Hope you guys are enjoying the warmth that's hopefull hitting there, on the boring subject of weather, we had some pretty good rain storms here these last few days. I don't know why, but when you just sprint out into a thunder storm with rain falling so hard that you get soaked instantly, the first reaction is randomly burst into uncontrolable laughter. I dunno if it's because you imagine what a passer-by would think - "Why in the world are two young men in church clothes and ties doing running through a torrent like this? And especially without umbrellas?" Hahaha... I love it, I wish so bad that I could get moments like that filmed.
So, this past week sure was a blessing. We've been working with this lady named Sandra since about the 4th or 5th day that we came to 7 Lagoas. We found her knocking doors and she told us how she had talked to missionaries like 19 years ago when her family was receiving the lessons, but no one was baptized and the missionaries stopped coming. So these past few weeks she progressed really fast and it was great, and originally her baptism was supposed to be on the 25th of February (or 26th, don't remember) but she randomly decided she wanted to wait. It was weird cuz she didn't even know exactly why... She had already passed her interview, was feeling great about the church... Just randomly decided she'd wait till the 10th. So finally the 10th arrived and since she had already had a few weeks of getting to know the members, there was a huge turn out at her baptism. There was like 30 people or so, which, for a week day, is really really good. The baptism was wonderful and once again that sight of her smiling and watching her son be baptized was priceless. Everyone afterwards gave her hugs and welcomed her and it's just the best feeling when someone is really truly accepted into the fold like this. These are the type of people that you don't even have to worry about staying firm in the chruch. To make things better, sunday they both were confirmed, as well as Jandira! Jandira had been having problems with trading her work schedule around to get sundays off, so it was just awesome to see all 3 of them confirmed. The Spirit was really strong, and the way he testified of the reality of the ordinances was really special. I sure love watching the progress that happens as these people take their steps in the gospel. I imagine how happy the Lord is when He sees his children and all of us progressing in the gospel. Since the people I baptized 6 or 7 months back aren't really firm, I'm also getting a taste of just how sad the Lord is when we forget about Him and let ourselve slide off the path a little. The part that gives me hope though is firstly the Atonement and repentance, because no matter how long these people are off the trail, they can always ALWAYS come back. The other thing is the fact that all of us staying firm, is totally our decision. It's not an inevitable thing for someone to fall away, it just depends on the little things we do every day. I'm so grateful for the foundation the Lord is helping me build here. I feel like I'm learning so much and muturing a ton and becoming more and more who I want to be. Obviously I have a TON of stuff to get better at, and a TON of weaknesses to overcome, but I know that the Lord wants us to succeed. What other knowledge could be more hopeful than that eh? Thanks for your prayers everyone, the work is great here, I'm loving what I'm doing, and the work of the Lord will go forward. Hurrah for Israel!!!