Monday, 13 December 2010

a very boubou thanksgiving

November 29, 2010

Dear family,
First off, it snowed last night. just insane, just insane.
Ok so I have tons of things to tell you!

Thanksgiving... last week on p-day I FINALLY bought a boubou, an African outfit. They are very popular among missionaries. Best 10 euros I've spent. Soeur McClaine and I decided that we would get some domino's pizza and eat in our boubous. We found a Dominos and bought some pizzas and it was amazing. Earlier in the day we got a call from a member of the ward saying that she had prepared a treat for us, a plate with the cookies on it. It was so nice of her to think of these poor little Americans away from their country on Thanksgiving :)

The next day, Friday, we had turkey bowl with our zone in Torcy. We got together for training and finding activity and then we ate. I once again attempted a chocolate pie and once again, I failed :( I think it is a sign that some Thanksgiving traditions are meant to stay in America). Before we ate, we had a football game, I was one the winning team. I even caught the ball the one time they threw it to me, only to turn around and run into an elder. Embarrassing. The meal was very good, a big shout out to the Davis couple who prepared most of the stuff knowing that most of us missionaries have never had much responsibility when it comes to preparing a Thanksgiving meal.

This week we had our miracle rendezvous with Regis, the guy from the train. We taught him at the church with a sister who has been home from her mission for three years. We were waiting for him at the gare and it became 1:00 and he was no where to be seen, but we got a text from him saying he would be late! That like never happens unless it is someone who is going to get baptized! We made our way to church and had an AMAZING rendezvous! A while ago we had this training on the "ideal first" and this rendezvous could have been filmed and used as a model for other missionaries. We all frequently bore testimony, gave him an overview, got to know him and what he expects/ The member was super involved in the perfect way, he noticed that he was feeling the Spirit with the "small heat in his heart" and committed to read the Book of Mormon and pray. Cecile said she would pick him up for church and they exchanged numbers and we all went our ways.

What I am about to tell you, might sound like a terrible thing. if one has misplaced their faith, they might view it as a catastrophe. It is Sunday morning and we are waiting for everyone to get to church and Cecile comes in and says "I have some terrible news." after the rendezvous, Regis went home and called his mom in Guadeloupe [an island in the west Indies] to tell her about his experience that day with missionaries. She told him that we were lying and that we weren't the true church and that he shouldn't see us. He called Cecile and told her this and she told him that he should still come to church to see for himself and he said he would. Later that night he texted her saying that he didn't know if he was ready to change his life and that he needed time to think, even though he could see that the gospel brought so much joy and happiness into our lives. He said that he would still pray everyday and read the Book of Mormon and if he had questions he would text her. I sat in church and was sad, it is a sad thing when someone makes a decision like this one, but I still knew that I was an effective missionary. I followed the Spirit in contacting him and we had an amazing rendezvous. The Spirit was there in such a force and I could tell it made sense to him and that he was one of those prepared for the gospel. I called him last night to invite him to a j.a. activity in Paris tonight, but he has school. I invited him to the ward meal next week and he said that he would come. He told me that he just needed time to reflect and that when he goes home for Christmas he was going to talk to his mom about the church and show her the Book of Mormon. Pray for Regis this week and that he will come to the ward meal and that as he reads the scriptures this week and prays that he will feel the Spirit and remember all the good feelings he had in the rendezvous.

I talked to President Staheli about faith in our last interview because we always hear, "your faith will bring miracles" and I told him I wanted to know where my faith meets someone's agency. I told him that as I thought back on my mission I felt like the time that I had the most faith was my time in Versailles. He explained to me that we need to always make sure that our faith is firmly planted in Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father, and that they together will lead me to prepared people. My faith isn't in people, but it is in those Two who know everything and can help soften the hearts of others. I have been thinking about that since and thought of it a lot yesterday. I am not discouraged because I know I did everything I could and I know that Heavenly Father did everything promised, now it is time for Regis to do his part and I know that he will :)

I am headed into Paris today for p-day. I have a musical number practice tonight with another sister. She was asked to play the violin at Christmas zone conference and I am accompanying her. wonderful day in Paris :)

I love you all, I love my life :)


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