Monday, October 26, 2015

Put your boat in the water

So good to chat with you people every week :)

Every time I feel as if I have to bundle every day into one email...which is basically impossible but I always try! Mostly I wanna talk about what I have learned. You guys (my regular readers) should know my daily schedule by now, with district meetings every week and church, and teaching lessons but you don’t know what I get out of them now do you? 

One of my goals, amongst many, is to not be competitive but follow the will of the Lord. I’m competitive with the language, progression (not outwardly, but inwardly, personally I want to win, kinda weird)...sadly I think after 14 years of soccer, my mentally is win win win! Oh be the best, be the best. However, that’s not realistic. That’s not how God’s missionary work flows. I need to think as He does as well as act. When I think like Him, I don’t want to be better than others or be the best but equal. I want to help them be better even though they might pass me (intellectually, spiritually). There’s a great scripture in Psalms 143:10 which was my weekly scripture. Look it up :) Enjoy.

I’ve also realized that we can repent in many ways. It doesn’t just have to be a serious sin. We can repent after thinking angry, prideful, or sad thoughts. We can repent when we know we can do better etc. There are so many things we can do better and can use the amazing gift of repentance! Our Savior understands everything. Repentance helps us back onto the path; back to that beautiful hike.

We have some investigators who we are helping with smoking, coming to church, understanding why it’s important to pray in respect to what we teach and I use an analogy about soccer to explain the commandments and why we have them. In soccer we have rules for everyone’s benefit. When everyone plays by those rules and stays in bounds, it’s fun. Everyone has a good time and feels the fairness of the game but when they are broken etc. the mood changes. Just like when we live the commandments, our bodies, minds and spirits are protected. We have fun, and amazing lives. But when these rules are broken, life changes. It’s not the same. Without rules and commandments, life is chaos. There is no reason to do good or enjoy these moments.

In a three-some now

One more metaphor! Yesterday we had the opportunity to watch the missionary devotional (that we were in as the audience) again with future missionaries in our stake and at the end someone said, "put your boat in the water" which made me think if my boat was in the water....yes! I was living a great life on my island of family, college, work but had the opportunity to set sail for Brazil; to bring a bag filled with seeds of faith for the other inhabitants lost at sea. I don’t know where I’m going at times. The winds change. Sadly, sometimes sharks attack but how glorious it is when I can yell, "land ho!" as I find a new island or person who is ready to plant that seed and try other fruit besides the usual mangos that originated there. They now have the fruit of this gospel, the atonement, and have the opportunity to nurture it and produce their own tree, with seeds, ready to share once more. Boy do I love metaphors!

Anyway, I think you get the idea. Life as a missionary is wonderful. Every day my Savior helps me become better and my relationship with my Father in Heaven grows tremendously. Set sail on this wonderful adventure of life, with the gospel, with things that are here only to help us.

Until next week,

I’m Sister Oldroyd signing off from Cotia, Brasil :)   

Monday, October 19, 2015


Hello everyone :)

This email I want to focus on what I studied this week. But let me give you a run-down of the other activities first.

We got to make lunch two times this week cause a member forgot and another couldn’t be there to make it so they gave us money and we decided what we wanted and made it (because obviously we are amazing chefs). The first was just meat and rice etc. but the second one was hamburgers!!! How joyful....they were a bit different but still a hamburger to me :) and we had 3 desserts....that’s what happens when we are in charge.

I also got to battle a pretty big cockroach for Sis Harris, ‘cause he ran under her bed. I immediately grabbed the broom, handed her a stick and told her to try and scare him out to the side of the bed where I was ready to pounce. In the end I won. There were a few marks on the floor as a result but one dead cockroach and a more comfortable Sister in the house.

