This week, let’s study charity and love. I learned so much about it this morning! The work is tough, but good! It’s going to be a growing experience here, because the members aren’t used to helping out the missionaries very much, and even say no to feeding us much of the time. But I know it will be ok. Sister George and I are trying to ‘love’ the ward members into missionary work. I listened to a talk this morning called “What if Love Were Our Only Motive?” (Elder Russel T. Osgothorp) http://speeches.byu.edu/index.php?act=viewitem&id=1943 and “Gifts of Love” (Elder Eyring) http://speeches.byu.edu/?act=viewitem&id=821.
It really struck a chord with me and made me take a look at myself to see what I can do to have more of this love in my life, and how I can make every action come from love. I know that was the Spirit whispering to me the path that I need to take in this area, even though the return might be small in the short term.
We taught a man from Tanzania yesterday. This was a serious challenge! There was a HUGE language barrier! We had to say everything about 18 times, plus say it like we were talking to a 1 year old. It’s surprising that it was this difficult, because he sounds like he speaks and understands English a lot better than he actually does. But this man has a very firm faith in Christ. We spent an hour with him, and at the end, all we were able to explain to him was that the Book of Mormon and the Bible are not the same book, that neither of them is more important than the other, and that he needed to read the Book of Mormon to be closer with God. We are trying to get him one in Swahili ASAP. At the end Sister George and I were so tired! Every muscle in my body had tightened during the lesson, as I strained to find some way for him to understand what we were teaching. He was never argumentative, but patient.
There was one crazy part though. In the beginning, he asked us if he could offer the opening prayer in Swahili. We told him ‘of course!’. He starts singing in Swahili. We are thinking “it’s ok, the song of the righteous, right?…” and his family starts harmonizing with him. It was really beautiful! Then he stands up and started speaking. His family carries on with the harmony, but he is no longer singing, just speaking. Even now, we have no idea what he was saying. Then. THEN. He started yelling. SCREAMING at the top of his lungs, and his vocal chords sounded like they were going to just give out! He was making wild gestures, and screaming in an enraged voice. He was facing perpindicular to us, and I couldn’t tell if his eyes were open or not. He went on in this manner for about 5 minutes. Sister George and I didn’t know what to do! But eventually it was over, and we started the lesson. Never in my life have I seen something like this, and I have taught and prayed with a Pentacostal preacher (I was surprized we didn’t see anything that unusual during that lesson actually)! Anyway, I do not know what religion this man came from, but what I do know, is that the Spirit needs a quiet reverent atmosphere, and any of the atmosphere we had created by singing before the prayer was dispersed. We had to build it up again! Tough stuff this Missionary work.
Anyway, I have to go now, but there is more to say, akk!
Enjoy these pictures!
A cute member in our ward loves to collect aprons! They just moved to a new house, still inside our ward boundaries. She is pregnant and can’t lift things, and is tired a lot, so we unpacked her kitchen for her while she sat on the couch and told us what went where. We got to wear these cute aprons while we did it!
We often are driving on old dirt roads like this one. This is actually someone’s driveway. It’s quite long! Kind of sketchy going this deep in the woods, as two sister missionaries, especially when we don’t know the people we’re contacting, but we’re careful to be safe! 🙂
The skies in Virginia are so beautiful!!
I don’t know what it is, but I have never seen skies like this before. It’s this beautiful ALL THE TIME. Amazing. I have a ton of sky pictuers to send home, so sorry!
That is a firefly. I wish I could get an adequate picture of them sparkling in the evening air, but that’s about as easy as it is to get a shot of a lightning strike.
Fredericksburg Battlefield! You can read about it, one of the major battles in the Civil War.