Tuesday, August 26, 2014

August 26, 2014


Hey again!
hey first mom I think I wrote a mass email two week ago!  That had a link to a video! actually, I think I wrote one last week also...?
But this week I wanted to talk a little bit about the importance to perservere!
So often when things go badly we want to give up.  At least I know that there are times that I just want to be in my bed, in Oregon, with my mom at my side letting me cry as much as I want.  But if I could go there whenever I wanted I don´t think that I would ever get anything done!  Life is supposed to be hard, and at times we are supposed to feel rejected, or lonely or lost or that we are in unjust circumstances but it is what we do in these circumstances that makes the difference!  The only thing that truly matters is your relationship with God and when you are in these hard conditions you have the opportunity to truly grow closer to the Lord!  He loves you and he knows you and even when you feel that no one understands or that God isn´t hearing your prayers, I can assure you, Christ understands perfectly and God IS hearing your prayers!  Just keep going!  Keep praying!  Keep becoming better!  Don´t be an object to be acted upon... be something that acts!  A friend sent a saying that I really like about our suffering and difficulties and I wanted to share with you also! "How is it that a loving God would allow us to suffer? I have come to realize that my Savior cares more about my growth than He does about my comfort. One evidence of His love is that He does not spare me from the suffering I need for my development and progression, even when I get mad at Him" We just have to rely on our Savior and trust that he has the power to help us overcome everything that we face in life.  Everything will work out for our good!
Sorry it´s short but was my thought today! 

Love you all!!
Britt (Sister Westover)

August 11, 2014


Oi again!
Wow the weeks really are FLYING by!  I think evey single day when Sister Mobley and I leave the house I always say the same thing... ´´can you believe that it is August (the date of the day)??´´ haha literally every day feels like it is slipping through my fingers way faster than I can handle!  But the good thing about that is it means that I really am focusing on these people I am teaching and the service we are giving!
I am teaching a family that I have absolutely fallen in love with!! Her name is Irlinha and his name is Carlos and they have at least 4 boys (there are always different people in the house and I have the worst memory now that I have to keep close to 100 names and adresses and details in my head so I am not sure on how many kids).  One of their sons is less active, Luanderson, and they have an Emmanuel and Lucas who are the youngest boys and absolutely adorable!  I feel so at home when we teach them sometimes I wonder if I really didn´t know them before (but of course I did... in heaven.. so it´s not even a question).  She has the biggest heart of anyone I have ever met and is always making me laugh!  Last night we went to teach them because they hadn´t been to church and they were all super sick so we just left a message really quick but she didn´t let us leave without giving us smoothies and crackers haha no one knows me better.  But teaching them has reminded me of two things:
1.  They have a son who doesn´t have a leg.  I´m pretty sure he lost it in an accident.  That is something that has been a trial for their family and especially for Irlinha.  She wanted to know why bad things happen to good people and why this had to happen to him.  I remembered that life is not supposed to be easy!  It is meant to be hard so that we can learn and grow and become something better.  Also there is always going to be opposition in all things. But most importantly that EVERYTHING will be made right through the Atonement of Christ!  Because he died and lived again we all have the opportunity to live again.  All of our natural imperfections will be taken away and Luanderson one day will have his leg again, not just his leg but his body will be made perfect!  How amazing is our Father who created a plan so perfect for each one of us! That is a gift that we will all have, regardless of our life here!
2.  We were placed in our families on purpose! :) God knew what our family would be life, who we would argue with or disobey and who we would ultimately love and who would make us strive to be better.  Through the authority and power to act in God´s name (priesthood) in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints we can live with our famlies for eternity. I can´t imagine any other life without my family (this past year has been hard enough without you guys) and thanks to God´s plan for us and the Savior´s church on the earth we can be sealed to our families forever in holy temples.

something to think about!  Talk to the missionaries :)


I love you all a lot!!! Hope you have a good week :)
Britt (Sister Westover)

Sister Do Val!  I love this woman!!




Tuesday, August 5, 2014

8/5/14

       
                                                       my district leader and companion
                                     
                                         companion outside the house of our investigator (Fransisca)
               
                                                           
                                                                 Geovane baptism!


                                                               Fransisca Baptism

                                                              Two boys that I love

Monday, August 4, 2014

07/21/14: Pay to Pee


Good morning America!

