Saturday, January 31, 2015

Baptism Day

It started out with a great Tuesday, Yes that is young Jace, in white baptizing sweet old Nair :) This was an experience that was unique and I loved every minute of it. I was super nervous; I won’t lie. I wanted everything to be so perfect that I was stressing a little. Silly me, I know better than to do that :) 
But if we remember right, Nair was the sweet old lady that I did a street contact with 4 months ago. But her husband wouldn't let her listen to the missionaries. So in November, her husband died, which was really "sad".  But then we had the chance to set up to teach her. We talked with Roesli Oliviera to set up an appointment, but as chance would have it the AP's knocked on her door :) haha but it was all situation good, we had the chance to teach her a few times, and then I had the opportunity to baptize Nair!!!!!!!! AWESOME!!!!!!! It was a feeling unlike others :) to know that because of the power of God, that he has granted to me, a daughter of God, came that much closer to making her way back to the presence of God :) That was a moment that I will never forget!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Apartment Selfies of the Week

Elder Iverson is going to miss this bunch... transfers coming next week!!!

Things Spiritual

For things spiritual this week.

I really, really, really focused on my prayers this week. They have unfortunately been slacking, and so I really focused on my prayers. I have started to pray out loud and it helps a lot :) 

The scriptures are coming alive for me. One really cool thing I found this week. The miracle of Jesus and Peter walking on water. This is an analogy for the Atonement. 

Jesus is walking and commands Peter to walk on the water. He is faithful and obeys, but this task is not normal, and needs the divine help of our Savior. He at first is fine, because he isn't thinking, it is habit to rely on the Savior when all is well. But what happens, Satan comes, and things become difficult, we lose our focus on the Savior, and his Atonement, and we start to go under, but in a last resort, Peter calls out, Savior, Help me. And the Lord, as always, will help if we ask. But, we have the capacity, if we really have faith in Jesus Christ, to walk on the waters, in the vilest of storms, just have faith, that the Atonement can and will help you, if we first have the desire to let Jesus Help!

Sãu Paulo Futbol Club Stadium -"What a Treat!"

Today we went to the Stadium!  And let me just say, what a treat!!! That sucker is beautiful, they had a show and so it was a little difficult and we couldn't go on the field, but we will try again next week ;) 


Sunday, January 25, 2015

Advice about Friends

A word About Friends... 

oh this is tough!

I don’t have much advice on friends other than love everyone. It is hard to love every single person all the time. And really hard when your friends are talking about them. Just know that if you talk kind to and about everyone, you will have more friends than you can count. And who doesn't want that?  

But the good thing about friends; you can have a serious chat, and they respect your point of view and want to help. Also, spend a good deal of time with your friends, even if it is just playing a game of fifa or zombies, and just be talking :) haha talk to everybody, and don’t have fear to talk to people, except porter and jett, take it easy with the ladies still :)  

I have some of the BEST!  I hope you all find brother's (or sister's) like these guys!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

I Love the Temple

We got to go to the temple. And it is always a great experience. I love the temple here. After the temple the week was a normalish week :) We taught the most lessons this week that being 18. We worked really really hard with Romario this week. He is the guy who is 20. And he lives in the favelazinha(little favlea;) He is a super humble dude, and he accepted to be baptized this week. We will see what happens, the dude, had some crazy problems, for example, he smoked 2 packs a day, and was drinking now and then. And now, he doesn't smoke, he doesn't drink, and all is well. And this week we found out his girlfriend moved in with him........ Gosh...... 

I had a good split in the area of the LZ this week. This is where the contact of the week happened :) haha we were talking to a lady, that wasn't old, but she wasn't young. And she loved me and Elder Jacobsen (LZ not my comp) and she was talking about how cute we were, and all this stuff, and when we left, she said "Tchau Tchau gatinhos" haha. Here in Brasil they say cat or gato or gata, for someone that you think is 'hot'. So a lady that was like 60 called us hot :) haha 

We had two experiences with Atheists this week. One came to church with the APs, and the other we took to the temple two different experiences :) 

The Atheist that was at church didn't care to learn, he so wanted to debate with our Leader of the Mission in our Ward.  It was heated and one of the investigators that we took to church handled it very well.  But this atheist was very content to argue with us about whatever. And on the exact opposite end of things. Me and Elder Rincon took an Atheist to the temple. WOWZERS!!!!!!  This guy is 18 yrs old, and he is an atheist, not by choice, but by laziness I think :) haha but we had the chance to take him to the temple (the waiting room of course :) but that didn’t matter. We entered and we all sat in different places. And we asked him beforehand to pray, and search for an answer. We were there, and I could feel the spirit so strong, the only way to describe that feeling was like my heart was pounding out of my chest!! It was amazing :) And the only thing I could think of "Dude, you have got to be feeling this also!!" We left the temple, and you could tell that he felt something, and Elder Rincon will teach him again, because it was a divisão :)  

