Wow wow wow it's just been a solid week.
To start off I just have to say how much I love this BE A LIGHT program. We are doing it together with members and our investigators and its so cool to see so many people coming together through service:) God put so many opportunities in our path and it was special because we were looking for them more than usual. Some favorite experiences, one day our cute investigator Cristina told us she hasn't been doing very well so we went and bought her flowers and took her a card and took them to her work and she just hugged us and wouldn't let go. Then we went to Mimmos pizzeria and ran a bunch of errands for him and got all his fresh mushrooms and pomodori for the pizzas and cleaned up the whole restaurant! It was so fun.
This week I felt the spirit so strong in so many of our lessons and I just want to share a few....One day we went to go meet with cute Elsa and teach her the restoration. She's the less active from Honduras with 3 adorable children. Well, it was so interesting teaching her the restoration because she doesn't remember hardly anything so we are treating her like an investigator. And then we will bring the whole fam back to the church :) Well by the end the spirit was really powerful in her home and I started talking about how each of us can have a personal "apostasy" in our lives where we stop following Christ or distance ourselves from God. As I'm saying this I'm thinking "what in the world are you saying, she's going to be so offended," but I just kept talking and really felt that that was exactly what Heavenly Father needed her to hear in that moment. She sat there silently and her eyes were all red and she opened up to us and said she had read a lot of anti literature on the church but still believes Joseph Smith to be a prophet and wants to feel this presence of Heavenly Father in her life again...she's been praying and reading the Book of Mormon every day for the first time in YEARS.
Another favorite lesson was with Massimo last night...so he came and sat down next to us on the bench with this huge smile on his face and said SORELLE I READ! But I didn't understand anything. Well we come to find out that this time he read but he forgot to pray! Piano piano, he is progressing slowly but surely and we read with him and it was so cool pointing out answers to his questions from the Book of Mormon. Well last night we taught him the plan of salvation and I don't think I've ever felt the spirit so strong teaching someone that...like I said last week I love teaching Massimo and I realized its because he is so ready...he's so open and everything he believes in is in perfect harmony with our church. Well by the end of the plan he had tears in his eyes and wouldn't even make eye contact with us, just kept his head down and said he felt "so good." And my collega asked him if he wanted to know if this plan was true and he said "I believe this is true. And I've never had a stronger desire in my life to know if something was true." It was sooooo powerful. And then he looked at us and was like why do you guys care so much about me and make time to share this message with me? And we simply told him that we know he is a child of God and God placed us in his path that day for a reason. He again looked up at us and quietly said "how do you know I'm a child of God?" It was one of the coolest experiences telling him of the love of God that we felt for him in that very moment......I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARIA.
Our lesson with Ada last night was incredible, we watched the talk by Elder Tad R. Callister called "What is the Blueprint of Christ's Church," its an amazing talk and perfect for Ada. Afterwards she sat there and was in deep thought and said "there's no way that a 14 year old boy made up all of these truths or even could have been able to write this book and do what he did. It would be a lot easier to believe that Joseph smith is a true prophet of God than to believe that he invented all of these things..." she's getting it! Ada is finally understanding and you can see every lesson she gets another piece to her puzzle and things are starting to click. Its so awesome...she told us last night that it's FINAL! She's going to make a decision and tell God what she is going to do (that she wants to be baptized or no) and to tell Him to lead her otherwise if it is not the right choice. I am so so so happy for her. I've never had an investigator who's made me as happy as Ada does...she's literally an angel.
Well, one of the happiest things during this week is we finally got our corso dinglese up and running again! Unfortunately we weren't able to do it for a couple months because we couldn't afford doing it at the hotel but now all is well. We had 10 STUDENTI at our first class last week it was awesome! And one student brought his 2 kids and they loved it so much and he was emotional during the spiritual thought and invited all of us missionaries to his house for dinner on Saturday and we went and it was amazing! I've never met so many families in my life that are so prepared for this gospel!!! And for the temple:)
BALDO CAME TO STAKE CONFERENCE yesterday:) he got all dressed up and he loved it. It was great.
So a funny tender mercy from the week....Sorella Erickson and I had run out of food/money for that last week of the month and couldn't go and do spesa, and we literally had 10 meal appointments this last week! Every night a member or investigator would call and invite us to eat the next day and we would just look at each other and say how do they know hahah....well we asked cute new convert Franca how she knew that we needed her food that day and she said SORELLE! Padre celeste (God) told me last night!
I absolutely am in love with my mission. I love everyone of our investigators....never in my mission have I needed to have so much patience with these people and I am really coming to understand how I truly am nothing, I am just the instrument in a his hands and I feel so blessed to teach these people the gospel. I LOVE teaching, and this week so grateful to be here during this season...it's so special. I've been studying the atonement a lot lately and have truly FELT how real it is and seen it working not only in our investigators lives but in mine and I have never been happier. Sometimes if I don't keep my focus on Christ and the purpose of His atonement in my life I lose sight and think of all the changes I need to make and I get discouraged when I fall short and am not doing as much as I could be. But when I make Him the center of my focus He is just there right by my side to tell me how proud He is of me and everyone of us and there to give me a second shot at it:) and I know he is full of second chances. I love this gospel because it is a gospel of change! I love my savior! His love is real and is available to everyone of us, don't wait any longer to come and feel it!
Have a beautiful week,
Don't forget to be a light:)
Crystal's current area is Passo Corese, Italy.
Her address is:
Via Giacomo Matteotti, 187
02032 Passo Corese RI