Also I had my first interview with President Del Guerso. He is fabulous everyone, so open and funny and wise. In the interview he said it was all me, and said I could start, ok. I just talked about how I was, my area, my Portuguese etc. then he would respond. I asked questions. It was so peaceful to just talk with him, and not feel like I had to give a bunch of answers to a bunch of questions. Lovin the Del Guerso's! Sister Del Guerso is fabulous as well :) 

In the training we had with her, she used a bunch of different words for us to explain our thoughts. I had the word Miracles. Such a great word right? Basically everything is a miracle. My mission, my family, friends, this plan, my Savior and the comment I ended with was that I have realized that I want to be a miracle in the lives of others and for my Savior, not a burden; Make others feel of His love, and have them feel as if your presence isn’t a hassle or problem but something they want to continue to enjoy.

I’ve studied a lot about Hope as well, some great scriptures are 2 Cor 4:18 and Rom 8:24-25. What are our hopes? Do we Hope in Him? He is Hopeful. Do I hope for others to have success or happiness? How can I help them have hope? Oh and be happy in Him!! (I love using words that start with the same letter. I think there is an English term for that....anyway.)

It’s been a great week as you can tell (or at least I hope you can) because this work is glorious. It’s weird to think three months have already passed and I only have a year and 3 months left but I’m still here! I’m still a missionary. It’s not over yet and it actually doesn’t really end when I return home, a new mission begins. Life after the mission! A completely different mission that I can always experience with my Savior, Father in Heaven, Family, friends etc.

Continue to "perseverar ate o fim" or endure to the end (for you English folk) and use all the amazing tools Christ has given us to enjoy this life, and create something beautiful and heaven worthy. Love you all! Even you strangers who are so interested by my blog that you are reading my emails every week (haha the jokes are starting to come which means I need to end this emai). I know these things are true. I am so happy because of these truths. At times it’s difficult to explain my emotions in words. That’s why I love Alma 26:16 so much. I know my Father in Heaven knows my heart which is the most important thing. I hope and pray that you all continue to stay firm in Faith and hope in Him because He never fails. He is the Son of God, our Savior.

Sister Oldroyd

(The Atonement Seeker)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Life is like a child’s playpen

What a great week eh?

I’m doing amazing if you guys didn’t know :) I want to explain a little bit of what our schedule is like and forgive the typos...this keyboard has some seriously stuck letters. Maybe by the end you’ll figure out which ones.  I’ll punch really hard!

We get up at 6:30, get toast etc. Study from 8-12 (I absolutely love personal study time! A time I can just read the Book of Mormon and PME) I study with Sis R after personal. We practice lessons etc. and practice language also....we have started to read together from the Liahona, mine is Portuguese and hers is English. It’s going well. After we either walk for about 30-45 minutes or ride the bus to the members house for lunch (another one of my favorite things of the day) This past week we had the hugest lunch ever ....I had two huge helpings of meat, rice, beans, salad, nhoque, fries, guarana, and then after had a cup of ice cream, 5 mini churros, and 2 pao de queijos. Let’s just say she kept saying "come meninas!' (eat more) and I listened. After lunch we start talking and walking and hoping that people will let us in to hear our message or that our investigators are in and available. Sometimes we have family nights with members and investigators which are awesome as well. You can tell I basically love every part of the day. The rough part is knowing that I’m a shiny, sweaty, missionary but who cares right?!

Still have clothes problems

This past week I really busted out doing contacts cause we had time in front of the temple this week! This is when we just stand outside the front gate and talk to EVERYONE....even members...even people with headphones in. It was great! People rejected us with a wave of the hand or words that I didn’t completely understand but we had a good experience anyway. Oh and I got a good tan too :) That day really testified of the gift of tongues for me. When we gird up our loins and go for it, the Lord truly helps us through.

I want you all to think about how marvelous this plan is. I have another metaphor for you guys. I thought of it this morning during study time. Life is like a child’s playpen. We are the children, God’s children but He is behind us. We can’t see him but he’s there talking us through what toys to play with and we can feel His presence. This life is full of toys to play with and decisions to make but Heavenly Father isn’t in front of us to show the way. He is with us in Spirit and Love and we have the opportunity to feel of His presence in all things.

