So the family that seemed to be “running away” last week? Turns out that the mother is having a lot of problems with her current pregnancy and so couldn´t meet with us. They are still very interested and we have an “almost” certain baptism on Sunday of Allan. A very intelligent kid; he understands and even anticipates our lessons. Even the content of them. He was able to correctly link points from past lessons into current ones. A future missionary, perhaps? The sad part was: If I had waited for two more hours before getting angry, it would have been smooth sailing.
But anywho, wonderful to hear about nieces and nephews. They are, by far, the ones I miss the most. Yes, mother. Pride in your children is alright. President Hinckley had a large chunk of it placed on the girls in his family. We marked several upcoming baptisms and the ward seems to be a little more forth coming with people to teach. I think a large part of that comes from the fact that “Girl´s and Boy´s Camp” ended Tuesday, with several less-actives and recent converts going.
As for me, I´m still recovering from the cold. Not too great, as I still have Skittles and pop left. (The members who can´t give lunch always provide something with pop, and my companion is doing his “I´ve got to look great” diet.) Yesterday, we had a youth get baptized (son of a member) and I was invited to participate in the confirmation circle. It is a wonderful experience to be able to use the Priesthood power to bless the lives of the children of God. It gets used frequently here, as many wish for blessings of health, and members invite us to participate in circles for blessings of comfort. I´ve gotten back on a hymn streak, and I LOVE IT! There is nothing like the power of music to drive away the woes and troubles of the heart. I do feel like this is one of the few times I can use English here, as it is for personal strengthening. Despite any reports to the contrary, I´m in good spirits, and I´m glad that I finally have the certainty in life that there is no burden that can´t be lifted by the Gospel. To paraphrase President Fielding Smith, “Only the gospel of Jesus Christ is the cure for the troubles of the world.”
Yesterday, we had an interesting Gospel Principles class taught by Elder Moura about the Holy Ghost. He used an example of cleaning products to illustrate cleaning the inner vessel so that we may be worthy of the Spirit. I was impressed what happened when he drew a line on the board and asked the audience (mostly women) what you need to clean the house. After a second, comments began flying so fast that Elder Moura couldn´t keep up. He then asked what you do to clean yourself to be worthy. A silence permeated for about 15 seconds, and then only a few answers came. I was left impressed by the fact that, when it comes to things of the gospel, people were less sure of their answers. Granted, it was a Principles class; although there were many members who knew the material there.
I hope we all study the material enough so that we don´t have to wonder what the right answer is. As Dad and I remembered from an Assemblies of God meeting: the guys who look for counterfeit dollars spend their days studying the real dollar and not all the counterfeits They train themselves with the real thing so that they know instantly the real thing. Elder Moura said yesterday: “We are spirit beings having physical experiences, not physical beings having spiritual experiences.”
Please spend a little more time this week studying, praying, and living the gospel this week. You will find the joy that comes from doing so. It´s a joy that can only be given by a loving Father in Heaven, who is in the details of it all. Please “be not faithless, but believing.”
Eu amo vocês!