Monday, March 2, 2015

41 - Y V Russian? U C, Z Gospel iz True

About the obnoxious title of this entree... So, ever since Sister Stephens and I came home from the long P-day which was spent dealing with getting car details worked out from my little accident of hitting the curb, we literally just spoke to each other in Russian accents for a good hour for the heck of it. 

I think it's because we watched "The Saratov Approach" the day before. 

And after zat, ze Russian, it just never stop!

It's gotten to the point now where it's hard to get out of the Russian accent. One time Sister Stephens started praying like "Dear Heavenly--- ...Dear Heavenly F.." Oh man, so funny! 

And we will be talking in our normal American accent to teach lessons but I was catching weird things like 'l's and 'e's that Sister Stephen's said in a slight Russian accent, and she said she caught the same thing with me! Haha.

Oh, and by the way, some bummer news, because of my accident, I have been black dotted for six months, meaning I can't drive until August. ...Well, I can drive in the last three months of my mission, when I'm in a new mission and everything because of this mission shrinking down and changing the name to the Bismark, North Dakota Mission and everything. 

But, oh well. At least I can like, use the map and phone and stuff instead of having to concentrate on driving.

So this week it was interesting. We did not have very many lessons. All of the less actives that we usually work with were either out of town or recovering from surgery. And there were many instances where we saw people, but we didn't have a lesson, but it was so important just to see them! So it was a good week, and we did in fact have a lesson that was super inspired.

And he saith unto them... it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared of my Father (Matthew 20:23).

It was Tuesday, we didn't have the car, and we had lots of time that we were needed to figure out what to do with. Sister Stephens, I'm so grateful for her, said, "let's just go outside and try that former investigator. Heavenly Father will bless us for going out and trying!"

So we did, and it was actually super nice outside! The sun was shining, there was LOTS of snow, but it was pretty warm. It really reminded me of Flagstaff, this walk did. 

It took us about twenty to thirty minutes to walk down this main road to get to the apartment complex the former investigator was at, but we had so much fun trekking through the snow and talking in Russian accents! About half of the sidewalk was cleared and half wasn't, it was pretty crazy. We wrote stuff in the snow at one point and when we got the the apartments...

*In Russian accent* "Why our appointment on other side of snowhill?"

But it was okay. We just walked around. 

And here is the thing. Heavenly Father's hand is so evident in this! We tried this potential first, but she wasn't home, so we left a sticky note. And then, we are going to try this former and we realize, because all the apartments look practically the same, that we left the sticky note on the wrong door! As we walk up the stairs to leave the sticky note on the correct door, we see someone pulling up and it was the former investigator! And he walked into his apartment just below us as we put the sticky note on the correct door!
And then! Well, first off, we were distracted by seeing this.

*In Russian accent* "Is zhat eggshell?.... oh. no. It snow shell."
We thought it was so funny, but anyways, we knocked, and his sister answered! A female! We knew we could now ask to come 'in!' 

If she hadn't answered, we wouldn't have asked because we have to have another female with us all the time when teaching, getting rides, etc. And we got in and taught the plan of salvation! 

And then, whoever it was like, came and picked them up right after the lesson! Holy cow inspired.

It's neat because this former is so genuine. We first contacted him in October and he even said the closing prayer on the doorstep, even though he was a little hesitant. He told us this day that he's not really wanting to continue probably because he's young and he likes to do fun things like drink once a week and he smokes and he's just not really wanting to give that up. 

But we shared the plan of salvation with him anyway and he was really interested in the three kingdoms of glory.

We are giving him a month, that's what he requested, then we will try him back. 

SO INSPIRED this lesson was!

For behold, I am God; and I am a God of miracles; and I will show unto the world that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and I work not among the children of men save it be according to their faith, (2 Nephi 27:23).

Another person we were able to visit-- one of the less actives that we got in with on the Saturday of the 17 miracles week. She is native and, Oh man, she has had such a rough life! Her living situation is not good. Her husband died a few years back, leaving her with three young boys, now ages 3, 7, and 8. She now has a job that treats her better, thank goodness, but she is on her own with no family here to support her, it's super hard to get by on the little food stamp money she has, it's super hard for us to get in with her to check up on her, and just, it's hard! AND her brother (that she hadn't known about until three years ago) was just murdered brutally, thrown into a river after being beaten so bad that he died by drowning....

And she still prays. She still believes in miracles. Even in her situation. Even with not coming to church in years. It's... really amazing. What an example.

Wherefore we would have come unto you... once and again; but Satan hindered us (1 Thessalonians 2:18).

