Monday, September 30, 2013

First week in Taubaté

Dear Family,

Thank you for your prayers, letters, and support.  This week was a great week.  We had the baptism of a man named Wellington.  He was super awesome.  Last week he showed up at church all alone and so we scheduled an appointment with him.  On the very first appointment he accepted baptism.  We taught him every single night this last week and he kept telling us ´´all this that you are teaching me just seems really familiar.  Like I´ve heard it already somewhere´´.  That´s called the pre-existance!!  Teaching him was awesome and it was great to see him take the step of baptism.  I am getting used to the new ward and the new responsibilities that I have, so far I have learned a lot.  This ward is really awesome.  The members are great.  My testimony has been strengthened and I know that God is willing to give us revelation if we will just ask for it.  

This past week we were trying everything possible to acheive a zone goal for baptisms.  We were working as hard as possible but towards the end of the week it became clear that we just weren´t going to get our goal.  On Thursday night the other three missionaries that live in the house and I stayed up talking and trying to think of anything we could do to reach our goal.  In desperation my companion said ´´And the eternals??´´.  An eternal investigator is an investigator that many missionaries have taught for a long time but no one has been able to baptize them.  We thought about one man who´s entire family are members of the church and he comes to church every once in a while, but doesn´t want to get baptized.  In fact he used to be a leader of another church and knows the Bible really well.  We decided to try and mark an appointment with him to teach him and baptize him.  On Friday we scheduled to teach him at 7:00 at the church.  Elder Cherry and I got to the church early at about 6:30 (we were on a division that day, Elder Cherry is one of the other Elders that lives in the house with me).  We went into one of the rooms at the church and decided to make a lesson plan.  We said a prayer together and then individually we both started studying.  The idea came into my head to study the conversion of Paul.  So I turned to Acts 9 and started studying.  After about 10 minutes of study I looked at Elder Cherry and guess what chapter he was on??  Acts 9.  I asked him why he decided to study that chapter and he said, ´´I just felt like studying it´´.  We took it as a sign and developed a lesson plan around the story of Paul.  Around 7 Edson (the eternal investigator) showed up, I had never met him before.  We invited him and his wife into one of the rooms in the church and talked for a little while.  We said the first prayer and right after the prayer the words ´´Edson what are you waiting on to be baptized?´´ splurted out of my mouth.  He said ´´Elders it is simple.  Are you two familiar with the conversion of Paul?´´.  I was speechless haha.  Elder Cherry and I looked at each other and then explained to him about how half an hour ealier we had recieved revelation that we should teach him about Paul.  We gave him the lesson that we had prepared and he was thinking about it a lot.  It definitely threw him off.  In the end he told us he still didn´t think that now is the time and we finished the lesson.  However we are not going to give up yet!!  This week we are going to try and talk to him again.  Even though he didn´t accept the baptismal invitation it was still a lesson to me that revelation is real and God is willing to send it to us if we just ask for it.  I know that for some reason we were meant to teach him that lesson.  Everyone pray for him so that his heart can be softened and that next time we go back he will accept the baptismal invitation!!
Love you all and hope you are all well!

-Elder Caleb Anderson

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