Monday, September 15, 2014

New Companions coming from CTM

So this week I STILL don't have my camera charger... Woohoo!  This week was pretty chill. We worked hard and we had two families in church on Sunday and we're going to have a baptism this next week. As far as work goes, it was a good week, and once you get the hang of things, it's not so hard. I think that that's why time is FLYING by right now! Seriously, this week seemed like almost nothing! Anyways, the highlights of the week:

September 9, 2014
         Today was a really great p-day because I got to watch “How to Train Your Dragon 2.”  I know it shouldn’t be some sort of big accomplishment, but it was a super big deal to us missionaries.  I didn’t understand all of it because the audio was really bad and it was in Portuguese…BUT, it was still very good.  The rest of P-day went well and we were able to get a lot accomplished, at least in the evening.  One of our problems in this area is that there are only women home in the afternoon and mission rules don’t allow us to teach unless there are three of us.  We found two couples who were at home in the afternoon, so that will finally give us someone to teach. 
         I saw that freaking cat that keeps pooping in our garage again, only this time it was in our kitchen!  I almost had a heart attack because it ran out from under the table and I almost kicked it!

September 10, 2014
         Nothing super interesting happened today.  One of our investigators broke up with his girlfriend today and he was a little sad, but we were happy because now he said that he will live the law of chastity and not work on Sundays anymore. He is really getting ready for his baptism.

September 13, 2014
         I had a division with Elder Tamanho this week, and he has a little bit more experience than me as a missionary, and we tore apart our area! We taught like bosses and made a ton of contacts. I lot happened today with splits, getting locked out of our house, having to sleep over at the other elders apartment, and lots of good lessons.  One of our investigators is working on getting married so that they can be baptized.  This is a super common problem in Brazil especially for the poor because it is very expensive to get married here.  We made several new contacts today.  One of our members made us a cake to take home and eat.  We shared it with the other Elders who let us stay in their apartment as a thank you.   As far as feedback from my zone leader,  welll.... He didn't say hardly anything! That's a good thing, because he said that I teach well, I work well, and that he didn't have anything to tell me. BUT I noticed that he contacts people REALLY well, so I asked him how he does it and he helped me learn a little bit about 'reading' people. I learned that there's a huge difference between judging and reading people. Well... not a whole lot, but as we read people, we can find things to talk about, conversation starters, etc. As we talk with people, he also taught me how to guide them to where I want them to be.  I learned  how to start talking about something that they want to talk about and eventually get to a topic that I want to talk about. Anyways, that was the biggest thing that I learned on the division.  It was a fun and productive split and I actually learned something useful. 
September 14, 2014
         Man, I was praying and praying that someone would show up at church today, but it was 9:20 and none of our investigators were there…ugh!  BUT, as an answer to prayer, two of  the families that we have been teaching showed up late.  We also had a guy that we have been trying to reactivate come to church.  He is super interesting, smart, and funny.  He has a ton of reasons for being inactive, but he also knows that he needs to change.  When he was younger his dream was to serve a mission.  He was active in seminary and institute and he even broke up with his girlfriend so that he could serve a mission.  But, his bishop told him that his mission was “to marry”  and he crushed his dreams of serving a mission. Later he entered into a depression and turned to drugs.  Bu recently he has shaped up his life and turned things around.  That bishop later ended up leaving the church and was responsible for stunting the growth of a lot of youth in the church. Fortunately for this guy, he is able to put the past in the past and move forward.
I don't worry about the gossip anymore, it's basically stopped because there was no basis, and no one even talks about those rumors anymore.  I got the help of one of the members of our ward who knows all of the missionary secrets and he put a stop to it. Besides, there's a lot juicier stuff going on that people are getting wrapped up in, and I'm trying hard to keep as far away as possible from it. Sometimes we have to know what's happening so that we won't get fooled or have one pulled over on us – like looking out for muddy spots so that you don’t fall in.  Other times it is just better to mind your own business. I'm not sure what's going on exactly but it is big. A lot of missionaries are pretty pissed off right now and I don’t think that is good for the mission. Yeah, I'm just going to keep on working and keeping to myself. Haha that's what I've figured out is that I can get pissed off, depressed, and all huffy and try to start a rebellion or I can be obedient, humble, and more like Christ and work on what I need to do to better myself.  It's a good thing that I am where I am, because you can be basically forgotten here. There are no sisters because it is too dangerous for them here,  and the only other elders live a LONG ways away in another city. I'm lovin it so far and I'm not too worried. I've already learned a LOT about myself while in the field, and I've surprised myself these days with my ability to keep calm. 
This Monday, we found out that Elder Benitez and I will train the language for some Americans who have been VISA waiters in the states. They are coming tomorrow from the Sau Paulo CTM's two-week refresher course in Portuguese. Super exciting!  It's going to be hard and I'm going to love it! Elder Benitez and I are still going to live in the same house, work in the same ward, and so it really won't be a huge change. We still don't know their names, but we'll find out tomorrow afternoon. We're going to work super hard and I'll make history in our area! ;) haha It'll be an adventure, that's for sure.

Tchau! Love you!
Elder Colvin

PS. We went to the center of the city this week and took out some money and had lunch in Subway. OH MY GOSH I MISS THE SMELL OF SUBWAY!!!!!!! I almost had a heart attack!

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