Why does this scripture perfectly describe Henry and Elizabeth! 

They are awesome! But Satan is making it SO HARD for them to come to church! Henry had to work because he's training a new guy and couldn't switch the shift, and Elizabeth had her sporadic nerve in her back, side effect from having an epideral I guess, act up due to the weather, and she's had bad falls before when trying to fight through the pain and so she told us she couldn't come. Satan! Ah!

But they will come. One day.

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne (Revelation 3:21).

Last but not least, Sister Stephens and I both received priesthood blessings this week because of the general stresses of preaching the gospel. In my blessing it was stated, "Your Heavenly Father cares more about your progression than your comfort." I'm so grateful for the priesthood.

Until next week!

P.S. Snow, Snow, Snow!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

40 - Winter is Back

Map of the City of Worthing, S.D.
Don't have lots of time to write unfortunately, but the main things that happened:

We went to Worthing again in the middle of the week and finally, it took three times of going, but finally we were there when the City Hall was open! 

And we totally got at map, the official map, which totally looks like a map of a school and it's hilarious to me. 

The member that was with us was cracking up because she was super surprised that they had a map at all.

We finally were able to visit the one less active that lives in Worthing! Yay! 

And he said he'd come to church this next Sunday! Yay!

Then zone conference was also this week on Friday. Two zones of missionaries all meeting together for a day to be spiritually nourished by other missionaries and the Stake President and President and Sister Anderson! Yay! 

And the Sisters in Brookings stayed at our apartment that night, which means Sister Christiansen was able to 'come back home' for a bit, being as this was her first area. 

So that was super cool for her.

It was a little hectic getting out the door, but we did eventually!

And, they sang to me at zone conference because my birthday is between January and the end of March! 

March 1st I'll be 21. 

Yea! Driving in the Snow!
Hey, Who Spilled White-Out on the Road???

And then Saturday I drove for the first time in snow that was on the ground, like pretty thick snow, and it was coming down still when I was driving. 

We had an adventure for better or worse.

I don't have lots of time to email today because I actually had to file an incident report before emailing. 

I was pulling out of a parking lot turning left and the turn was too wide and it was dark and I had no idea where the curb on the other side of the main road was and I hit it... pretty hard... 

And what makes matters worse was, we are using a rental car right now, because our car is getting hail damage fixed... 

The hit made the right side of the front bumper pop up... So... That happened. 

We are gonna be figuring out stuff with that today, but, things should work out I hope.

So, yeah, don't drive in thick snow if you don't have a car that's built to do that, especially for your first time driving in it. 

Not good.

So, went to sleep, and woke up to a call from bishop saying church was canceled because of the weather...

Darn it! And Henry and Elizabeth were going to come too! 

Satan really just doesn't want them to come to church! 

By the way, they have hit a slight stumbling block. 

We taught them about tithing on Saturday and it was a good lesson, but Henry doesn't feel right about it. He feels like you are buying blessings. Which, I suppose if you had to have a concern about tithing, that's probably the best one you could have. 

He was set on being baptized, but having to live the law of tithing he joins the church is making him have doubts. But he will come around. They won't be able to be baptized on the 14th, but they will be baptized eventually. 

They are still willing to meet with us and everything. It'll just take some time of getting used to the idea of tithing being something that God has asked us to do.

But yeah, it was pretty windy and snowy. 

I was even able to capture the wind blowing the snow! Look at it, blowing up and to the right! 

It wasn't super cold, but the road conditions were bad, really bad, too much snow for little cars! 

We went outside to see if we could get the car out of the garage and give it to the sisters, but oh man, there was this car that was stuck trying to get out of the parking lot. 

And her car was about as big as ours. 

We were able to help her make it out, but yeah, getting our car out wasn't happening until the plows came through.

The Sisters did actually come and get the car later, but they got very stuck trying to get out onto the main road. It was a good thing that bishop was picking us up at that time and that a random citizen was able to help them. 

The road conditions... yeah, not good.

We ate lunch with the bishop though because he lives pretty close. We had soup! 

And then we watched Saratov Approach with them (because we could) and Sister Stephens had never seen it. Bishop then took us back home... but we realized we left the phone! But we had fun walking back over there.

I wanted to take more pictures, but my camera died. By the way, pictures taken with the camera inside a ziplock bag seem to work! Woo!

So yeah, winter is back. We were teased with nice weather the past couple weeks and now this is the worst we've had it practically. But I am grateful for the time were the weather was nice! It's important to count your blessings.

Until next week!

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