Monday, May 26, 2014

Doubt - don't like that word, Higher Than a Kite & King Benjamin!..... 5-26-14

The Weather has changed, and wow the change was fast! This past week we have had some freezing cold days. Luckily for us we have the chance to walk around :). 

So I'll start with the good news. Which that's all that I have had this week, it was a good week! We went to Arturo at the beginning of last week with a member from our ward. He served his mission in Uruguay a little while back (not as far back as you dad:) ). He has been praying and we are working with him on reading and understanding what the scriptures say and mean for us. We went feeling like this was the time to give him another date for his baptism. We began talking about baptism and how it is just a step towards returning to God and that we were thinking about the 31st of May for his baptism. That is when Wilder (the member) began to testify of baptism and his own baptism. He really brought another aspect to the lesson and Arturo accepted the date! 

We then went back the next day to go over the Commandments again and he said that he had a doubt. I hate the word ´doubt´ and I started to get a little worried, but it ended up being a doubt that shows how much he wants to do the right. He doesn't know if he is going to be going back out to work in the fields soon and he would feel bad if he couldn't keep going to church every Sunday because the field where he would work is really far away. We talked with him and the Bishop Sunday about how he could go to another church that is closer to where he works if that is what he needed and his doubt was solved. So for now we have a Baptism planned for this Saturday!! And it looks like it will be another cold one! Baptism of faith. 

The other great news from the week came yesterday. President Smith made a trip up here to Rivera to talk to us personally and came with some awesome news! We are going to be having a Stake Wide Fireside by us, the missionaries with him. He talked to us about putting what President Monson said to action. Now is the time for the missionaries and the members to unite and the Lord will help us AS WE ACT with FAITH. He told us about how the Prayers of Faith mean we will need to act too. This Fireside is going to be a great time for us as missionaries to talk with our members and invite them to go and for them to invite someone. To put to action the challenge of what was said. Invite someone every 3 months to do something like go to church or listen to the missionaries. We need to be talking with everyone and making invitations 24/7 to everyone we see to come unto Christ, and now we have the chance to do something that has never been done in Uruguay and there will be more interest from the people. 

I left the little talk he had with us higher than a kite! We went straight to Mario´s house to invite him to it as well as his family. He was so excited for it and his family said that they are going to be thinking about it. It seems like I have just been being reminded of the Basic Principles lately, which have truly been making the difference in what I am doing. I know that the actions of Faith after prayers of Faith will bring miracles. The Lord always taught and invited others to follow Him in Faith and I have the chance and privilege to be able to represent Him here in Uruguay! Love you all and I know that The Gospel of Christ saves lives, and us as members should always be acting with faith to invite! 
                         ELDER Devashrayee
I played King Benjamin in Primary this week... 
The kids were laughing at me trying to get on the "tower".

Monday, May 19, 2014

Prayers of Faith = Increase Miracles..... 5-19-14

This past week was quite the week! So I started off the week feeling really "trunky" to be completely honest. I kept thinking about how much I love my family and my friends and the great memories I have from my "little boy years". It was tough, but things definitely changed Tuesday night. That is when I am thankful that life keeps moving!

We had been thinking about how to help Arturo progress and have an experience that will help him keep moving forward. We felt like we needed to go over the power of our desires. We shared that with him and how everything we teach we know to be true, but if he wants to know it depends on him and his faith to ask in his prayers- something we had already talked to him about. But, this time the Spirit was there really strongly. He told us that he knows it is true because of what we do as missionaries- Walk around, carrying the word of God to everyone. At the end of the lesson he agreed to pray and it was the first time that I truly felt like he was progressing. It was a sincere prayer from his heart. We left his house excited for him and hopeful that the Lord was going to answer him. 

That night I began to think about the example he gave me of a humble sincere prayer. I thought a lot about that and how I could pray with more faith and sincerity in every prayer and ask the Lord to help me. I ended up getting my answer. 

Thursday we went to Tacuarembó early in the morning to have a "five zone" conference with our mission president as well as President Ceballos from the 70. President Smith talked about just that with us. Prayers of Faith. He gave the example in Alma 31: 30-38. The Lord visits us in our afflictions to give us the strength to keep pushing forward, not to take away the trial. We need to put more trust in Him and pray with Faith for what we need. Miracles happen with prayers of faith. It was a direct answer to what I had been thinking about. 

Then today we had our studies in the morning. I read 3 Nephi 19 that talked about Christ with the Disciples and praying with them. Christ smiles and cries because of the great joy he felt because of the Faith that those people had in Him. Our prayers of faith bring a smile to his face as well as ours. We truly will see miracles pass in our lives and feel the Spirit more fully. It even says at the end of the chapter Christ tells the Nephites that they had seen and heard all of those great things because of their great faith. That fundamental principles and actually the 1st principle of the Gospel of Christ changes our lives. Faith! Acting and cultivating that Faith in Him. It is an action and process that should never stop in our lives, and unfortunately I had forgotten that. 

