Tuesday, October 1, 2013
I Believe in Miracles! - August 7, 2013
Familia, (e amigos)
Wow. I have never experienced learning and growth like I have here in the CTM. I have only been here for one week and I have multiple conversations in Portuguese every day, all the time. While I am not fluent and the Brazilheiros speak SO fast, i can understand a lot more than I could last wednesday. I believe in miracles. It is a miracle that I am here, it is a miracle that my District is incredible, (we are all so different but it just works. Sometimes, I think to myself, this must be what Heaven is like. Laughing and learning and being happy with the people you love), it is a miracle that God has allowed me to be a missionary. It is a miracle that He lets us pray to Him for help, and it is a miracle that we can change and grow and be totally different people than we ever thought we could become. I. believe. in. miracles.
I have to start off by saying that there is so much to say but not a lot of time to say it! I'm sorry if I didn't have the chance to respond to you personally this week, but I will try better next week!
Being a missionary is the hardest thing I have ever done, but it is hands-down the BEST thing I have ever done in my entire life. I am learning so many valuable things. Patience, for one. It is very difficult to be on such a strict schedule and be with a companion all the time. But that's how we learn to deal with people who are different from us and become more Christlike. My instructor's name is Irmao Allan (irmao means brother). He is without a doubt one of the best men I have ever met. He served a mission in Brazil and now he has a little family. His english is funny...sometimes he says things and we're like...what? haha. But he means well and really cares about us. He speaks mostly in Portuguese, to challenge us and totally immerse us in the language. There have been some really funny things that happen when you're learning a new language.....i'm sure you can imagine how you can make one tiny mistake in your pronunciation of a word, and it changes the whole sentence. Example 1: yesterday, I was reading out loud in Portuguese. I read, "Esta gravida e do meu irmao" and Irmao Allan is like WHAT DID YOU JUST SAY??? All panicky...and I'm like, what? He says, Sister Sperry, that sentence means "I got pregnant from my brother". What you meant to say is "Esta GRAVATA e do meu irmao. You MUST learn the diferencia!" haha. So we laugh a lot about EVERYTHING in class. LIke you said Dad, I have never laughed more in my life than on the mission. My companheira is very very different from me, but I love her lots. We quote movies all the time, which makes it fun. We work really well together. Our investigator, Josiel, is progressing well but we are trying to figure out how to get through to him better. So tonight, we will try a different approach. We want to let him know that we love him and are here for him as just a friend. If we can get to know him better and earn his trust, he will feel more comfortable opening up to us. And really, that's all that being a missionary is about, right? Letting people know we can help them in any way if they will accept it.
I'm sure you're all wondering about the food here. Well, there's a lot of mystery meat, so that's interesting. But I made a goal that I would try at least one bite of every thing! (sometimes those are very small bites that end up in my napkin, but nevertheless, i am trying). They always have rice and beans (no question there) and the desserts are always like a mousse, pudding, jello, or flan. always. And they feed us a ton...the first few days I lost like 5 pounds, but now I am getting more used to the food and I like it better.
Last night we had a devotional where Elder Holland spoke. It was from a few years ago, but the message still remains. He acknowledged that they expect a lot from us. They expect us to be near perfect. However, they do not apologize because exact obedience brings the spirit of God into our lives. I know that this is true, for I have seen it as a missionary. It is true. I have so much more to say...next week! Also, there is a place here called Mr. cheney's cookies or something like that right across from the CTM. For like 20 bucks, you can write a bunch of emails throughout the month and they will print them off and deliver them right to me. Can you look that up Dad? I would love to hear from you guys, even if it's just an email printed off. If you go to like missionties.com or something it should come up.
I love you all more than you know. Being here away from you is so hard...but I love you and wish you the best week ever! Keep smiling. love you!