Monday, February 15, 2016

Ain't Nothing Going to Keep me Down!!

Sorry if I forgot someone’s birthday or anniversary!!! I think Luke´s is coming up soon?? HAPPY BIRTHDAY LUKE!!!!!!!!!
Where to begin, TONS of rain this week, which was super fun! To answer questions, I’m actually not freezing too bad! I wear 2 coats sometimes but most of the time, just the black thin one. I’ve always been one for the cold! But still, this week was really messy with rain and wind! But that doesn’t stop the work of the Lord!
On Tuesday we had an activity of the Ward for Carnival, which was super fun!! All the missionaries were there and it was an awesome opportunity to get to know the members and show that we support them. We ended up having 3 investigators there and Carlos ended up dancing with the Bishops mother-in-law, which was hilarious!!! It was a party for sure!! We really enjoyed interacting with the investigators and the members as well. We did the game during the activity called Noah´s ark, which everyone loved! Lots of confetti and streamers, sister Moraes was going crazy because Carnival wasn’t too big here as it is in Brazil!
So we do a lot of searching in this area and one thing that I’ve found is that a lot of people know the church in this area. Almost everyone we talk to knows the church, which is awesome!! We find a lot of people who know members as well which is a great way for us to talk to them. We found 2 people this week that already talked to missionaries in the past. We’re working on find those that really will progress but we find so many that know the church! One of the ladies we found, Olinda, actually has gone to church a few times and has been friends with a few members in our ward for 20 years. It’s super awesome to find that the members are being good examples and inviting friends to know more. The other lady, Cristiana, talked to the missionaries 8 years ago and is from Brazil!!! We ended up being invited to eat dinner and have lunch with her on Sunday! Man it felt good not to cook!  She’s super awesome! We loved teaching her and getting to know her! She has 4 kids, 2 are in Brazil and the other 2 are at home, Raphael (5) and Daniel (18 months). She’d talked to the missionaries through her brother that was being taught by the missionaries.
We met another family this week too! Her name is Paula and her son Rui! She just had a baby a month ago and her son Rui is 8 years old so we’ll work with them too! We have lots of people in potential that we just need to keep up with! It’s coming but very slowly!
As we were trying to arrange a car ride to an activity on Sunday one guy actually came to us and asked us who we were. It was awesome!! We explained that we were missionaries for the church. He didn’t really want to talk but then we asked if he wanted to stop smoking because he was talking about his smoking addiction. Well we got to talking and explained that we were helping Carlos stop smoking and drinking as well. He became interested and ended up giving us his number and address! So cool how all you have to do is find what the person wants in life and connect it to the gospel.
We have a huge list of people that we know and want to pass by and help progress. We have met and taught so many people that I can’t even begin to explain each of them. As of right now we have people we just need to help them progress. It’s all super exciting!
Oh also, haha I think of lost some of my coordination! We were walking down the stairs to leave a predio and it was super slick and the lights went off. I slipped on the stairs and landed right on my elbow. I heard a sicken pop and the rest of the night I couldn’t move it or my shoulder. The whole area was black and blue with a huge golf ball sized lump on the tip. I got really worried so we went to the hospital and luckily nothing is broken, just all my muscles in that area are inflamed and swollen. Bruised the bone, which is just awesome! Nothing gonna keep me down!!!
This Sunday we had a conference in Amial and we were invited if we had an investigator there. We did so we went. Our stake president was the guest speaker and his wife as well. We got there and our investigator ended up leaving half way through. So we got permission to stay for the rest of the time. I really needed it just to feel the strength of the missionaries. The missionaries were the choir and they sang `The Prayer” and `I am a Child of God` which put me into tears. My companion has been really struggling with the mission change, which has made things really hard. I want nothing more to help her but it’s been really hard to find a way. Those 2 songs just brought so much peace because in the fight to help her stay and be happy here I’d been getting down on myself for not doing more. I just love the power of music. I’m so thankful for the mission and everything that I’ve learned. It’s a fight everyday to make sure she’s okay and work. But I’ve been so blessed with a great ward, with a great area, and with people to support me. I can’t ask for better.
Also, I’m super excited for Marley!!! I actually thought a lot about staying longer here on the mission! I already sent my letter to president this week asking to extend! If I can’t extend for another 30 days, maybe he’ll let me extend so I can see her before I go home! I don’t know what will happen but I should know soon! I love the mission so much. Even when the trials come it makes me realize the growth that comes from resistance. His will be done! Love you all so much!!

Sister Hillam 

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