Week 67: Substance to the Soul

Hello loved ones!!!!! This week was another wonderful and full and great week. This week we saw many miracles. We threw a Halloween party and it was DOPE.  A ton of people went and it turned out great. Which is a miracle because holy cow we did not realize that we do not know how to plan a Halloween party hahahha BUT thankfully, it finished well with the help from the members and Heavenly Father. I’ll send a few pics lol

So this actividade took up a lot of our time this week, but Heavenly Father blessed us because of our sacrifice; we found a new family to teach! A member brought them to the activity and they loved it, and yesterday they went to church!!

Also, another HUGE MIRACLE, Filipe’s mom, (Filipe who is preparing to go on a mission) is an eternal investigator of about 10 years, going to church faithfully and wanting to be baptized. But, she was never baptized because she is a widow and she receives money from her late husband’s work, but she is now living with another man for almost 20 years, they are basically married just not officially because they thought they would lose the money from her other husband’s work if they got married, and they need that money. BUUUTTTTTT THANK HEAVENS my mission president is a lawyer, and he told us a number to call to ask if she truly loses it or not, because apparently the law about this moved recently, I don’t know it’s complicated, but ANYWAYS WE CALLED AND IT TURNED OUT SHE DOESN’T LOSE IT AND SO THEY CAN GET MARRIED AND WE ARE SOOOO HAPPY buuuutttttttt Satan is annoying still and is still placing obstacles in their path so that she can get married. But it will all work out, pray for her, and Heavenly Father will do His part, this I know.

This week I had a very special experience at church yesterday. Yesterday was our Stake Conference, and the missionaries sang in the choir, so we had to sit in the front, long story short, I sat basically right next to the pulpit, and so when the talkers gave their talk, I had to turn my head backwards and anyways it a super uncomfortable two hours for me haha BUT I prayed and asked Heavenly Father that He could let me have a sacred experience and He gave it to me. Every single talk touched my heart profoundly, I don’t even remember what was said, but the Spirit brought to my spirit something heavenly in every single talk, and finally I learned the importance of our worship. I read a talk from the November 2016 conference from Bishop Dean M. Davies, “The Blessings of Worship” and it also touched my heart profoundly.

When was the last time that, in a normal church meeting, you felt that you were truly worshipping Heavenly Father and our Savior? When was the last time that you felt “a sense of majestic awe and profound thanksgiving”?

“When we worship in spirit, we invite light and truth into our souls.”

We create substance to our souls; the more we lose ourselves in worship to our God (which doesn’t only mean on Sunday at church, but also how we show our adoration to Him in every thought and word and deed), the more substance is added to our souls, and the more substance that is added to our souls, the more we can find ourselves, because there will be more of us to find!

So how do worship God, lose ourselves in this worship, and subsequently find ourselves with added substance to our souls?

“We approach Him with incomprehensible feelings of wonder and awe. We marvel in gratitude at the goodness of God. We ponder God’s word, and that fills our soul with light and truth. We comprehend spiritual vistas that can be seen only through the light of the Holy Ghost. As we worship, our souls are refined… our hearts are drawn out in praise to our blessed God… we hallow and honor Him continually.. we open our hearts to the healing power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ… Our lives become the token and expression of our worship.”

I humbly testify of this; so much light and pure love and hope and faith has entered in my life and has become part of my soul as I have searched to lose my life in worship to my God. He is so good, gente. I love Him very much. I know that He is real, that He loves us, and that He is merciful.

I love you all!!!!!!! Have a wonderful week!!!

Photos!!
1. Halloween!!!!!!!!! Erick lol
3. Rafa lol
4. Demonic children hahhahahhaha jk..
5. Filipe, who is planning on going on a mission in January!
6. Our haunted house got a little out of hand…. hahahhahahaha jk its just make up dont worry
7-8. The love of my life

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Week 66: Miracles and miracles and miracles!

Hello loved ones!!! It is crazy how fast the time is passing….

This week was so good, Heavenly Father placed so many tender mercies and even huge miracles in our path. He is so good.

