Elder Skylar Abel
Brazil São Paulo South Mission
Rua Dr. Luiz da Rocha Miranda, 159
8° Andar
Parque Jabaquara
04344-010 São Paulo- SP


Monday, August 28, 2017

Seek the Spirit

Well hello there favorites!!

This last week was pretty solid. I had some struggles with a few things, but in all I am still as blessed as ever. The Lord's hands really are in this work, and I know it without a doubt. Today I had to say goodbye to Elder Judd. His adventure to Brazil is about to begin, and I am so excited for him. The kid is truly such a stud and is going to do great things on his mission. Keep him in your prayers as he travels, and keep him in your prayers for his strength. He was struggling a bit with being nervous and worried that he wouldn't do well. He feels inadequate, but I made sure that he was aware that there is no such thing as inadequate missionaries. The Lord really does strengthen all of the missionaries through experiences and trials. Although times we may feel inadequate, I know that that we are never alone and as we commit ourselves completely to the Gospel and have faith that Jesus Christ we will feel of His love, His peace, and His comfort. It truly is amazing!!

So a little update on my past week. The Eclipse was pretty lit. We had a devotional the next day and he talked about the Eclipse. Weatherford T. Clayton made an analogy about how the Sun is the Savior and the Moon is Satan trying to block out the light of our Savior. He said.. "There is nothing that can cut us off of the light of our Savior." Although Satan may try his very hardest, he will never fully be able to block out the light of our Savior. The Savior will always be there for us no matter how dark and dreary life gets. We can always pick ourselves back up and find the Light of Our Savior. I love it! Another cool thing we did that night was sang "Army of Helaman" a cappella. It was soo cool to hear all of these missionaries pound out that song. The spirit was so strong and it made me realize how important this work is. So neat!! Another favorite part about my week was seeing Hermana Dowdell. That girl has a lot of power and a lot of strength. Her testimony is amazing!! She has given me a lot of strength this past week and I am grateful for the opportunity that we have to be here together and lean on each other for support and help. She keeps me focused here at the MTC. I love her and love seeing her! Such a blessing!!

I know that I talk about the Gift of Tongues and the Spirit a lot, but it is just so real and has been such a blessing in my short time as a missionary. We got a new investigator (our teacher), and we were writing a script to take with us so we could go through a lesson smoothly. I kept having this feeling to just forget about the script and let the Spirit guide. I ignored it and continued to get ready for the lesson with making notes and a script. But then I felt the same thing and this time I acted on this prompting. A minute before we left to teach I told Elder Judd that we are going to leave our script and notes behind and that we will only be taking our pamphlets and the Book of Mormon. He looked at me like I was crazy and was pretty upset at me for a bit. He was really iffy about the situation, but I told him to trust me on this and to rely on the Spirit for help. He humbled himself and we both went in with complete faith that we will be able to speak the things of our hearts and rely on the Spirit to bring to remembrance the language. My heart was pounding, but as soon as I walked into that door to teach, I felt this overwhelming feeling of peace. I sat down and we carried on a perfect conversation. We were able to say exactly what we wanted to say, and everything went so smoothly. It then came time for me to bear my testimony and I got the chills as I went on and bore with perfect Portuguese my testimony. Everything was just coming out of me and it was straight from my heart. My mind was blank in this testimony, but the Spirit had made me that promise that everything would be alright. The Spirit taught in that lesson and we came out of it in complete shock. Elder Judd had the same type of thing happen with him, and he told me that he couldn't thank me enough for giving him that opportunity. I felt wrong taking the credit, and told him that it wasn't me that had the idea to leave the notes, it was the Spirit. You guys.. The Holy Ghost is real. I know it is because I have felt the love and peace that it has offered me. I have only been a missionary for a few short weeks, and have felt its strength day in and day out. I know that as we rely on the Spirit, and are worthy of its companionship, that we will be blessed beyond measure. The spirit is my favorite companion here on the mission, and is needed to bring souls unto Christ and this great Gospel. Because it is not me that brings people to the Gospel, it is the influence of the Spirit. I know as we rely on the Spirit in our day to day activities, we will be blessed immensely. The Spirit will guide you, keep you safe, bring you joy, and give you comfort at times that you need it the most, or aren't expecting it. I love this gospel and I love the joy that it not only brings to my life, but to the lives of others. It brings me pure joy to know that families can be together forever. I love my eternal family, and I know that God is aware of each of us individually, and knows exactly what we need. I challenge you guys to look for the Spirit this next week and see what blessing it gives you. Faith is a very hard thing to have these days, but I know that if we even have a little bit of faith, that it can go a long way. I love you guys soo much and pray for you day in and day out. I am so grateful for the love and support that you offer to me, and the wonderful examples that you are. May the Lord bless you, and may you look for the hand of the Spirit in this upcoming week.

