Monday, December 14, 2015

Almost Merry Christmas from Brazil!

From Elder Olivier!.......

Hi everyone!

So this week was pretty hectic. It was the last week of my companion´s mission, so he had a ton of stuff to do (interviews with the mission president, classes, saying goodbye and taking pictures with everyone....). Anyway, we spent almost no time working in our area, which means, with the last few weeks of very interrupted work too, we really only have two investigators who we are (now, I am) working on getting married the next transfer. So, this week my companion and I are going to have to pretty much start from scratch. 

This week we had a really big Christmas Conference, where all of the missionaries in the city of Manaus (the mission is too big to have everybody fly or boat back to Manaus for it) sang for a bunch of members in the area. It was pretty cool. It lasted all day. We had training from the mission president and the assistents, and we also had lunch. Having lunch is always cool. 

The best part of the conference was talking to all of the missionaries. I saw some people that I haven´t seen for a while, which was awesome. At one point I was talking to some missionaries when the mission president came up to all of us and greeted us and shook our hands. When he got to me, he said, "Elder Olivier, você está preparado para treinar?/are you ready to train?" I did a false laugh and said, "para treinar?/to train?" just like I always do when I don´t get the joke. I thought it was a pretty weird joke. So I forgot about it until yesterday, when I got a call from one of the assistents to the mission president, and he said that I will in fact be training a new missionary for the next transfer. Then I got the joke. It wasn´t a joke.

So anyway, right now I´m in a weird position in time where I have no companion (he will arrive from the CTM tomorrow night) and I´m with two other missionaries who also have no companions. I´m also kind of a little nervous about training a new missionary (who I pray is brazilian). But I´ve also been thinking a lot right now about how I felt when I left the CTM. It´s just the same anxious feeling that you get when something is about to change and you´re just waiting for it. But it´s also comforting to know that the last time I felt like this everything turned out OK.

A scripture I´ve been thinking of is Jacob 4:6-7

 6 Wherefore, we search the prophets, and we have many revelations and the spirit of prophecy; and having all these witnesses we obtain a hope, and our faith becometh unshaken, insomuch that we truly can command in thename of Jesus and the very trees obey us, or the mountains, or the waves of the sea.

 7 Nevertheless, the Lord God showeth us our weakness that we may know that it is by his grace, and his great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have power to do these things.

So right now I´m probably one of the most unqualified people in the mission to train a new missionary. I´ve only been in the field for 2 transfers, and I literally just finished getting trained myself. And I´m still very much learning the language. But I really like this scripture, because many times the Lord calls us to do things when we have "weakness" to show that it isn´t by our power that His work comes to pass, but by His power. And also, to relate this all to Christmas, it is super important to remember that the power of Jesus Christ is super important. A lot of people don´t know who Jesus Christ is or don´t understand why He is important. But He is eternally important to all of us, and because He lived a mortal life, we can all return to live with Him and with our families forever.

Anyway, I hope you all keep having a great Christmas season! And keep being awesome!


Elder Olivier
(written 12/14/2015)

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