Monday, January 2, 2012

Let's Get This Black Year Started!

"Goodbye" 2011 ... "Hello" 2012
Hey!!!

Happy New year!!!  This was certainly a different New Years Eve.  I went to bed at 1030!  Elder Costa woke up when the fireworks were going off, but I just slept right through it all.  Before going home for the evening, we stopped by the house I called you guys from and his brother-in-law’s house because they were having a party with a bunch of the members.  They had a barbeque and they invited us to stop by. It was fun, but strange being at an actual party when you're a missionary.  We took off pretty early and went home.

You guys were up until 2:00? When you guys were going to bed, I was on my way to church.  Kind of funny to think about this time difference.  Like … when you guys are up until 12:30 … I’m just waking up.  Britt - did you meet any guys at the dance?  I’m so glad I’ll make it home a bit before your 16th birthday!! Also … what’s the deal with everyone making their trips to visit from Australia while I’m gone?  Can’t Lynette and everyone just wait until the next summer once I’m home? haha  Sounds like you guys are going to have lots of fun.  And to respond to Pedro’s question, can you pass a message along to him?  There are so many people from my first area that I really want to keep in contact with after my mission.  I'll have to write to them the only problem is the letters will be in Portuguêse.  I can speak no problem and understand everything, but writing is kind of hard because I don’t know all the spellings exactly and accents and stuff.  I’ll give it a go anyways.  Igor isn’t a member but he’s a cool guy.  When I started my English class, he went to it.  I really wanted to go and teach him with Pedro, but he was always so busy so it was hard to get a time to go and teach them.  Who knows, maybe Elder Krusi and Elder Morais will have more luck at getting in contact with him … if they even know about him.

This weekend we're going to have a baptism!!!  Finally!  It’s been a while.  We reactivated this one family, and they have a daughter that isn’t baptized and when we talked a little bit about baptism she interrupted us and said really excitedly, “I want to be baptized! can I?!”  So this Saturday is her baptism.  Following that baptism, is the baptism for that couple I told you guys about during the phone call.  They will get married first and then baptized.  I’m so excited for them because they’re so firm and strong in the gospel already.  It was really neat …  one day we had a lesson with them, and before the lesson we were chit chatting with David because everyone else was cooking and didn’t need help from us.  Anyways … he started telling us about this guy who he met through his work.  The guy asked him how he is and David responded very happily, “Oh I’m great!”  The other guy then started to cry and talked about how much a mess his life is and how he wishes that he could say his life is great too.  What did David do?  Something that not a lot of members would do in this situation, but they should do.  He said he had two friends that could help him.  He explained to him that we are missionaries of a church and meeting us really changed his life.  He then bore his testimony of the gospel.  He got his phone number and passed it off to us.  You could see the “want to help this person” in his face and hear it in his voice, that he’s serious about what he said.  He said twice to make sure and call him.  I got to thinking how funny that is, because he doesn’t even know about referrals and how people are supposed to do that.  It reminds me of Lehi’s vision of the Tree of Life.  He partook of the fruit and when he saw that it was good, he wanted others to have some of the fruit too.  He’s a really good example because a lot of time, people give referrals to either help us out because they like us … or in a kind of "want-to-be-seen" way.  He did it out of love because he really wanted to help this guy.  And he also did it because he knew the gospel really has blessed his life, like it does everyone‘s life.  I think sometimes we take that for granted or forget because we get used to the blessings, and the referrals can become referrals for the wrong reason (granted referrals in any form are great) but it has a lot more spiritual power when it’s done in the way that David did it.  He didn’t even know that he was passing a referral on.  He just knew that he was helping someone.

Well, I have to get running now.  I love you guys so much!!  Thanks for everything!  Hopefully all is good with you guys and hopefully Nana and Papa make the right choice about having a second house in Vegas for the winter time (that choice being to have a second house there haha).  That would be sweet to come home and have Nana and Papa living next door to us!  Love you guys! Happy New Year!!  Let’s get this black year started!!!

Love,
Tavin

PS  - No I haven’t received the Christmas package yet.  The secretaries of the mission should be pulling it out today.

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