This last week we had two very successful lessons with Kobe, he’s one of our investigators from Gana and met with the elders ten years or so ago. But now, he’s been making some real progress. As we’ve been trying to teach him for a month or so, he’s been a little…uninvolved. He has difficulty reading and he works ALL THE TIME. But he always makes time to meet with us.
On Tuesday we FINALLY managed to get Julia (one of the members in our ward who speaks perfect English, probably because her husband is American) to come to the appointment with us. It just seemed like Satan was doing everything he could to keep her from being able to come. Whether it was a fallen out appointment, her daughter breaking her foot or just no time, for three or four appointments she wasn’t able to make it.
But this week she was able to come and we met in the chapel with Kobe. We had a really spiritual lesson and talked about the Holy Ghost and, by the end, we were all crying we felt the spirit so strongly.
It was interesting to me though, seeing as Kobe brought his ‘Happy Fit’ water bottle for the first time to our appointment. After the termine Julia asked him if he trained at the Happy Fit just around the corner, at his affirmative, she said, “Well, maybe you know my husband, Patrick.”
I think his reaction suprised all of us, seeing as he, not only knew her husband, but really liked him.
And so, on Thursday our next appointment was held in Marchtrenk in the home of Julia and Patrick Cumberworth.
Things like that are really just awesome! Gotta love the miracles.
On Wednesday we had Zone Conference and so it was off to Salzburg again. It was a very interesting conference, and I learned a lot. But the hardest part of it, for me, was watching the testimonies of those missionaries going home before the next Zone Conference.
Sister Lin, one of the APs, the Weidmans and another Ehe-paar (The ones in Brixon Italy) all got up to bear their testimonies. It’s incredibly difficult for me to imagine that one day, in the next year, I’ll be doing the very same thing. When you look at your mission in the perspective of time, it’s not that long. Here I am, I’ve been on my mission for over seven months and it’s gone by so fast.
You just don’t see the time when you’re working for the Lord.
On Thursday we went by on a family who had removed their names from the list of the Church because of something that had happened in the ward. They had been baptized 15 years or so ago and had removed their names from the Church 10 years ago.
They are an extremely nice family, the mother loves the missionaries and pulled out every single photo album that contained pictures of the missionaries and showed them to us. She says that she still believes everything, she just doesn’t go to the church. It makes me really sad that these people were hurt by something so badly that they left the church. I’m not sure what it was, but I know that it happened for five or so years before they finally decided they’d had enough.
But we are planning on going back, trying to show them that maybe it’s not all that bad, even if bad things have happened.
Thursday was also a day of sadness, considering that we had an appointment with Michael and he never came. We had confirmed the appointment only a few hours before and when he never came it was really a disappointment to us.
So, after waiting a half an hour later, hoping that by some chance he thought the time was later, we started to head out to go by his apartment.
We were barely two hundred yards from the church when Sister Lin stopped an Asian lady on the side of the road (go figure). We found out she was from Thailand and I remembered that there was a Thai Book of Mormon in the chapel. So we took her to the chapel and I got the Book of Mormon and we gave her a tour.
She had been living in Wels for seven years (in Austria for 20) and had been walking by the chapel every Monday through Friday for the entire time she’d been in Wels, and we just happened to find her that night.
When we were down in the Geneologie Zentrum she started talking about her brother who had died two years ago in a motorcycle accident. She looked at us and said, “Wissen Sie wo seine Seele ist?” (Do you know where his soul is?)
Chills rolled down both of our spines and we nodded, “Yes, we know where he is.”
“Yes, the answers are in this book, and we’d like to talk to you about it if you have time right now.”
She had time, so we sat down and taught her the second half of the plan of Salvation.
Sunday brought a lot of surprises (Überraschung). Kobe came to church! Dennis came to church, and it was just a great day! There have just been so many miracles in this work! So many! Its incredible.
But for me, this week, there were a few things that I was most impressed by as I read through the Liahona from August and September.
The first was a talk from Elder Oaks in the August Ensign entitled, In His Own Time, In His Own Way.
It’s a talk about revelation and how we receive revelation.
“WE need to know that the Lord rarely speaks loudly. His mesages almost always come in a whisper.”
Just the words of advice he gave were so incredible, talking about how revelation isn’t a constant thing, sometimes we have moments of revelation and other times it takes work. Which is why we have to study it out in our minds and think about it, until we’ve come up with a solution and then go to the Lord with it.
A missionary once told me that the Brother of Jared is a great example of this idea of taking something to the Lord.
The Lord commanded the Brother of Jared to build several ships in the manner that the Lord wanted them built. But the Brother of Jared soon realized that there was a problem. Because of the way the boats were built, there would be no light the entire way across the ocean.
And so, the Brother of Jared went to the Lord and said, I don’t know what to do, we can’t use fire and the ships won’t allow for sunlight, what can we do?
THe Lord told the Brother of Jared to work it out and to provide a solution.
And so the Brother of Jared went up to the mount and made sixteen rocks and tried to make them as bright and as clear as possible. And after he had done all of this work, he took the stones again to the Lord and said, “Lord, I’ve tried everything I can. I have these sixteen stones, and I can’t make them shine alone. I know that if you were to touch these stones with your finger then I know they will shine.”
And so, through the Brother of Jared’s faith, he was able to light the way across the ocean of the Jaredites.
I may not have to build a boat to carry people across the ocean, or carve stones out of a mountain side to show the Lord that I’m willing to work to receive inspiration and to see miracles, and that might mean that I never see the literal finger of God, but that doesn’t mean I don’t see His hand in the work every single day.