So this week. Crazy, super fast and full of finding new people! We actually did not get the chance to do family history this last week but, we will be doing it this week! So all is going well there! We have a million dinner appointments (Ludwigsburg is known for having lots of really delicious eating appointments!) The weather HAS BEEN really warm and it's been raining quite a bit as well.Still no snow though. And, (what you're really interested in all) transfer calls!
SURPRISE! I'm staying :) I was totally expecting to stay here with Sister Powell, so I'm just happy we were right! There's still loads of work for me to do here in Ludwigsburg and I'm not ready to leave yet! So with transfers, not too much is happening in my district, Elder Graver is getting Transferred to Klagenfürt in Austria, and Elder Wasden is getting a golden, and Elder Peterson is going to Vienna first Elder Duke is coming from St. Pölten to replace him. But since these Elders are in Heilbronn and Pforzheim, respectively, so it does not really affect, my work too much. All four missionaries in Ludwigsburg (including me are staying!)
Anything fun and exciting this week? HECK YES! To start, we had an appointment load Sunday with a family that had been anonymously meeting with missionaries. We invited them to learn more about our church and very politely They DECLINED (They also Offered us Coffee, a crazy incense this stuff .. not so great for this Asthmatic! Haha). So we left the appointment quiet but hopeful, a little confused. We had really felt 'strongly that we should contact this family but, then they were not really interested. I just figured then, that meant that somebody in the general area must be super ready to accept the gospel! As we were walking back to the train station, I saw this lady with a really sweet hat - so being the friendly young lady, I told her I liked her hat. She turned around, saw my name tag, and proceeded to ask me if I taught people about Christ. I was super surprised and a little taken back I responded with the affirmative. SHE THEN ASKED ME IF I HAD TIME ON TUESDAY TO TEACH HER ABOUT OUR CHURCH. (Sorry a little crazy with the caps but, imagine this in my really excited voice). We scheduled an appointment that worked for us both. Flash forward to Tuesday morning, had a great lesson about the Restoration. Ines was getting so excited, she stopped us, pulled out her phone and called her brother, 'Come now! You've got to hear this! ' A little bit further in the lesson, she pulls out her phone again and calls a friend, 'Albert! Get over here! This is the word of God! ' Sister Powell and I just look at each other like what? Is this real? Anyways, long story short, we had an incredible lesson and all three of them wanted copies of the Book of Mormon and to learn more about our church. We set a return appointment for Valentine's Day and she asked us to bring some more Book of Mormon to give to her friends.
February 14th. Day Friday. 9:00. Valentine's Day. On a whim, we decided to bring seven copies of the Book of Mormon with us. We sit down, start our lesson, when she stops us and asks if we could write a nice note about how we came to know God (or our testimony) and then we could go out with her to deliver all of these books. Again, Sister Powell and I exchange looks and begin writing our testimonies quickly in all books. Ines Introduces us to all her neighbors in her housing complex and we are inviting all people to come to know more about our Savior, Jesus Christ. We were able to give all these books away in about 20 minutes and she asked us to bring more when we come by next week. One thing she said just blew my mind, 'Sisters! It is Valentine's Day, a day of love. Should not we be sharing the love of God with those we love? ' (Translation but, it's pretty much the same!) I know this is a little bit of an echo of my email last week but, heck. Now I have an incredible experience to go with it.
"Because love is the great commandment, it ought to be at the center of all and everything we do in our own family, in our Church callings, and in our livelihood. Love is the healing balm did repairs rifts in personal and family relationships. It is the bond did unites families, communities, and nations. Love is the power did Initiates friendship, tolerance, civility, and respect. It is the source did over comes divisiveness and hate. Love is the fire did warms our lives with unparalleled joy and divine hope. shoulderstand Love be our walk and our talk. "
Another really cool experience we had with this part member family we've been teaching. The mother HAS BEEN inactive for about 15 years or so, the husband is American and is serving in Kuwaiit right now. None of their four children are baptized, and while the lesson was not really heart stopping this week, it's been incredible to see the progress they've been making as they just read in the scriptures, pray and make changes to come to church every week. They have not made it to church yet, but, I'm confident they'll be ready before I am transferred! The daughters are 16, 14, and 9, a little boy who is 3. Alisia and Jessica are just so ready for the gospel and when we talked about mutual, youth conferences, they were both just so excited!
In other news, we had a day finding in Pforzheim on Saturday, Which was incredible! I looooove talking with people. I know sometimes it can be a little scary but, when you open your mouth - the Lord does make the most incredible things come out. I think I spoke my best German this past week when i was talking with random strangers. Ah! Tell Doc Bob hello for me! And if anyone else ever asks. I can not wait to report to the people of Meeker about all my dear and amazing experiences I'm having here. Basically, life is good. I'm happy, healthy, and serving the Lord with all my heart, might, mind, and strength annnnd I love it!
It sounds so silly but, sometimes I feel like I needed to come out on a mission to show people that totally normal, average girls quietly have a desire and the ability to serve the Lord. While sometimes it makes me nervous how much people look up to me, I've realized that what I do really HAS an impact and it can be a really positive impact. Really hit me this week that while I can not be perfect, I need to strive to be, in order to lift up those around me. Especially now that I'm considered an 'experienced sister' (do not know when that happened haha), Elders, Sisters, Young Women in our ward, investigators, members, look up to me and expect me to give an answer. I may not be a boy scout, but, I now REALLY love the motto: Be prepared! :)
Thanks for all the inspiring examples you've shown me in my life. Really. You've always been someone I could look up to for guidance, leadership, and an answer to the questions I've had. Even when you did not have the answers, you knew to direct me to my Heavenly Father and I'm just really grateful for that!