Monday, May 25, 2015

IT'S. DANGEROUS.

Hey everybody!

This week has been a kind of slow week and I missed home quite a bit this week. But sometimes something that really scares me is how fast time really flies.  Before we know it I will be home and my mission is going to feel like a dream.  I'm grateful to be here and that we are members of the church.  I never realized this growing up, but we are so blessed to have the family we have and the parents that we have and all they do for us.  I am sure grateful for my parents, the knowledge of the gospel and the happiness it brings in our lives.

The rain has slowed down a little, but our ceiling in our house leaks water bad!  And now we are having problems with the electricity and we don't have hot water again. Mold is also starting to grow on all our things. President told us to look for a new house. It will be good to move to a different house. This one just has too many problems.  We are also getting two more elders in our house, so there will be 6 of us total.  

We received some references this week, so hopefully we can find them at home and start teaching them this week. 

Haha, I have seen monkeys here a few times now and there was one sitting in the door way of a house making a weird sound the other day. Haha!  They are so funny.  Here, instead of squirrels running up the trees and power poles, they have monkeys. 


My area isn't very big.  There is a portion of our area on a hill.  At night time we can't go up to the hill, the biggest part of our area, because it's really dark and everybody says it's dangerous. We try to stay away from that part at night. It is pretty intimidating.  

We found out last night that I will be staying with my companion for 1 more transfer here in Santo Amaro, and the other American will be leaving the house. I am kind of bummed out that the American elder will leave our apartment, but excited to see who the new elder will be. 



That is about it for this week. I'm excited to stay here and find and teach more people in this city. 

This week as I thought of home, I reflected on the power of prayer and the comfort that comes through daily prayer.  President Benson said, "All through my life the counsel to depend on prayer has been prized above almost any other advice I have ever received  It has become an intergral part of me, an anchor, a constant source of strength and the basis of my knowledge of things divine.  Our Heavenly Father is always near . . .  Thank God we can reach out and tap that unseen power, without which no man can do his best.  I testify that there is a God in heaven who hears and answers prayers.  I know this to be true, for He has answered mine.  I would humbly urge all within the sound of my voice to keep in close touch with our Father in Heaven, through prayer."

Hope you all have a good week and Happy Memorial Day.  Thanks for all. Talk to you guys later. 

Love, 
Elder Nickerson

Monday, May 18, 2015

CITY. WITH. MONKEYS.

Hey Everybody!!
 
This week has been really good and really busy. First off, we had a zone meeting in a city called Fiera De Santana. It was really good and inspiring, but that night we missed our bus back to Santo Amaro and had to sleep in our zone leaders house.
 
 







 
 
 
This week it has rained for 5 days straight and the river is starting to flood again!! It is really high and in our house the ceiling is leaking water in every room but one. We have to get that fixed.
 
This week we were able to find a guy that accepted everything in the gospel and is excited about the church.  So I'm excited to start teaching him more. We also found out this week that this city has monkeys!!! I have a video, but it won't send.
 



 
 
 I hope that the rain will stop here soon because it hasn't stopped for 5 days and nothing has a chance to dry out. I have never seen so much rain in my life.  The weather here is so crazy.  I can't believe how fast it can change.  The sun will be shining and then torrential downpour.
 
Saturday night we had a wedding of a member here and Sunday, President Lisonbee, our mission president, came to church and looked at our house because two more Elders will be moving in with us.
 
I also wanted to let you guys know that if the weather is nice next pday, we are going to try and see the coastline.  So I may be a little late for emailing.
 
We got both new showers installed today and we got another light working in our room that wasn't.  A member was able to help us get things fixed in our apartment.  It is going to be so nice to have hot water again.  You don't realize how important the little things are until you don't have them.  I am grateful for hot water. 
 
Russell M. Nelson said, "Thanks to God's great plan of happiness, families can be together forever - as exalted beings.  Our Heavenly Father declared, 'This is my work and my glory - to bring to pass the immorality and eternal life of man.' Both of His objectives were enabled by the Atonement of His Beloved Son, Jesus Christ.  His Atonement made resurrection a reality and eternal life a possibility for all who would ever live."
 
