This last week was super crazy with tons of excitement and laughs. To begin, I'll start with some of the stupid things I said this week, as my mouth seemed to be working faster than my brain at times:
1. We contacted some Americans on my exchange with Elder Dearden and they told us they had no interest so I said "That's alright. Good Job." As we were walking away and immediately thought, "Good job? why did say good job?"
2. We were contacting people on Easter and I wished a guy a Merry Christmas.
3. When we walked into the temple they asked us what kind of session we would be doing and I told them that we were there to do a "bevestiging Dienst" (confirmations) instead of a "Begiftiging Dienst"(endowments) so they looked at me like I was crazy, until my companion realized what I had said.
To sum it up, words are hard...
Our Zone hit our Easter Egg Goal! finding 59 new investigators with our goal of 55. We were way stoked to hit it, especially because that means an average of 6 per companionship! We spiced up the pepper eating competition and people could nominate another companionship to do the pepper challenge with us and we happened to have a 3 way tie so 8 of us will be doing it together, including Sam Hunter, haha (We made sure that happened) we will do it on Monday.
We had an amazing day in Keukenhof, the dutch tulip gardens. I gave my "dying testimony" at the zone conference in the morning and yes I cried... Then I spend the day with Elder Dearden and ELder Bruneau who have become my best friends on the mission. I realized what kind of friendship I really want with people because of those two. One that is way chill and fun, but we also talk about spiritual things often and in depth. I Loved it.
Friday night we were able to hear from President Uchtdorf as he spoke to the members in our stake. [Side note I got to see the Beute family again (the bishop in Leiden) and also Tessa (the girl that we pranked the new office elders with)]. The main message President Uchtdorf had for us was "Keep the commandments and trust in God" but a couple other highlights were:
- The Sunday before Easter, Palm Sunday, Jesus entered into the city with crowds of believers shouting and praising him. Only a few days later as Christ was being Judged these "believers" were nowhere to be found. Are we Palm Sunday Saints or are we followers and believers no matter happens to us or others.
- Speaking about serving in our callings: We are not judges by the titles we've held, the amount of hours served, or the weight that was on our shoulders, but rather by the desires of our heart. There is no calling that is better than another, they are of equal importance if we serve right.
- A lady asked what do you do when you feel like you can't fulfill your calling like you should: "If you feel like you aren't doing enough, think about how I feel" and He continued to share that Satan is the one that wants us to feel inadequate and is usually a sign that we are doing what we should be doing.
- A funny one! Some lady asked if she should go to the Paris temple open hour with all the recent terrorist attacks: "Well the first thing I did after hearing about the attacks in Brussels and Paris was get on a plane to France! Why do you need to go to Paris anyway, you have a temple 5 minutes away from here" Shutdown! haha
Then to close we had a tender lesson last night with a lady from Turkey. She is Muslim, but also wants to be Christian and she shared with us parts of her history including that she was married and wanted to become Christian but her husband abused her and attempted to kill her because of it. Sadly we hear similar things like this often from refugees from the middle east. My point has nothing to do with cultural politics, but rather a reminder for all Christians. There are those in the world that give up family, friends, and even their lives to follow Christ, and yet we complain when we have to wake up for 9am church or to go to a Tuesday night mutual activity. Do we really know what sacrifice is?
William Barclay, a Scottish minister, once said "love always involves sacrifice. And we do not really love Christ unless we are prepared to face His task and to take up His Cross" In Short, we can't learn to love Christ until we are ready to sacrifice our time, our habits, and our will for his. Pres. Uchtdorf also encouraged the saints here to look for ways to sacrifice a bit more and promised them they would grow stronger in faith because of it.
Thats my 2 cents, with 2 weeks left :)
Elder Talyon Anderson Perry