This week was fun! I´m getting to know my new area... that has a church building! woohoo!! and getting to know the members.  The Sisters here a little while back met some young teenage boys (like 12-15 years old) and they all have fallen in love with the church and over the last few months tons of them have been baptized so the young mens program is really big! haha they are so dang cute though and they love the Sisters! It´s so fun to hear all of their stories and how they came to know the church and gain a testimony and they have been helping us out a lot! They go out with us to teach their friends families and want to introduce us to everyone, it is seriously so great!  Yesterday one of them didn´t go to church so we passed by to teach his family (that aren´t members) and to make sure that everything was okay with him.  I asked him how was his experience in the church and he started telling me about how he loved it from the first time he went.  He said his favorite part is the sacrament because it is so calm and you can feel closer to Christ.  Then I asked him if he prayed to know if the church is true and he told me like this:
´´It was funny because it was the very same day that I woke up and I was thinking ´do you think I´m really in the right church?´and then the sisters passed by my house that day  and told me to pray and ask God if it was true and he would give me an answer.  So that night I asked God if the church was true and he told me it was.  So I know I´m in the right church.´´

I just about died hearing the testimony of this little boy because it was so clear to him that God talks to us and hears and answers our prayers.  He didn´t have any doubt that he had recieved revelation directly from our Heavenly Father.  I was thinking a lot about prayer this week and how we literally have the opportunity to talk to the Ruler of the Universe and he talks back!  So many times we complicate things and we don´t recognize the whisperings or promptings of the spirit in our life that he gives us as a response.  All we need it to believe that he will respond, have a sincere heart and an intent to act on the answer that we will recieve!  It is a simple recipe for the best counsel you will ever recieve!  So this week seek out an answer to a prayer that you have been needing to say!

soo the title of my email was my shock of the week!!  We all know how I have problems with the fact that I constantly need to relieve myself of all of the water that I drink.  Yeah that is a rough thing sometimes in the life of a missionary here in Brazil.  I don´t know how many sketchy bathrooms I have used or how many random people have let me into their houses (yes this can and has been used to our benefit).  BUT last week I had to travel from Fortaleza to Aracati, which takes 3 hours and I was dying before we got on the bus so I went to use the bathroom in the rodoviaria (bus station place) and I totally had to PAY!!  I could not believe it!  Literally I was so shocked that I had to use my own money to relieve myself in a sanitary place!  I was tempted to just pee right there because 1. I am poor and 2. this pay to pee deal is ridiculous!  Anyway,  it made me grateful that I live in a place where I can drink as much water as I want and not worry about my financial situation afterwards.

Love you all!
Sister Westover

last night with sister palacios eating cold cereal!  that was the best!! it´s been wayy too long

Last Morning




July 16, 2014: Transfers!


Hey hey!

So the last few weeks have been kind of crazy with the cup and having to stay in house during the Brazil games and then this week we havd transfers and we had to go to the doctor yesterday for my new companion so I finally got to my NEW area last night!  I am now in aracati!! woo hoo :)  it is super hot, and next to the beach haha so a little different as a missionary but I am so excited to work here!  I already miss Paju├žara soo much but I am way excited to have a new area and such a pretty one at that.  Sister Palacios and I had to split up :/ but we finished training and she is totally ready to show the area to her new companion!  My companion now is Sister Mobley (american) and she is already like cracking me up haha so that´s good!  She has already been in the area 5 months so she´s got everything down and she works way hard which is such a great quality in any companion so I am super excited to work with her! :)

It broke my heart a little bit to leave Paju├žara but I know that I need to be here now and I am so happy to still be in the mission... It was so weird to leave after 6 months there and I remembered NIki going home and I just thought how awful it would be to have to leave the mission completely!  One day I can worry about that but for now I am happy as ever to be here :)  When we got here yesterday at night we went out really quick to buy food for breakfast today and a member called our name from across the street and introduced us to her friend to teach!  That was literally the best welcome to my new area possible! haha

I don´t really have a lot new because I already forgot what happened last week and I don´t know anything about my new area other than it takes 3 hours to get here.  But I am happy, healthy, busy, bronzed, and excited for what the future holds! I hope that eveything is great at home! 
LOVE YOU!
Sister Westover


July 8th 2014


Sister Palacios and I
Fourth of July (we were in the house all day so I had time on my hands and red lipstick tube in my hands)


Emily (one of our investigators who I love!) Also her sister is our investigator and she is a hairstylist.... yes I always try to find people who will bless the community to teach.
and our doctor in physical therapy.... she is the greatest!  yeah I had some problems in my hips.  But know big deal I just keep pushing on :)






06/30/14: Part 2


06/24/14: Daddy's Girl


I know that my Happy Father´s Day is a little late but... Happy Father´s Day!! 