 
 
That is about it for this week. Muito obrigado por tudo. Eu espero que voces tenham uma boa semana. Eu amo voces. Eu vou falar com voces proxima semana. (Thank you so much for everything.  I hope you have a good week.  I love you.  I'll talk with you next week.)



Com amor, (with love)
Elder Nickerson

Monday, May 11, 2015

LITTLE. FROG.

Hey.
 
This week has been a good week. We have started helping with an English school teaching a bunch of people English. There is another American that lives in the same house as me, so we have been helping the school 2 days a week. And we teach them about our church in English and teach them to say prayers in English.  We are finding a lot of people that want to learn more and a lot of people are wanting a Book of Mormon.
 
I'm grateful for all the opportunities that Heavenly Father gives us to find and teach people that are prepared for us. I sure am grateful to be here in Brasil and to be a member of our church.

And on Sunday everything worked out and I was able to talk to my family over Skype!! It sure was nice to talk and see my family again. I am really grateful for my family and all they do for me.

Well, that's about it for this week. I hope all the mothers had a good Mother's Day. Thanks for all.

Talk to you guys next week.

Love,
Elder Nickerson




Ha! This was a little frog we found in the street. It has been raining a lot and the streets are filled with these little frogs jumping all over. 

 
 
 
From his family.
 
It was so great to talk to Elder Nickerson on Mother's Day!  He sounds so good.  He is happy, smiling, joking and really taking in every moment and experience of his mission. He still has his sarcastic sense of humor; which we love.  We can see his testimony and growth over these few short months. 
 
He can rattle off Portuguese so fast. He bore his testimony to us in Portuguese and it is amazing the difference from last time. We can hear his companions and him talking in the background and it is such a neat experience for us to see his learning and growth. He says that he is able to understand most everything and has seen the language come full circle for him.  He does not know all words but is learning more and more every day.  It is really a surreal experience for us, as his family,  to see what can be accomplished when the Lord is on your side.  By small and simple things, great things are brought to pass. . . .
 
 
 
video
 
 
It sounds like the people love Elder Nickerson and can see his testimony through his humbleness and his aptitude to relate well with people.  He loves the people and loves being able to share and spread the gospel.  
 
He said he has gained about 14 pounds, which is amazing to him because he thinks he should be sweating that much away.   They are going into the winter season there and the lows are about 70 degrees, which he says feels very cold.  He was actually trying to get over a cold from the cold weather change!! :) 
 
He feels extremely fortunate to have companions and elders he gets along with so well.  He has loved his areas.  The area he is in now has a little more violence and they have streets that they call the "streets of the killings".  They stay away from those places when it is dark. He hopes to see more of the coastline before his leaves this area.
 
He has learned how to listen to the Spirit and follow the promptings.  As a family, we have gained so much from his strength and testimony and grown closer together.  We are blessed to have such a courageous brother and son.  We love him and could not be more proud of him and his willingness to serve the Lord. 
 
Nick has finally adjusted to the food.  He eats a steady diet of rice and beans. It took awhile for his body to adjust to the food change. He is not a fan of milk over there, but he loves the fruit.  He said his favorite fruit was guava, but all the fruit over there tastes a lot better than home. 
 
 
 
He says he loves Brazil and he loves the people, but he is not quite ready to live in that much heat his whole life.  He misses the cold weather of Idaho and realizes how lucky we are to live where we do and have what we have.  He says we are a blessed people us Idahoans.  :)
 
We learned that for most people you are not able to own a gun in Brazil.  It takes a lot of paperwork to be able to have a gun.  There is also no hunting allowed in Brazil, and for that fact alone, Brazil would never be the place for him! :) For those of you that know Nickolas well, know that to be a true and accurate statement.  Nick misses home and misses hunting but is beyond words to have the experience of his mission.  He believes with all his heart that he is put exactly where he needs to be.  He is loving his mission. 
 