Love, your humbled missionary, Elder Abel!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Bitter with the Sweet and... Hermana Dowdell!

Well hello there!!

Goodness gracious.. I miss you all soo much! This week was pretty amazing! Elder Judd and I got here at the same time and we have truly enjoyed being companions. Exciting and sad news came Friday though.. Elder Judd has received his Visa and will be heading to the Brazil MTC to finish off his MTC experience. We opened up the mailbox and pulled out the mail. When we saw the flight plans we just started bawling. Elder Judd was crying because he doesn't really want to leave me or Provo, and I was crying out of pure joy for the kid. I am super duper excited for him and the progress that he will have in the MTC in Brazil. The Brazil MTC is so much easier to catch on to the language because everyone speaks Portuguese and it is rare to hear English. It's a blessing and a curse! But yes.. that does mean that I will be a solo missionary. Meaning that I will be in class all by myself, teach investigators all by myself, and will depend on other missionaries to get around the MTC.

Some pretty amazing things happened!! I saw a lot of miracles and I am continuing to progress in ways that I can't even express to you. First things first.. all of you have been asking if I have seen Hermana Dowdell. When she first arrived, she showed up to her study room. I was talking to a teacher, as she turned the corner from the stairs and we caught eyes. It was the best moment of my MTC experience, and I have had some pretty amazing moments. Like I just lit up and instantly felt so happy and full of so much joy! I quickly finished talking to the teacher and made my way to Hermana Dowdell. We shook hands and just talked for a bit, but she was late for her class so she slid in and met her first companion. It's so crazy! I have seen her everyday that she has been here, and we have been able to talk quite a bit. She gives me so much strength, and seeing her makes me feel overwhelmed with the amazing work that we are about to take on. She is such an amazing example to me and I am so proud of her and the sweet, kind, and loving character and personality she has. She is going to be an incredible missionary and she is what keeps me sane and focused while I am here. It's hard to explain, but she is such a blessing!!

I have been blessed in so many ways! We were teaching one of our investigators (a member.. in fact another teacher) the Restoration. I was kind of relying too much on the script, and not on the spirit. Then as I was giving the first Vision all of the sudden I looked up and with the Spirit I recited the First Vision perfectly in Portuguese.. (side note.. I had not even practiced it, nor did I know anything but the first line). Our investigator started crying and my eyes welled up a bit. The spirit was so strong and I ended it with my testimony. I don't exactly know what I said, but it was powerful and something I will never forget. The Gift of Tongues is real. I know it is because I have felt it. I have been overwhelmed with an amazing spirit here at the MTC and have learned soo much. I thank my Heavenly Father everyday for the blessings that he bestows upon me. Truly blessed beyond measure. I now am still working on the First Vision, but almost have it memorized. Just need to get the last line down. The language is coming along and things are starting to pick up a bit more. I have learned a lot and have honestly been blessed in so many different ways, that I can't even describe. Small miracles come day in and day out. I love it and I love being a missionary.

I would just like to finish things up with my testimony. I want you guys to know that when times get hard, we always can kneel and plead to our Heavenly Father. We have all been gifted with so many different talents, and abilities.. I challenge you guys to use them. Find ways to serve others, because this life is so crucial, yet so small, to the life we have beyond the veil. We have also been given many trials and challenges, where we are tested of our faith, strength, and ability to overcome. Take those as a blessing. It is God's way of saying that he has faith in you. He has trust in you to do what is needed to overcome those trials and challenges and become better from them. Remember that you are never alone through your trials, we have a loving, caring, kind, and generous Heavenly Father who cares about us deeply and wants us to do what is needed to return to live with Him.. and is a prayer away from answering any question, fixing any problem, and offering any peace/comfort that is needed. We also have the perfect example in our lives, Jesus Christ. Who took his life away for us, for YOU, to do all that is needed in this life to return to live with Him and our Father in Heaven. A great analogy from Elder Holland came yesterday at a video I watched, about how hard missions are. He likened a mission to the suffering and atonement of Jesus Christ. He said.. "The road to Salvation, always goes through Gethsemane." Times are hard, but how can I say I am a disciple of Christ, if I don't expect to have hard times like Jesus Christ did while he was on Earth. My trials are a lot different and not even close to as big.. But I know that through Him.. all is made possible. I know that because I know that the Atonement is real. It blesses us in ways that seem impossible, but are so important and so crucial in this life. You guys.. God lives, Jesus is the Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of this world. Remember them this week and remember that they are always there for you no matter how hard life gets. I love you all so much and am so grateful for you all. I am grateful for the thoughts and prayers in my behalf, and the love that you have for me and the example that you set. I sure hope you guys are doing well and that you have a wonderful week. Always smile for me, because life is amazingly. I love you all so much and am so grateful for you.

