Monday, March 7, 2016

March 7th - Service and Sideburns

Hi Family and Friends!

This week things were pretty normal. I´ve been eating a lot more here because the members give you a ton of food all the time, so that´s pretty great. The city is really beautiful, and I´ve really been enjoying reading the scriptures in Português. With the second language you get a better picture of the meaning of the scripture and it brings different images to mind. It´s really cool. I accidentally shaved off one of my side-burns this week, so I got my hair cut by my companion today. It looks way better now! Overall, I´m really content here. If only the Brazilians didn´t like Nickelback so much.

I really like your description of the light that shines out from us. There´s a scripture somewhere that says that the Spirit of God is light and truth. Things that bring us into the light are of God, whereas the things that don´t come from him are darkness. We really should try to be good examples and spread our light. Knocking doors is slow yes, but it fills the time, and we´ve got good work going with the members too. This week we´re launching a new program, together with the President of the Relief Society (Socidade de Socorro here). We´re going to be having a family home evening in the house of a different member each week, and we´re going to invite as many investigator families as we can from the two companionships. We had one last night and it was really pretty powerful. Our investigators have the problem that they are "brazilian married", i.e. living together without being legally married. As such, we focused on marriage and the blessings of a having a family all together for eternity. 

We started with an object lesson. We asked a recently married member to open a pão de mel (equivalent to a ding dong) and eat it without using his hands. We gave him 1 minute, and he got nowhere. Then we read Genesis 2:18, and explained that it´s not good for man to be alone, that he needs others to help him, principally his wife. Together, they can accomplish much more than a man alone. We then showed a really ancient church short film about marriage, Together Forever, and asked the members to share their testimonies about marriage. It was really spiritual, and it felt as though angels were in the room. We ended singing "Families Can Be Together Forever". Overall it was a fantastic experience.

I´ve also spent a lot of time thinking about The Ten Commandments this week. No, not the movie. We had a Stake Conference yesterday, and one of the speakers spoke about the continued relevance of the 10 commandments even though times have changed a fair bit. Imagine, if everyone just held to the 10 principles that we find in Exodus 20, everyone would be a lot happier. There virtually wouldn´t be crime in the world, and everyone would be richer, healthier, and happier. I know that God´s commandments are really the perfect guide for us to be happy in this life. I´m thankful I can share this gift with others, and following them I will succeed.

Elder Murray

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