We are proud of Nick and his desire to serve the Lord.  Elder Nickerson is on a mission for all the right reasons.  Because of his desire to serve the Lord, we can see his blessings, as well as, blessings for our family.  It is always a bitter sweet day when we get to Skype with him.  The best thing for us is to see him happy and healthy and gaining so much experience and so many neat stories.  We are able to talk with people that Nick serves and we have grown close to some of the people in Brazil.  It is so great what opportunities there are with technology. We are so grateful for those people and families that take Elder Nickerson in as their own, and report back to his family how he is doing.  We live for those moments and for Mondays!  :) 
 
We are grateful that Elder Nickerson is working on his 8 month out there, but more grateful that Nickolas is not worried about the time. He is focused on listening to the guidance of the Spirit and making the most of his time in Brazil.  He realizes that this is a once in a lifetime experience.  He says sometimes it flies by and other days it drags on, but for him and also his family, overall, we can't believe it has been 8 months.
 
He wanted you all to know that he loves you, he is so grateful for each and everyone of you; for your thoughts, your prayers, your letters, and following along with his blog.  He feels your love and support from home and is grateful for such a strong support system.   He knows this church is true, he loves the Lord with all his heart, and his hope is to help others feel of that love and know the blessings that come from this gospel. 
 
From the bottom of our hearts, we thank all of you. Thank you for everything you do for our son and brother, for everything you do for our family.  We love you!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The greatest gift of all of the gifts given by God is eternal life. I love the words of Elder George Albert Smith: “We spend most of our time, many of us, seeking the things of this life that we will be compelled to leave when we go from here, yet there are the immortal souls all around us whom, if we would, we could teach and inspire to investigate the truth, and implant in their hearts a knowledge that God lives. What treasure in all the world could be so precious to us, for we would have their gratitude here and their everlasting and eternal appreciation in the world to come.” (In Conference Report, Oct. 1916, p. 50.)
 
 

Monday, May 4, 2015

A. WEEK. OF. SERVICE.

Hey!!!

How is Everybody?

This week was really fast!!! And the weather was a lot cooler. That always makes it so much nicer.

We did a lot of service and helped a lot of people this week.  It felt good! This city is a lot more calm than Barrieras and there isn't loud music and parties every night here. It is a small area.

But . . .  there was a guy that got shot and assaulted here in the streets. Last night we were looking out of our apartment and saw a guy walking down the street with a machete, and a few seconds later another guy running saying, 'watch out, he has a machete', and 20 minutes later the cops showed up! It was pretty crazy!!

 Right before I got to this area, the river flooded and water entered into a lot of peoples' homes.  So we have been busy helping people clean and dry things out.  We have also delivered a lot of food and clothes to the needy.

The people here are really poor but are willing to give up everything to help another. They are the most humble people I have ever met. 

Just thought I should tell you guys about Skype next Sunday. Mother's day!!!!!!  :):):):):):):) We are going to Skype around 2 o clock our time! We have found an English school here in Santo Amaro that is going to let us use the Wi-Fi there. I hope that all you guys will be able to be there. We will go Saturday and get it all set up for Sunday. But as of right now, it will be Sunday at 2 o clock my time here in Brasil! I will try and let you guys know if anything changes. I can't believe this time has already came so fast.

All of us in our apartment are getting along great!  I am doing good and I am extremely blessed and grateful to be here in Brasil. How blessed am I to have been born in Jesus Christ's church.

I reflected a lot this week on service and the importance of it in our lives.

 “As we look beyond our differences in age, culture, and circumstance to nurture and serve one another, we will be filled with the pure love of Christ and the inspiration which leads us to know when and whom to serve. We best serve our Father in Heaven by righteously influencing others and serving them.” Richard G. Scott

Hope all is well with you guys, talk to you guys next week, and to all the moms out there, Happy Mother's Day!


Love Elder Nickerson