Sunday, January 24, 2016

Bible bash só que não

Dad's questions:  
What were some of the strange things about Christmas in the “summertime”? 
All the christmas music about the cold weather and stuff and here we are sweating like pigs.. thats a little weird. Its hard to get into the christmas spirit without the cold weather. 

Haha its been like raining this whole week and kinda cold and im just like "why cant it be snow?"

So yeah this week was Transfers right? Its all just kinda a blur now the weeks are just flying by. 

So as for missionary work this week it was the normal. Visiting the investigators who want to know more and cutting those who dont.

So I have a story I think I didnt tell you last week. So we went over to G and R´s house to teach them a lesson and S was there. He's a kinda cool guy but hes trying to be a pastor and so he thinks he knows everything. He goes to a pentacostal church. So we get there and we left 3rd Nefi chapter 28 for them to read which was cool. So we get there and S was just kinda in a bible bash mood. It might have been because his mom was there this time or because the 2 girls are gonna baptise soon but he was on one. 

So he says, "I have a question."
Here in the book of Mormon, its saying that Nefi was a God. This book isn´t real. 
I was kinda startled im gonna be honest because, well, Ive read this book and I never got that impression so I said "lets open up to where S is and find out whats going on. So we all open to the first chapter in Jacob where in the chapter heading it saids "Nephi dies" then it said in the first 2 verses that Nephi gave a commandment to Jacob to continue writing in the plates. 
S said "So here it saids he dies and in the first verse he gives a commandment, is he God? Did he resurrect? Who is he to give commandments?" 

I looked at the family and they were kinda smiling hiding laughs, so I said, "Who wants to explain to S what those little italic letters are?" and J said that its a summary of what WILL happen. So I said now lets turn the page and look at (quickly scanning the page) verse 12. Read that out loud for us. "And it came to pass that Nephi died." Hahahaha the whole family was laughing pretty hard. 

Then we explain the commandment about writing a history of their people like the bible and he tried to just jump to another thing because this topic was obviously locked. So I get the really strong impression that I shouldn´t even get into it. So I said, "look we are here to teach G and his family, can we continue to teach them?"

And he says "teach me I want to learn!" and we explain that his questions aren´t to learn. He then opens to some random part of the bible and starts reading and is like, "look its like the same thing! 12 apostles!"
"YES" me and my comp almost said in unison. 
"Jesus healing people!"
"This is a second testimony of the Bible Why do you need it twice?"

 I said, If I awnser your questions can we continue to teach G in peace?"
"2 Cor 13:1"
"BUT where does it say that he will visit other people?"
"John 10:16."
I asked G if we could leave him with a prayer.  I left my testimony and got to my knees to pray. S wanted to keep fighting but everyone was kneeling down to pray so he just kinda stopped. Afterwards G showed us a video about different religions but that all of them believed in love and he thanked us for not fighting with S and apologized a lot. It was really a blessing and the spirit that told me not to fight.

I´ll leave you guys with the same testimony I told them that I know the book of Mormon is true. I know that it is the word of God. I know Nefi wasn't a God and I knew the book of Mormon wouldn't say he because the book was written by prophets called by that all mighty God. I know this church is the only true church on the face of the earth that has the exact teachings of Jesus Christ. I know that he leads this church today through Thomas S. Monson and that through the Book of Mormon we can know the truth of all things. I love you guys and miss you all so much!

Elder Hamm

ps. Me and Elder S are going to mark a day to go to S´s house and answer all of his "Questions" haha

Monday, January 11, 2016

Baptisms and Weddings

My comp wanted this foto....I couldn't stop smiling and everyone was like, "no you're fighting, stop smiling!"


Look I'm Darth Vadar
Do you eat at members for dinner or lunch? We eat lunch with members and we actually have some awesome investigators who like to give us dinner sometimes but everyone always wants to give us Coke or like some cookies or something. 

Are the kids out of school for summer now?  yeah... kinda. Well there was a big long strike in the middle of the year so they are paying for the days off now so some schools might now have summer. haha and this like "summer break" that they are on right now ends in like Feb. 

Where do you shop for groceries? I go shopping in a store called Bahamas. But im not happy about it Bob. Not. Happy. In Rio there is a supermarket called Bramil which is super huge and super cheap. Bahamas is only in Minas and it is not that big and its expensive and the prices are on a crappy electronic thing so you have to like bend down and get eye level to see the price, its just the worst.  

So this week we baptized W. W is 8 years old and super cool and his uncle is a recent convert who is just the best. I didnt think this baptism would do a lot for W but he asked to be baptized like 1,000 times so I wasnt gonna say no. So we taught him everything and interviewed him and baptised him and I gave the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands and in the middle of sacrament meeting he got up and came over to me. I thought he was gonna ask for candy that I have sometimes for the little kids, but instead he came up to me and said my name and said "Obrigado." and gave me a hug. I almost broke down crying thinking that this little kid - this kid who loves getting into trouble and causing chaos, could feel such a difference in before and after receiving the Holy Ghost. it was really cool. 

