"... I would that ye should remember, and always retain in remembrance, the greatness of God, and your own nothingness, and his goodness and long-suffering towards you ..." -Mosiah 4:11
|From left: Me, (former) Sister Debora Silva and |
(former) Sister Niara Kurtem, both from Brazil.
Taken July 2017.
I spent my last weekend in Brazil in an area called Itapetininga. After church that Sunday, my friend Niara Kurtem and I went to visit the people we wanted to see who weren't at church. I felt like it was one of those, "I came all the way from the U.S. to see you and you weren't at church?!" kind of roundups. A sweet, kind member offered to drive us around (HUGE blessing because it was pouring down rain and that area is ginormous) and we felt prompted to go see Hugo and Sandra, a less active couple we had worked with while serving there two and a half years prior.
This couple was quite surprised when they looked out the window and saw us at their gate. We chatted with them for a few minutes, catching up on life, and then Sandra looked at us and said, "I don't even remember why we went less active." We all went silent. A few moments later, Niara asked, "Is it alright if we sing you a hymn?" The couple agreed. We sang "Nearer My God To Thee" just as we had done countless times on the mission. The Spirit filled the room and we were brought to tears. We challenged them to go back to church and reach out to their friends in the branch. Hugo prayed vocally for the first time in years and they thanked us for remembering them. I felt like a missionary again.
I never want to forget that feeling. I don't ever want to forget that spiritual rush from head to toe when you know you have been an instrument in the Lord's hands to help someone feel of His love. This is true JOY.
|From left: Me, Niara Kurtem, Sandra and Hugo. Taken August 2017.|
God is SO good. I need to remember His goodness. I need to remember how great He is. He uses us in small and simple ways to bless us and help each other. I am surrounded by so many people who uplift me and help me feel important and remembered just by being who they are. I need to make a better effort of doing this for others.
The more I look back at old journals and read past experiences I've had, the more I see miracles that I didn't recognize in the moment. I can have confidence that He'll continue to provide for me as I strive to always remember Him and put Him first. You know that "state of never-ending happiness" that King Benjamin talks about in the Book of Mormon? I want that more than anything. Sometimes I lose sight of the grand purpose of it all, but I just need to remember.
The Lord never forgets us.
"... And if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it." -Mosiah 2:41
|This family is one of my favorites from Votorantim, Brazil. Joaquim and Generosa. |
I brought them BYU shirts :) Taken July 2017.