We got to visit with Joci through Skype on Christmas! It was so great to see her! She looked wonderful and happy. She wanted to hear all about the family and we all wanted to hear about her! We all laughed a lot. When asked what she loves she said that she loves the people. She loves the way that they sit out every evening on their (kind of like a porch) She loves to visit with them during that time. She also LOVES hammocks and says that they are essential to life! She said some things in Portuguese and asked us to figure out what she said. As she said it the spirit came so strong and we recognized some words, it was the first vision. It was a sweet experience. She was skyping from Barbara's house (the person who posts of Joci on instagram) Barbara sat right next to Joci during the call. It was fun to see their relationship and hear them talk back and forth in Portuguese. When the conversation was over it was hard to say goodbye. We all cried and wanted more but we were so grateful for the opportunity to get to talk to her, hear her voice and the sound of her laughter and see the sparkle in her eyes. It was a very special Christmas for our family.
Well it was freaking awesome to see you guys! Man I miss you! Daddy I knew you were going to cry. I knew I would too. It’s weird when the hardest times come i cant cry. All i can do is push through, but then when comfort comes, when i get to see my family or when the lord calms my heart i cry like a little baby. Man. I sure love all of you! It was wonderful to see you. I can’t wait to talk to you again in 6 months. It’ll go by fast i promise. My Christmas was different. It didn’t have the Christmas sparkle like at home, but it did have the warmness. It was a wonderful Christmas gift to talk to you all. But i guess it feels like Christmas a little bit everyday. I am trying really hard to focus on Christ. I am also trying to do what Christ would do. Many times it is a lot easier to go through the motions without emotions. Do contacts on the street and if they don’t accept your message think oh well they were invited but it is a lot harder to look at every single person how Christ would look at them. I want to love every single person. As for Eljoao with the drinking problem he stopped drinking and Mario started.
So i have another kind of funny story. I forgot to tell you guys on Christmas. So we were sitting on the porch of a members house on Christmas waiting to go home so we could talk to our families and the one member leaves for a second and comes back holding a live chicken by the wings. He casually walks through the house out to the back and then about 3 minutes later calls the elders from the back of the house. So we all go back there and he gives us the chicken, now dead, in a box. and says "be careful, it might still be alive" Well thats my story. I thought it was super funny. Here is this dead chicken in a box. Merry Christmas! Funny.
So other than that we met a guy who is possessed with the spirit of the world. That’s how it exactly translates in english. So i don’t know what that means but apparently he has never learned spanish but he can speak it and he’s really creepy. I try and stay away from that one. Maybe he was just drunk. I don’t know, i don’t speak spanish.
The baptism fell through. I was super upset about it. He was excited about it until Friday. We went and talked to him, Fransisco on Friday with the LD for and interview for baptism. We left them to talk for a bit and then came back and he didn’t want to get baptized. The elders didn’t say anything out of the ordinary to him. They just asked him the interview questions and now he doesn’t want to be baptized. He understood everything before and now he just doesn’t want to. We tried to answer his questions and every time we would answer them he would just say "hey i’m sorry i just don’t want to be baptized". Anyway that’s frustrating. He has a problem with paying tithing. He doesn’t have much money so we tried to explain that the blessings out weigh the sacrifice but he just said "sorry i don’t want to be baptized" then he said that he is scared that he wouldn’t be able to walk around at church and that he would fall because he has a problem with his legs and that its super hard to get around. So we tried to explain that he has a bunch of people at church that would help him and that someone would pass by and bring him to church in a car every week and that if he would make the sacrifice every week to go to church his legs would get a little bit better and that he wouldn’t fall but he just said "i don’t want to get baptized sorry." That’s really rough.
We have 4 people with baptism dates for next sunday. Pray that they will be protected from the influence of the devil. He sure works hard on investigators. Man. But we are working really hard.
Any way, you know Mario? He started drinking again. I almost cried. He is really struggling. I fasted for him on Saturday. That just breaks my heart. He was doing so good! but now he is going downhill fast. I am super worried about him. My companion is mad at him and doesn’t like to be charitable towards him because she thinks he is just being dumb because he keeps saying its hard but doesn’t tell us why. So i decided to take control of the situation. He responds to me. We told him that if he feels like he wants to drink he can call us. So he called us on Sunday right before church and Sister Lencini wasn’t very nice on the phone and was super annoyed with him and just told him to come to church. He asked her if she could pass by his house but she said just come to church we will talk to you there. But i decided to pass by his house and we passed by and i said "Hey Mario! Hows it going? You doing ok?" and he said "No life is really hard" and i said "Put a shirt on and come to church with us! You’ll feel better in church!" and he said ok and came.
We also have another investigator who she wants to drop but i don’t because all he wants is a friend. If we are nice and friendly to him he will come to church and get a testimony. She hasn’t even tried and she says its his fault. Any way... Im not having difficulties with my companion, but i wish that she would love all of the investigators, not just the ones she wants.
Thank you for your prayers. I don’t know where i would be without them. Honestly. It helps so much. I have had some hard days but the cool thing is, when something hard happens Heavenly Father always sends something to cheer me up. Anyway. Yesterday was awesome! I felt really good about my work. I worked hard, I helped people and i was able to talk to Preta (a sister in the church i love love love love her) like a best friend. She gave me a sweet bracelet she made and i’m going to teach her daughter piano lessons a couple times.
Life’s good. I love the work and i love you all!
The church is true!
Love you miss you!
love, Sister J. Baker