November 11, 2013

That sounds like a marvelous Sunday Mom! It is always a great feeling to be on top of things and have a bit of time to relax. Probably one of the biggest rewards on the mission is when a little time is left over to ponder. It feels like its just run from one place to another to another to another and another! Sunday nights generally stay pretty nice though. Well I am pretty excited for the Thanksgiving turkey when I get home. Ha-ha turkey here is really expensive and I only have missionary money ha-ha.   Well mom, the beef jerky always got here fine and my comps have never had any trouble with it coming in. The taxes don’t generally happen if the contents of the package are less than 50 dollars so yeah as long as you did that there shouldn't be a problem mom. I am really excited for them to come! Dad said you sent two?!!!! yeahhhhhhh!!!
Well I have been saving up to buy a pull up bar too so I can work out the back and the shoulders and the chest a little better but ever since we started doing our exercises I have felt so much happier and energized, its easier to wake up and its just been really nice.
Studies are sacred and I love every minute that we have set aside to study together. I decided to read the bible because there are so many good stories and examples in the Old Testament that I can use in the teaching and it’s just nice to read some new text. Ha-ha its a little crazy that I have never read it all the way but I am loving it a lot. Its super hard to understand the Old Testament in Portuguese and I generally end up rereading the chapters in English. But man, the times in the Old Testament were pretty crazy and God demanded a lot from the people, now a days it is much simpler and these people still have such a hard time giving up so so so little to have salvation and happiness. 

Speaking of salvation and happiness, this Sunday was absolutely incredible with Kaique. It was so great. I had never said this but we have become such good friends. He reminds me of Levi. He is such a cool kid, he loves the same chill rock music that Levi does and he is just such a polite respectable guy. It is so incredible how the Lord has prepared him, and seeing that he has, I know that he will have some great responsibilities in the church someday. This Sunday I baptized my brother and it was the greatest feeling in the world. So Kaique was pretty nervous about it all and we spent the entire day with him on Saturday. He signed up to help with a church service project and so we did too so we could be with him, but nobody else from the church came to help so we ended up leaving and went out to eat lunch together. That was a lot of fun and it was pretty good food too. After lunch we went to his Mom's house and talked with him for a while about life and the gospel and it was just so cool to see how he is truly converted. I never like when an investigator is nervous about baptism but in this case I did. He was only nervous because he understood the weight and responsibilities of the covenants he was going to make. Then our district leader came and interviewed him and everything went super well, and after we ordered pizza to celebrate. Lets just say we were stuffed by the end of the night and no we weren’t able to get our night workout in because I also had to prepare a talk for the next day on "How to invite others to come unto Christ" it was only a ten minuter so no biggie. 
When we had showed up to church Kaique was there and ready to learn and I knew right away that he was still pretty nervous but more ready than ever. Everyone there was quite excited for him. 

We passed through the first two hours of church and then the bishop told me that I wouldn't be able to speak because something came up. I was a little bummed but then again I would've summed up my talk in a couple short sentences. "How do we invite others to come unto Christ?" 1st- convert yourself 2nd- go with Nike and just do it. But anyway they changed out the bishopric and it was a cool-ish meeting. Kaique and I were sitting together in sacrament and all of the sudden his dad and his grandmother came and sat by him. He just started bawling and said that he wasn't nervous anymore. It was so cool to see the support that his family had for him even though they don’t have any certain religion and his parents are divorced.
It was even better to bring back feelings of how much Dad and Mom have always supported me in life and the feeling of having Dad at the football and baseball games and the church talks and the school things is just something indescribable and extremely rare these days. I couldn’t help but tear up as I saw that and as I thought about our wonderful parents and family. We are just all so blessed.
After Sacrament we changed really quickly into our whites and took some pictures and started the meeting. It was a simple baptism, but every time I enter the water with one of God's children and have to opportunity to recite such sacred words, it is a feeling that I never want to let go. Just like Elder Holland said the words "Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ...." These words are words that change lives and the true understanding of them makes these people who are commissioned change the world.  As soon as Kaique arose from the water he was crying and we both hugged. It was just the greatest experience. 

Well that was the cream of the week, other than a lot of hot, sweaty hours out in the sun, it was a great week. As for this week, transfers are tomorrow because of the holiday season and I will be training a greenie again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so so so so excited, the other zone leader who will be coming to our zone will be training in another area also and I literally cannot wait. We will be getting two more sisters in the zone and opening two areas. We are now the second biggest zone in the mission and yes, the true work of salvation and the Kingdom of our Savior is growing here on earth. I am so happy to be part of it!
Family, I hope you have a wonderful week and maybe take into mind my advice on inviting others to come unto Christ, convert yourself and then just do it. I love you all! Have such a wonderful week!

Elder Paynter

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