We also had an awesome lesson with G and his daughters (R was sick so she wasnt there). Where we re-marked their baptismal date for the 30th! we also did a few things the presidente counciled me on doing to really find what they were struggling with. It was funny cause Im always like, Do you guys actually like the church? And everyones always like "Yeah!" So Im like, "and the Book of Mormon? Do you like reading it, do you feel good when you read it?" And they´re like "yeah I know this book is written of God cause I feel the same when I read the bible." So im like so do you guys want to be baptized? and everyone just kinda stays quiet.... hahaha so im like alright i´m lost - like what the heck... hahah I said I feel like this 2 magnets. On one side everyone is saying they love the church and stuff and on the other is baptism... and there seems to be that repeling force between those two things. I want to know what is this force between these 2 magnets.... hahaha so we went and we asked the baptismal questions in detail and I was like alright. So im gonna ask you all a question and you can only respond, "I know this is true," or  "I'm still not sure if this is true." 
Bouquet de Marshmallows.  I'm gonna get
married next.
And boom just like that we found the leaks. They believe in The Book of Mormon, they are just not sure that Joseph was a prophet.  That's gonna be easy to clear up. haha but yeah so im suppper excited about that.

So I was pretty much dying this entire week. I had a really really cut up sore throat and I went for a run monday and almost died. haha I have never had such bad asthma - holy cow. haha I almost blacked out I just had no air. so yeah I had to buy some medicine and stuff.

But yeah this week was good. Today was a sprint since its transfers. We are closing 2 zones which is kinda big. Now we have bigger zones and less Zone leaders. Our district got 4 sisters bigger. so now its staff and 4 sisters and we lost 4 elders. 

So this week M and E are gonna get baptised!! They got married on Saturday and even though they were the investigators of the Assistances, we go over there all the time cause its close to our area and we teach them all the time. Plus me and E have a special relationship cause he works at a Prison so he's super sick  and I just think its cool. So we went to the wedding with special permission from the President. It was awesome. 

But I love you guys!!! miss you all tons!!!


Elder Hamm

Yeah, don't look to closely at it.  Its literally something of Satan.
This is a festival called Filheira dos reis.  

Monday, January 4, 2016

Just some thoughts

This is W, a recent convert's nephew.  We prayed and fasted and he got permission to be baptized.
This is our excited face to be baptized!

How was your holiday cooking?  it was almost all barbeque which is about the best thing in the world. In Brasil Barbeque is like you get some charcol and put some nice cuts of meat on the grill with just rock salt. They have some flavored rock salt which is good but there is a huge debate about using it because if you put flavoring on it, it would be like any other carne just cooked over a grill. But I like the flavored rock salt and some Alcatra or Picanha, a good chicken wing cooked to a dark brown. oh its good enough to eat the bones and everything. but yeah my mouth is water so im gonna stop. haha 

Did you make something good?  Yeah I made cinnamon rolls with a glaze. it was delicious.  

Do they have fireworks at New Years? Yeah there are a bunch of fire works always going off here. and they are sooo cheap! In one area where we work they were trying to sell me 12 of those morter bombs that shoots into the air for like 30 Reais. And when I explained that we are misisonaries he was like alright 25 Reais. Im like DUDE DONT TEMPT ME. haha but I did buy a few little things here and there to have a little fun ;)   haha 

So yeah this week was super cool! We taught a lot of people who really felt the spirit and accepted the invite to be baptised. We are working a lot with the members and they are giving us alot of good references so that reallllly reallly helps the work along. We are also doing alot of family nights with members and investigators which is helping a lot with the members being excited about missionary work and also the members. 

Something really hard to deal with these days is the misunderstanding of the bible. I am getting realllllly tired of trying to explain to someone about how God and jesus and the Holy Ghost are 3 personages and about how Jesus has a body of flesh and bone and stuff like that. THERE ARE LITERALLY 1,000 EXAMPLES IN THE BIBLE OF BOTH THESE THINGS. it comes to the point where im just sad. Sad that so many people dont understand the Bible. Sad that churches preach this. Sad that people dont open the bible to actually read it and just take it for whatever Paster says. If people would actually read the bible, like really READ it to know if it was true and to try and find the Church of Jesus Christ, they would find it. "Seek and ye shall find." that is a promise in the Bible. I dunno. I will spare you the rest of my rant but just know The plain and simple truths are in the Bible. They aren´t hidden or secretly worded. All scripture is interpreted through the holy ghost and if you pray before you read the bible, the Lord will reveal the plain and simple truths to you. It is that easy.

So the rant is pretty much because of one thing that happened this week. We went to AC's house (a recent convert) and her parents go to a different church but I count her mom like my aunt. Shes the best and every time she sees me, she wants to give me a hug and so I have to try and fight the same feelings and not hug her even though shes like 48ish. shes the best. So obviously I love her and want the best for her. But everytime we teach like a 5 minute lesson she has a million questions, which is good it means shes learning, and, well, if you think about it this restoration started with a question too, sooo..... But her questions are doubts her pastor put into her head. She keeps putting into her head, wrong ideas about the basic truths. And when I tell her that that is wrong and show her in the bible where its written she gets this face that is so sad and so confused.  It makes me so sad!  She is so lost and I wanna help her so bad but when you get the wrong information fed to you for the last 40 years of your life its hard to take them out of your head. 

Missionary work is so important. SO SO Important. So important that (insert a not so basic truth here) John the beloved and 3 Nephites wanted to stay here on the earth untill Christ comes again in order to bring more lost souls unto him! It was the most unselfish and loving thing they could ever do. Two years isnt a lot of time but it didnt start in 2014 nor will it end in 2016. We have the basic truths, we have ANOTHER testament of Jesus Christ, and we have to share that. That is our duty, that is our responsibility. When you really understand Jesus Christ and his purpose, you want to share that with others. Its not that we hate other churches and only we get to be saved. But we want to help others have the joy we have and help others know our Savior like we do. That's the love I´ve developed on the mission. 

But yeah. that was kinda my week. Ive been studying alot and its been really good. I love you guys!! I miss you guys so much!! hope you all are doing well!!
Elder Hamm

Some stuff to mix into açai