Today is Dias das Crianças, where everyone celebrates children whoohoo! I can’t imagine how much our Heavenly Father celebrates when we are one step closer to returning to him. You can bet that I’m going to make sure I have enough money (or have done all I can spiritually) to buy that ticket home. I love you all. Stay firm in Faith and find joy in knowing you are a Child of God.


Sis Oldroyd

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Trust Me

Well everyone,  as I sat in conference I decided that I should just throw in the towel because how am I ever going to write about this past week and about how amazing it was, especially with conference??!!! Well I’m gonna try anyway :)

The week started with a surprise birthday party for an elder in our district with food, cake etc. The next was a training day for us new folk where Sister C. and I traveled to the chapel next to the temple, had training with talks, activities, lunch and giving out a Book of Mormon in front of the temple. I saw some good friends again! It is always great to visit the headquarters every once and a while. I’ve realized once again how competitive I am....for a meeting we did an activity where whoever got the answer correct could smash a plate of whipped cream in the losers face....and let’s just say I did not want to change my clothes and have this happen. Luckily I got the first one right...but then I had to go again! This time we both didn’t know the answer and smashed it in each other’s face at the same time which was not a good idea...some in the hair...most of it fell on my skirt.  Let’s just say I’m remembering how competitiveness is important/fun but don’t let it ruin the fun! Who cares if there’s sticky sugary stuff all over your face and skirt… Get over it! Great lesson for me :)

On a more spiritual note, I’ve learned this past week that it’s not about the numbers. Yes we create goals for every day and week to motivate us to do our best and even raising the bar but how many baptisms did John the Baptist have before he was asked to baptize Christ? 0...a big goose egg yet he was worthy. He was exactly who Christ needed. He wasn’t asked because he had 100 other baptisms or 10000 contacts. It was because of his character, his testimony, his spirituality. This is what I need to focus on. Am I doing my best? Am I prepared to do the Fathers will even without 100 baptisms? Am I focusing on what’s most important? That’s my first food for thought...

Another is The Atonement is like a trail already blazed in the beautiful mountains, all we have to do is walk it! Yes there might be steep parts, or sharp turns but we weren’t the one who had to clear out the trees, boulders and dirt to create the trail. Christ did. He removed every rock. Please enjoy this life like it’s a beautiful hike (wow I’m on a rhyming roll! haha not really)

Lastly, my conference story :) I was at first a bit bitter about having to watch it in Portuguese because I was insecure about how much I would understand and that I wouldn’t get all the answers I needed but immediately I was corrected in my heart and mind. I kept having the thought "Trust me" and "Why are you forgetting the power in the language of the Spirit" "I called you to preach in the Portuguese language" etc. This calmed my heart and made conference amazing. I obviously didn’t understand every word like a native speaker but I understood what I needed. I even had the opportunity to hear the beginning of the English phrases before the translation for a bit of help. In total I watched 3 out of 4 conference sessions in Portuguese (one I got to watch in English cause a member could watch it with me) and women’s conference in Portuguese as well. This conference was such a refreshing time for my spirit and soul. My love for the prophet and apostles is stronger, my testimony and conversion is better all because of two days. I can’t wait to get the Liahona and read them over and over again. I hope you all had just as good a time as I did. Share what you learned with others. I know without a doubt that everyone got something different out of conference, because the language of the spirit speaks to everyone in their own personal way. I hope we respond in our own way back because that’s what God wants; Our personality; Our testimony. We are all different but with our differences, we are united. We are members, disciples, and warriors in this battle of life. This truly is the last dispensation and we need to prepare now! Grab what you can to train, exercise, and support your comrades. I love you all very much. Know that I prepare every day to meet my God. I don’t want to be caught unprepared. I want to be over prepared and it’s my decision to do such.

I’m staying in Cotia for now :) and am overjoyed to be a missionary now. We don’t have to wait until we're grown....the time is now :)


Sister Oldroyd