Lots of older people here have been telling us that they are afraid of Carnaval even though it is quite small in our city. One of our investigators, Mirelle, said: “I’m not leaving the house; everybody already dyed their hair.” I was confused — what does hair dye have to do with Carnaval? Then over the next two days all of a sudden everyone in the street had hair dyed bright pink, red, blue, yellow, green, etc. She was saying that she knew Carnaval had already started because her neighbors already dyed their hair! We’ve also seen a lot of people in costumes. There are little bands of boys and some adults walking around with costumes, sticks, and masks. There are also lots of people in rainbow tutus.
We haven´t seen much Carnaval but right before we got to this LAN house we saw some people dancing Frevo! That was exciting. We are hearing a lot of marching band sort of music. Our LAN house (similar to an internet cafe) was closed today but luckily there was another LAN house open. It´s not very good — only two headsets and the computer lost power due to lightning in the middle of my video chat.
We had to wait for computers to be open so we went to a store where I tried on this hat:
We have had a number of investigators hiding/don´t want to answer the door this week, so that was a little sad, but we did a ton of contacts and we have found a lot of great new people to teach. We have two great families marked for baptism but we have a stake conference coming up so we will see whether we can convince them to travel to Caruaru for that or if they will have to be baptized a little later.
We already had trouble finding people at home for the lessons we planned with them, but now with Carnaval it is getting worse. We mark a visit with someone one day and show up the next day only to see a locked-up house. We call them and they say they´re travelling for Carnaval!
We have been talking to a lot of investigators recently about how to recognize answers to prayer. We have shown a couple of them this video with Elder Bednar’s thoughts on receiving revelation. It reminds us that we can’t expect answers to be huge signs from God — often they are more subtle. On my mission I’ve found a few scriptures about answers to prayer that I really love. One is Alma 5:45-46. Here he is talking to the people and asks them how they think he received an testimony of the gospel:
45 And this is not all. Do ye not suppose that I know of these things myself? Behold, I testify unto you that I do know that these things whereof I have spoken are true. And how do ye suppose that I know of their surety?
46 Behold, I say unto you they are made known unto me by the Holy Spirit of God. Behold, I have fasted and prayed many days that I might know these things of myself. And now I do know of myself that they are true; for the Lord God hath made them manifest unto me by his Holy Spirit; and this is the spirit of revelation which is in me.Alma 5:45-46
This is cool because Alma saw an angel before this — but apparently that wasn’t enough to have a testimony! He had to fast and pray — not just one time but for many days!
I have been on a mission for six months! We ate açaí to celebrate. I can’t believe it’s been six months already!