Friday, January 23, 2015

Never a Dull Moment in São Paulo

The photo of the frog. We were fasting, and I was hungry, so I had a quick snack ;) haha

Not sure why I put that flower in my hair, and the lions that some guy has in our area.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Good News of the Week

This week was fabulous :) Lets start out with the good news.

We had 10 commits for church this week, it was really good.  We had people that were new, and people that wanted to investigate. But everyone is determined, until Sunday at 8:30 am it is the sad truth here.....We had only Vagner come to church. For a little background on Vagner. He is a man with 55 years, he is a Physical and Mental Theripist. (I know I spelt that wrong :) hahaha He believes in a lot of stuff that is a little weird. For example he believes that Noah had the help of 16ft fallen angels to build the ark :) haha and that there is a God, but a separate Creator? But he was at the church Sunday :) and he said before, "If I go, I want to feel it!" So we were hoping for a really spiritual meeting.  All was good, in Priesthood, he wouldn't sing, but in Sacrament we were talking to him, and I was like, whats the deal? why won't you sing? (not exactly like that :) haha but I got him to sing, and you could tell that he was feeling the spirit. When he left he said this, "We will be talking again" :) hahah YES!!!! The lad felt the spirit!!! We have him in our prayers.

We also found Romario again. He is one of the two young guys that we took to church. He had a motorcycle accident and messed up his hand.... I will try to get a picture, he has some gnarly scars :) hahaha and a permanent frowny face on his hand from the surgery. But the story on him. We taught him a lot and talked about baptism. He liked the idea, but he moved for like 3 weeks, and we couldn't find him. We found him yesterday and he asked, When is my baptism?? :) yes yes yes yes :) he is awesome he has 20 years, and he had a problem with alcohol, that is gone, with smoking, we are getting him to stop Sunday :) and the problems with the ladies, we are working on that :) but he has a desire to change, and so we will work hard, and he loves the church. SO we are praying, and he will be baptized :)

This is the familia Puerta. 
Jettstar, I already picked you out a girlfriend from Brasil :) it is the little girl sitting on the left side of the foto :) she is 9 and at the moment I actually forgot her name....

Elder Rincon from Columbia is the other guy in this picture, that is a killer sun set my friends. 

There is a lot of good things happening in our area. The sister Nair that will be baptized this week:) I don't know if you remember but she is the lady that I did a contact with back in October, and she remembers that moment and yesterday we had a FHE with the Belloni's and she told the story of how she met us four angels, and then she said, this one (pointing to me) and then rubbing my head, was the first one. He talked to me in the street, and invited me to the church :) 

The people here are amazing, and the love that they show for us is second to none :) 

Funny contact of the week :) 
One lady was a bit older, and I started to talk to her. This is how the conversation went.:
"Hi we are the missionaries of Christ. "
"I already know you guys"
"But we would like to talk with you more another day"
"I already know" (then as she was leaving) "Thanks darling" (as she rubbed my chest for a good few seconds, and then was gone :) hahahaha

The work is going forth :) at times I am discouraged, but only for a moment.... The Lord helps us people. When we are down and out and think that the Lords isn't around, this is when he is the closest to us. Without the Lord, things would be a heck of a lot worse then they are :) 

The other family is Rosália and Guilherme, they are Menos Ativos and travel a lot.... we really want them to return. Guilherme isn't baptized, and he gave the most sincere prayer ever yesterday, and asked that they would start going to church more :) 

This is the familia Souza. Brother Souza in the 1st counselor in the bishopric.

