Monday, October 6, 2014

Mawage, that is the weason we are gavewed hewe tewday! WHOOOO my first marriage of the mission! A and D, the couple we've been working with since we've got here finally got married, and the day afterward, baptized!! And boy was it a marriage! They put a LOT into the whole marriage ceremony, and it was definitely the classiest event I've been to here in Brazil. All the Elders in our District were invited, and we went in suits. SO style'n. But, in all seriousness, it was one of the greatest, happiest moments ever! Getting legally married is a bigger step than I ever thought it would be, and it was a step that I was so happy to see this couple make. Putting it all in a nutshell, Saturday night was a night of lots of good food and even better feelings. Who knew that helping other people be happy could make you so happy!?
Other than that event, this week was bewildering, I still don't know how to make sense out of it, but here I go trying to describe it.
The entire week was a rough one for me. We had a hard time getting traction in our work, and for whatever reason me and Elder S lacked out usual energy and excitement. We struggled with effective planning and teaching, and we ended the week with a lot of wasted time. Which, by the way is the WORST.  There's not many feelings worse than feeling like you've missed opportunities and wasted the Lord's time. Needless to say, I was guilt tripping a lot of the week, and trying to apply what I know was necessary to improve. Then, on the weekend we all got our minds blown.
Conference was great yes, but this Sunday will be remembered as one of the most remarkable days yet. We had one baptism set up, and in the baptismal service, another one of our investigators accepted a baptismal interview, and was baptized after the last session of conference, but just wait, that's not all. Just before the last session of GC, our investigator J showed up, and what happened next is a second-hand account (I was with a member going around picking up less-actives). J noticed that the baptismal font was filled, and became curious. One of the members offhandedly jokingly told him that it was for his baptism. J however took it seriously. He asked if there was an empty room. He entered and proceeded to pray for at least ten minutes, he left the room with a clear answer, and the desire to be baptized that very day. We desperately tried to get in touch with his mom to get her permission, but were unsuccessful. However, we've now got yet another rock solid baptism set up for this coming Saturday.
In thinking about these remarkable events, I was trying to figure out what God was trying to teach me. I was sure that these miracles were for me, and then it hit me. Does God love me? Yup.  Does he want to bless me? Sure.  BUT, these particular events had NOTHING to do with me. I wasn't even there in person. I realized that these miracles are for these people who are making covenants with their Heavenly Father. It was one of those moments where you realize you're NOT the center of everything. I felt humbled to be able to watch the manifestations of God's love for these people, he really is a truly perfect father, and he loves EVERYONE!
But, those are my thoughts this week!
Ate mais!

Elder Justus Johnson

 Ok, I was a little bit worried about the cups being missused here but than I saw the beads of sweat on the faces of the Elders and realized it really was the only way they could get a drink of water.  Must have taken quite a few re-fills.

Can still be goofy and have fun.
Interesting note:  Justus' uncle Daniel teaches Seminary in Utah and recognized one of his students was Justus' companion.  Small world.

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