This week we fasted. A lot. And Heavenly Father saw it. It’s interesting, because you know who else knew that we were fasting? Satan. Literally the two days that we fasted this week, were the only two days since we have arrived here in Butiá that people offered food to us hahaha seeeeyaaaaa. But anyways, we fasted for two specific purposes; to find God´s elect, and the second, to find men to prepare to receive the Melquesideque Priesthood. (Forgot how to spell it in english.) And LITERALLY the same day that we fasted, both times, Heavenly Father answered our fast and prayers. We found a man that accepted us into his home, and he told us that we were angels, on a divine mission, and he accepted a baptismal date!! And the other miracle, the other fast we talked with three men, members of the church, that are elders in perspective. They opened up to us, told us their difficulties, and decided to make the difference necessary in their lives to be able to receive the Priesthood. (!!!!!!!)

It is incredible to me that something so small and simple as a fast makes Heavenly Father bless us so incredibly much. Every day I am more in awe at how merciful He is with us when we make but the smallest effort to show our love to Him.

ALSO other miracle!!!! We started working with a family that fell away from the church two years ago, and stopped completely with everyone. A family that the father was the first counselor to the Branch President, that already went through the temple, etc. All of the members told us about them when we arrived here in Butiá, telling us to visit them, etc, that they had been trying to reactivate them for a very long time, but they didn’t want anything to do with the church. So we started visiting them, and it was chill, they let us leave a message, and we started to be friends with them for real; we felt the pure love of Christ for them, we felt how much He truly wanted them back in the fold. Anyways, the miracle is that yesteday, they showed up at church!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! For the first time in two years!!!!!!!! Church had already started but I was in front trying to call an investigator to see if he would come and I saw them show up and I screamed and ran to them and I hugged her and we cried hahahhaha it was such a good feeling.

Loved ones!!!! It is so so so worth the effort to bring a lost sheep back into the fold. Never give up! Never give up doing your visits, serving them, inviting them back, showing your love and the love of the Savior for them. One day they will return, and we will feel the same joy that the father of the prodigal son felt. And we can have a party like he also had 🙂

And so, this week was wonderful. Obviously there were some downs. There always are. We are living in a fallen world with wicked people, we are all imperfect spirits housed in an imperfect body, but God is real, Jesus Christ atoned for us, and we are the Saints of His church in these Latter Days. What more reason do we need to rejoice each and every moment of each and every day?

I love you all so much!!!! Make an put Christ as the center of your life every day.

Com amor,
Sister Smith

Photos!
1. Minha filha. I love the heck out of her. We are literally sisters seperated at birth2. My rain cap lol everyone said I looked like a butterfly, but a dumb butterfly…. hahaha
3. I love hammocks way too much
4. Lovely Brasil
5. Singing in the rain
6. We found this mask in our house hahahahah wut
7. Lovely Brasil pt. 2

minhaponchohammocksBrasilSingingMaskBrasil2

Week 65: INSANITYYYYYYYYY I don’t know what else to say here hahaha

Hello loved ones! This week was INSANE. Literally insane. I don’t have the time nem the resources to say everything that I happened but I will say two things that I learned in a very real sense this week: 1) What the pure love of Christ truly looks like; when someone forgets completely and totally about herself to put the needs of another above her own. (AKA my companion and my roommates this week). 2) That Satan is real and when we are determined and happy and living righteously, that when we are on the brink of something really good and miraculous and life changing, he will come at us with all that he has, and he has a lot. But this leads me to the other thing that I learned. That, exactly as we continue being determined, happy, obedient, and trusting in the Lord, the adversary never will have more power than us. Our spirit can be much much much stronger than our flesh, we only have to want and trust.

So this week my perspective of many things changed for the much better, and every day I am awe-struck at how much the Lord is teaching me here.

Because of the things that happened this week we weren’t able to execute all the plans we made. But, we planned a dope activity for the youth and almost 20 youth showed up, and they LOVED it. And I laughed até o pó. We did a “tree of life” activity and we had to guide them and they were blindfolded and it also made part of our english class so they had to follow my instructions in English to find the tree of life (we taped candy to a tree behind the church hahaha) and all the while the other jovens and adults were “Satan” trying to tempt them and confuse them. And it was soooooo funny but in the end a super strengthening experience. I love love love love love this area and these members so much, they are helping us so much in our quest to open this area and find the elect of God and make this branch a ward. I know it is going to happen. The Lord does nothing until after the trial of our faith, but after the trial of our faith, He does everything.

