It has been a reaaaaaaaaally crazy week! We have seen so many miracles!
I need to start with why Hna Powell is the bravest new missionary ever. We were going to an appointment with a less active family, and had knocked on the door a few times with no answer. A car pulled into the driveway and two Hispanic ladies got out. Hermana Powell immediately starts waving and goes to start talking to them. I immediately knew they were missionaries from a different church, but hey no harm in talking to them. They told us who they were and started to ask us questions about the Book of Mormon and Joseph smith and were kind enough to give us a website from their church we could go to to see a list of all the reasons why the Book of Mormon isn't true. We talked for little and agreed we wouldn't agree haha. Then as they were going, Hna Powell said "wait I want to give you something!" And gave them a copy of the Book of Mormon. They tried to say no but hermana Powell said "No it's a gift from me" and you just can't say no to that. So that was our most epic book of Mormon placement this week.
In zone conference President Barney asked us to try to teach more lessons every week to members to give us more practice teaching and to help strengthen the members. So we've been calling and visiting every less-active family and saying "Hey, our mission president asked us to do this, and we want practice speaking Spanish, can we come over once a week and teach your family the four missionary lessons to give us some practice?" And they are all more than happy to help and say "yes of course come over for lunch/dinner and then we can all sit down and have the lesson!" And it's awesome, and a huge miracle that we are getting in with all these families who didn't want to have us before. We are so grateful for our inspired mission president!
Things are going great here! We are meeting lots of new awesome people every day, there was one guy we talked to for like 45 minutes, and he had all the exact right questions, like about what we believe about what happens after we die, and why there were prophets in the bible but there aren't now, and beliefs about faith and agency, and as we talked to him he realized that Mormons weren't everything we thought we were and he actually agreed with everything we believe. Sadly, he wasn't interested in having us back or taking a pamphlet or anything, but it was incredible, he was so prepared, and even though we met him when we were outside contacting, it turns out he lives in the same apartment complex as us so hopefully we continue to see him around and he can keep thinking about what we shared with him. Missionary work is amazing and it is so wonderful to see people accept the message and realize it is the truth they have been looking for, but it is equally heartbreaking at times when people are so close, and preconceived notions they have about what the church is or any number of different obstacles lead them to walk away. So we just pray really, really hard that someday they will maybe because of that small contact we had, or had with anyone along the way will allow the spirit to open their hearts.
This week I got to give a training on Christlike attributes and it helped me ponder a lot on the idea of becoming and the people that we choose to become over time. There is a quote by Elder Oaks I love:
"In contrast to the institutions of the world, which teach us to know something, the gospel of Jesus Christ challenges us to become something.… It is not enough for anyone just to go through the motions. The commandments, ordinances, and covenants of the gospel are not a list of deposits required to be made in some heavenly account. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a plan that shows us how to become what our Heavenly Father desires us to become."
We had an awesome discussion about how what we are is more important than what we do, because our hearts are what will eventually lead us to the actions that we take. The challenge is to become as He is. Also, for all my friends on missions or leaving on a mission, or even thinking about a mission, there is an amazing talk by Elder Bednar from October 2005 called "Becoming a Missionary" which is incredible and talks more in detail about this.
Thank you all for the love and support!! I hope you have a wonderful week
Russian Art Museum!!
Giant rainstorm this weekend
A member made me homemade black bean burgers as a reward for eating a habanero last week 😂🌶🔥