Monday, November 21, 2011

Oct. 31, 2011
I~m glad to hear that you~re excited for wrestling. I really really want to wrestle someone here. Especially because here they all do jujitsu so I want to see how I would do. I think I would do pretty well. :)

Hamilton has recruiters after him huh? That is cool :) Are they offering money or just a spot on the team?

This week was pretty good. Got to work alone twice (see moms email for more) and learned a lot about working as a senior companion. I am not in such a hurry to be a senior now. haha But it was really good.

You are exactly right about the pride. I am studying humility right now in Preach My Gospel (you should take a look if you have time) and trying to learn how to have more confidence in the Lord and less confidence in me. Because I think that fear really is an indication of pride. We are afraid of what people will think or do or say and we don~t trust the Lord because we are worried about ourselves. Really it is a lack of faith in him or an indication of pride in Us.

I~m learning a lot about myselft. I spent the first 11 weeks trying to keep my mind 100 percent on the work. Never thinking about home or about my truck (how is that by the way) or about marriage or anything other than missionary work. And it was good. But now i~m just exhausted mentally. I don~t know what you did to keep your mind on the work without killing yourself but I would appreciate your advice on the subject.

I am relaxing a lot more. It is good. I can feel the spirit more when I am less worried about rules. Its hard to explain but I think I am learning a balance between life and rules. And when life is different than the rules and when we need to sacrifice our lives to obey the rules. It is a tricky balance and one that I will hopefully have figured out by the end of two years. haha

This week we talked to a Jehovah Witness couple. It is interesting to see how missionaries deal with people who want to fight. I find it really immature when people say something and then say the reference right after and I hate it when people do that and hate it more when missionaries do that because it makes us look like we are just trying to flex muscles (biblical muscles). And I would rather pretend to be stupid and let them talk and then present a simple message about love than bible bash. I really think that we can avoid bible bashing if we focus our messages on love. And compliment people on the faith they have and show them how this love can be more present in their lives. It’s what I want to do as senior companion.

There is a lot of people out there who don~t understand the bible and who have great faith but don~t know where to put it. It is really sad. I hope I can help a few of them. but really they just want to teach us. Pray that I can find people who really love to learn and who are really looking for truth.

Love you Dad,

Elder Noel
OH thanks for teaching me to work. One day you said to me that your goal was to make me work until I loved work. I love work. I love learning and I love being active. I’m less interested in naps or in general recreation because its time lost for learning. I think that is a gift from you.

I did get the packages. Infact I am wearing the tie right now:) It was really funny my companion got the package before me so everyone in our district saw a package from my family to him but not to me. Thank you so much for the picture!!! I love it:) I put it in my book of Mormon. And peanut butter on pancakes was such a treat!!! haha I have pancakes everyday. (almost blew up the house this week making cake..... hahaha) Thanks for the packages. They really are great. It is crazy how much a little love from home can do for your moral.

This week I got to work 2 days back to back alone with Elder Christensen (new elder here from utah but he served for 4 months in Alabama) so that means 2 days not having a Brazilian to have my back. It was really good for me. Good for me to know that I can make decisions and good for me to know that I can speak that language in a manner that people can understand me.

The bad thing is he wants to speak English at home. That isn~t terrible but it is harder for me to maintain my image as a missionary in English because I have patterns of speech in English that are less than formal. And its easier for me to talk bad about my companion in English which is really bad. haha so I~m learning two things. 1 be more patient with Brazilians because they don~t have the opportunity to re structure their language and 2 learn to control the things I talk about. It is good. I am also translating. Which is good for my confidence.

Our lesson to new investigators was rough..... haha but we taught them and I think we demonstrated our church well. We will see how well when we return next week.

I spent a lot of time worrying that people wouldn~t talk to me after my companion left (he leaves tomorrow) because he has been here for 6 months. But yesterday at church the relief society president was already talking to me and not him because she knew he would leave. That was really cool. It is really good for my confidence. Usually I am worried about what people think of me. Especially because I can~t speak and express myself in the manner I can in English.

Well I love you mom. This was a good week. I can~t believe its already been 5 months since I left! Crazy huh?!

I love you mom!!
interested in naps or in general recreation because its time lost for learning. I think that is a gift from you.

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