Weird things that happen on a Mission

Weird things that happen on a mission:

1: Your journal begins to fill, and you actually finish an entire journal (not in 8 years;)
2: The floss that you use runs out? I have never done that before ;)
3: Waking up at 6:30 is becoming habit 
4: Pens start to run out :) haha I have already used more than 5 pens completely, and lost 5 more. 
5: You start to see that your everyday actions are being moved by the Spirit of God, and you see yourself becoming an instrument in the hands of the Most High :) 

Foods I Love

Foods I love:

Limes... :)haha -  i am addicted.
Peaches here are so so so good. 
I love whatever fruit that there is.
I love beans, and rice, and they have like mini french fries, you put them on your rice beans and meat it is good :) 
Gurarana is really good, and a little different here, but good. 
We ate a fruit called Jaca yesterday, and that was weird because you
can’t chew it, you just have to swallow and it feels weird :) haha 

I pretty much will eat anything still :) Melon here is different and I love it :) 

Heat from HELL

In other news, it is crazy hot here!!!!! It is hitting 40c here people :) haha which i think is around 103ish :) and it is polluted to heck, so the heat just sits, and you feel the pollution when you are walking, and when we arrive home after the day, the coldest shower isn't cold enough :) but "faz parte"  - Makes part of the mission :)

A Word about FEET

The socks are good!  (It appears CTR socks are holding up a bit better than the unknown brand worn by nameless other missionary.)

...and my feet, that looks good- right Mom?:) Just a blister, that is fun? it doesn't hurt, but looks nasty ! Just from walking.  

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Fruitcake Anyone?

This is what they call Panettone. (pan e tone e ) This is fruitcake, that Brasilions love, but this is a Choco-ttone :) 

Te Amo!

This week had a strange start :) We got to watch Malevila, or Malevicent. We are not sure why exactly, but we got to. We watched it in English with the son of Roseli Olivera, Rafael:) It was good, and strange, probably really good because it was the first real movie I have watched in 5 months :) 

Then we received the craziest rain Storm this week on Thursday!! We saw the wall of clouds coming after us, and we thought, crap....... So we rested under the garage of a pharmacy. It was crazy, for one minute it would rain then rain and hail like crazy then the wind switched directions, the street flooded, and a motorcycle crashed in front of us..... It was crazy!!!!! and to celebrate the rain, we played UNO and the guy with us is Elder Gonçalves he is in area Caixingui :) 

The next day we had a split in the area of the ZLs. I was there. We did a contact that was so, so funny. We asked her if she had talked with missionaries before like us. And her response was that she thought she had, but it wasn't the same missionaries because they had blue pants :) hahah oh lady, you made my day :) 

I am not sure if I mentioned that we are teaching an Arabian, Portuguese :) haha His name is Shahab, and his friend Muhamud. They don’t want anything with the gospel, but we are always teasing them, and I always ask why they are smoking.... :) haha they all just laugh and try to change the subject. But for a good lesson we taught the W of W. And Shahab didn’t understand. So we asked if he was addicted to cigarettes, he said that he wasn't but then when we asked him to drop his 3-5 cigarettes that he smokes everyday, he said he couldn't...darn.... but I think we have something here, also, yes they are Muslims. So I am learning about their religion also. That is interesting. 

This week I learned a lesson that I will never forget. In the city of São Paulo there are more then 11 Million People in the limits of the city there are bound to be a lot of homeless guys. So I decided to do something about it. Being a missionary I don’t have a whole lot to give, so the only thing I can give is the gift of Love. This is why every person that we see on the street without a home, I make an effort to talk to them for 10 min. It is only a little piece of my time, but you can tell they love the company. And when we have food we always give them some good stuff. 

And one day, it was Sunday, it rained crazy hard, we passed the storm with Massano, and after we saw some guys in the street, and I felt like I should go talk to them. So I walked over and started talking. They at first were like what are you doing? But then when we started talking they were nice. There were 3. One was sleeping, and one to show us care grabbed a little spot of the blanket and pulled it so I could sit down. (Why is it that those who have so little, are so willing to share?) Let us learn a lesson, that yes money is important and necessary in our lives, but it is just paper that someone put a value on. It means nothing in the world to come. I am not saying go and give a homeless guy $200. It is better if we give them time, conversation, and little presents:) For example, I noticed that they were very wet from the storm, so deciding that a umbrella is a necessity here, I asked if they had an umbrella, and they replied no. So lets just say I went home without an umbrella :) 

This is Massano, he is the missionary that is leaving tomorrow. We went shopping with him today :) He is going to a place in Brazil called Mació. it is the NE.

Yesterday we had interviews with President, and a training by the APs. Quick notes that I learned.  The training was on faith. If we are faithful, really faithful, we will keep our goals in mind, and God will make a way for them, to be accomplished. Also when setting goals, set them with God, have him help us. And attach a promise. 
"If I do this, you will give me this".  If we do this the blessings will be flowing and we won’t know what to do :)

Much love

Stay safe 

Elder Iverson :)