I love you all so much! Thank you for your prayers. I will need them especially now, pray for me that I will be able to stay in this area until the end of my mission.

PICTURES:

1-3. Yesterday we were knocking on doors for EVER without any immediate results, and out of nowhere came this dog that looked like a lion. He turned out to be the highlight of our night hahaha
4-5. This is what happens in our family home evenings hahaha

LionDog3LionDog2LionDogFHE2FHE

Week 64: Fogo nos ossos tchê

Hello loved ones!!!! This week was caarrraazzzzyyyyyyyy. Crazy good!!! So I received my new daughter…. Sister Silva!! She is from São Paulo. She is WONDERFUL. She is super chill and excited to work.

So we arrived in our area Wednesday night. Our area is the tiny little town of Butiá, in the interior of Porto Alegre. And it is ADORABLE here. I already love it with all of my heart. It’s super green and perfect and I love it.

Unfortunately, here in Butiá there are no street signs with the name of the streets, and no one knows the name of the streets. But, us, as missionaries, we live by the map and we live by street signs, so we spent 90% of the last few days wandering in circles completely lost hahahaha. It was hilarous and a good bonding experience. But we got to know our area, and the Lord placed little tender mercies in our path. We accidentally found a less active and her husband, and worked with them this week, and they went to church yesterday! Also, we are going to start preparing her husband to receive the Priesthood! This branch only needs six more men to be ordained to the higher Priesthood and to maintain a frequency of 80, and in January it can already be turned into a ward!! So we, my daughter and I, and the other two sisters of the branch, Sister Simião and Sister Gerlach, are working até o PÓ to reach this goal. Presidente Cruz told us that he placed each of us here in this branch for a very special reason. For me and Sister Simião, the reason is because we are crazy and excited and we will liven up this branch hahaha. Thank you Presidente. But for realsies I am STOKED to be here. I feel a confirmation in my heart every day that this is where I am supposed to be, doing what I am supposed to be doing, with whom I am supposed to be doing it, and it is soooo good. God is so good. We are here with “fire in our bones” for this work.

I found a DOPE scripture that I LOVED that I wanted to share with all of you my loved ones. In Deuteronomy 4:29-31,36:

“But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.
When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the Lord thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice; (For the Lord thy God is a merciful God); he will not forsake thee neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them….
And thou heardest his words out of the midst of the fire.”

God will never forget us, and he is merciful. Above all of the things that I know about him, this is one of the most powerful to me, that he is merciful. And so he will never forsake us, and he will never forget his promises. And sometimes we need to be in the midst of the fire to open our ears to hear his voice. But when we do, we will find him, and he will never forsake us.

I love this gopsel and I love you all and I love being a missionary!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you for your prayers, know that I pray for you all sempre.

Photos!! Finally hahaha

1. My lovely roomates
2. Arroz com leite e torta de bolacha; my favorite sobremesa ever
3. My new daughter, Sister Silva!!
4-5. What we do during training lol

roomiesSisSilvasobremesaTrainingTraining2

Week 63: Transfers and training and whitewashing, oh my

Loved ones!!!

This week was insane. Some of the lowest lows and highest highs I have ever had in my life. The week started off assim: we had four baptisms planned for this Saturday!! We were planning everything certinho and BOOM all four dropped on the same day. Two dissapeared; they had to travel last minute. The other two drank coffee. So this week was rough. But, I had an experience very very special; I was feeling dissapointed, feeling that I was doing something wrong, that I was missing something. I asked Heavenly Father what it was, and He showed it to me! And I had the opportunity to repent, and it was wonderful. Repentance is the most miraculous act of faith that we can show to Heavenly Father, and His forgiveness that always follows, even more miraculous. He is always there, waiting for us to return to him with full purpose of heart. And so it ended up being a really really good week, we were able to mark a firm baptismal date with Tayglor, and he is stoked, and we were stoked. And, it was in that moment, literally, that we received a phone call. Transfers. And I was transferred……. It was literally the last thing that I expected; I was in shock for like four hours. Literally until I had to pack my bags I wasn’t believing it hahaha. But, the Lord calls, and I obey. And He called me to train again, and so I will open an area training! I still don’t know where hahaha I’ll let you guys know when I know.

