A letter written to Kayla Pickett...
Jake asked me to share this story with you.
“So, remember that picture of the big city outside my window? Oh yeah, we went through there. Haha and when I say big city, I mean this place was crazy. I’ve never been to NYC before, but it’s the only thing I can compare it to. SO many people, the buildings are giant! The air is terrible and well, it smells like smoke. So anyways, we had this one street we could be on, the busiest street of them all around here. My instructor told us it is the wall street of Sao Paulo. And well, its nuts! The streets are HUGE. Anyways, so when driving over, I got super nervous, I was worried about people not understanding and well, just nobody wanting to listen. Satan’s thoughts were getting in my head. So when we arrived, I was in awe. Elder Acosta was like a deer in headlights, and I was like…uh, where to start?
Walking down the street, we were trying to find someone to talk to. Haha a little nerve wracking. Finally I told myself, lets talk to that guy sitting down. So we did. I introduced myself and all that good stuff. Haha turns out the guy knew English and was a pastor. Haha oh joy. Let me tell you, we got shut down! Haha I got a good laugh, told Acosta that it couldn’t be any worse than that.
So the next guy we talked to was black and was called Miguel, he too spoke English. Haha we were busting up. We couldn’t believe we got two English contacts in a row. Except this guy had an English accent, he was from Capetown, South Africa. So that was legit. He was a really strong Catholic. In face he had his bible on him. So we showed him a scripture about other sheep, John 10:16. It was good. We were bummed that we didn’t have any English BOMs. But its ok. We talked to him for 20 minutes about Africa, rugby, and the gospel.
But then later we talked to a guy with a heart problem, sitting there to get money. Told him this book will help his life. He was very interested and thanked us so much! His name was Joao. So humbling, it was hard to understand him, but so awesome he had nothing and was loving.
One of my favorite contacts was Matthew. He had a cig, long hair, stunna shades, and coffee…I think. But he also spoke English, way cool. He was way interesting. Just sitting there on that curb. But anyways, he didn’t believe in God, but in a higher power. We made him think. We taught the whole first lesson. Very knowledgeable about the bible and Christ’s life. We talked to him for 25 minutes. Super good! I knew he felt the spirit and we asked the right questions. So awesome! Never gonna forget that, I judged him too quick, but I know something clicked in him. He accepted the BOM and promised he would read. So awesome we are teaching real people!
Haha so the others were good experiences, but these were the ones that stood out. Ones I want to remember. We passed out 5 BOMs. All seemed way interested….well except the last. But that’s an interesting story. Haha so here goes. So with 35 minutes left, this bum came up to us. He said, “ I want a Book of Mormon.” But he slurred all his words. He was totally drunk. You could smell it from a mile away. This guy was a bum. Trashed clothing, no shoes, super dirty, his eye (right eye) was messed up, super gross, losing teeth, walked funny. Haha got the description? Haha oh [and] he was black. But anyways, he came up to us wanting a BOM. I wasn’t sure if I should give him one because its sacred. I told him that, and he said like he had a desire and all that stuff. I still wasn’t so sure, but then a thought came to mind, “yeah he is drunk and doesn’t know what he is doing, and I don’t know what he will do with the book, but he is a son of God, and deserves a chance to hear the word of God.” So I gave it to him and just testified my heart out to him, knowing I’m not the one to judge him and that I am doing my part, and that I should love this guy. So yeah, he took the book and the other bums were sitting…drinking. And well one got mad because his bottle was empty and he threw the glass tequila bottle right next to us. Haha glass was everywhere! I’m surprised none of it hit us. Acosta looked like he was going to pee his pants! He didn’t like the…weirdos and creepy people. Haha I don’t mind. But yeah, I just said “haha we should probably go.” So we did. Rushing to get back to go meet up with the others.
So with these experiences, I was surprised how friendly the people were, especially in a scene like NYC, people who don’t want to talk or be bothered, ya know? But those who didn’t want to talk were so polite! Almost everyone was willing to talk. It was so neat! I loved it. But I loved the feeling of getting a taste of the campo. I’m not as nervous, and am super excited =] I know this is the mission Heavenly Father wanted me in. Without doubt. Ah I love this place. Crazy place, but so awesome, I wish I could describe it better. Its kinda like the states in Paulista, all different types of people. Same hearts and all, they are like you and me, searching for happiness. Incredible, and well I am here to give it to them as best as I can."