It was a busy first week of the new transfer here! We got so much accomplished this week. We both know this area pretty well now, so we were able to just hit the ground running. Even though you're very tired at the end of the mission, you've also got a whole new sense of the value of your time. Every minute is now more precious to me than ever before! I'd like to just talk about three cool experiences in particular that we had this week.
So, winter decided to roll in rather early here in Lyon. We've had a lot of RDVs fixed for each day, but of course there's always a bit of time here and there in between appointments where we've got some time to kill. So what do we do? Street proselyting. You just walk up to people and ask if they'd like to know more about the church. Sometimes God is funny...when each of these moments arrived this week, it just seemed to always fall on the part of the day where the wind was the most bitingly cold and the rain was plummeting the hardest. But do we let that stop us? No! And what's even better is that we actually even had fun doing it. We chose to laugh at the ironic misery of the conditions, because as Sister Roney says, we knew it was the "perfect storm for miracles." Your attitude makes or breaks every situation. Life is so much more enjoyable when we choose to look at it through grateful and positive eyes. Even though very few people were sincerely interested, we got to show our faith and trust in the Lord. By doing hard things happily, we show God that we love Him and trust there's a better and higher reason for doing these difficult things He asks of us. He can then entrust us with His larger purposes, because He knows we're instruments willing and worthy to carry out any task He gives us.
Next I want to share a very cool lesson we had with our awesome sister Michelle (the one who is making a huge comeback to the church after years of inactivity). We went over and she explained to us how they were already out of money for the month, and she began to panic over how she was going to feed her kids for the next two weeks. She was really scared and began praying to God to ask for help. Then suddenly a thought came to her mind, and she remembered that she had paid her tithing on fast Sunday. Immediately an all-encompassing peace came over her as she realized from the Spirit that everything was going to be okay. She said, "I realized, silly me! Why on earth am I worrying? I've got God's promise to have the windows of heaven opened to me and to be provided with even more than I need. Since I paid my tithing, I know everything will work out." She then explained how not long after, she happened to stumble upon a little savings she had put aside a long time ago and had forgotten about. It's exactly enough to get her through the end of the month. Also, she took seriously creating food storage when she learned about it not long ago. She had stocked up and realized that that food would be more than enough to get them through the rest of this month. Do you see everyone how God's promises are real? When He says that if we do our part, He'll do His, He means it! As my dad says, "we can't afford not to pay our tithing." The blessings are too great to forfeit.
The last thing I wanted to share was a cool lesson we had with one of my favorite recent converts, Diogène. He received his patriarchal blessing yesterday, and so we gave him a lesson the day before about these special blessings. This lesson just really reiterated to me the gratitude I have for my own personal blessing. I would not be here as a missionary if I hadn't received my patriarchal blessing. I would have missed out on the greatest experience I have ever had. I wouldn't have ever thought of considering serving a mission. I promise you, God knows us so much better than we know ourselves. He sees us for who we can become, He knows our potential, and most importantly He knows what it will take for us to attain it. He knew this is what I needed to help me reach higher and become more like Him. I am eternally grateful for that sacred patriarchal blessing that was given to me, that led me to the track God needed me to be on. I encourage all who haven't received their's to prepare to do so and to receive it when the time is right. For those who have their's, read it often and ask God to help you live up to your potential described therein. He can make of us what we never even imagined possible.
I hope you all have a most wonderful week!