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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Sister Whitney is 20!!!

Everybody listen up. I´m 20 now so I have more wisdom. NOT. Haha. A birthday in Brasil is seriously a strange thing, wonderful, but strange. I actually forgot it was my birthday until my comp said something. Then I was like, "Oh yeah, I've been alive for 20 years today." That was weird. We had a good time. For our last lesson of the day, Sister Oliveira (Sister C. Silva changed her name to Oliveira) wanted to go see a recent convert. I was all for it, so we hurried there. When we arrived all the lights were off in the house, but Sister Oliveira just let herself right in. I was like, "This is weird, but whatever." Come to find out, they had planned a little surprise party for me with cake and everything. I was so surprised and so happy that I almost cried:) It was an excellent birthday.
This week had it's ups and it's downs. We lost a lot of investigators, either they didn't want to learn more or they weren't progressing, so that´s always hard. I was kind of having a hard time with this. We have been working so hard for so long and haven´t seen much success. I honestly didn't know what I was doing wrong. I study hard to become a better missionary, we talk to everyone- and i mean everyone-, we work all day, and still we´re struggling. I was really frustrated with this so I decided to take a minute and cool down. I read a couple talks in the ensign from conference a few years back and came across a talk from Elder Nelson. It was entitled, "The trial of our Faith". I know that this talk was an answer for my desperate prayers. In this talk, Elder Nelson cites Either 12:27, with basically states that the Lord will give us weaknesses so we can become stronger. It´s only after we have exercised our faith though out our trial will we see the growth and the strength we have received. This scripture and talk gave me so much peace. I know that I am doing all that I possible can to be a good missionary. I know that because of this the Lord WILL bless us. Maybe not with 20 new investigators, maybe not with 5 baptisms, but I know that because of the trial of my faith I WILL be a better missionary. I know that I am becoming the instrument that the Lord wants me to be. 
Before my mission, everyone talked about how hard missions are. I was always like, "I can do hard things, a mission can´t be that hard". Well, I can still do hard things, but my mission is seriously the hardest thing I´ve ever done. But it´s also the most rewarding, most cherished part of my life. I feel like a new and better person. The parts that I like about my old self are still there, but I have noticed that I have new and better qualities. Like I´m not afraid to talk to strangers anymore. Look out McDonald's, I´ll be asking for a boatload of ketchup now:) The mission breaks you down so the Lord can build you back up, but better. I love it.
Also, we were rewarded this week for our work and faith. A girlfriend of a member wants to learn more about the church and came to sacrament by herself this week. We had someone in church! (Thanks mom for the prayers!). Her name is Viviane and she´s very open to learning more about the gospel. I am sooo excited to teach her!
I love you all. Thank you so much for the Birthday wishes too! It was seriously an unforgettable birthday:)
Have a fantastic week!
Love, Sister Whitney 

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