December 3, 2013
We had a fantastic week here in Debrecenland!
Lots of people asked about Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving was great this year! We had district meeting and then afterward had a thanksgiving lunch. Sister Oberhansley and I were in charge of the yams and mashed potatoes. Now... they don't have yams, or sweet potatoes here... so I used a squash, and I tricked everyone! It was so fantastic. One of the senior sisters is currently serving with a native Hungarian, and so she came, and so did another cute ward member. It was so much fun to all be together, and we also had the opportunity last night to go over to their house and talk. It was really nice. They were some of the first to be baptized, and I could listen to their testimonies all day. I am so grateful for them :)
This is me with Zsóka and Magyar novér.
We talked a lot about things we were grateful for, and we had a large variety of answers. Heaters, the Book of Mormon, trials, the ability to laugh, the ability to play basketball, good health. I was surprised how often good health was brought up. When we talk to people on the street or tract, a lot of people say that they think health is the most important thing in life, or that is our purpose in life, and i have thought about it a lot, whether i agree or not. And then, we went around the room and people kept saying they were grateful for good health, and it just made me think about it a little more. I don't have a purpose to this paragraph I guess... it was just some of my thoughts.
So, we moved last week and it was terrible. Terrible. We kind of just dropped our stuff in our apartment and then went out and worked all day, and then when we came home, we couldnt get the heat to work. IT WOULDN'T WORK! Everything I tried, it didn't work. The hot water also didn't work. There was like a little light switch by the water heater, and I flipped it on, but only cold water still came out. And so, I wore some socks, and two pair of pants, and a hoodie to bed. It was freezing. I couldn't sleep at all because of the cold. Sister O put on her biggest winter coat and she slept in that, but neither of us slept well. I ended up pulling all of the clothes out of my luggage and layering them on my bed like a blanket. That was at 12:48. Luckily that kept me warm enough to fall asleep. We had to catch an early train to go on splits, so we woke up at 4. I heard Sister O turn on the shower and I was so afraid that the hot water wasn't going to work. It would have been terrible. So terrible. But, luckily it worked! And then later that day the landlady came over and got the heaters working, and so that was another little miracle. Weee!
We have had a couple of interesting things going on here, and I really need direction. I am so grateful that my mission has taught me that prayers are answered and that we need to be worthy to receive direction for our lives, and the lives of those around us. Anyway. This weekend, I prayed a lot. And I needed an answer. And something someone said in a testimony really stood out to me, and I guess one might say it was the answer to my question. He said something to the effect of, if we dwell on the negative and continue to just seek out the negative, that is all we will reap. He then said it is the same with good. If we can find good in things, we will be able to be happier, because we will only reap goodness. I thought it was so interesting, and it really helped me understand some of the people here more. Sorry I have to be vague, but that was my insight. Sometimes seemingly innocent actions really will be the things that hurt us the most. Or, help us the most. Opposition in all things!!!
Everything is up and ready for Christmas!! It is super pretty, and I am super glad I get to be here at this time of year!
We are working with an investigator this week to quit smoking. It is really hard, but it is going really great! She really wants to quit, and she has already made it three days. We are meeting with her every day, which I am totally okay with, because she is one of my favorite people in the entire world, and we are just trying to keep giving her little nuggets of strength to keep going! Most of the people here smoke. She was kind of explaining that in America we are probably used to seeing one person in 10 that smokes, but here, there is only one that doesn't smoke! It really is so different here. So sad when I see young teenagers, around 15 smoking, and I don't really think anything of it anymore... But! She wants to quit smoking, and stop drinking and everything else. She says she just feels like it is the thing to do. Can anyone say--the Spirit is helping her out? So excited to see how far she goes.
Just got back from Family Home Evening (it has been a weird day...) and we learned about angels. It was so fantastic. We talked about different angels from the scriptures and what, or who, are angels. It was so good. We not only talked about heavenly messengers, but we also talked about Satan's angels and angels on earth, among us, aka people! It was really great. Overall, our purpose is to become more like Christ and to lift the burdens of the less fortunate around us. We can be angels!! So, if anyone has read this far in this email, take the time today to be someone's angel. Ha. Remember how when we were kids we had the magic Christmas wand that we passed around at Christmas time? Maybe the whole world needs one of those, and we can do a good turn, like do the dishes for someone else, or make their bed, or help someone carry their groceries, and then leave that magical wand on their pillow. Man. That was a good Christmas tradition. I always felt good getting that wand, and I always felt good giving it. I love how those things work out.
The Lord is blessing us here like crazy! The work is going well, and we are doing our best to keep inviting other to come unto Christ. Perfect time to share this little message. I guess it isn't little, it is the most important message ever!! Mikulás comes on Friday. I hope I have been good enough to get candy in my shoes!! Bad kids get sticks... but I think since I have been a missionary this entire year, I have got to have something going for me :)