Monday, January 20, 2014


January 20, 2014

Heidi and I were able to chat for a few minutes through email early this morning. I have included a few of her comments.

“ I am so happy here in Lankwitz.

The ward is really small here - definitely smaller than Langenhorn. There are a lot of wards in the Berlin area.  This is just one of them, and it isn't really in the center of Berlin- more in the suburb area. But there are some really nice people in the ward, and it is so different because we serve with two elders and the elderly couple, too
We are working with so many incredible people.,and I am just LOVING my companionship and that we are so close to the elders and see other missionaries a lot.

Also, just wanted to tell you how amazing it is that since my priesthood blessing I have had NO homesickness whatsoever, no anxiety, no depression, no nothing.  I am just so happy! :)

It is seriously so cold!! I think I am going to buy a warmer coat today.”

Now for her weekly email:

Quote of the week:  "I hate blondes, but I can love you through Jesus Christ." -Schwester H***
It was also with Schwester H*** that we helped her throw her Christmas tree out of her third story level apartment last week. . .  Always an adventure!

More comical moments of the week:
We were out doing doors and we go walking up the stairs after a man rang us in.  "Hallo, wir sind die Missionarinnen . . ." The man seriously jumped back and squealed like a little girl hahaha it was so funny.  So I asked him, "What's wrong, you're scared of a couple of girls?" ... 
The word "Missionary" can have quite the effect on people!

I learned from Sister Darrington, "I will do whatever it takes."  We were talking to a man at his apartment and it turned out that he had supposedly read the Book of Mormon two times already but he had decided that it wasn't the word of God. I asked if he had prayed about it, but he had not.  I was just so intrigued by this man and was a little bit stubborn so my companion stood next to me in horror as he fetched a bible almost the size of me, holding it in his arms and opening it up.

 I then proceeded to read in 2 Nephi 29 . . .  " Thou fool, that shall say: A Bible, we have got a Bible, and we need no more Bible. . .

Let's just say, I think I have overcome my fear of talking to people :P

I have only been here for about two weeks, but it is crazy how quickly a place can feel like home.  I love the people here.  I love how everybody is different.  Everybody has their own story. There's something I can learn from every one of these people.

There is J*** from Australia with the coolest accent and the coolest dinosaur pajamas.  He claims to be Aethiest, and yet he prayed at the end of our lesson with the most earnest and sincere call to God that I have ever heard.  He just wants to KNOW.  He is willing to try because he's not worried of failing.  It just really touches your heart when you hear somebody really pray for the first time, really trying to communicate with their Father in heaven.

There is M** from Egypt who has half of the Quran memorized.  It is so hard for him to just change his way of thinking because Islam is so different from Christianity, specifically Mormonism.  Imagine believing with your whole heart that Jesus Christ was just a prophet, but to try to change your beliefs that He was and is in fact the Son of God.  He prayed just last night and asked God to help us find the necessary means so that we can teach him, show him the evidence that he needs, and really help him so that he can know the truth, to close the doors that need to be close and open the necessary doors that need to be opened. 

Y***  from China who is young, beautiful, and a master pianist. Just in December she had no idea who God was, and Jesus Christ was just a name that she had heard.  We have met with her a few times since I got here and her rate of progression is incredible.  She prayed at the end of our lesson earlier in the week and we challenged her to specifically ask God if Joseph Smith was a prophet and whether or not the Book of Mormon was the word of God.  When we ask her if she felt like she had received an answer she just spoke of the feelings she gets when she prays.  "I feel so light when I pray.  Like everything is peaceful.  I just want this to become natural for me.  I just want all of these teachings and commandments to be a natural part of life for me."  It was so special that we could testify that that is why we have the commandments in the first place.  God loves us so much, and He gives us the commandments to help us find happiness in life.  She went on asking all sorts of questions about our purpose in life, and she just listened so intently to the answers and scriptures that we provided. 

J*** from China.  In meeting last night we watched "Finding Faith in Christ."  We shared our own testimonies of why we believe in God and Jesus Christ.

 Why should we believe in God?   

Not only does it bring us peace and hope.  But it helps us know our direction and purpose in life.  We are here on the earth to have joy, to learn, to grow, to make covenants with God.  Faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy ghost, and enduring to the end.

 We didn't really have that much time to talk in detail, but we invited J*** to say the closing prayer.  We had taught him how to pray in the beginning, and by the end of the lesson he was thanking us so sincerely for helping him to become aware of God, of Jesus Christ, of his purpose here on the earth.  He was so grateful.  He prayed for the first time then.  Again, incredible for somebody who just an hour before had wondered about his own existence, wondered if there was a God, or some higher power.  "Please help me to know if you are really there God.  Please help me so that I can learn what I need to.  Bless me that if it is right that one day I might be baptized."  We hadn't even invited him to be baptized, but he knew it was something expected of him from God even without the invitation. 

We need a DESIRE.  It is the desire of these people that allows them to truly learn, and to allow the Spirit enter into their humble hearts.

I am so happy here in Lankwitz and it means a lot to me that people see in me one who is enjoying the work.  It's crazy looking back sometimes and wondering why I ever struggled, why I ever doubted, why I ever feared?  Then I realize that's just always how life is.  But it feels good knowing that I have overcome things that were once hard, and have learned things that were once confusing.  I am learning more to enjoy things that are hard, especially when I realize that doing hard things makes me stronger.  

I love you all!!
Sister Heidi Elaine Shelley    

No comments:

Post a Comment