They say the mission is a roller coaster and this week certainly can attest that. I felt like a chicken with my head cut off basically everyday. So much going on! It was busy and hot and chaotic, but what else could a missionary ask for?
Starting on Monday we had a pretty interesting experience play out while we were on the bus. I was talking to some kids about my age and they were interested in what we were doing and why we were dressed the way we were with how insanely hot it is. As I was explaining our purpose as missionaries two men on either side of this big group jump into the conversation and start proclaiming that God doesn’t exist and Jesus Christ doesn’t care about us anymore, and all the promises in the Bible are a sham. I stood there and testified to those men that I know God is our loving Heavenly Father and that Jesus Christ did actually suffer for every hardship that they have experienced. I told them his love is so immense and without end for them that even as they curse his name he still desires them to come unto him.
What happened next wasn’t anything miraculous, but they were simply unable to respond to anything I had said. I continued to testify that the reason they were unable to counter me was because they were feeling the influence of the Holy Ghost who testifies of truth and they could not deny it. The kids we were talking to found this quite impressive and so we planned to meet with them after they return from their holiday at the sea.
That night our bishop called us to receive some help in going to visit a less active member and his family, none of which are members. It was quite a chaotic lesson with the little kids running around and screaming, but nonetheless it was uplifting for them and we plan to see them this week!
The rest of the week was a smorgasbord of running around, having lessons, having no shows, talking to people, and on top of that trying to work with our office to get a new washing machine because ours hasn’t really been working since we got here. But all is well!
More drama has ensued in the saga of Valerio and Miriam. Unfortunately this week was full of complications and opposition. Valerio was doing well for most of it up until yesterday when he got sick from the rain on Saturday (apparently you can get sick when it rains in Italy).
Anyway he didn’t come to church yesterday so he won’t be baptized on the 20th which is really sad. We’re hoping for the 27th. In any case, we’re still pressing forward with faith and staying optimistic.
Sunday after church we had an awesome pranzo with the family Caporale and Impolognia! It not only consisted of a delicious white lasagna of mushrooms, prosciutto, and sausage, but also they are just awesome people and so fun to talk to! We laughed and joked and had a good time. Then my companion and I shared a spiritual thought with them that actually meant quite a lot to us and we could tell they appreciated it which was the perfect way to cap off a great week.
In a week full of ups and downs, smiles and disappointments, I find myself very content with it all despite the hard times. I think that is what I find most fulfilling about missionary work. Even when things don’t go the way I want, maybe an investigator no shows, or the bus doesn’t come for an hour, or people aren’t open to receive what we want to bring them. I don’t need to worry myself because I did what I was supposed to do and I enjoyed doing it. The nights I sleep the best are the nights in which that day I did everything I could do, whatever the results of those efforts were.
So my invite to all of you is instead of worrying about what didn’t get done or what didn’t go right, thank Heavenly Father for anything and everything that did go right or even better than you expected. I guarantee you every time you do this, your hope in him will grow because you will see his hand working in your daily life.
I love you and I pray for you daily,
Please feel free to email me with anything you may be facing that I may pray or fast for specifically, Have awesome weeks!