Monday, December 22, 2014

2nd letter from Lelystad, Nederland -- Week 26

Doooooouble Raaaaaainbow!!!! Whoooooa!!!!!!!!!!!
My boy, Elder DeWitt and me just spreadin' some of that Christmas Cheer.  (Thanks, Auntie Shauna for the hats and scarves.)
Elder Benjamin Steenblik and Elder Jeremy DeWitt.  We were biking and saw a pirate ship.  Naturally, we had to do the "Titanic and I'm "Flying Jack."
Goedemiddag allemaal!

It's almost Christmas and I've almost been gone 6 months! Holy Toledo! Wow, my mission is almost 1/4 over.  It's depressing how time flies out in the mission field! On Christmas Day, it will be my 6 month mark.

Oh man, it is so nice to be in the Netherlands where I can actually understand what some of the people are saying! I don't really miss the Flemish language in Belgium.  Dutch sounds a lot more nasty, but it is so much easier to understand! Plus, I honestly like the gross sounding language now.

On Tuesday, this week I was on exchanges in Hilversum and it was really fun.  I can't believe that I am alive! The bike that I used was horrible. It was the size of a kids bike, the steering was always turned way to the left, the seat was pointed nearly straight up, it made horrible noises, and didn't have any brakes.  But the Lord blessed me because I am still alive.  We taught a guy there about the law of chastity which is always a good time.  It went super well and we had lots of Bible scriptures to back it up.  It was a solid lesson.  That night, we went on splits with 2 of the ward members there.  I was basically in a city I had never been to, with a person I have never met and visited another person who I have never seen in my life.  It was a little bit weird, but we had a good visit with the less active member.

We went mini golfing this week! There is a guy in our ward named Christian who comes with us on joint teaches all of the time and it was his birthday.  We went to a glow in the dark mini golf place and golfed it up.

We had our Zone training this past week as well.  We talked a lot about effective planning and how to use our time most wisely.  Sounds pretty boring, but it was actually super good and I learned a ton. The best part was that it didn't take us 6 hours to get home like it did in Belgium!

We also went on a lot of joint teaches with the sisters this past week.  They are both awesome and I learn so much from them every time we go on a joint teach with them.

A wise man once said, "The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear." -Buddy the Elf.  So, on Saturday night, we went caroling! Yes, it was the sisters idea, but it was super fun. We rode around to a ton of less active members and some of our investigators.  We sang to them and gave them cookies.  Yes, the sisters made the cookies! It poured rain on us, so we were all soaking wet! Haha.  All the people we went to were super grateful for us stopping by and wishing them a Merry Christmas.

Elder DeWitt and I had a really cool experience this week.  Our investigator pool is close to nothing and we basically have 2 solid investigators and other than that, nothing.  We did a lot of finding this week.  It can be exhausting to go out knocking doors and talking to people all day.  And kind of scary too because a lot of the time, we don't know what the heck the people are saying to us! We knocked on the door of a guy and he actually let us talk to him before slamming the door, like most other people do.  We stood at his door for like 10 minutes and talked to him.  We answered his questions and taught him the truth about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.  There wasn't a doubt in my mind that the Lord helped us with that one.  The Lord promises that if we open our mouths and speak to people, He will bless us with his words in the very moment that we need it.

 As missionaries, we show our faith by going and talking to the people, trusting that the Lord will bless us with the language and to say what He would have us say.  I will be honest, sometimes having to go out and find people stinks.  We talk to so many people every day and nobody is interested.  It can be very discouraging.   Sometimes I just feel like a typical door to door salesman.  So many people think that we are there to sell them our religion or to convince them that their religion is wrong. We are there to invite them to come closer to Christ and to help them achieve the fullest measure of joy in this life and more importantly, in the life to come.  This next week will be another week full of finding new people to teach.  Finding people who have been prepared to hear the message of the restored gospel.

It is so weird to think that Christmas is in a couple of days!!! Wow!! This might be my first Christmas without snow! It doesn't even feel like Christmas without snow.  Don't get me wrong, it is freaking cold here, but it just rains and rains.  I've got my fingers crossed for a white Christmas!!!

Happy holidays everyone! I'm sad I can't be home, but there is nowhere else in the world that I would rather be than here in the mission field in the Netherlands! I am learning so much about Jesus Christ and His amazing example.  It has already been an awesome holiday season and I am sure that this week will be even better.

 I love you all!!!
                                                -Elder Am Stone Can (That's what my name translates to)

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