22 April 2014
What a wet weekend we’ve had! *And more rain and thunderstorms forecast all week long – you can check out the weather in Bratislava here.
Yesterday (Easter Monday) the shops and libraries were all closed, so we had a partial P-Day indoors writing in journals and chilling to MoTab. Most relaxing day I’ve had in absolute ages! It was boring compared to last P Day 😉 We took a výlet to Devínsky hrad (Devín castle); it was almost as cool as our Welsh castles. We found a lizard, and named him Felix 😀
My companion, Sestra W is so cute! She is down-to-earth, considerate, and quiet. She works really hard. Like me, she is the eldest child in her family. We made halušky together for the first time yesterday. Yay!
This week has felt like an age! And yet the time is slipping by so fast. I have mixed feelings about our efforts this week: I feel I am trying hard, but am aware of my imperfections as I try to balance between helping Sestra W come into her own, and buckling down to get the job done efficiently. My appreciation for what my parents and teachers and trainer have all done for me has suddenly risen to a whole new level. 🙂 I’m trying to develop patience and trust that the Lord will magnify our feeble (but consecrated) efforts to work miracles here in Bratislava. And we need them!
A miracle that we’re praying for in particular is a prepared family to teach: “the kind that tells us ‘we’ve been praying to meet you'”, in Sestra W’s words. She and I truly became friends this week. Her Slovak is quite excellent already. She memorised the entire First Vision in one afternoon! So proud… 🙂 All she needs is the confidence to react to questions and take the lead.
We were in Brno (Czech Republic) last Thursday for a training meeting, and Sestra W and I both came away from training feeling that we need to focus on becoming great finders and refresh our teaching pool. As Prezident McConkie has said: “the key to a happy and successful mission is learning to love contacting, fast.” 😉 A few times this week a wave of urgency to do the Lord’s work has swept over me and propelled me forward as we seek to open our mouths and share the gospel message with the people around us.
We learned a lesson about the law of the harvest: try as we might our Friday remained devoid of teaching apointments, so it became a Finding Day. We practiced different contacts, tried using Gospel Art and testimony and questions and pass-along cards and YSA members and by dinner time we were ready to keel over with exhaustion. We had many meaningful conversations, but not a single lesson nor phone number to show for our earnest efforts. It was tough. We steeled ourselves for the next day by telling ourselves that miracles would play out for the work we’d put in on Friday. Sure enough, on Saturday we got 3 numbers almost effortlessly while riding the trams to and from appointments. It was such a testimony-builder for me of reaping miracles from consecrated efforts! The Holy Ghost brought to my mind something else Prezident McConkie shared with us about the principle of consecration: “it means giving consistent effort every day regardless of immediate results.”
We didn’t teach as many lessons as we’d hoped this week, and have no new investigators. Although we did have a miracle in that an investigator we found last transfer has resurfaced: he called and wanted to meet. A member of the Church here who just received his mission call to Germany helped us teach and was just fantastic! The branch mission leader accompanied us to do some service in S’s garden, and we had a positive discussion afterwards. Also Brat M read the Priesthood Session from Conference, which he enjoyed immensely. Easter Sunday was full of miracles. Our stalwart sister M went to teach a former investigator with us; her testimony had a crucial impact. M’s father, who is not a member of the Church, invited all the missionaries round for dinner and let us share a spiritual thought! M was just glowing as she held the Book of Mormon with her father, and bore her testimony about Christ. It was a beautiful moment.
I love you all lots, you’re in my prayers!