This week was considerably different from the last few. We were able to leave daily to work in the area and didn't have quite as many stressful moments in the office. I say not quite as many because life here is always exciting and something new always pops up.
1) Miracle of the Fast- So a couple weeks ago I definitely forgot to fast (general conference threw me off), so I decided to do one this last Saturday going into Sunday. The motive behind it at the beginning was for two particular investigators. I was thinking a lot about what they still needed to do to be baptized, why they weren't progressing, etc.
But as we began to walk to church on Sunday I found myself praying instead very fervently for a miracle to happen at church today. Preach My Gospel talks about how our prayers and what we ask for should be led by the Spirit, and that seemed to be what was happening. As we waited at church, neither of these two investigators was showing up. But, randomly, two youth approached us and, embarrassed, asked how they could enter. Kind of shell-shocked, we invited them in and they stayed for the meetings. Neither actually live in our area, but I could see that absolutely the Lord was showing me that He is able to work miracles, I just need to look for the right ones.
2) Go to Work- So as I said, this week we were able to leave daily to work. Which was exciting as there weren't many current investigators to visit after these last few crazy weeks. So we set to work finding people. It was not easy going, we were working in an extremely rich area, but we still managed to teach a few lessons, visit a couple less actives, and have some exciting experiences. I love doing the Lord's work. It is so rewarding.
3) Interesting Persons- So, as is custom in a missionary's life, we met a number of interesting people this week. Though I must say this week was more eventful then some. First, on Tuesday, Elder Cushing and I ran across a guy that spoke English. Apparently he lived in the US for sixteen years, his dad was a professor at NYU, and he studied at Harvard. Eventually he returned to Brazil, where he has sold his soul to the devil in order to perform miraculous feats, he is the Ju-jit-su champion of Brazil, gets in fights daily and had broken his hand hitting a guy's face the other day. So that was nuts.
Then we met a man in the notary office who also lived in the US for a while but spoke horrible English. He was a missionary for another church there, but was unable to get a new Visa now. He told us he'd tried to ask Barack Obama for a letter of recommendation but never got a response and might have to call him. He was a nice guy and told us we were doing the Lord's work. He writes songs and wanted to do an arrangement for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. We encouraged him to go for it.
4) Steadfast- By far the hardest thing I was asked to do this week came on Thursday when the President called. He informed us that a missionary wanted to go home. This is a really good missionary but he was being insistent, and it looked like he would leave on Sunday. President and the assistants were out of town. So President sent us to this elder's area to bring him to the office to stay with us for four days. President told me that something needed to happen in these four days to change this elder's perspective. That was kind of a lot of pressure.
As I got to know and love this missionary (he's a Brazilian and an awesome guy), I prayed like crazy that he would stay on the mission. That something would happen to change his mind. Honestly, none of these other things from this past week seemed nearly as important to me in my prayers. Well, there's still a day left but I believe he will be staying. And he's taught me a lot in the process. My biggest desire on the mission isn't to baptize a lot. It's to be a good example to others here. To help them be better. To be an example to my friends back home. I just want to serve those who need me at this point of time in my life.
So that was this week. Full of prayer. Full of excitement. Full of all the good stuff that makes missions the best two years. I was thinking recently about the grand majesty of this work. We, members of the church and especially missionaries, are part of a work that has been prophesied of since the beginning of time. And that work is now being hastened, meaning that this particular point in time will be remembered for generations to come! What are we doing now to be worthy of that charge? Are we the best we can be? Because the Lord expects it of us.
I love you all. I hope you know that. Be good. Try to be better. That's why we're here.