The evening sky, near Prenzlau, Germany
A very long eventful yet uneventful week. This week was probably one of the hardest weeks that I have had so far on my mission. I am not even sure where to go with this letter. Not exactly brimming with inspiration you could say. Not to say that I am in depressive mood or anything, just they always say to keep your letters nice and happy. But I can't think of too many great events to talk about. I mean we did have a mission tour this week in Berlin, where Elder Johnson one of the seventies came to visit us. That was very good although I can't say too much about it other than it was a great reminder of how to be bold with the people that you teach but also to show your love and sincerity as you do it. Really the mission tour conference and this week had really just made me think upon a couple things. One of them being that I have never been more capable and have had more responsibility on my mission than ever before and I am fulfilling those duties to an effect, but at the same time I still feel like I have no idea what I am doing. Haha
This week we didn't have too many opportunities to teach because many of the people we had been teaching are on vacation or simply were at a loss for time. So with the many hours of finding that had we experienced, we experienced quite a bit of resistance. Going so far as people threatening to beat us up, even though we had hardly introduced ourselves up to that point. Or an even more sad event where we were going by on a investigator and unfortunately he wasn't home like we said he would be. And as we were walking away and passing an open entry way of an apartment, we heard a small voice saying, gibt es ein Gott? (translated-is there a God?) At first we were confused because we didn't know where this voice was coming from and then we heard the voice again and then we turned around and we say a small girl probably around the age of 11. And she re-asked the question. Of course we being missionaries said yes there is a god. And she asked us how we knew that. And then we said we had received an answer from God through the Holy Ghost that he was there. And this is where the sad part begins. So then her brother shows up who looks to be about 9 years old comes out and begins to just call us crazy for believing in God and called us many other names. And he really meant it and was really mad that we were even there. And he kept going in and out of the apartment hallway in order to call his dad or somebody, and I just thought to myself we need to go this isn't going to go anywhere good. But before we left we asked the girl, if there was one question that she could ask God what she would ask. And then she said well I would ask if he could bring my cousin back. And in that moment I could really tell that she was really sincere. And it just really got to me; here is a girl who has honest questions and curiosity. But she is living in an environment where she is being taught not just to not believe in God but also to hate those who do believe in him, one could tell just by the way her 9 year old brother reacted to us. But of course we are the bad ones with our horrible cult. However I still was able to talk to her a little bit and was able to explain to her that death is hard, but through God and Jesus Christ we have the hope that we will see our loved ones again and that this life does have a purpose and that's why in the end we don't need to be sad. Seconds later her brother showed up again and began to rail on us again. And we just said goodbye at that point which is good because at that point their dad came out and of course he looked stereotypical for the part, meaning that he looked big, unhappy, and covered in tattoos. He began to yell at us for talking to his kids about God, although they are the ones that talked to us. And we just simply said sorry and told them to have a nice day. My hope is that the young at least came off with the impression that we aren't bad or weird people and that sometime in the future she will be open enough to talk to missionaries. It it times like these where it is hard to ask yourself if you would help a man such as him who has so much hate in his heart that he puts it upon his children so that they in turn hate those around them. Haha which is good that I taught a lesson about Charity at church where I was then reminded. The reasons why we want to have charity in our hearts and to follow Christ and His gospel. Because it is a medicine that gives us feelings of contentment and peace and it is not only just the pure love of Christ but also His pure happiness.
In closing my letter I would like to remind everyone that I am not sad although it is hard to experience things like this on a daily basis. And I would also like to say that I still do with my whole heart believe that there is someone out there who is ready to hear about the gospel and to apply it in their lives. It is just a little bit harder here that is all. And once again I can't say I would rather be anywhere else. Yesterday I had thought about if I were home right now and not here. And that I could be studying and working and dating and just continuing life and really having the freedom to do whatever I want without the burden of such a heavy responsibility. But the more and more I think about it. The more and more I am convinced that it would not be enough that my heart would not be full. In the end it has only been the gospel that has filled my heart and made me feel like, hey this is enough, I am truly content and happy. So I would rather be here doing this than living the most extravagant life-style back home. And even someday when I do go home and that day is coming fast than you might think. I will do all that I can to bring this same spirit with me and to continue being a disciple of Christ in every way that I can. Because I know that in the gospel, in Christ I attain a true sense of worth and happiness that cannot be found anywhere else. I hope you all have also had a great week and I hope this next week is even better. Even though the summer season is also coming to a close. I love you all and I pray for you all.