Monday, November 25, 2013

Testimony Changes Attitudes

WHAZZUP!!! I say only because this week was pretty dang epic! To all my friends in the MTC who I've neglected to put into my emails, i apologize. a quick recap of the last couple weeks goes in the following manner. I received my trainer and learned that we were opening a new area. I then learned that it was my trainer's last transfer and that he had been an epic missionary (former zone leader, former assistant to the president, no big deal). The first couple weeks we got here were pretty rough, nobody wanted to listen to us and all that good stuff. Anyways, he got over it and started having a good time and then this week came around.

We had district meeting and we taught a single lesson. That's what the numbers say, but I feel much more like numbers don't tell the success we're having here. During district meeting we learned a ton, we practice taught a ton and we started coming up with better ways of finding people (because what we're doing now isn't working). I had ratatouille for the first time (it's okay, but not as amazing as the movie makes it out to be). I also ate heaven on a slice of bread. they have a strange peanut buttery like substance here that's called speculoose. It literally is the most delicious thing in the entire world. It's a lot like delta flight cookies in a creamy form. Anyways, our lesson that night was with Ian, our investigator sent from heaven. He basically walked into church and knew that everything was true. we taught with a super helpful member and got through the first half of the plan of salvation. It was a very very good day!
Wednesday was a lot of fun, but I cannot for the life of me remember why. A lot of people cancelled on us and it was so cold I thought i was going to die (for anybody that's just gotten added onto the list, I'm in Normandy which is the north western part of France and it rains incredibly cold rain everyday for around 16 hours a day). That was Wednesday though!
Thursday we finally celebrated Elder Hall's birthday by going to a slightly disgusting Chinese buffet. I really don't like buffets for anyone that doesn't know that already. After that we went on exchanges with the only other companionship in our district. It was pretty fun, I went with Elder Garner and we taught two lessons and contacted some people. The first lesson was pretty much me not understanding anything, but I'll talk about the other lesson a little later. Oh yeah, we got a senior couple too, they're pretty cool. Their name is Piepgrass and they're Cannuks (Canadians) The sister is Belgian, but she's lived in Canada for like 40 years so they're Canadian :)
Friday was a day full of contacting, porting, and getting rejected. Same old same old. After me and Elder Hall got off exchanged though I learned that Ian had told them that he wanted to be baptized (exciting!) But he had to talk to his super Roman catholic wife (Scary!)
Epic Saturday in which we got our first opportunity to do service, but it ended up taking all day (which was not what we had planned). It was a lot of fun though! We scraped the wallpaper off of a member's kitchen and they were super grateful (I actually think that was why he agreed to come to our lesson with Ian, it was a righteous exchange). Not much other than that though.
I don't remember when we taught Fahed, but we taught this Muslim kid who is super cool and open. I'm not sure if he wants to learn the truth or convert us to Islam, but so far he's keeping his commitments and he told us that if he thought our church was true he would join. The members are super awesome to us now, even though we keep trying to set up appointments with them so we can pray with them and then go port in their neighborhood. They're starting to give us the opportunity, we have our first trial run on Tuesday
ANYWAYS, we didn't get to do a lot of work on Sunday because we had church and two hours of companionship study and all that, so I thought this week was going to end with a pretty lame sauce porting session, but once again the Lord decided to prove me wrong. We found a really awesome lady who we have a return appointment with on Friday. It's funny how you only find people after you're ready to go home, but you decide to try just a couple more doors.
I'm going to have to say the theme for this week is don't give up! When I went on exchanges with Elder Garner we went to teach a lesson with someone and it turned out that he wasn't home. His wife answered the door and almost sent us on our way before Elder Garner decided not to give up. He taught he the restoration and then the lady started talking and saying how she didn't think our church was any different than any other. I bore my testimony. It's funny because I only had a small understanding of what she was saying, up until this point I hadn't said anything in 30 minutes, and it seemed like the lady just wasn't interested. At this point in my life I can honestly say that there is nothing I have in this world that is more important or powerful than my testimony. This woman changed her attitude completely, Elder Garner succeeded in getting her to a family home evening and I think she's coming to church next week. It just showed me that perseverance is amazing and that this gospel touches peoples hearts. I didn't bear my testimony with perfect French and it was pretty simple, but I know that by small and simple things great things can come to pass. regardless of who you are or what challenges you're having right now, Don't give up. Sometimes overall goals aren't achieved by perseverance and we fail, sometimes we feel that despite our perseverance nothing will change. I don't think it matters, and I know that sometimes we don't change the world or even another person, but I know that trying over and over and over (and over) again without giving up changes us, it makes us better and that is what life is all about.
Have an awesome week everybody, if you made it this far into my rambling letter thanks! Remember not to give up!
Elder Michael Beneamato Bruno

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