Tuesday, June 14, 2011

week 23 Flip People! We're just trying to help you work out your salvation!

This is what I wrote on our white board last night out of frustration haha. I think cumulatively I have spent hours in the last three months just staring at that board trying to figure out what it is we are supposed to do. This week during planning I was sitting staring at the board and Sister Brower was like "what are you doing?" and I said "I'm trying to receive revelation... it's not working". That's not to say it's been a bad week or anything, I just know it could be better and I want it to be better! I want to be busy teaching people! I love teaching, I love being in lessons and bearing my testimony (even though I can't always say things just how I want), I love seeing people change. I DON'T love wandering around having awkward conversations with people who don't want to talk to us. It's not the awkwardness that's the problem haha, that part is entertaining, but when they don't want to talk to us... then that's just no fun. Oh missionary work. We also made a list on the back of our white board listing the reasons why Armenia is harder than a states-side mission. We did it to try to make ourselves feel better after watching more of "The District 2" movies with their ridiculous numbers and helpful members and whatnot. I will send a pic of our board and you can read some of the things we put down. I'm not complaining, I wouldn't want to be anywhere else, but sometimes I just have to remind myself of the differences.

Anyway, this week... lets see. Highlights. We had a meeting on the side of the road on Tuesday with a group of like 6 people. We had a prayer and everything and ate sunflower seeds as we tried to teach something to these very ADD people. That was fun. We did service in one of our member's gardens with him. He is such a cool man, I love him. His name is Samvel (like Samuel, but Armenian) and he has baptized 65 people I think he said. He was the man who referred Mariam to us, and who baptized her. He's such a good missionary, one of the few. After his house we were supposed to go visit another member there (in Kharbert), but then we didn't think we'd have time, so we left to go catch the bus. On the way we saw our Branch president's wife and kids waiting for the marshutni. They had been waiting for an hour and were late for an appointment, so she had called a taxi to come get them. Since we were all going to about the same place we just shared the taxi. As it turned out, she didn't have enough change on her and so it was really good that we were there and able to help. I felt like the Lord and placed us there to help her, and was glad to be helpful to someone. Especially cause I don't usually feel like I am. You know those missionary stories where the missionary says something like "I didn't know why I was supposed to go down that road, but I felt like we should and then we found a golden investigator and they got baptized and now they're going to the temple etc."? Well...... that doesn't really happen for me. We're usually more like "hey.... where do you wanna go? I have no idea, lets just go this way" and then nothing happens. Haha. I guess the Lord just works differently with different people. But anyway, that one day we were able to help. The biggest highlight of the weeks happened at church yesterday. For about 2 weeks now we haven't seen Mariam and haven't been able to get a hold of her at all! We went out to Kharbert three times this week and she was never home. She wasn't answering her phone and none of her neighbours had seen/heard from her. SO, I was really worried. Really really worried. Either they had just gone to another gyoogh (village) or something was up. So,  yesterday we walked into church an hour early because we were going to practice some music that we're going to be performing in Sacrament Meeting soon. I walked in to have Annahit running at me and jumping at me. My heart was so happy! It turns out that Mariam has been working late, and she has a charitable organization that has been keeping her really busy. I think she has been having a hard time with some things lately too, but I couldn't understand her cause she talks so fast. Hopefully we'll be able to figure it out and help her out though. oh, and she had left her phone somewhere and doesn't have it which is why I could get in touch with her. Her girls seriously attacked me for like 30 minutes with love. I love those 2 so much. Oh, also, Mariam and Julietta both received callings yesterday. Mariam is a counselor in Young Womens and Julietta is a counselor in Primary. They are the PERFECT callings for them. I think they will both be forced to learn the gospel better at a good level and pace, and they are definitely needed in those callings so they will hopefully feel the responsibility and want to fill it. So, my ladies and doing alright. My goodness I love them. I am going to be so sad to say goodbye to them whenever I go, which I feel is going to be soon. You never can tell with President Carter though, so we'll see.

Alright, on to our investigators quickly. We met with *K* this week and he told us that he has been looking into another church too, which is fine, but I think he's kind of trying to back out of baptism. The real problem is that he still hasn't prayed and directly asked God if the church is true. He can't expect to know what God wants him to do if he doesn't ask. Another problem is that he is leaving in just over a week to go away for work for a month... soooo, we hope that he will keep up with reading and praying while he's gone and still be on track when he comes back. We'll see. He asked if we have a church close to where he is going (lake sevan) though, so thats a good sign. Unfortunately we don't. Too bad. Our newer investigator *J* we thought was doing well. We had a good meeting with her on Thursday and then again on Saturday. We gave her a baptismal date and committed her to come to church and promised her that if she came and prayed during the sacrament to find out if its all true that God would answer her.... and then she didn't come. Gah, these people are killing me. We still need to get a hold of her and find out what is going on. Our two other investigators have been out of town a lot this last week so we haven't seen them and don't know where they're at anymore. SO, we need more people! We need people who are ready! They have to exist in this huge area somewhere, the trick is just finding them!

OH another highlight of the week, Sister Brower was sent a ukelele, so we have been playing with that lots. It makes me miss the guitar, even though I wasn't any good at it and barely played it. I want to learn to play so many instruments when I come home... if only I had the discipline to actually do it.

Alright Family, I love you. I pray for you and hope you're doing well and that you're happy, healthy and wise! Have a joyous week!

Sister Smith

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