Monday, March 24, 2014

Let Him Carry You

Olá queridos!

Another week come and gone like a flash...where is the time going?! We´re already halfway through the transfer meaning I probably only have 3 weeks left here in Matosinhos...crazy right??? I HIT MY HALFWAY MARK IN TWO DAYS STOP THE TIME, STOP IT SOMEONE PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!

But alas, here we are, halfway through my mission and I´ve learned so much it´s ridiculous. I´ve changed so much too, with a lot more changes still to go. It´s scary to think that my adventure here in Portugal is halfway over because that means we´re on the down slope back to normal life. GASP.

Anyway......another great week my friends! As they always are I must say. We had a really sweet conference with the Porto Zone (I´m in Porto Norte) and they asked me to give a talk about developing faith to find new investigators. I based my talk on Ether 12:6 and D&C 123:17. One thing that I´m realizing about faith and miracles is that it always comes when you´re least expecting it... I mean it´s true what ´they´ say- if you´re obedient, you´ll be blessed. If you pray really hard, you´ll be blessed. If you work your tail off all day every day, you´ll be blessed. That´s all true, but it turns out that there´s more. You do all of that stuff, and then you have to wait. You have to be patient. Anyone that knows me, knows I´m not patient by nature, but I sure am learning to be as I see these miracles flowing after periods of waiting. It´s quite splendid really. Basically, faith is a lot about perseverance.

Divisions with Amazing Sisters
I got to do yet another division this week, this time with Sister Silva in my own area. Funny story...she was MY sister training leader for THREE WHOLE TRANSFERS. So let´s be honest, I was kind of scared to do that division. Good news is, she´s like the greatest person you´ll ever meet and even though I am almost certain she taught me way more than I could have possibly ever taught her, it was a really great experience! Divisions are ALWAYS great experiences because we get to see how other missionaries work and we pick up new techniques and such along the way. Sister Silva has an amazing story. She´s from Cabo Verde, she´s 27 and she got batized just 2 short years ago. She helped the elders in her hometown find loads of people to teach until they created a branch in that city so that she didný have to walk an hour and a half or take a bus full of friends to church far away. If anything, the mission gives you a chance to meet the most INCREDIBLE people....

Fun story from last week´s divisions that I forgot to tell you all! We went to visit this inactive family. Cool part is, one of the daughters is actually serving a mission right now in Portugal and I know her pretty well! So anyway, the mom is really nice but she just has some doubts and doesn´t really believe in the Book of Mormon. So we got to know them better and shared a nice message and invited them all to read the Book of Mormon and pray every day. All the kids happily agreed but the mom said that she would only read in the Bible. I asked her if we could just leave a short part in the Book of Mormon but she refused. So then I opted to leave one in the Bible. I went to the first scripture testifying of the Book of Mormon I could think of, John 10. As I was looking at the chapter in her well-worn Bible, this particular chapter just had 1 verse marked with a few words next to it. That verse just happened to be 16 `Other sheep I have which are not of this fold...´with the words, ´Livro de Mormon-Americas´ written next to it. Isn´t that neat? Concidences in this work just don´t exist. I don´t know what will happen with that family, but it was a very cool moment as a missionary.

Well folks, what more is there to say? Matosinhos got cold again this week but it´s still sunny and there are flowers EVERYWHERE. I swear, all the weeds are flowers and it´s a beautiful sight to see. 
Planning sessions when it´s cold....keeping it classy guys.

The mission is...the greatest. Even when the days are long and cold we sing hymns half in English half in Portuguese and the Lord carries us through. He´s literally, so much more than I ever knew possible. He picks us up every day and He guides every step and I just know that He´s taking care of us. Please pray for the family of that elder in Sweden who passed away in a car accident...scary to think that could have been me and Sister Brundage just a few months ago. I´m grateful, so very grateful that my mission isn´t over yet, not here in Portugal nor in life. There´s so much more to do and every day I´m more resolved to do it. I love you all so much, every one of you reading this whether I know you or not. Let the Lord carry you this week, He´s there, He´s ready.

Com abraços, beijinhos, e muito amor,

Sister Swasey

Porto and Porto North Zone

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