We baptized Gabriela!!! It was so wonderful to see how happy she was leaving the water. She just shines. She´s turning 12 in the next couple months, so we´re going to get the YW President involved right now instead of the Primary. I´m so excited to see where this girl goes. We are still teaching the rest of her family - please keep Matheus, Socorro, and Aucildes in your prayers this week! I just want this family to be sealed so badly!
And, due to some health complications, my beloved daughter, Sister F de Oliviera, was transferred today. We had a rough week with some scary nights and in the end, Presidente Soares decided that she needed to be closer to him and Sister Soares and needed more help than I could give. I miss her SO MUCH already but it will be better for everyone. I need to let someone else help her now.
BUT WAIT. Presidente Soares thinks that I need the experience to continue training, so I´m now serving with....Sister Arévelo!!!! Who is from ARGENTINA!!!! And has 1 month in the field! Hahaha. Looks like I’ll be learning some Spanish now (Ak? Rach? Dad? Elise?). I´ve gotten comfortable with Brasilian companions, so looks like I’ll be returning to fervently praying for the gift of tongues. Expect lots of stories with language-barrier hilarity to come :p
This month I´ve been struggling with the eternal debate - what is the difference between Serving with all your heart might mind and strength and Man should not run faster than he has strength. Seriously! The scriptures can be quite contradictory sometimes! My LZ recommended that i read the discurso de Presidente Uchtdorf from Janeiro´s Liahona - The Best Time to Plant a Tree. Here´s a quote that really stood out (I´m translating from Portuguese, so please forgive any errors):
With almost all certainty, we are going to fall short - at least for a little while. But instead of becoming discouraged, we can regain (?) our strength, for this understanding removes the pressure to be perfect right here and right now... Remember that even though we don’t reach our final destination immediately, we have progressed along the way that leads to it. This is what matters, and it matters a lot! Even though we don’t reach the finish line, the simple fact that we continued on the journey makes us better than we were before.
When I got here in Caicó, I was so ready to come in and be the best i could possibly be - be an amazing trainer, help get the ward excited about missionary work, teach English classes, teach piano classes, open a new area with lots of baptisms and investigators and just be a good missionary! All these are very worthy goals. But we´re human and we have limits. I got caught up in where I WANTED to be that I couldn’t see how much we had already accomplished.
So, I’m not perfect. I´m not even close. I´m not the missionary that I wish I was and I’m not the person that I have the potential to become. Yet. BUT I’m happy with who I am and what I’ve accomplished. We don’t make a goal, and then wake up the next day with the goal accomplished. We try and we fail and we get up again and try and little by little we become a little bit better. And every day, every week, I become a little bit more like the Savior. It will be a lifetime process but it’s worthwhile.
So - be happy. Look at what you´ve done! You are a child of God! And He loves you! And He´s helping you!
Lots of love,