This week was...eventful to say the least.
On Monday it was my birthday. Thank you everyone that sent me a birthday wish. I really love hearing from you. Elder Todd and I were going to have pizza on Monday but decided to have pancakes for lunch instead. Between the two of us we ate 5 kilos (11 pounds) of pancakes. It was really, really delicious. Then that night we went to a less-actives house and had pancakes with their family and some investigators. It's nice that my talent for making chocolate chip pancakes has a real purpose in bringing people together in unity around some good food.
On Wednesday there was a conference because President Moreira is leaving and going home. They took a mission picture, there were some speakers, I understood almost everything that was said, we sang the mission hymn, and it was just an overall good day. But in all honesty my favorite part of the whole day was seeing the people I'd gone to the MTC with. I was just so happy to see them. I had grown to really love them in the 6 weeks we were together and it was nice to see that they were all doing well. Learning and growing. And, I wasn't the one to lose the most weight. Another elder lost 15 kilos (33 pounds), so my 10 kilos wasn't so bad. The conference ate our whole day though so we got back in time to do just a little bit of studying and then go teach our English class. We taught them commands and then played Simon Says. They thought that was the greatest thing. I look forward to continuing the class. It should be fun.Elder Todd and I keep our house really clean, and except for the 25 flies that live in our shower and various spiders that live in cracks that I can't get to, I haven't seen more than a couple of stray ants in weeks. Until Wednesday... I was kneeling down to say my prayer at night. I don't have a bed, only a couple of mattresses on the floor. I knelt down and found a cockroach...in my bed. I flicked it off, killed it, said my prayer, and climbed into bed and fell asleep. I don't have the time, energy, or privilege to be able to worry about having bugs in my bed. I shake my sheets out every once in a while, but bugs are everywhere here so you learn to just deal with it.
We continue to work with less actives and part member families. They seem to really love visits from us. We had 2 baptisms this week. Included are pictures of the baptisms. Flavia was baptized a couple weeks ago, but on Friday her little brother Felipe was baptized and her friend Renan was baptized. Renan was the referral of an investigator, who was the referral of a less-active, which was the referral of a member. The Lord has a way of leading us to the people who need to hear from us. Member missionary work is so much more powerful than I ever understood before. Renan has several friends that want to hear the gospel and his cousin even came to church on Sunday for Renan's confirmation. I love this work. Renan, Felipe, and Flavia, are all filled with a light that they didn't have before. It's beautiful.The quote of the week: In Joshua there is the story of the Israelites coming to Jericho for the first time and sending out scouts. The scouts came back and all of them (except for Joshua and Caleb) said that there was no way that they could capture Jericho. Caleb's response was "Give me this mountain." He volunteered to take the hardest and most difficult challenge because he knew that with the help of the Lord it was possible. We shouldn't always ask for the hardest thing to happen, but when it does we must be ready to turn to the Lord and let Him know that you are willing to take on the challenge.
With all the energy of my heart,Elder Tyler Andrew Bushman
Tyler with President and Sister Moreira
Elder Todd and Elder Bushman
Flavia's baptism day
Elder Bushman with Felipe and Renan
Felipe and Renan's baptism day