Monday, December 16, 2013

Sometimes God gives us lemons to show us what it tastes like, so that when we taste lemonade we understand how sweet it actually is.

Sister Watt and Castle in Edinburgh.

Like my subject? I made that up, here is my explanation.

 I feel like the past couple of weeks have been sour! I keep on saying how this has been a rough week, over and over again. To be honest it hasn't gotten better either, and I don’t know when it will get better, but despite all the trials and struggles and frustrations and tears, I know that when the blessings come (and they will come!) I will thank God for the trials he put me through, because then I know what joy actually feels like. I know that if I continue to work hard I will receive blessings, and more importantly bless someone else life one day. This just made me think of this talk by Elder Holland to missionaries, it’s really good you should read it, but here is a quote from it, and this makes me feel better and understand better why times get hard!

"Anyone who does any kind of missionary work will have occasion to ask, why is this so hard? Why doesn’t it go better? Why can’t our success be more rapid? Why aren’t there more people joining the Church? It is the truth. We believe in angels. We trust in miracles. Why don’t people just flock to the font? Why isn’t the only risk in missionary work that of pneumonia from being soaking wet all day and all night in the baptismal font?
You will have occasion to ask those questions. I have thought about this a great deal. I offer this as my personal feeling. I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him? It seems to me that missionaries and mission leaders have to spend at least a few moments in Gethsemane. Missionaries and mission leaders have to take at least a step or two toward the summit of Calvary.
Now, please don’t misunderstand. I’m not talking about anything anywhere near what Christ experienced. That would be presumptuous and sacrilegious. But I believe that missionaries and investigators, to come to the truth, to come to salvation, to know something of this price that has been paid, will have to pay a token of that same price.
For that reason I don’t believe missionary work has ever been easy, nor that conversion is, nor that retention is, nor that continued faithfulness is. I believe it is supposed to require some effort, something from the depths of our soul.
If He could come forward in the night, kneel down, fall on His face, bleed from every pore, and cry, “Abba, Father (Papa), if this cup can pass, let it pass,” 16 then little wonder that salvation is not a whimsical or easy thing for us. If you wonder if there isn’t an easier way, you should remember you are not the first one to ask that. Someone a lot greater and a lot grander asked a long time ago if there wasn’t an easier way.
The Atonement will carry the missionaries perhaps even more importantly than it will carry the investigators. When you struggle, when you are rejected, when you are spit upon and cast out and made a hiss and a byword, you are standing with the best life this world has ever known, the only pure and perfect life ever lived. You have reason to stand tall and be grateful that the Living Son of the Living God knows all about your sorrows and afflictions. The only way to salvation is through Gethsemane and on to Calvary. The only way to eternity is through Him—the Way, the Truth, and the Life." -Missionary Work and the Atonement
Here is another quote from Elder Holland,
"Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some don’t come until heaven; but for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come." -"An High Priest of Good Things to Come"
These are just some things that have been going through my mind that last couple of days.
Now that that is over with, I will tell a little about my week. We have found a lot of good potentials this week and unfortunately with the appointments we had set up all of them fell through but we still have more and we will continue bugging the others for a few more try by’s and such. On Wednesday we had exchanges, that day I started to get sick so I have been pretty tired. but I learned a lot with the Sister Training Leader, and we got a lot of potential investigators because instead of one of us going to their area, they both just came here and we went on what’s called a blitz, so that was nice because everyone we talked to both Sister Shead and I and Sister Cardon and Sister Passey contributed to the Corstorphine area. We met with Deryll twice this week, and hopefully we can start making some progress on helping her find truth. She is willing to listen and learn but it has to come from God for her, which is great! That is how we like our investigators, only taking truth from personal revelation. She isn't quite progressing yet, but if she keeps her commitments she made last week when we see her tomorrow she will be, so hopefully that will happen.
We got to visit a recent convert Sally Hunter, and I have only met with her once, but she was super happy to have us come by, we helped her move into her new house a bit. We also gave her this Christmas heart ornament we made. We had another relief society activity, where some less-actives attended so we were able to attend and we made some more ornaments, and they provided felt. So we mum and Amber, remember the felt roses on the Christmas wreath we made a few years ago? Well I made an ornament with a similar thing on a Styrofoam ball! It was awesome! Sister Cardon made a cool one too, so we gave hers to another person we are working with, so we right now for our non-existent Christmas tree we have 2ornaments, a Christmas heart that Sister Cardon made and a felt Rose ball thing that I made! Fun huh!
One of several trees blown over by the huge wind storm.
A lot of the formers we have found have been foreigners, so we have been making a lot of trips to the mission home for Book of Mormons in different languages. It’s super nice having the mission home so close. So for the past couple of weeks we have given out Book of Mormons in Russian, Portuguese, Polish, Italian, and Indonesian and I think that’s it, but we have given out 2 Portuguese ones so that’s cool! We have a tradition here to stop all foreigners because if it wasn’t to accept the gospel, why would they come to Scotland! ;) Haha I’m kidding besides the cold it’s a wonderful place. But it is getting really cold. And the fact that there is no snow is frustrating because I feel like there is no point to the cold if there is no snow!
Norma was officially reactivated into the church this week! She even got up and bore her testimony!   As did Ruth…Ruth made us chum her up though. Chum means to go with them.
We had some dinner appointments and that was nice, including thanksgiving dinner, which I made funeral potatoes for. I was pretty proud of myself!
Well I am running out of time. That’s basically all my week anyway! I hope all is well with everyone at home! Love you all and I hope everyone had a good thanksgiving!
Love you!
Sister Watt
P.s. on Saturday we manned a booth for this woman’s religious organization fair. It the first time that the church was allowed a booth so that was good. We talked to a lot of people of different faiths, especially the Sikh faith! It was really interesting. They had henna, and I almost thought about getting a henna tattoo but then I thought I probably shouldn’t as a missionary! ;) Love you!

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