This week merits a really good email!! Every week does but like, this week extra does.
I think before the mission I learned something about obedience bring happiness. After that it's been a little easier to be obedient. I'm not perfect, but I just know that in every aspect of life, if we work hard and put in our 100% then we will be much more satisfied with who we are and what we're doing with our lives. It's the same for the gospel, that is not an aspect of our lives, but is in fact the base for the way in which we live every aspect of our lives.
So this week...me and my companion were a little down. Despite the fact that we like, never break any rules ever. We have many people to work with but we just felt like we were failing in so many aspects. Even our full days kind of stank. We didn't feel the Spirit, we didn't feel like we were reaching the people on any level deeper than just superficial...it was really depressing, frankly. We felt sort of listless. Planning was frustrating because nothing was coming to mind and it was just like, "what are we doing wrong?? Where is the SPIRIT? Where is some GUIDANCE?"
Va beh, so I woke up one morning to face a day that I really didn't want to face, went to check my email, saw an email from my mom. I always like getting letters from my mom so I was instantly a little bit happier. But this email was different from every other email I've ever received on the mission. She told me that during a work party, her and my dad had met an Italian with whom my dad works! Crazy, small world!
But wait, where is he from? In all of Italy, where? GENOVA. And as it happens, his wife and two sons are HERE and they live in OUR Ward boundaries so he gave my parents all his family's contact information where it fell into my hands that rough-start morning.
Well I called her and she said yes subito to us going over. We had the most fun time with her and her sons who speak both perfect English and Italian, accents and all. We talked to them about the Book of Mormon and they fed us genovese cake. So cool!! Like, what are the odds of that? And it's so great that it came on a day when we were down.
Now, yesterday. Yesterday my companion was feeling, as she put it, "defeated." Like most girls, she sees all her flaws and doesn't think she's good enough and was just feeling defeated. Then we lost our phone. With all of the information necessary for like, setting up appointments...mind you, this week we had set a goal to teach 21 lessons which is approximately 10 more than our average. Or like, double. It's entirely possible, it's just that people ALWAYS cancel every week so it's never happened so far. So, defeated companion, less-than-average focaccia, lost phone, and defeated-looking ambitious goal...mmyeah. At a certain point we just had to put our big girl pants on and move on. We lost our phone and we both kind of suck but we have four lessonsso we need to focus on those people and what God wants to tell them and not on ourselves.
That night ended with an amazing lesson with new investigator Margherita who will be coming to church, amazing lesson with atheist Silvia with whom we felt the Spirit so strongly, a bidone (it's inevitable, but the cute fruit stand guy said I was beautiful so that was cool too), and an amazing, classic Italian lesson which included fresh pasta, tons of chatting, and three European university students who asked us amazing questions. Our RM friend was an amazing help and thanks to him and God and every other good thing in life, we will see these three girls again to teach them more.
We also had a super powerful lesson with our less-active couple the Gali's. They are about our age except married, we like them a lot. They joke around a lot and it's really refreshing. We listened to the awesome talk, "to whom will you go?" from the last gen conf. Then they invited us over for Christmas to watch a movie and probably eat like always and we're going to build gingerbread houses with them this week. But more importantly, we committed them to come to church this week.
All this is possible when we love God and love the people!! I LOVE LOVE italy. I LOVE italy. I love the people here and the culture and the people. And the culture. To everything there's a time and a season. And I'm so grateful for this time, this season in my life. I still have so much room to grow but I'm just grateful for people and the human experience and I'm grateful for God's plan of happiness for us. I'm grateful for you and hope you'll let me know if I can ever do anything for you! I love you! Have an amazing, prayer-filled, gioiosa settimana!
|Luca with Ronney and Martha, SLC Utah|
|Francesca, Marco, Stefano, Sorella Arndt (Jill), Sorella Strachan|