week 15 . the english major that can't speak english: a #minhavida brought to you by portuguese

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I GOT PACKAGES AND LETTERS THIS WEEK!!!!!!!! Best. Day. Ever. Mom, thanks for the Ensign & New Era, and for the Christmas package (I haven't opened anything in it yet because I want to keep it all in there and neat in case I get transfered...I think. Maybe I'll give into temptation and open the package on the bottom that you mentioned. nao sei), and thank you thank you thank you for the package with the missionary bag, book of conversion stories, picture of baptism (you're so fancy...you already know!), and everything else. Genuinely made my day. I was smiling non-stop thinking about all the fun stuff I got from you. You are the actual best mom in the world. (And my whole Zone agrees and was crazy jealous of me haha). And thanks to all the people who sent me letters!!!!! I am so grateful for the support and love!

This week was a week of ups and downs with our investigators. We have an investigator, Glauber, who is 19 years old and a reference from our Bishop's wife. We taught him everything, he went to church, accepted baptism, all perfect. But this week it got a little weird and said he didn't want to be baptized anymore, and he was acting a bit irritated...he was like a different person because normally he's super calm and shy and seriously awesome. So Sister Marcelino and I left that lesson crying and super frustrated. But the next day we decided to fast for him and our other investigators. When we went back after starting our fast there was a huge difference. We still don't know if he'll be baptized, there's still work to do, but he listened to us, he's reading the Book of Mormon, and I have faith it will all work out! Later that same day we taught a woman named Raquel, and the lesson was perfect. Honestly. She understood the Restoration so clearly. The only problem with her is that she can't make it to church because she is always with her brother who is sick in the hospital, but we're praying for her and we'll continue teaching her and it will be so amazing when she finally gets to go to church. Truly I have such a strong testimony of fasting now. When we show the Lord that we are willing to make sacrifices for him, he will show us miracles. He is a God of miracles, I have no doubt about it!

Sister Marcelino and I had a few moments this week where we were feeling really sad about the investigators who weren't accepting the gospel. It's hard knowing that we can share with them everything they need to have eternal happiness, to return to the presence of our Heavenly Father, and they just don't want it. But we realized that as we are experiencing these feelings, we can understand just a little bit what the Savior must have felt when He was here. He loved the people who He taught so very much, He did everything for them, even died for them, and still they rejected Him and His gospel. But He never stopped working, never stopped showing His love for them. I'm so grateful for His love and for His example. 

Also I read about Alma and Amulek in the Book of Mormon today and they had the same experiences! They worked so so hard and were still rejected, but after a lot of faith and patience and diligence they saw success! The Book of Mormon is the best people. It truly has answers to all our problems. 

My #minhavida moment for the week. We were teaching a lesson to a woman named Lis who is the friend of a young couple in our ward (Liz and Jutson. They're adorable). And all of them can speak or at least understand english fluently. So Lis asked if I could teach a couple minutes of the lesson (the Restoration) in english. And I'm thinking: sweet, this will be way easier. False. It was so hard. Hahaha. I kept using portuguese words on accident and the whole time I was translating from portuguese to english so half my sentences came out so weird. I had to think so hard to teach in english I'm sure I looked like I was constipated (sorry for the visual but it's true). It was to the point that Lis even corrected me a couple times because I was using portuguese words and not realizing it. haha hilarious but also crazy exciting. The gift of tongues is REAL! Woohoo, fluency in portuguese here I come!

I am so grateful and happy to be here! The past three months have flown by, and this time that I have to be a missionary is truly so short. I am receiving endless blessings every day from my Father in Heaven and from the knowledge I have of this gospel. I think every day how grateful I am that I have two amazing parents who raised me in the church, my life would've been so much different without the example that I had. (going to church, reading the scriptures and praying together, hearing your testimonies mom and dad). Thank you! And now because of you I can share this happiness with other people! THE CHURCH IS TRUE. I know it. I know it with all my heart. 

I hope you all have an amazing week and remember that I love you all so much and am grateful every day for the family, friends, ward members, everyone that I have at home.

Com muito muito muito amor e gratidão [mom note: "with much much much love and gratitude"]

Sister M. Baker (got my new name tag with the M. this week haha)

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