Returning With Honor

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Monday, August 29, 2016

I Tried My Best & The Lord Did The Rest (Week 50)

Hey Everyone!
Yes, I'm trying new foods...haha


So this week kind of took me by surprise...we had emergency transfers this week. My District Leader was transferred and became a Zone Leader, and I am now the new District Leader. I feel very unprepared, and kinda scared, but more importantly I am trying my best, and I feel very privileged to serve others so I know the Lord will guide me and use me as an instrument to benefit others. 


Spiritual Experience:

On Sunday we went to go look for 3 families, and all of them kept their doors closed. They did not end up coming to church with us. We had also invited 2 other families to church, but we didn't have time to look for them so we just went to church and they made it after sacrament.

When none of the 3 families answered their doors that morning...I felt hopeless, and sad. I felt like I didn't help them enough, and that morning I prayed for the 2 other families. I prayed that they could make it to church, and it turns out that they made it and they loved it. I am not able to explain how happy I was at that moment to see them at church. I was so happy, and it was great to see them and it was so spiritual, but there was one part in particular that I loved the most. It was probably the most spiritual moment I had that entire day. It was the instant comfort I received from the spirit...telling me everything will be okay...and yet again...everything did turn out okay. What a blessing it is to have a spiritual companion, teacher, comforter, and friend. I was so thankful and had no other reason to worry, for I knew it would all work out in the Lord favor, as it always does. We just need to trust the Lords timing and remember that his ways are always better then our ways, and I am so thankful to know that in my heart. 


Last Thoughts:
Great group right here

Thank you all so much for all your support. I am so thankful to receive emails, and comments from all of you. I am so grateful to have you all in my life. As always, I wish you all a great week. Keep being those amazing examples to those around you!

-Love, 
Elder Arevalo






Tuesday, August 23, 2016

We Don't Have To Wait.. (Week 49)

Hey Everyone,

As always...I hope you all have been doing good. 
Here was my week in a nutshell:


Investigators:

My companion and I have an investigator named Ana. She is great! She received her response and she just needs the desire to be baptized. Our other investigator Aimunda is also great. She is reading the scriptures, she likes church, and she loves us, but she's just missing one thing. She needs to see that she has an answer from God. Our other investigator is  Dorlis. She went to her dads house for 20 days :( So that's on pause right now. 
Fabio and Madiliani they are not married yet. Fabio is very hard to find at home, but his wife really likes the lessons and has a great desire to follow the gosple. Liandra is scared to switch religions. She has confirmed to us that she knows the gospel is true and she received a response from god, but she is having a lot of doubts, but I know she knows.


Spiritual Experience:


My spiritual experience is about being obedient. My testimony about obedience has grown. I know that I need to be obedient to the Lords will. He loves me and he wants me to be close to him. Our Father in heaven gives us rules so we can stay close to him. Something I realized is that we do not have to wait till after death to be close to him and love him. We are fully capable of following and showing our love for him today. I learned this through being obedient to the rules of the mission, giving a talk about it at church, and giving a lesson about obedience. We can have our Celestial Kingdom here on earth, but we need to chose now to follow and be with him.  


Pride: 

learned that being prideful is something can be shown in many forms. Pride is something can be shown for your country, your ethnic background, your favorite sports team, etc...but it is also something that can be very dangerous. If we do not chose to be humble it can be something that stops our progress to reaching Heavenly Father. 


When I talk about pride...I am talking about the pride that is talked about in the scriptures. 
Some of the people in the scriptures do not want to listen to the voice of the Lord. They think they know better, and they think they are better then everyone else. I mean prideful in those terms. I don't want to be like that...I do not want to be that person that is always thinking and saying, "I am way better then other people" or "I'm always right"...I think that is very annoying.

In short, I just want to be like Christ. I want us all to be happy and be with him one day. I want you all to remember that the Lord only wants you to do your best and he will compensate for any shortcomings. That I know to be true. 

Anyways, that was my rant on what i learned this week haha. Love you all! Have a great week! 

Love, 
Elder Arevalo




Monday, August 15, 2016

No Money (Week 48)

Hi Everyone, 
I hope everyone has been having a great summer so far, and a good start to school soon. Anyway, let's get straight to it today. Also if I use any Portuguese...it will be italicized haha. This was my week:


It was Fathers Day Here In Brazil:

So yesterday (Sunday) it was Father's Day. I wished my father a Happy Father's Day even though we celebrate it a bit later, and it gave me time to reflect how grateful I am for the father and mother I have. They have both demonstrated by example that making the right choices in life isn't easy, but "Vala A Pena" (it's worth it).


Spiritual Experience I Want To Share:

So, we did a FHE (family home evening) at an investigators house (Raimunda). It was with Ana, Riderson, and Ryan the "Neto de Raimunda" (Granchild of Raimunda). We tought them the word of wisdom and they accepeted the teachings very well. They wanted to learn more, and they had lots of questions. It was great! We responded to all of them, and when we where respondeding...I was really happy and relived to know they where understanding the lesson. I was so glad they were asking questions! because that means they are interested!!!!! The amazing part of this lesson was this: 

Raimunda recives money from her husband every month and she didnt have enough money this  week for the bus, because she gave us (missionaries) food the week before...(The Lord does not let his sons and daughters suffer)...her husband called a day before and said he recived a raise of pay and he sent more money for her!

When she told me that...tears flowed from my eyes. I can see the Lords blessings pouring upon her and her family.  I am happy and honored to be a missionary out here in Brazil. I can feel myself getting lost in this work, and I have never had so much joy in my life until now.  I am working with the Lord and he is doing everything to help his sons and daughters, I know this to be true. 

