Oi familia e amigos!
This week´s been a pretty sweet ride. To start things off, our house has been getting super into working out. We´ve got a buttload of elastic bands, some dumbbells, and we´ve been really killing it during morning exercise. Last week p-day we did a deck of pushups. We put two card decks together, and then we went around in a circle and everyone drew a card, then did that number of pushups. Jacks were 11, Queens 12, and Kings 13, with Jokers 14. Then you go until the deck runs out. Unsurprisingly, it was pretty tough. We pushed through though, and to show-off, I hit one last set of 30 after the deck ran out. Doctrine and Covenants 38:15 says "Therefore, be ye strong from henceforth," and we´ve really taken that to heart here in Itajubá.
This week we entered a house to teach a guy and he had a statue of a saint next to his TV, a plate with a Psalm written on it, and a giant picture of the Pope waving on the wall. So you´d figure the guy would be Catholic, right? Nope. "I´m an evangelical." The other group here had an encounter with a Jehovah´s witness this week. He walked up to them and said "Matthew 6:9", then left, went and bought a Coke, then came back and said "Do you know what it says? It´s the Lord´s Prayer. Our father who art in heaven, hallowed be THY NAME. Do you know what the name of God is?" and at this point they realized he was a Jehovah´s Witness and had a good conversation with the guy. His tactic was pretty stylish. There´s also this one guy, really dark skin, that runs around the town shirtless with a footlong cross on a chain around his neck. Every time he passes us he says "No way guys! One flock and one shepherd! No room for you guys here!", then keeps on jogging. Itajubá´s a pretty great place.
This week we had another baptism, of the daughter of the woman that we baptized last week. We had a date all set for this week, but then, on Tuesday, she told us that she has a problem that she has to fix, and she wanted to wait until June to be baptized. I didn't know what her problem was, I still don´t, but I felt impressed to testify to her that it won´t get any easier to solve this problem with time. I promised her that, with the Lord´s help, he would help her solve her problems if she was following him. We fasted and prayed, and the next day, she changed her mind, wanted to be baptized on Sunday, and cut the bad stuff out of her life. I don´t know what changed, but on Friday, she had a completely different countenance. She was much happier, and at peace.
I know that the Gospel changes lives. When people put their problems in the Lord´s hands he always helps them out. As it says in Matthew 14: 36 “And besought him that they might only touch the hem of his garment: and as many as touched were made perfectly whole.” You have to reach out first, but if you put forth the effort to make it through the crowd to Jesus Christ, you can be whole. I plan to help people get to point where they can reach out and touch Jesus Christ. With the Lord´s help, I will succeed.