Elder Matthew Nielsen

"You are assigned to labor in the Brazil Fortaleza East mission"

Getting Cold in Utah!

Hello Family and Friends! ​

My week has been great! Being a missionary is an incredible experience because it gives you the opportunity to look beyond yourself and serve others. As the District leader, I have been given a lot of opportunities to help missionaries in my district. I had the incredible opportunity, a few days ago, to help a missionary. He was struggling with some doubts and some personal stuff, and I had the opportunity to counsel with him and help him to feel God’s love. He is an incredible missionary, but he is more on the quiet side and he really doesn’t open up about things. Well he finally opened up about his problems. After listening to him, I said a prayer with him and I prayed with all my heart that he would be given comfort and inspiration from God. I felt the spirit so strongly and especially God’s love for him. When I opened my eyes, the missionary was crying. He said he hadn’t cried in over a year. Afterwards, I was able to give him a hug and tell him everything will be okay. That moment was the best part of my week! It is experiences like these that remind me why I chose to serve. He is doing much better now if you wanted to know! The reason I bring this up is because I have been thinking a lot about the subject of service and the love of Christ this last week. I have been trying my hardest to develop Christ like love in myself.  But it’s one step at a time!

My week has gone smoothly! My companion and I have been working really hard to learn the Portuguese language. It has not been an easy road, but as I look back, I realize how much I have progressed in the language. I can say a prayer, bear my testimony, teach a basic lesson, have a short conversation, and tell people about myself. Even though I may not always recognize my progression in the Portuguese language, as I kneel at my bed and pray, I realize how many blessings I have been given while I have been here. God is real. He knows you. Just take the time to think back on all of the incredible blessings you have received in your life and you will see his hand.

My Funny Experiences at the MTC:

1) Whenever you go into the bathroom and try to use the sink, the water is either scalding hot or Antarctica cold. There is no middle ground. I have tried so hard to get the perfect temperature. I’m making it my quest to do that by the end of my stay at the MTC. Even while you are in the shower, it is the same. It is really funny because as I’m taking a shower, I can hear all the people screaming because the water turns scalding hot all of a sudden!

2) I finally got a picture with Elder Conon O’Brien. The picture is attached.

3) Well it is getting freezing up here. This weather here is much different than California to say the least. And considering I didn’t pack for cold weather, because I’m going to Brazil, I felt no need to bring a jacket. So right now I’m really regretting that!

I have been thinking about the story of Moses and how the people of Israel were being bitten by the poisonous serpents.  Moses tells them to look up to his staff and be healed. There were some people who wouldn’t look up and be healed. The question that keeps running through my head is why don’t the people look up? They have seen that Moses is a prophet of God. They have seen the many miracles that he performed on their behalf. So why wouldn’t they trust that they could be healed? Isn’t it a very simple action to look up? As I think about this story, I realize that it relates to all of us at different times in our lives. We live in a world that turns us inward, where we focus on ourselves. We see only our own trials, burdens, and sins that we carry and we forget that there is more out there than just ourselves. We forget that EVERYONE around us is experiencing hard things in their lives. But if we look up, if we trust in God, if we can turn outward, instead of taking the easy route by turning inward, if we do that, i know that we can be healed of our pains. “Charity is the pure love of Christ.” And those people who will turn outwards and help others will be blessed beyond their comprehension and they will bless others more than can be known. I testify of this. I have received this charity and I cannot possibly repay those people for their acts of love they showed me. They turned outwards and towards me when they could have been doing something else. Those acts come from God and help make this life more joyful. Please, as you go through this week, consider someone you can bless and help them. Do it anonymously or openly. Each will bring countless blessings to you and to all those you serve.

Eu sei que este evengelho, a Igreja de Jesus Cristo dos Santos dos Últimos dias, è verdadeiro. Eu sei este por meio minha experiencas em minha vida. O livro de Mormon é a palavra de Deus e guair-nos e inspirasao nos. Eu disse eles cosias em nome de Jesus Cristo Amém!

I wish all of you the best and hope to hear from you soon!

Elder Nielsen

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