Wednesday, April 1, 2015

2nd week! 2nd email!

They still have each other! So cool!
(Makelle figured out how to download)!
(Sister Makelle Smith)
Biggest lesson of the week- To have faith in Christ is to be confident in Him and His atonement. Act on your faith and let His atoning sacrifice work in your life. And He will give you the courage to act by the spirit. The MTC is so spiritual I learn so much everyday!
I love you all so much and think of you everyday. Enduring to the end does not just mean making it to the end, it means to be constantly growing your faith and then serving to the end. 
We taught our investigator a few more times this week and I spoke a lot, I was so surprised with how much I could say! Turns out our investigator Danielle is our 2nd teacher, haha so funny but i love her. Her name is Irma Kimball, she is a doll and says that we did very well and brought the spirit.
One day Sister Kirkendall had a dentist appt. so we were in a quad ship where four of us had to stay together all day! I love my district we all try to help each other learn the language and we laugh. One day we saw a duck outside and we thought that was pretty entertaining. We will sing random songs and laugh a ton! We found grand canyon ice cream and I did a victory lap out of joy! 
I have been feeling so much peace about the language, I am a slow learner. I have a plan to use flashcards and to speak the language and it's slowly coming! I learned that we shouldn't let our afflictions tear down our testimony. We must lean on it to make us stronger. I learned how to say "struggle bus" in port. Onibus de luta. Haha yeah I'm on that most days. 
We watched a movie about a boy named German who was so ready to receive the gospel from the missionaries. I felt the spirit so strong that there are people like him waiting in Brazil to hear about Christ and the gospel. I am so excited and cannot wait to get there to share my testimony. 
Elder Meredith and I have become close friends and have a secret handshake, it's nice to have elders around too! I rock at four square in gym time! My teacher Irmo workman told me in English that I know more than I think which gave me so much confidence! I know I need to stop being such a perfectionist and to just try my best with the language and that will be good enough for the Lord and for my investigators! I learned that In order for our seeds(testimonies) to grow first we must harrow up the ground. We need to struggle and to have hard times before we can change and feel gratitude. If any of you are having a hard time realize there is a time and a season for everything, and that you will be blessed and your testimony will grow if you keep the faith! 
I love my district and my teachers I am really starting to love the MTC. I am having a different perspective to try to serve those around me, and it helps me to have greater peace and joy. 
Sunday we fasted and went to a devotional. I learned that if we become disciples of Christ we will be able to feel comfort in times of sorrow! I can truly testify to this. I have tried to be obedient and God has helped me to feel good with my service. 
My companion asked Elder Meredith to give her a blessing and I was able to witness it. Wow how amazing is the priesthood. The power of God is so real and we have been given that gift from Him. The blessing reminded me of blessings my Dad would give me, the spirit was so strong in that room. I know this work is so important and I am so grateful to be apart of it. Also one day my companion was struggling and I prayed so hard, then that day an elder came up to her and said the lord is happy with you and you are doing good. What a miracle to witness that God answers prayers and He is so aware of each of our problems.
So yesterday we taught our teacher Irmo Workman as a new investigator. Wow haha that was scary! He didn't let us in the door and asked us so many questions and "How" about 6 times. My companion froze in fear and she speaks Spanish haha. We didn't know what to do so I felt a prompting to tell him God loves him and that if he prays the Holy Ghost would help direct his life. I bore my testimony about this church and shared the scripture D&C 6:20. We said he would feel God's love if he followed His commandments. We told him we didn't know all the answers but we could explain if we could come back tomorrow. He said yes, and that he would pray about our church! I felt the spirit so strong as I bore my testimony to Jo (Irmo Workman)! I realized that I can hold my own in Portuguese, it may not be perfect but he could understand. My teacher told me he was so proud of me and of my skills. Haha skills right, but he said if I keep working I will get better and better! He said don't be sad because you didn't get in the door, it's not about how you feel, but how Jo felt about the visit. I know that if we have the spirit with us it will testify to our investigators! I am so excited and grateful that I am a missionary for this Gospel. I love the Lord and He will help us no matter what, He knows us individually and He will not leave us alone in our time of need. Thanks again for all your support, it has helped me so much! eu sei que da igreja de Jesus Cristo dos santos dos ultimos dias es verdadeiro.
Sister Smith & Sister Irizarry

(Sister Courtney Smith)
So this week went by really really really fast! It flew by! I was able to sing in the choir for the devotional this past week! We sang a song called "Behold the Wounds in Jesus Hands". Look up the song and lyrics! Its a song from the perspective of a missionary to an investigator! Wow I can envision myself inviting people to see Him, hear His voice, come to know Him, and feel His love! I'm so excited for this Easter! I honestly think this will be the first Easter that I will  be so focused on Christ and what he did for us. A scripture I found in personal study is Alma 36:3 whosoever will put their trust in God shall be supported in their troubles and their affliction and shall be lifted up! I know the Savior is our brother but more importantly He is our Best Friend! He knows us so well, He can help us in the exact way we need it! He is our perfecter! He will take care of us, He will encourage, and comfort us any time we need it. He is not selfish like most of us can be He is constantly waiting eagerly to hear from us, He is waiting for our hearts to turn to Him, so He can heal us. He can mend and fix your broken heart, but He can only do this with as much as you give to him! Turn your entire heart to Him. Repent quickly so He can lift you up and sustain you! This is why we celebrate our Savior Jesus Christ. He was called, prepared, volunteered, and willing to sacrifice for you! Only because He loves you. I love my Savior and have quickly learned to doubt my doubts not my faith! 
I honestly was really nervous and unsure about being able to speak Portuguese. I knew that through the Lord all things are possible HE is a God of miracles!
I was able to give a couple lessons in Portuguese without a script!!! It was such a fulfilling moment to know that the Lord is blessing me because of my faith and determination! The spirit is sooo strong here! I'm learning so much about having an and being a companion! It can be difficult to always be with someone so different! But she is awesome and such an example to me! WE work really well together and that's all that matters! I have been feeling more of a desire to be in Portugal now that I can speak a little! I just want to testify to everyone that God has restored the gospel on the earth today. We can find ultimate happiness and peace in the knowledge and revelations God gives to us when we follow Him! I love being a missionary and having the blessing to be here and learn Portuguese! I will say this again: I can't wait to see my Peeps in Portugal! I can't wait to bring them the gospel! I'm so happy and I'm learning to love the MTC! Only four more weeks here!!! Ahhhhh! Love you guys! 

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