Sunday, November 30, 2014

So, It Has Come to This...

I saw a silly web comic one time that said that you can use the phrase "So, it has come to this...." in any situation to spice things up a bit. I've shared this thought with tovereni in passing before, and so when the snow finally hit Helsinki and I was less-than-enthused, I heard her utter those words as we trekked slowly and carefully out to the bus stop, and burst out laughing. I'd hate to have to try to make it through a full-time mission without a sense of humor.

Several of our investigators let us know this week (on the same day, actually) that right now isn't the best time, and our teaching pool was suddenly reduced to about half its size. These things are a part of missionary life, and although it's sad, we decided to just go forward and focus on the things left for us to do. The next day we received TWO referrals and set up appointments with both of them! One of the women actually lives just across the Espoo 2nd ward border, so we had to re-refer her to other missionaries, but the other one is a very prepared woman who is looking for the right church, and who seems to have been prepared for this time. Some elders found her teaching records from way back in 2008 and decided to give her a call. She was surprised, but agreed to meet with us (she'd moved into our area) and we had one of the most spiritual first lessons I've had my entire mission. Lessons like this do not happen every transfer, even. While I hate to count chickens before they hatch, especially as a missionary, we know that we need to take special care of Lynne as she seeks for answers.

A while back, the Marjaniemi sisaret called us to let us know that they met a French man on the street, and gave him our number. Street contacts rarely go anywhere without a set return appointment or an exchange of phone numbers on both sides. I've never received a call from a pass-along card, although it happens sometimes for other missionaries. Last night I was excited to get a phone call en francais from said man, hoping that we can meet at our church and help him with his English a bit. We're planning to meet later this week. Sometimes I dread the thought of Sisar Schellenberg leaving so soon, because (among other reasons) we seem to have so many magical contacting moments together, and I want it to last!!!

Saturday was our once-per-change chance to go to the temple. Aside from being quite possibly the most uplifting and revelatory experience I've had in the temple, Sisar S. was able to see some of her friends from a former area, one of whom was there for the first time. We saw a recent convert from Marjaniemi sitting next to them in the baptistry. As we went to change our clothes, I saw a familiar face from my finnish hometown- In fact, there were FOUR members of the Lappeenranta ward at the temple that day, and I had a wonderful time hearing how excited they were to tell me about the missionary work in that neck of the woods.

I called President Watson about the fatigue issues I mentioned in my last post. I wasn't sure what he could do or say, since we've discussed this topic many times over. I'd had the thought that beyond diet and exercise, it might just be an issue with the quality of my sleep. President suggested reading a couple verses from the Book of Mormon between my nightly prayer and getting into bed. Since tweaking my routine, I've taken a half-hour lunchtime nap one day, and that is it. I feel more rested and relaxed all day long. It's amazing how the Book of Mormon helps with so many practical things in addition to the spiritual, and often in ways I'd never think of.

This blog post reads a bit like an overview of the area book, but time is particularly short this week, and I just want to testify of the miracles I've seen and the Love I've felt from the Lord this week. As winter rolls in, I'm grateful to know that I am here for a great purpose, and that the Lord is with me in every phase of the work, including the runny-nosed, red-cheeked, abundantly-bundled phases. I've got just over a dozen weeks left. I look forward to working hard and seeing many more miracles in that time.


Sisar Hansen

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