 I love both of my parents DEEPLY and EQUALLY but I know that I would be lying if I didn´t admit that I know I have always been a daddy´s girl. Yes, Dad, i think that your jokes are funny and I was always laughing when I was trying to pretend that I didn´t hear them.  This week I thought a lot about the role of a father in a family and I remembered a lot of tucked away memories that I have with my own.  I remembered how I never liked to drink milk plain but one time I saw Dad drink milk with ice cubes and I thought that it was so cool that I don´t know for how many years I told all of my friends that I only drank milk if it had ice cubes... just like my dad.  I remembered a time that I refused to go to bed (sorry mom!) until Dad tucked me in but he came home so late that I had already fallen asleep on the staircase waiting for him.  I remembered waking up early with Brooklynn when we lived in Texas to eat grapefruit and sugar with Dad before he left for work.  I remembered telling of the the volleyball team gossip to Dad with Maria and we were laughing for hours.  I remembered all of the times Dad sat me down to talk about life and I thought about a lot of struggles and hearbreak that I could have avoided if I had still been smart enough to follow the counsel of a dear father.
I am immensely grateful for a father who always was an example of another loving father that we all share in common, the Eternal father of our spirits, our Father in Heaven.  I am grateful for my earthly father who always reminded me that I am a daughter of a Heavenly Father and always encouraged me to reach my divine potential which is so much greater than I ever imagined.  I am grateful that my dad taught me eternal principles when my perspective was focused on earthly matters. Because of recent tragedies at home I wanted to share with my dear family and friends insight that I recieved from my dad about the plan of our loving, all powerful Heavenly Father.

Part 1 (second part to come next week!)
Faith, Hope, Charity and Gratitude-
When we have faith in Jesus Christ, that He lives and that he payed for our sins, that he created the way for us to return to live in God´s presence, we will have hope!  We have hope that despite every difficulty, sadness, tragedy or trial that we have passed or will have to pass, there is a better world ahead of us.  We have hope in a future that is free of pain and suffering.  A hope that is ´´through the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the power of his ressurrection, to be raised unto life eternal.´´  A hope that is an anchor to our souls in this storm-beaten sea of life.  With this hope we begin to understand the love that God, our Eternal Father, and his son, Jesus Christ, have for us.  A love that lead God to sacrifice his perfect son and that lead Christ to suffer and bleed from every pore and eventually die for us.  The prophet of the world today, Thomas S, Monson, spoke of this love saying: ´´that love never changes... it is there for you when you are sad or happy, discouraged or hopeful.  God´s love is there for you whether or not you feel you deserve it.  It is simply always there.´´  We can be the angel in someone´s life in expressing and extending this Christlike love.

06/16/14: Be grateful that we are children of a loving Heavenly Father


This week I thought a lot about gratitude.  I know that life is hard, it isn´t fair, it is a mess and a challenge all at the same time.  The great thing is that God knows us, and he loves us perfectly because we are His children.  He chose his perfect child to send to this world and suffer and die to make up for the injustice that exists.  All that is unfair in this life can be made right through the atonement of Christ.  If you don´t know how, come to know our Savior!  He offers peace, rest, love, happiness for all of us!  All we have to do is follow Him.  God is way too good to us, recognize the blessings that you have in your life and talk to the missionaries, they offer a message of our savior that will change your life for the better!
I love you all :)
Britt
Sister Westover 

June 9th 2014


Hey everyone!  Sorry I really don´t have a lot to say this week!  Our time on the computer is now like 50 minutes so that goes by super fast!  I miss you all tons but I am still happy as ever here!  I hope that everything is going really well at home!

A thought I had this week:
sometimes we are waiting and praying and expecting HUGE miracles!  Yes, miracles do exist and sometimes huge miracles occur, but sometimes the miracle is in the little occurances of every day that add up and then after some time become something great.  Last night I just had the scripture ´´by small and simple means, great things come to pass´´ in my head and I thought about how every day I am seeing miracles even if we don´t have visions or raise anyone from the dead, God is allowing us to learn and grow and giving us just what we need to be able to keep going and that is amazing in and of itself! So my invitation for you all this week is notice the little miracles in your life, the tender mercies of our loving Heavenly Father and give thanks for these things!

I love you TONS!
Britt (Sister Westover)

06/02/14


Josenilson :) he is Dad of Joilton and grandpa of Wesley.  His daughter was baptized in another city with Sister Morais!  I love this guy.  This is the last peanut butter jar you gave me haha but I decorated it with pictures of Jesus and every time that Josenilson feels the desire to smoke or drink he will put his money to buy cigarros ou bebidas in the jar and then we will use this money to marry him and his wife!  Oh how the life of a missionary is creative.