Monday, August 16, 2010

Four Month Anniversary

Hey everyone!

I hope everyone had a good week! I did! They go by sooo fast- seriously. I had my 4 month anniversary this week- It was so cute. I went out to dinner, then saw a movie, after got some ice cream and walked along the beach. HAHA- I wish! Naaaa- I worked, and that’s even better.

Let’s see what happened this week. This Saturday we had Laura´s baptism. I was a little worried for a minute, because she had a friend talk bad about the church to her and prove all these crazy things that were wrong with our religion. She said she was just confused and didn’t know what to think! But we helped answer her questions, and asked her `do you think that confusion and doubts come from God?` She said no, and we challenged her to pray again to know if her decision was right. She was happily baptized and brought into the church with loving friends and a smile on her face. It was so great! The missionaries had been teaching her for about a year- crazy huh!

OOO- One thing I forgot to share with ya´ll last week was one of our new rules. They announced last week that we could only listen to Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and on Pdays we can listen to EFY music. MY HEART STOPPED. I literally had to hold back tears during the meeting... Music was one of the things keeping me sane! And if you know me, you know that I don´t like Motab (Mormon Tabernacle Choir) one bit! But- I have thought a lot about it, and decided that this is my challenge. I decided that I will not only listen to MormoTabby, but I will know EVERY WORD to EVERY motab song I have (and I have a lot because I was prepared!) I will know that the guy in the third row, 10th from the left was a half pitch off tune during the 3rd verse of my 76th song. Mmmm Hmmm... Bring it on! Ha-ha And after 2 weeks, I can tell you that I will officially be singing in an opera voice for the rest of my mission, because I have to sing along. Oh goodness, what a great time of life. :)

The mission president visited this week. One night we took him to some of our investigators and Recent Convert´s houses. He, his wife and daughter really enjoyed it, and so did our investigators! I had to teach a lesson in Portuguese in front of him, and it was so intimidating! I only have 2 months of the language, and I know I speak incorrectly a lot, but he said he was impressed with my speaking and thinks I´m doing well. His family is learning too, so it wasn’t too scary, I guess. I really like my mission president and am way excited to be serving with him this next year and 2 months.

So you wanna know more about the culture. Hm.. Well I don’t know what I have already said, so forgive me if I repeat. They don’t have HUGE stores close, like we do at home. So we buy food at little grocery stores, or little shops out of people´s homes. The kids here have school either in the morning, or in the afternoon. I think their high school ends a little earlier than ours, and they all attend `college` which is paid for by the government. There are always people sitting out in the streets, or in front of their houses. In fact it´s really weird if people aren’t outside. There are a decent amount of cars here, but only richer people have them because they are way more expensive to buy here. So people walk or take the bus. Also- technology is way expensive here too! So many people don’t have high-tech things. But of course, everyone has cell phones. Silly. I have to be careful when I want to take pictures, because I don’t want to get robbed. We also work in a somewhat dangerous area, and my companion worries about me because I am soo white and might get robbed or something. I’m not too worried, because we stay in safe places and we´re being watched over by someone pretty powerful.
I hear so many cat calls every day, or people trying to speak English to me. I am tired at being looked at like an animal, but there isn’t much I can do about it! Everyone stares at me, probably because you don’t see ANY Americans or ANY white people around. There are some days when I just want to look at people and say `Don´t look at me!` Ha-ha! But, I can’t. Probably because they don’t speak English, and you know, I´m a `loving` missionary. But it gets tiring.

I will try to think of more culture things this week. Something funny happened; this will give you a little insight to my life here. We were at a member´s house for lunch, an old lady’s home, and when she handed me my plate there were little ants running around on it. So, when she wasn’t looking, I brushed them off with the tablecloth. But, that was stupid because I then started finding them on me! So I couldn’t sit very still during lunch, because I was worried about ants in my pants! And also worried about the food... because who knows what was in it if she can´t see very well. I survived though!

I hope you enjoy our pictures. It´s sad, but sometimes taking goofy pictures is the only thing we can do for entertainment. What do you guys think of the blonde? The color is blech, but I don’t have time or resources to fix it, so O well!

I want to finish by being a smidge churchy. I have to say that I am learning and growing soo much. We were teaching an 18 yr old boy last night, and he said `I don’t understand how you guys can live far from home like this and teach people that don’t want to listen.....Sometimes, don´t you think it´s a waste of time?` I looked at him and said, `No. It´s not a waste of time. I am far from home, living a completely different and difficult life, and at times it is really hard. But, I am learning. I am learning a new language. I am learning how to teach and love people. I am learning how to be a better person and closer to my Savior. I am giving up my wants and desires for the Lord´s wants and desires, and as I do this I get more out of my time than doing anything else with my life` This is true.

I have to say to all the people preparing for missions- PLEASE READ THIS. The mission is amazing. The mission is hard. The mission isn’t about you, but at the same time it is all about you. Please, before you leave, KNOW why you will serve. KNOW that the Lord wants you there. HAVE a testimony that this is right. You don’t need to be totally ready, or perfect at anything. Just KNOW that you are supposed to be there at that time. Then when the hard times come, they are nothing, because you know why you are there.

I love serving. Every day I feel so insufficient, but If i can make someone happy, or make a small difference in my life and in Brazil, It´s worth it. I KNOW i am supposed to be here. I KNOW that my Savior loves me. I KNOW that the things I am teaching are true. And the best thing is, is that I am not here to convince people that these things are true, I am here to help them know for themselves. It´s beautiful and so simple. Please know that I love my Savior, and this Gospel. I am so happy to be here. I am SOOO Grateful for my testimony and that I have a desire to follow the Lord. So many people don’t have this- It´s incredible and sad! In fact, it´s incredibly sad! But, I hope something I said will help you recognize how special this gospel is. I love you all! Have a wonderful week!
-Seester GOrdon


Welcome to the mission life!

Laura's Baptism

American Candy

My tan marks on the tops of my feet

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sister Gordon,

I loved reading your post. Very entertaining. Sorry about the music rule. Hopefully the guy in the third row, 10th from the left will be much to distracting for you to notice the gal on the first row, 2nd from the right. ;) he he

On the positive side, it sounds like you are staying really busy, teaching many choice people, and seeing wonderful success, like Laura! From first hand experience, I learned that a full-time mission is more of a 'survival experience' than a spiritual feast most of the time - but, as you have summed up well, it's SO worth it!

Hang in there. The Lord has sent you that part of His vineyard for a very wise purpose. Best wishes on your 4 month Anniversary. Treasure every moment. This precious time of your life will be a distant memory faster than you can imagine.

The Gospel is restored! You are sharing the most important message and the most important opportunity with the people around you!

Keep Smiling, and Definitely Keep Singing!

I'll be thinking of you, when I do.
Sister MoSop in SLC