First things first. I am training a brand new missionary. Ah. Yeah. I'm nervous. She will be coming to be on thursday night. We will also be Sister Training Leaders. So like.. Sister Zone Leaders. Lots of responsibility all at once. But hey... at least we're not white washing an area ;) It'll be interesting, that's for sure.
We found out the news while we were in Zollikofen with the Zolli Sisters. We got the permission to go to the Temple again to be there for Sonja!!! She did baptisms for the dead for the first time! It was so amazing to be there for her! I've never been downstairs in the font, so it was really cool to be there. So beautiful. So peaceful. I miss the Temple. We were in such a rush and we were late to the session, but we got there, we were there for Sonja, and that's what is important :) I loved seeing how happy she was. I felt such love being back with my Zolli ward :) They loved me and I loved them. It was really nice :)
|The socks i received from a member from zollikofen. she made me and sister pea matching socks, but didn't get to give them to me before i left. such a sweetheart! I've always wanted knitted socks!|
We then spent the night with the Sisters. That was really good, too. I got to talk with Sister Peacock and see how it was going for her being a Trainer and all. Which was good since I'll be doing the same thing here in 3 days. *AH*. I'm just looking a lot to my memory of Eve and how great she was. I hope I can teach my Golden all that she managed to teach me :)
We had a few really cool experiences this week.
We met with the family from Eritrea again. I LOVE THEM.
We got there, waiting a bit until the husband was changed from his work clothes and started. They were not happy that we wanted to talk about the BoM again, and so they wouldn't even have it. Good thing we prepared something from the Bible. Only thing is... they are used to be preached at. I don't know how to preach! Neither does Sister Robben. So we were both a little like... what do we do? We had decided to talk about faith. Harmless enough. The tables got mega turned and the husband started preaching and giving the lesson. They are so focused on Christ. It unbelievable. And really cool and a good testimony builder for me. But they focus so much on Him, that we couldn't even talk about faith because it wasn't Jesus Christ. (BG: It should be faith in Christ, wish i could be there:)) They ONLY want to hear about Christ. I don't fully agree with that, (mmmmmmmmmmmm) but... yeah. We tried explaining about the Trinity and that it doesn't really work, as we read in Matthew 3 about Christs baptism. Then he started asking who God was and what the relationship between Him and Christ is and... yeah. The whole time I was just thinking "Heavenly Father, what is the point of this? We just come into peoples houses and they tell us that we're wrong. This is the truth! Why aren't people just jumping into the font to be baptized? Why can't they tell that we have the truth? This is so harsh...".
When he was finally finished, we just thanked him and told him that we agree 100%, because we do! Christ is at the center for us as well!
I was feeling a bit down after this whole preaching thing. But then the moods changed completely. They had made us dinner again, and this time we ate Eritrean food.
I love these cultures! Seriously. They are the most generous and loving people that you could ever meet. They just have a different way of communicating with each other. They are really open and really intense. We talked about this in Institute this Tuesday. The teacher was talking about how if we understood the culture of the Bible better, we would understand the way they reply to one another. For us, sometimes the replies from Christ seem really harsh. But, for them, that was just how they had a normal discussion. If someone were to speak to us like that, we would pull out the boxing gloves and get ready to knock them one:). I learned that first hand this week. They just communicate different. But they love us!
We ate something like a buckwheat crepe. That's what it looks like, anyway. Then you put meat and yogurt and veg on in, take another crepe, and eat the stuff in the middle with your fingers, using the crepe to "protect" your fingers. It was SO GOOD. I LOVE THESE CULTURES!
Seriously, it has been amazing getting to know so many different people and their beliefs about life and God and religion and so on.
We had a finding day on Saturday and we were knocking doors, when a man from Iraq opened the door. He was Muslim, but let us in. He and his wife were so loving! Wife spoke NO German, but loved us! She was so happy to have two strange girls sitting in her front room. They gave drinks, something to eat, and then offered us there house to us and our families if we ever needed to stay somewhere. And that's not the first time that's happened. These people really understand what it means to love your neighbor. I am so impressed by these cultures. And I love them!
The finding day was really really special. I want to share one success story from the day.
We were walking on the street, decided where we wanted to go next. We decided not to go in one direction, and go around the corner instead. There was a man. So we stopped him. We told him that we talk about Jesus Christ. He told us that we had stopped the wrong man because in 20-30 minutes he was going to end his life.
We were speechless. Sister Robben is brilliant and invited him to come get something to drink with us and we could talk. He had to run to an appointment, but he gave us his two telephone numbers and told us to meet him somewhere at 7. He promised he'd be there.
And he was. 2 Elders came with cause they were worried about us. Totally not needed. But.. I'm glad they were there. We went and got drinks and this man started to tell us all about his life.
He is in such a deep place right now. All that could go wrong has gone wrong. He felt no more hope and no more light. I was able to bear my testimony that there in hope in life and that is through our faith in Jesus Christ and that we can repent, be forgiven, and become new again. He said he knew that I would say that, but not in a mean, sarcastic way, just a matter of fact kind of way. He kept saying that is wasn't "zufall" (coincidence) that we met, but that it was Schicksal (destiny). He doesn't just give out his info to just anyone, especially just to two girls on the street. But he thought he'd give us a chance. He asked if he could come to church next week. He couldn't come yesterday, but he wants to meet again this week and then on Sunday.
It was just so amazing for me to be able to bear testimony of the hope and light of God and His Son and the Gospel. I spoke from my heart, and it was really an uplifting moment for us all. To know that we were really in the right place at the right time and that we stopped him. I guess that's why we stop everyone, right? ;)
God wanted to show me that finding is fun, I think. I have never seen success like that with a finding day. All the people we found were quality people who have potential. Which is perfect since I'll be teaching that to my Golden here over the next 12-18 weeks. Here we go.
This week was really good. Crazy that I have a comp that is leaving the mission field, finished and going home. It's really strange, but it's been good cause I've set some goals for the Trainer I want to be and the things I want to accomplish for the rest of my time here and what kind of missionary goals I have for the rest of my life. It was a good reflecting time. This is a really good time to think of others and to share a Christmas spirit. I look forward to it. We will be focusing a lot on the members. We are going to find all those people hiding in rocks and in the mountains and in the hills (Jeremiah 16:16-17). And we are going to teach, teach, teach, and find, find, find :)
Love you all. The Church is true, even when people may tell you that you are wrong. We know that it will only get harder the closer we get to His coming. Now is the time to prepare to meet God. So do your best, make Him proud, and go forward with a heart full of faith in Christ, knowing that tomorrow is a new day, another day to start over and to love those around you.
Let us not forget the real meaning of Christmas.