Luckily this past week I received the guidance that I needed through the guides I have here. My leaders, the scriptures, and the Spirit. I learned a lot, and now its time to put it to the test! Faith and works go hand in hand so lets all grow our faith a little more and act more! I know that this principle is true. It is the first step we need to take to really gain a testimony of Him and His Gospel. I know that this church is true and the scriptures truly are inspired words for us today to read, ponder, and apply. The Lord really does hear prayers and will give us the strength we need to get through whatever trial we may have. He loves us and smiles every time we act on faith in Him. The best Big Brother we could ask for. Love you all and hope you have a great week! 
                           ELDER Devashrayee
I found Herby down here in Uruguay!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mother's Day, Strive to Continually Grow, and "Wake UP"...... 5-12-14

Happy Mothers Day (LATE)! And they most definitely celebrate it down here too. This past Saturday we had a ward activity at the church. I was surprised with how many people showed up, but I realized after the activity why. They all shared experiences with their Mothers or poems that they wrote for their mother. Mothers are appreciated even down here :) A memorable time for me. 

And Sunday was my time :)  I enjoyed being able to talk to my mom and Fam! It seems like everyone is just getting older... really weird how that works, but I guess that is what happens. Made me truly take into account the many blessings that I have all around me. I have such a great family and role models in my life. So many people that have made an impact on my life, and helped me get to this point that I am at right now - doing the work of the Lord, the most important thing I could be doing right now. It scared me a little bit to think how fast the time has been going by. Seems like doing the things that bring us joy always fly by! 

Ya the mission has been tough, but I have gained a lot more and really grown to understand what my purpose here is, and what will bring me the most happiness. That is the Gospel of Christ. A Gospel of Hope and Change. That has been a motivation for me the past few months here, something that I learned, and keep testing. It is what Everyone has the opportunity to do. Every person has their individual time, and way of coming to know of the truth that there is in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. 

We have really been stressing that with the Members here in Chico 2. We all need to work on our own conversion to Christ, and be willing to share the great news of the Fullness of the Gospel that was restored to the Earth because of the Love and Perfect Plan of our Heavenly Father. Why do we fear sharing the happiness? 

Our investigator Arturo has been investigating the church for 4 months now, and has made slow, but sure progress. We keep teaching with Patience and letting the Spirit work in him. He has had a fear of praying in front of us, but this past week he prayed twice. They were sincere prayers. It was an example to me of the importance of a sincere prayer- expressing our gratitude, and asking for the help we need most during the day. The Lord has commanded us to Ask! He wants to know that we are putting faith in Him. 

The other cool part this week was Danilo got Confirmed this past Sunday. He continues to be a great example to everyone. This week I read in Alma 57: 21,22 26,27 and he was a great example of Faith, Obedience, and Trust. We are protected and guided if we will strive to grow these 3 principles. We should always be developing ourselves. All of my contacts have shown that to me, but Danilo has been special that way. 

Our Stake Presidency talked to our ward yesterday about how we need to all "wake up" because "everything isn't ok in Zion". There is so much work to do, and ways to become more like Christ. There isn't time to waste! Everyone is needed in this process. Today is the Day to do it! Love you all and hope everyone enjoyed their Mothers Day - I sure did! 
                               ELDER Devashrayee

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Danilo Baptized, Faithful Carriers, Light on TOP of the Hill..... 5-6-14

First off, it was change week and NOTHING changed for me. I am still here in Chico 2 Rivera with Elder Gropp!! Still a District Leader and have a wonderful district. Life is good!

Well what a week it was people! Seemed like everything that we had planned just fell through, but that is always what pushes us to work harder and smarter with the Spirit. So Friday we went to the church to check the font because now I don't trust any baptismal font... We turned on the water and it was flashback time to the other baptisms... Cold water baptism! And this one was especially cold. 

But lets back up to earlier Friday before checking the water. We had the Zone Leaders come to our church to do the Interview of Danilo. Danilo asked Elder Zapata if he could interview him, which was really cool because it was the last time that Zapata was going to be able to interview someone for a baptism. He goes home today, that was a sad goodbye. He has been a huge influence on me as a companion as well as a leader. But they came out of the Interview and E Zapata was really impressed with how Danilo answered the questions and explained them back to him. Ended up being one of the best interviews he has been in. Danilo is a little champ! 

Saturday the baptism was scheduled to start at 5, but I guess the Mormon Standard Time really is a world wide standard of time. We had Danilo and one of our Investigators there before the Bishopric even showed up! Ended up starting at 5:20, but was a very spiritual reunion. Even with the water being freezing cold and Danilo was shaking as I said the prayer, he didn't say a word and came out of the water with the biggest smile. He then gave his testimony after, and all of his less active family members were there to see and hear it. They felt the Spirit strongly as well as all of the members that attended. It's so true what Christ says about little children. 

We have been focusing a lot on Matthew chapter 5 and how we as members need to always be examples of what is right even if there are those that are openly fighting against it. Christ knew and knows still that it isn't easy being that light on top of the hill for everyone to see, BUT our reward in heaven will be far greater than we can imagine. 

The times are changing, and it is obvious here in Uruguay with all of the laws that have been passed, and how the world thinks. It is nowhere near how our Heavenly Father thinks, and HE needs us to be the faithful carriers of His Perfect Plan of Happiness. Righteous living brings the peace of heart that no one can take from us. I know that this Church is true, and that the Gospel has been restored in its fullness, just depends on us and how much we truly want to make the Gospel a way of life. I know it changes lives because it has been changing mine. Christs atonement is real, and through repentance we can feel that joy- joy far greater than anything else. Thank you all for your examples and support. I truly am blessed to have you all!! Have a great week! And remember your MOM's this week!
                               ELDER Devashrayee
On top of one of the few "Hills" here in Rivera.