Raimunda told us she feels blessed to have been found by us missionaries. I can see the blessings she is receiving. It is not us missionaries who are giving them to her...we are just instruments in the hand of the Lord. Likewise, there are so many blessings the Lord is giving me. If anything, I am getting double of what I need and want. I can't even hold all the blessings I am reciving hahahaha.


I am sure the lord is so very happy with you guys and is doing the same with you guys. Love you all. Keep being amazing examples to those around you. Thanks for believing in me guys. It means a lot. Thanks for being a part of this experience with me through these emails. 

-Love,
Elder Arevalo


Pictures: 

 


Monday, August 8, 2016

Baptism Week (Week 47)

Hey Everyone, 
Great Day

This week was yet again filled with awesome experiences. I've broken them down into categories so it's easier to follow it all. Here ya go! Thanks for reading everyone, it means a lot!


Spiritual Experience(s) I Want To Share: 
I was so excited!

The first one I would like to share involves my companion and I teaching a lesson with a married couple. We decided to teach the restoration. I have done his at least a million times, but this time it was different. I started to talk and teach and then I started to cry as well. I cried because I felt like I've known my investigators for a long time. I have never felt so much love for some one who I never knew, and i could also feel the saviors love for them and for me. That was one of my most spiritual lessons of the week! I felt the spirit from beginning to end. 

After the lesson my investigators had a great feeling and they wanted to know more, and and now they want to go to church! I know the spirit testifies of our words. Everything starts with our words. If we do not speak...no one will listen, and therefore no one can benefit from them. 
The Big Day!
The second spiritual experience I was when my companion and I baptized two investigators this week. They are the ones I spoke about last week (Kimberly and Kadija)! Anyways, I saw our investigators in white clothing and they looked so happy! So much more happy then when we found them. I could see the Gospel changing their lives. This shows me that living the Gospel brings blessings and happiness that we could never imagine. 
I know these things to be true. Here on the mission I have come to know my saviors love for me more than I ever have before. 



Investigators To Pray For:

-Raimunda 
-Ana 
-Doloris 
-Fabio Mardileni

As of right now...no one is 100%. All of our investigators have a date, but we still have lots of teaching to do and they have a lot of learning to do about living the commandments. So we will be doing a lot of work this week.
Food Sister Ranchero Shipped To me. Thank you Sister Ranchero! 


What I Learned From The Scriptures This Week:

I want to share what I learned this week in Alma 34:9:
9: Pois é necessário que haja uma expiação; porque, de acordo com o grande plano do Deus Eterno, deverá haver uma expiação; do contrário, toda a humanidade inevitavelmente perecerá; sim, todos são obstinados; sim, todos estão decaídos e perdidos e hão de perecer, a não ser que seja pela expiação que deve haver. 


This scriptures is pretty great. Because of the atonement of the Lord we can have knowledge, family, immortality, and live with our Father in heaven forever. Before Adam fell we could only have 2 of those things I mentioned above. Those are: live with our father and have immortality. After Adam fell...we  could only have 2 (a family and knowledge) 



Through the atonement we can have all 4 (knowledge of happiness, immortality, family, and live with our father in heaven forever), and I thought that was a really cool perspective to see things from. 


-Love, 
Elder Arevalo 

Monday, August 1, 2016

Amazing Progress (Week 46)

Hey Everyone, 

How is everyone this week? I hope you've all been good! My week has been very productive. I taught 19 discussions this week, and have made 12 new investigators! My companion and I are so happy about our success, and we thank our Father in Heaven everyday, but we know we can do even better to find more people ready to receive the gospel.

Branch Statistics:


This new area of mine is definitely really small. Its definitely smaller then a branch, but its getting bigger! We started with 50 people at church every week, and now we have 90 people going to church!! 90!!

Spiritual Experience:


A really cool experience I had this week with my companion involves two investigators named Kadja and Kimberly.  Kadja has had lost of doubts lately about life, and the gospel, and I worried for her. But during a lesson one day she read some scriptures and you could just see her doubts eliminated by the spirit as she read and listened to my companion and I talk about the meaning of the scripture and bare our testimonies of the truth of the gospel. You could see the glow and confirmation she had from the spirit at that moment, and that's when she said, "Elder Arevalo, I have never been so touched by the spirit as I have now. I am ready to be baptized". I as a missionary looked at my companion and then we both looked at her, and we were filled with so much joy. A moment like that is indescribable. It's one that I wouldn't trade for the world, and we are so thankful and happy that she and Kimberly are ready to be baptized this week. Pictures soon to come!

Besides that wonderful experience, we also found tone of new people to teach and we even had some old pesquisadores (investigators) go to church and we can see the Lord helping them in many ways. 

Investigators I ask you all to pray for:

Kimberly 
Kadja Maria Jackoline FabioMardileni Maria Moses Elisangela Cley 


Why Read The Scriptures?


Besides all the really cool experiences, I wanted to share with all of you a really cool scripture that I invited everyone to read. It is a scripture that describes the importance of reading the scriptures! It's in John 20:19-22, 26-31. These things are written so we can believe in Christ our savior. What a great blessing the Lord has given us.
Scriptures are a great source for us to grow. Please check it out everyone! 

I even have the link right here for your convenience haha: https://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/john/20?lang=eng 

I can see that the Lord has a plan for us. I know it was hard for me to see this "plan" in the beginning, but João (an old investigator) was 100% sure and ready to be baptized and I quickly learned that I was needed here in Brazil to teach people, and I am honored. 

I hope you all have a great week as always, love you all. 

-Love, 
Elder Arevalo