Jan 3, 2011
I don't think I ever told you about the Miracle of 2010....which is sad because it was kind of a big deal. At the beginning of the year, President Staheli felt like 2010 was the year of miracles and that we needed to raise our standards of excellence. One of which, was 300 baptisms in the year, which was unheard of in this mission. I didn't really understand the impact of it because I was still pretty new and I had no idea about anything, but I remember him talking about it and feeling like it was really important. President talked about how he knew we could do this and he knew that the numbers were big, but he knew it was possible. Right after, we merged with the Brussels missionaries and miracle of 2010 became a HUGE deal. As the year was coming to an end, President Staheli kept stressing that the real miracle of 2010 wasn't necessarily the 300 baptisms, but that as missionaries our faith was increased. That is what I saw as a missionary. Yeah, I saw a lot of great things, like Kai and Xavier and Alexandre and Francoise and Sylvain, but I also had a lot of hard times. However, through it all I learned a lot about faith and what it really means and what a miracle really is. I am so grateful for the year 2010, that for everyday of it I was here in France as a missionary. I'm grateful for all the people that I have met and all the experiences. I am looking forward to the miracle of 2011, which has already started :)
Last p-day we spent it walking around Paris and just looking at buildings. It was fun to just wander and not have to worry about being somewhere or making sure we are doing something, just enjoying the scenery of Paris. It is crazy that I can feel so at home in one of the biggest cities in the world. We got crêpes and went to FHE with Nathaly. Sadly it didn't work out like we had hoped. We talked with her again yesterday with the mother of the British family that had us over for Christmas and she challenged Nathaly to get baptized soon and to not hesitate that Satan is going to try to work on her and turn her again the church. I just don't know what to do anymore and as always it requires a lot of prayer and meditation.
At the beginning of the week Yue said that she was no longer able to see us because she was too busy. This was a pretty big blow, as she was our most progressing ami and I just love her to death. I knew that she was making the decision out of stress and the whole week had been thinking about making cookies and drop them off. However, we had bowtzah, those Chinese dumpling balls for interview lunch. Previously Yue had told me that she loves bowtzah, but didn't know where she could get it. There was tons left over so we dropped it off with Sufang. The next day we received a call from Yue saying that she was really touched by us thinking about her and assuring us that she still wants to meet with us.. She then invited us over for a lesson on Sunday and we talked about the Atonement and the significance of Christ's sacrifice for us in our lives. I feel it went really well and am excited that I get to go over to Yue's for my birthday :)
We also had our first shift at the visitor center this week. Our shift is for 4 hours, 2 hours contacting, and 2 hours giving tours. The contacting was pretty stressful, A new experience for Soeur Turney. A crash course in contacting. This week will be much better as we will practice contacting. I did see this mother with 2 boys, probably 7 and 9, and I talked about how much having the gospel in our family has blessed us and invited her to pass by the visitor center. I hope she does :) We gave one tour and it was to 3 friends of a former elder in the mission! It was pretty crazy to see him again, I still called him elder...it happens.
We got a new ami this week! soeur McClaine and I had contacted this woman from Tibet. Soeur Turney and I were able to teach her. She is very Buddhist and has a hard time understanding the difference between Jesus and Buddha as their teachings are similiar... she wants to meet with us. We gave her the Book of Mormon, she felt bad putting it in her sac with her work clothes because "the Jesus book is more important." Her name is Ngwang and I am excited about teaching her!
This week I want to sharea quote I really like from Elder WWirthlin from "The Great Commandment"
"Oh, it is wonderful to know that our Heavenly Father loves us—even with all our flaws! His love is such that even should we give up on ourselves, He never will.
We see ourselves in terms of yesterday and today. Our Heavenly Father sees us in terms of forever. Although we might settle for less, Heavenly Father won’t, for He sees us as the glorious beings we are capable of becoming.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of transformation. It takes us as men and women of the earth and refines us into men and women for the eternities."
Think of how great this is, how much it impacts our lives. I am grateful for this refinement and I know that my Heavenly Father loves me. Have a great week and
à la prochaine :) je vous aime