Transferred! After a couple of super mixed up transfers in Vila São Luis, I was transferred to Nova Iguaçu, Nova Iguaçu. My comp will be Elder Leal (Brasilleiro). I am super excited for a little change. I have only heard good things about this area!
So this week, I got to go with Elder Borges for his last training with president Lima. We learned there about the importance of complimenting people. It is so easy and natural to skip over the good things of a person and just see the errors. As a duplo, Elder Borges and I have made the goal to compliment every single contact. It has really made a difference in the way that I look at people. When you actively search for the good qualities of the people surrounding you, you end up just feeling so happy and grateful for all the Lord has done in the world.
One day we were walking in the Square of Vila and there was a man on a bench that stopped us in our tracks. He had whiskey on his breath and drugs at his side. He asked us who we were and explained that he needed help. His wife kicked him out, he cant hold a job, he is living with his sister in a small house, and has no where to turn. We sat down by him and started to explain that it wasnt without a cause that he felt that he needed to talk to us. We shared a scripture that explained that it will be through his Savior that the miracle of healing will happen. After a short time, we grabbed his information and marked a date to visit him. I asked him what time he would be in his house. He looked at me and had tears in his eyes and responded *Any time, whatever hour you mark, just tell me. I need this. I need this. Just tell me the hour.* As we walked away, I remembered the story of the woman who reached for the hem of Christs robe as he walked by, having faith that she would be cured. In that moment, a piece of the puzzle clicked. We really are representatives of Christ. As incapable, flawed and imperfect as we are, we were called of God to work miracles in the lives of the people around us. How humbling it is to wear Christs name on our chest knowing that we are nowhere near what He was and is. However, He chose me.
A different day, we were walking in the street, and we felt the need to help a lady with her shopping bags. We lifted them to her house and she invited us in. She lives there with her 2 kids- a boy of 18 and a girl of 10. Her husband abandoned her and she is very nervous and anxious. Her boy of 18 is rebelious and doesnt want anything to do with the family. We have started the lessons with them and have seen the unfortunate catastrofes that happen because of broken families. I think the families are the strongest protection we have against the adversary, and for this he is working double time to break them.
We visited a reference of a member who also has a broken family. The children are grown and left, and she lives alone. The husband was abusive, and was unfaithful to her. (The neighbor was pregnant with his child during the same time that the wife was.) She started crying as she told us the story. The husband has been in the hospital for the past 5 months as he has suffered 5 strokes. She told us that as she looks at him there each day, so helpless, she cant remember all of the terrible things that he has done against her, and continues to pray for his recovery. I cannot even imagine being her. Her ability to forgive is incredible. It is amazing how we continue to find people who are examples for us.
I hope that you are all doing well. I continue to pray for you. Wish me luck in Nova Iguaçu!!
The last one is me with Elder Borges