Love, Your favorite Elder, who is happy and smiling.. Elder Abel! Ü

Monday, August 14, 2017

A very HAPPY Missionary!


First things first... the subject of this e-mail. My Companion is Elder Judd and he is from Mesa, Arizona.
He is going to the Brazil Campinas Mission and is a total stud! We literally laugh like 24/7... mixed with a little bit of work for the Lord and our Mom's of course. Ü I am the district leader over the MTC District. I don't know if I can take this as a compliment though, because it is literally only me and Elder Judd in our District. Yes you read that right.. 2 of us in one zone and he is supposed to leave in a few weeks if his Visa arrives. Leaving me as a solo missionary. So I guess pray for me that he doesn't get his visa or I get mine. The rest of our Portuguese Zone left today besides some other Brazil visa waiters, so we are the examples now I guess.

How about how blessed I am? Upon arrival we came up to my classroom and the teacher was speaking Portuguese and Portuguese ONLY!! I pretty much understood like all of it and I was answering and everything. It was incredible and I truly do believe that God gave me that moment to show me that He is aware of me, my sacrifice, and all that I am doing and serving. The gift of tongues is real. While we are on this subject.. I have a pretty crazy story! Elder Judd and I have been speaking Portuguese as much as we can because of SYL (speak your language) and we were like completely shattering our minds because we had done so much work and just were getting stir crazy and going insane. So I told Elder Judd to come on a walk with me and so we went for a walk and without realizing it... we spoke PORTUGUESE for like 10 minutes. When we finally realized what we were doing we looked at each other and I teared up a bit. This is our first week and we already have been introduced to the Gift of Tongues. We were so grateful for that moment and the opportunity that we had to humble ourselves and give all of the credit to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I literally have been so blessed ever since I have been set apart as a missionary. I know that God is aware of me and His hand is in all that I do. It is simply amazing!!

He knows us. He is aware of us and loves us. All He wants us to do is submit to Him and do all that is needed to return to live back with Him. I love this church and I love my calling. I KNOW that I am called of God. I am here to embark on a service that is needed in this world wherever I am called to serve.. As hard as it is to be away, I know I am where I need to be.

I would like to finish by sharing a quote from Elder Bednar from Characters of Christ. He says.. "A testimony will never be enough, but if we are converted unto the Lord.. I PROMISE that you will never fall away. Conversion is consistently being true to what you know and the testimony you have. The Character of Christ turns outward, as the natural man would turn inward." You guys.... If we can do as Elder Bednar says and become converted rather than just have a testimony, I know that we will be better disciples of Christ. I know that oftentimes we tend to do as the "natural man" would, and turn inward rather than outward. But I know that as we look for opportunities to serve, and be like the example that Jesus Himself, we will become all that God wants us to become and be able to finish our earthly mission with smiles and confidence.

I love you guys soo much and thank you for your prayers. You all are so special to me and mean the world to me in ways that you would never imagine. Thank you soo much for your love and support. You guys make me smile. Smile for me today, and throughout your week. You rock my world.. I love you! Ü

Love your happy and excited missionary, Elder Abel Ü

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Come what may and LOVE it! #cwmali

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, standing

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

So begins the adventure!  Elder Skylar B. Abel has begun his mission.  He will be stationed at the Provo Missionary Training Center for the next six weeks, after which he will travel to the Brazil São Paulo South Mission. Fingers crossed that his Visa paperwork moves along quickly and efficiently. If there's a delay, he will then be placed in a "waiter" mission as he awaits his Visa.  We are happy that he has the opportunity to return to his original mission in Brazil.  There have been many prayers and tender mercies along the way in behalf of Sky. Thank you! We love you and are grateful for your love and support. Let the work go forward!  We are so proud of you Elder Abel!!! ♥

Provo isn't too shabby....I guess!

I have made it here to the Provo MTC and my work has begun. I am so super excited to learn new things and become closer to my Savior as I wear His name and my name on my chest. I am so grateful for you guys and the wonderful examples you are in my life. Thanks for all you do and I can't wait to talk to you soon. I am unsure when my P-Day is, but you are all in my hearts as always.

The journey begins now and I am soo pumped!! Chat with you soon.. I love you!

Love, your favorite and excited missionary... Elder Abel (: