Monday, March 21, 2011

I could feel the Spirit guiding me . . .

A porcelain resting spot perfectly placed for the weary traveller.

We stumbled onto this photogenic little stream.

Elder Siqueira next to the stream -- notice the left bank, and how high the water has been after a storm.

This week was rather normal as far as a week in the life of a missionary goes; not super interesting, but always a little different than the previous weeks.

Elder Jackson got a package from his family. They sent him some “curry” mix. So on Monday, he made up the sauce and put it with rice. It smelled pretty good, so I ate it – and I actually enjoyed it. However, it was a bit spicy for me. Here´s something I think most people don’t realize; Brazilian food is NOT spicy. Hence, I have not eaten anything spicy for a long time. In conclusion, it made my throat really dry, making it hard to sleep. This condition lasted for 2 nights, with little sleep – which makes for rough days of work. Also, it caused my body to increase in mucus activity, making me kind of congested, and to this day my body is still making excess mucus, all from one plate of curry. Maybe I’m allergic to the stuff?

Friday night I had an intense baptismal interview with one of Elder J. Lima's and Elder Jackson’s investigators. We learn in D&C 20:37* of the requirements of baptism, mainly a broken heart and a contrite spirit, or in other words, humility. Someone during a stake leadership conference asked President Tavares how we will know if a person is truly humble and ready for baptism, and he had an elder stand up and then he had an elderly member stand up and said to us, “Now imagine this full grown man confessing his sins to this boy -- can you get any more humble than that?” Anyway, my interview was an interesting experience, that tried me in an area to which I have little experience, but I could feel the Spirit guiding me during the whole process and it went well, and the investigator was baptized.

Saturday morning we had an appointment with a family that just wanted to teach US, and it was really frustrating. To every question and doubt they expressed, we had an answer in the scriptures. However, they refused to accept anything we said. At one point, he was talking about how the devil can transform himself into an angel of light, and talked about Joseph Smith’s first vision and how that could have happened in that instant. I quickly responded with my testimony about how I know that was not the case, and humbly invited him to do what everyone must do to know, and that is to ask of God. However, he then continued to argue, and for the first time in my mission, I stood up, shook his hand, said “Tchau,” and walked out of his house without saying a prayer. The spirit of contention is of the devil.

Elder Titus

*D&C 20:37 "And again, by way of commandment to the church concerning the manner of baptism — All those who humble themselves before God, and desire to be baptized, and come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits, and witness before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon them the name of Jesus Christ, having a determination to serve him to the end, and truly manifest by their works that they have received of the Spirit of Christ unto the remission of their sins, shall be received by baptism into his church."

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