The reality of the length of time Soeur Holt has left seems to be sinking in. This week I received an email inviting me to Institute [a study class that takes place in Manchester each week] and although I appreciated the kind thought I didn’t need it. In response my spiritual thought for this week is from my reading in Ether 12 verses 2-4- I, like Ether, shall not be stopped in my mission to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the people of the Antilles, in raising my voice from the morning until the sun sets! Therefore I henceforth banish all trunky emails sent to this disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. As I continue to hope for a better world, Christ who is my anchor!!!! So it looks like we’re not allowed to mention her coming home for a while!
Family Home Evening last week was held at Soeur Ceac’s home and basically the entire branch were invited to celebrate Frere Desir’s birthday. We discussed the First Presidency message from this month’s Liahona and spoke about preparing for General Conference (side note I am so excited I know that that is really cheesy!) Lots of food and we called it a night!
As we commented last week a lot of time is now spent contacting and finding new people to teach, so any opportunity that the Sisters have to teach is welcomed. Studies before heading out for district meeting which was all about baptism surrounding the gospel of Jesus Christ; as you have noticed Soeur t and I have been doing a lot of finding recently and so we haven’t taught in a long time both of us were buzzing after role playing the gospel of Jesus Christ teaching the Elders from Point-a-Pitre- sad I know but there it is.
This week I had the opportunity to head out on exchanges with Soeur Atkins; I loved this opportunity to work with her once again. She has grown into an extremely diligent and hardworking missionary. Of course she finds joy in this work throughout the exchange we were both so happy to be out sharing the gospel. I think what continues to amaze me about Soeur Atkins is her willingness to leap outside of her comfort zone she is always willing to try something new even if it is at first scary. She takes a breath and does it! One of the things they were able to talk about is that the trend of our immediate, natural reactions to a situation is really a marker of our character. This reminds us of the CS Lewis quote that Soeur Holt shared last year:
“When I come to my evening prayers and try to reckon up the sins of the day, nine times out of ten the most obvious one is some sin against charity; I have sulked or snapped or sneered or snubbed or stormed. And the excuse that immediately springs to my mind is that the provocation was so sudden and unexpected: I was caught off my guard, I had not time to collect myself. Now that may be an extenuating circumstance as regards those particular acts: they would obviously be worse if they had been deliberate and premeditated. On the other hand, surely what a man does when he is taken off his guard is the best evidence for what sort of a man he is? Surely what pops out before the man has time to put on a disguise is the truth? If there are rats in a cellar you are most likely to see them if you go in very suddenly. But the suddenness does not create the rats: it only prevents them from hiding. In the same way the suddenness of the provocation does not make me an ill-tempered man: it only shows me what an ill-tempered man I am. The rats are always there in the cellar, but if you go in shouting and noisily they will have taken cover before you switch on the light.”
That afternoon Soeur Atkins and I picked up Soeur Kasongo to go and teach an old man. Bless him he has gone through so interesting experiences in his life and I think he took this opportunity to tell someone all about it, his wife converted to another faith and then started going and preaching with one of the pastors and staying over at her mother’s house. He goes to check on her and she is there eating with the entire family and the pastor, the pastor takes his wife to France with him where they set up home and then a few years later she sends back for the children- the story goes on but you get the gist…therefore he doesn’t have a lot of confidence in religion. We spoke about the plan of salvation and how we can find meaning in our life here on earth.
Next morning while still on exchanges and contacting we met a young sound tech man called Thomas- he said that he deserves his name because he doubts a lot. Not sure about that but he definitely asked a lot of question that gave us the opportunity to testify of Joseph Smith and for the first time in my mission I gave out a testimony of Joseph Smith brochure (because we are out of restoration!)
That afternoon after dropping Soeurs Atkins and Hansen off at home we headed out- you guessed it contacting- a man who we had actually played basketball with the other week; however he told us that he liked playing basketball with us but he wasn’t really open to listening to what we had to share, sad but he sure did give us a shock when he opened his gate!
We went to visit Marie Gertrude- a lady who Soeur t and Soeur Hansen had the chance to teach during exchanges she was in a lot of pain in bed and so we massaged her legs and said a prayer before leaving.
On Friday we visited Soeur Eclar who wanted to help us by looking through our area book to find people that she used to teach with the soeurs before.
Saturday the entire day was studies and driving to and from Basse Terre and Abymes for the Relief Society activity. A great day we loved it being social butterflies talking to everyone and loving life in the sunshine!
On Sunday we saw miracles- we met a Haitian who was not sure of us at the start but read in the Book of Mormon and spoke to us about the respect she has for the Mormon friends that she has in Haiti who she loves- she invited us back! Then a house that was all locked up with the lights out but we rang the door ell anyway; the lady there has a Book of Mormon already and has recently lost her mother and has just split up with her husband, we spoke about the peace that we can find in Christ.
A week full of miracles- kimbé raid pamoli, bisous!!