So I’m starting a new adventure, and it will probably be my last adventure here on the mish… which is INSANE. But I am going  to give it all that I have and trust in the Lord to do the rest. I hope that you all do the same in your lives. Trust in Him. That is one of the greatest things I have learned on the mish, and one of the most precious treasures that I have and will always keep with me. He is so good, He knows all, and He loves us. Trust in this.

I love you all!!!!!
Com amor,
Sister Smith

 

 

P.S. Sorry for the lack of photos!! Hopefully I’ll send a few sometime soon in the future hahaha

Week 62: The Lord’s people do not fear!

Hello loved ones!!! Another week of hard work. And another week that I don’t remember much that happened hahahha BUT what I do remember is that Sister Hailstone and I saw many miracles. First of all, in this one week we have had together, we have learned SO MUCH from one another. This transfer was not a coincidence.

One of the many miracles of this week was General Conference!!!!! It was SO GOOD. Na real, it was really different because we were able to take many investigators to watch and listen, many very important investigators that have had doubts and questions. And so the whole time I was more focused on them, on what they’d think of the talks, when a talker (? hahaha) said something that I knew they needed to hear, I just thought, “Oh! I hope they’re listening! That is exactly what they need to hear!” One family really really special went and THANK DEAR HEAVENLY FATHER so many inspired blessed children of His spoke about the Book of Mormon, which was exactly what this very special family needed to hear. The dad, Sergio, came up to me afterwards and said, “Now I understand why you girls are always trying to convince us to read that book. We are going to read it now for sure.” (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!)

And another young man, Tayglor, he went to three of the quatro sessions and he LOVED IT. He is the young man that we started to teach in the hospital because he was using lots and lots and lots of drugs. But now, he had left EVERYTHING except cigarrette, which we are helping him with. But it is a huge miracle. It is incredible to me to see the Atonement of Jesus Christ work so actively in the lives of people that, even though they don’t understand it very well, they are doing their best to change their lives through Him.

I’ll write a few things that I loved loved loved from the conference. It’s a mixture of quotes and inspired thoughts that the Holy Ghost brought to my mind, lol I’m not sure which is which. But this is what I got out of it.

  • The divinity within us reminds us that we are all just walking each other home.
  • God is a God of hope, of light, of illumination, and love, all that elevate us until the heavens.
  • Every piece of bread that is torn for us is individual, just like how He was torn for us, each one of us, individually.
  • Be careful with toxic perfectionism; just do your best and trust that the Lord will do the rest
  • We need to decide which path we are going to take every day; the path of kindness and generosity and love, or the path of irritation, anger, and lack of faith
  • To be full of light and joy, we need to repent every day
  • Even though this life is short, it is incredibly significant, eternally significant.
  • God is not a God of coincidences
  • Our good works are recorded in heaven; if no one sees them here, the heavens see and rejoice in them.
  • Let us be saints full of faith and hope, keeping our covenants, praying fervently, and we will see miracles happen.
  • “Remember to place Jesus Christ in the center of your life today”
  • The Lord’s people do not fear.
  • And all of this is as simple as making a decision. Make the decision to be happy, make the decision to trust in God and have faith, make the decision to serve others, make the decision to be happy, and you will be.

I love you all!!! Thank you so much for all of your prayers. I am so grateful for every single one of you. God is good. Trust in Him. Love Him. And everthing will work out for your good.

Com amor,
Sister Smith

New Companion: Sis Hailstone

SisHailstone

Week 59

HELLO LOVED ONES!!!!!!
This week was a week full of miracles!!!! Unfortunately I don’t have time to write them all!!
I will write more next week! This week is so photos! Lol love you all!!!!!
Photos!
1. We did an activity about free agency with our little investigators using balloons and needles lol
2. This one’s for mama; there are SO MANY horses here. You would love it.
3. This is what we do waiting for our bus
4. Gaucho day
5. I LOVE living with four sisters it is the best thing ever
6. I painted Sister Marque’s hair and she did my make up lol

agencthorseswaitingguachodayroomiesmakeovers