Monday, December 12, 2011

I feel like the prophet Jonah

I really am feeling like Jonah when he was called to serve in Nineveh
but was reluctant to go. I have been transferred to São José do Rio
Preto and am a little reluctant to go. I don´t want to leave this
fantastic ward here in Birigui. I really became a part of the ward
here. But, I won´t flee like Jonah did. It was a bit sad saying
goodbye to everyone. But it was really nice to hear the gratitude that
everyone expressed. We had dinner with Jair´s family last night, they
made fish for me again! It was a really fun night and a bit emotional.
I shared my favorite scriptures from 2 Nephi and Jair shared John 3
with me. He encouraged me with the words that ``the field is white
already to harvest´´. I love that family so much, but I know there is
another one waiting for me in Rio Preto.

So, tomorrow I will start training for the fourth time. I´m really
excited especially because it will be an African. I can´t wait for
this opportunity. There have been so many problems getting Americans
here to Brazil that they are bringing in missionaries from other
countries here in South America and now Africa! It´s gonna be a great
experience. I´ve heard a lot of great stuff about Rio Preto too. It´s
the second biggest city in the mission. It has about 400,000 people
and two stakes. I will serve in the Second Ward of the North stake.

The ward in Birigui had a temple trip last week and several of my
recent converts went. It was such a great expereince hearing them tell
about the Spirit that they felt at the Temple. Jair´s two kids and
José Henrique went. José Henrique is really excited about serving a
mission next year. I can´t wait to hear where he will serve. Jair´s
kids also hada  great experience. Samuel also passed the sacrament
yesterday.It´s so cool not only seeing people be baptized but taking
the next steps to stay active for the rest of their lives. Retention
of activity is a big challenge here in Brazil. But I feel really proud
of my work in Birigui.

My companion told an interesting little story to explain how the Devil
and his angels work. He taught about the MTC for the evil spirits.
There was a training there for the new evil spirits that were arriving
and they asked 3 experience spirits that had a lot of success dragging
people out of the strait and narrow path to explain how they had so
much success. The first one said that he had brought dozens of people
into Satan´s kingdom. He would tempt people to drink a little, or
browse naughty websites. All the new spirits were quickly scratching
down notes. The second spirit explained that he had deceived hundreds
of people by tempting them to just stop reading the scriptures and not
go to church weekly. Then the third spirit came foward. He was
renowned for having won thousands of souls for Satan. He said, `` do
you want to know how I had so much success? I told the people to keep
the commandments of God.`` All the new spirits were puzzled, `´isnt
that the opposite of our mission?`` The Third spirit explained, ``
keep the commandments of God....tomorrow´´. I thought it be an
interesting little parable to teach about laziness and

Well I guess that about sums it up for now. Things are going very well
and I´m really excited for the new adventure that will start tomorrow.

Elder McLelland

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