Monday, July 11, 2016

Viva La Vida

I decided to go for something that everyone knew today, because I've been pondering on the meaning and how it connects to how I've been feeling since I've left the office. It tells the story of someone who "used to rule the world," but now has become one with the people. Don't get me wrong, I did not feel any sense of power as I was in the office. But I felt like I knew of most everything that was happening in the mission. Now that I'm here, I almost feel shunned to a certain extent, haha. I've come to realize that I've gotta work harder on Living The Life (hence Viva La Vida) and get to work!

It's a good thing that teaching is a lot more fun than boring old office work, huh? This week we did a lot of hard work in our area. The results weren't what we were hoping for, but we still did get some good results. I think the most disappointing thing was that we only got 15 lessons this week. The new mission standard is that we're supposed to have at the very least 20 lessons. We're going to have to put some better planning into this next week, but I want to make it happen. I think one problem is that we haven't been looking in all the right places for investigators. It feels like most of our last week has been filled with teaching people of other faiths that don't actually have a desire to act on our message. While it's important to help them to feel the truthfulness of our message, I still think that we could do better at finding those prepared to receive us. Luckily, we got some really cool references these past few days, who we're trying to get into contact with now. I've got some real hope for what's happening.

We only had one investigator in church yesterday. His name is Jacinto, and we just met him this last week. It was cool to see him show up to church. I didn't even teach him, I was actually on a division when we were going to teach him about the Restoration. So when he showed up, I didn't even realize that he was an investigator until Elder Jhangani told me! We also had a less-active named Solangela show up. She's one of those people that you're like, why aren't you going to church when you act like an active member? We found her through knocking doors, and the family invited us in. The first thing we saw was a big common picture of Jesus Christ, the one that's on pass-along cards here! We were like, are you members??? and they said yeah it was funny. I guess they just needed someone to tell them that we missed them. I wonder how many other people just need that one visit, ya know?

I went on 2 divisions this past week. The first was with Elder Santos over in Patim. It's a place that's about 20 minutes from here by car, and it's a pretty small community. There's a branch that's kinda struggling back there, but I saw some really good potential. They also work in a zone called Luzia Nunes. The thing about working out there and living here is that if you don't find a ride, you have to walk. And that's a looong walk. I was sweating pretty bad. The second division was with Elder Farnsworth in São Filipe. It'd been about 8 months or so since our last division, but he's still doing really great for himself. We only had 2 lessons that day, even though we were out for about 10 hours! Even so, we got a lot of good things done, which taught me a lot about planning for one.

It keeps getting hotter, but the promise of rain in a couple of weeks is looking good! Hope you all have a good week! I hear there's some not fun stuff happening in America, and my prayers go out to all that have been harmed in this past week. Remember to share the love that Christ has for all of us!

Elder Penner

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