Deivid came to my ward to tell me he was going on a mission. (Read about Deivid's miraculous baptism last January here.) I saw some fruits of my labors yesterday when he decided to share a scripture that helped the Sunday school teacher explain a deep principle. He whipped out his smart phone and went to town with the scripture lds app. It was rad.
I went on a lot of exchanges with the elders in my zone. It was a great experience because I learned that I have a lot to work on in order to reach a high level of teaching, ministering among my elders, and comfort for the elders that may need help in the future.
On Friday I grabbed a bus with Elder Santos and headed over to Ala São Marcos to interview two of the elder´s friends who were getting ready for baptism. The bus ride was a great because I could grab some zzzs but I was sadly woken up by the glass window beside me when the bus took a sharp right turn. To make a long story short and to sum things up, the interviews went great and both of them passed. Wooo!
We had some pretty great experiences. The President told us that we need to conserve our Book of Mórmons for the people who will truly read them. Yeah, I know. It's really different than a European mission. We have to hold back our Book of Mormons so that we don´t run out. Elder Santos told me that there was a mentally retarded man who didn't know how to read and possessed a Book of Mormon. We clapped our hands outside of his gate and he came out to attend us. He gladly let us in, but I had the strangest feeling when I walked into the house. I saw his mentally ill wife on the couch smiling at us and I felt bad that we were there to take away a Book of Mormon. I thought to myself again, "let's ask them where it is." Elder Santos asked them if they knew where the blue book was and they said they gave it away. Whew....that made things a lot easier.
Then I remembered what Jonathan told me one time in an email. "Elder, people-sweep the house." I then asked them with confidence, "Is your son home?" It seems like a weird question to ask someone you completely don't know. But I felt prompted because I sensed that there was another man behind the kitchen wall. And surely there was. We taught him. He understood and shared with us his fears and doubts that he had been struggling with these past weeks. I won't go into details but we used a fresh new Book of Mormon out of my torn up messenger bag to answer his doubts and to calm his fears. He got really happy and asked us where the church was located. Yeah. I say success to that. Instead of taking away an unused Book of Mormon, we gave one away to someone who needed the doctrinal answers.
When we passed through their gate to leave and go to the next planned appointment, Elder Santos looked at me and said, "O Senhor é tão misericordioso com os seus servos que seguem os seus mandamentos colocados pelos profetas. eu vi um milagre lá. Cara, aquilo foi bem legal. Nós fomos para pedir de volta o livro de mórmon mas em vez de tirá-lo dele, nós demos pra alguem que necessitava. Aquilo foi bom de mais." (" The Lord is so merciful to his servants who follow his commandments placed by the prophets . I've just seen a miracle there. Dude, that was pretty cool. We went back to get the Book of Mormon but instead of taking it from him we gave to someone who needed it. That was too good . ")
(translated by the mama using google translate. Serrana or Hikari if you are reading this please send me any corrections!)