Monday, April 23, 2012

Elder Holland is the Man!


First off, got your package! Woot! yay! It was sweet! I loved it sooo much :D The frisbee was sweet! One problem. My razor is series 1 and the head was series 5. So it didn´t work :/ but thanks :) We already ate the oreos hahah. Also the apron was sweet and the jeans fit! Also, rolos are yummy thanks! And thanks for the journal and new belt and other sweet stuff! Got my card too! I actuallly thought, hmm.. well, usually there´s money that goes with cards, but what will it be this time, ah yes! Unlimited money!!! hahah jk jk :P Anyways, it was awesome and a very good birthday! :) Thank you!

Élder Jeffery R. Holland is the man! So we went to Penha and listened to him and some 70´s as well, and man, it just was the sweetest thing ever!! yes, loved it. Elder Holland is so passionate about his mission it´s amazing. He really made me think about my mission and how I want it to be. Because he talked about how his mission was the changing part of his life. How his mission has shaped his life more than any other person he thinks. He made a promise saying that he cannot promise how many baptisms we will have, but he can promise that we all can have at least one conversion. Ourselves. Because we are all the Lord´s investigators. We are little bit ahead, had more lessons, showing more faith, etc. But we are still his investigators in the gospel. He said all our converts had the right to see us in 20 years and still be faithful in the gospel. He talked about how we are asking them to pray, read, show their faith, go to church, sacrifice, and do all this, so how can we not do it and let them down. they have that right from us. He said that it seems like the Savior was less impatient with a certain group of people. Pharissees, Saudees, (i have no idea how to spell those names) scribes, etc. Why? Because they preached something but they didn´t live it. they were hypocrites! Hypocrites were always the group of people most offensive to the lord, even during the restoration. (they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me). So, we cannot be hypocrites and we must live what we preach and we must be converted. This has made me think about where I want to be at the end of my mission and thought about what my mission should be doing for me. Well, I thought of 3 specific things that I wrote a lot more about in my journal. The mission prepares you to be a parent, a spouse, and a leader. These 3 things can be achieved through the mission. And with each one of those things, a firm faith in the gospel is required. So us being converts has to happen. We must be one of our converts from our mission. That is required. Man, just hearing and listening to Elder Holland was amazing. He said so much, I didn´t bring my notes, but I´ll show you someday. That was just something that stuck out to me and made me realize even more that a mission is not just a time of competition of how many baptisms and how you get them. But it is how you leave them and how you come out of it. He talked about that it is not leading them to baptism and that´s it. We are to lead them to baptism and then lead them to the temple. There´s this family that I baptized in Limoeiro that I´m going to be writing tons of letters and emails just trying to do everything I can so that when next Christmas comes around, they can be prepared to go to the temple. That is my goal, to be there and see them go through the temple. We are helping people become saved, but if we know anything about that, baptism is the start. We have baptism, confirmation, priesthood (for men), endowment, marriage sealing. That is our job. To invite others to come unto christ, by helping them receive the restored gospel, through faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the holy ghost, and for some it ends there. But it must continue, there is the last one that some missionaries forget about: endure to the end. We must help them with that part as well! anyways just some thoughts this week.

So anyways, the holland dealio was motivating and all :) hahah. We were working hard with alessandro this week. But it was so hard to find him at house, i was getting frustrated because in the end he was interviewed and wasn´t baptized. It was just a little bit frustrating but he is still progressing, we just got to teach him better. anyways, Valdir we have to wait to teach him, because going to church for him is against the law for him right now, because he can´t be super close to his daughter, so we have to wait on that now hahah. But we will continue again when the probation is over. It´s such a weird situation because everyone needs the gospel but you have to respect the law and all haha.

But the work is really progressing here, I just hope to see some better results this week. :) I´m so glad you turned back to windows computer :P haha Mac doesn´t even exist here really. I know it does, but no one has one. haha. Thanks for the money update, now i know i need to use my money more wisely hahaha. But now i have the other card, so we're good hahah :P I liked the story about phil :p that was great haha. I can´t wait for the day, when I will meet Grandpa Shaw. That´s a day i´ve been waiting for forever. Which means I also can´t wait for the second coming. Elder Squires was Elder Schenk´s companion. He´ll get random phone calls from doctors to make sure he´s okay as well hahah. He´s way awesome! I like him! Random thought, we were watching the restoration last night with deutsh (how do you write that?!) subtitles and now I´ve learned some of that language too :P I already decided after the mission I will learn japanese hahah. :)

Insert--This is what I wrote to Grant that helps make sense of the above:

You bring me such joy, Grant. I was reading through parts of my old journal from when Grandpa Shaw died and right after you were born. You were a light in my life then and now. It was really hard on me when Grandpa died and when you were born, you helped bring light back into our little family. I laughed really hard at one thing--when you 2 or 3 months old Phil asked me if we were going to keep you and I told him yes. He said, "Good, because I like him."

I got the picture of the tour of italy... man good tasting, sooooooooo jealous :P but that´s okay, I get rice and beans everyday ;) hahah. Well, hey! Grandma Merrill has that book of her history right? I want to read that someday. Also, I´m definitely going to do family history when I get back.

Anyways, I gots to go now and do stuff to relax and get ready to teach some peeps tonight :P We´ll be eating dinner with some of our investigators tonight. Let´s bring them to church this week ;) yes I agress lets! WOOT!!! I love you guys and I think of you often. I have random moments where I remember funny things and I laugh to myself. Like when dad was soooo mad because he had to go to the bathroom, but he was on the jetboat so he couldn´t. hahaha :P anyways, até mais! Eu amo vocês mutio. Mais do que vocês conseguem imaginar! Pois é! então, essa semana foi boa e essa semana vai ser mutio melhor. Por favor, não faça coisas que eu quero fazer :P estou bricando... só em poucinho. :P Tchau!!

com amor,
Élder Grant Shaw Merrill

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