Thursday, 16 October 2014

New Experiences

Just Claiming My Territory

Sister Montesinos and I outside of our apartment building
Dearest Family!
How are you all? Hope you're doing splendid :) Is it cold there? I've had the longest Summer this year- from January to now it's still quite warm, so for one of the first times in my life I think I'm ready for Winter! Anyway, this week was filled with a lot of new experiences for me! So my companion and I aren't super pumped about going tracting and it's generally a 'last-resort' type of thing, but we went this last week, and got quite a few door slams, but finally I mustered up the courage to do the initial greeting at the door (instead of my companion doing the talking) and so I did it all in Polish and all by myself! Mind you, we got scoffed at, rolled-eyes and a slammed door before I was even able to say "...Latter-day Saints" but hey, I did it myself! It gets hard sometimes having to deal with the rejection, but I've been carrying around a big picture of Jesus Christ in my Ksiega Mormona (Book of Mormon) and my companion always reminds me that He's with us always as long as we are doing his work and trying our best. I love all the time that we get for spiritual studies in the morning, because it means I get to learn more about what Jesus Christ is like and what His disciples are like, and that consequently has been helping me a lot with loving people and seeing their worth the way that He does.

This week I also had a pretty good experience with speaking to a man sitting on a park bench. I've been praying so hard for courage these past few weeks, and God has definitely been helping me out. So I went and made the initial contact, I explained who we were and then he said "Please sit down" (in Polish). I was so taken aback at the invitation I almost didn't believe I had heard him correctly! We were able to teach a short lesson and hopefully give this man hope about having purpose in life (he said he didn't believe in God and had accepted the fact that his life doesn't have a purpose). While I didn't understand much of what he saying, I was able to bear simple testimony about how I know that God exists and has a purpose for me, and knows everyone on the Earth individually and loves them. My companion did a really great job of teaching some other basic restored truths of the gospel, and even though we probably won't see that man again, I have hope that he was left with a better understanding of his own great worth, and I'm glad that the Lord let me be led to that encounter.
Yesterday at church was really great. My listening skills are slowly picking up, which is helping me build more meaningful relationships with the members of the ward. It's also giving me more courage to just speak for the sake of trying, because I know that's how I'm going to learn best.

The other day, the Elders and us went to a park and set up a 'free table', where we have DVDs, pamphlets and Ksiega Mormonas free for people to take. One man came up to our table and said he's heard about us before when he was in the States, and he satyed in a Marriot Hotel and got a Book of Mormon there. We were like great, what do you know about the church? He said he knows everything already but wished us good luck and was quite friendly. He walked away and the Elder and I were a little sad because one of our least favourite responses as missionaries, is "I know everything already". It's such a shame to hear that, because we know that really, if they knew everything already, they would give our message a chance, pray about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith, read Moroni's promise about knowing the truth of the Book of Mormon, and find out for themselves about why our message truly is so important. It's also a principle that we as members should always remember- we never know everything. I seriously love reading the scriptures (I've been reading a lot from the New Testament lately) because every time I read through, I learn something different, and I feel closer to Christ. It's super important to remember that Christ's gospel as told by Himself, includes the final principle of enduring to the end. We need to constantly improve and learn, and none of us can ever reach a limit of knowledge or spiritual understanding on this earth. Well back to the park, a few minutes later, the same man came back to us at the table. He was curious about why we were in Poland and asked us if we have Polish backgrounds. He was super surprised when we said that we didn't, and he seemed a little confused as to why we would be doing missionary work in Poland. (I've noticed that we get this question quite a bit). Well it's a good opportunity to bear testimony, and I hope that this man could feel of our sincerity when we told him that we truly believe that Christ's true church has been restored with His authority on the earth.

I love being a missionary in Poland, and I truly wouldn't be out here telling people the things I do, if I wasn't 100% sure of it. I know more than anything, that the things we teach honestly matter more than any material thing in this world. "Men are that they might have joy". I love life, and I love you all so much I can't explain :)

Be happy and have a super awesome week,

love Siostra Grgich

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