Monday, November 9, 2015

Lessons From My Youth!!

Monday!!!! Was p-day.

Tuesday!!! We went into Rennes for interviews with President and Soeur Babin. And I passed! Woohooo. But they're sending me home anyways.

Wednesday was zone conference and also the day I gave my "dying" testimony/last testimony in front of the zone. I found it somewhat odd giving my final thoughts and feelings with 2 1/2 weeks still left in the transfer! I don't know if I could manage to describe all that happened during this period of time. It's like living another lifetime! And I didn't suddenly developed a wealth of wisdom or deep understanding, but I have seen my faith and love for this work grow day by day. It is "by small and simple means that great things are brought to pass." Alma 36:7

I shared some of my ideas from the email Rudd sent me last week and an email I sent Soeur Hansen about Christ and his disciples. Christ, at one point in their ministry, asks the Apostles if they will depart from Him like many other disciples have. Sometimes, discipleship has its challenges and can get to be very hard when impassable obstacles arise and there seems to be no solution. However, Peter responds so faithfully and with an even greater understanding when he says,"To whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life." He knows that Christ is the source of hope and life and light and joy. When our hopes and desires and aspirations are founded in Christ, it is actually Him who enables us and helps us to attain them. Meanwhile, keep looking up and reaching out to others.

Thursday we did a little bit of service and cleaned the church! We discovered that there are all kind of hidden treasures at the church and sometimes those are ginormous spiders! :)

Friday was PLANNING and we got to visit a less active member who we hadn't been able to see since the end of July! People these days are pretty difficult to get a hold of. 

Saturday we went out working in some neighborhoods next to our Portuguese members. It was going well and then Soeur Erickson's back started really hurting her. We sat down for a minute and then decided it was best to head back and take our lunch break. In pain, she looked at me and said, "Sorry that I'm wasting your time." And then she looked away. I just sat there for a minute thinking and I turned back to her, threw my arms across the front of me and said, "I'm offended. You think you're wasting my time. And it's not even my time!" And then, I somewhat dramatically scooted all the way to the end of the bench to show her just how displeased I was that she thought of herself as a burden.

Right then a bus pulled up and we got on. It only took 2 seconds before we spotted an ami we had been trying to get ahold of. We sat and talked with her for a minute. The bus stopped at another location, other people got on and then two familiar little girls ran past us. I looked up and saw Joyce getting on the bus! It was sooo good to see her! We talked for a good moment and got off the bus together. She updated us on what her situation was trying to move back to Africa and now she has to wait an additional year. I felt so much sincere care and concern for her as we listened to her and prayed with her. She told us she wanted to come back to church again this week. Afterwords, Soeur Erickson and I were talking and we concluded that God has everything already worked out. Aches, pains, sicknesses-He has us covered!

Sunday Joyce and Mme Gallois came to church! I was somewhat surprised because we hadn't visited with either one of them for some time and they both just showed up themselves. It was also the primary program-and I love the primary program! :) And later that evening, the Bouaka's invited us over. Their son has been out on his mission for about 4 months now and so they are certain to take a special interest in their own missionaries. It was so kind of them and I think I needed it too. 

We talked about service and shared a Mormon message from President Hinckley:Lessons from His Childhood. It's the story about two boys who are walking down a road when they come across a pair of shoes and a vest. The owner of the vest was out working in the field and one of the boys suggested hiding his shoes and seeing what would happen. The other, a little more observant, made the suggestion to hide two silver dollars in his shoes and wait to see his reaction. The result of the kind act of service was just incredible. The man starting putting on his shoes when he notice one silver dollar and then the other. He pulled them out and upon seeing them, knelt and offered a prayer of gratitude out loud. Tears filled his eyes as he thanked God for this heaven sent gift. And I admit, tears welded up in my eyes just tad bit as we shared this experience and challenged them to serve those around them.

We can bless people in so many ways without even fully comprehending the extent of our service. Soeur Bouaka later said she just felt impressed to invite us over and asked if there was anything she could do for us. "Yes! Please come teaching with us," I said. We had just been having the most difficult time this past week meeting with our Amis and integrating them with the members and this was an answer to our much needed help. After all, we are just two missionaries and we need the help of every person around us. I love you and challenge you to be observant this week and always and look for ways help those around you. 

Talk to you soon! 

Soeur Hopkins

This is all of the Soeurs missionaries serving in my zone!

Prez and Soeur Babin when Soeur Erickson told them we were doing a jumping pictures. What reactions!

Even they are familiar with the front cover of High School Musical! Haha I love them so much.

We gave in and bought a new, strawberry decorated caddy for grocery shopping!

And the typical Bronte we have come to know and love!

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