|Zuster J and I|
|Cool castle/old prison|
|Leaning tower in leeuwarden. sometimes you just have to push!|
Just as the general authorities of the church have been placing an increased emphasis on sabbath day observance as a key to success, peace, and happiness, we as missionaries have been focusing on church attendance as the "key indicator of all key indicators." Sister Jaramillo and I have had a couple of cool experiences this past couple weeks- on two separate occasions, we went to teach the first lesson to someone we had found, and concluded by explaining and bearing testimony of church as a special place where we can receive instruction, peace, and personal revelation. In both situation, the new investigator came to church the next Sunday! We are definitely seeing the blessings of that focus.
This week we also had our Christmas Zone Conference, in Rotterdam. Sister Goodman played piano while I played violin for all of the hymns, which was a lovely experience! It was wonderful to receive instruction from President and Sister Bunnell and the Assistants. We are looking forward to promoting the new Christmas campaign - A Savior is Born. I encourage everyone to check out the movie and the website!
We also had a zone service day working at organizing food at a foodbank (is that what we call it in English? a voedselbank) in Zwolle. It was great, and we also had a miracle meeting a wonderful girl there who is really searching for something in her life, and we became friends as we talked and she helped us serve. Blessings!
|Zone service in this huge warehouse and miracle new friends.|
The climax of the week however was definitely on Saturday, when the beautiful wonderful woman we have been teaching was baptized!!! She had already picked a date when I got here, and has been steadfastly preparing for her baptism as we have taught her all the lessons. She is a huge example to me of faith and obedience. For example, when she realized she wouldn't be able to get to church the normal way one Sunday, she reassured us, confirming that no matter what or how, she would make sure she was in church, because she needs it every Sunday. What a woman! Her baptismal service was peaceful and simple, and she was radiating her happiness. I know this step she has taken will be a great blessing to her and I am grateful to have been able to participate in her journey! She is a true friend and I am excited to keep working with and supporting her here in Leeuwarden.
|Baptism in Leeuwarden!|
I've had some experiences this week where I felt like I messed up or was disobedient and I let feelings of guilt and shame crush me... But I received some excellent advice from ever patient President Bunnell. Godly sorrow motivates us to change and improve. Guilt only tears us apart. God never wants us to feel unloved or hopeless- He is Always there to invite us to change, improve, and He will Always encourage and comfort us. As I applied that counsel and the Atonement, I felt great peace return, and I was once again singing as I biked down the Streets of Ljouwert! I have a great testimony of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I know He is our Savior, and through Him, we can truly be relieved of our burdens.
Have a wonderful week everyone!