Monday, 26 May 2014
Hey there fam jam!
Bad news.. The weather has just started getting hot and I already wish for death. Thankfully down here in Vlore we have a little bit of a sea breeze.. But really though, it's so hard. I like don't even want to walk anywhere, and the thing is it's really only been around like 28 degrees, it will get up to high 30's apparently. I'm not even sure how I'm going to make it through haha. HAHAHA okay, I flipping DIED when Steph said that she feels like butch cassidy in bermuda shorts. It's so true.. Those bad boys just are NOT flattering. There's no getting around it. But seriously, what is it about summer that makes people absolutely toss away their dignity? Seriously, I'll send you a picture of this bloke we found wearing shorts that were ABSOLUTELY unacceptable. Haha, but it gave us a good laugh nonetheless. And oh my gosh.. the beach.. Again..people have no shame.. Haha, they all basically look like beached orca's in speedos. It's disgusting. But.. hey, good for them I guess. Haha!
Well this past week was pretty good, not too many exciting things happened. Ledi is back on a baptismal date for June 13th! She's still going strong and she stays for all hours of church. I'm so proud of her, she's awesome. She's already almost done 1st Nephi, she's just killin' it. This Friday 2 of our investigators will be getting baptized! (Assuming all goes well, you never know..) First is Lina Rrapo, she's the wife of one of our recent converts, the one who was afraid of the water. I'm really happy for her because I know that she just needs the foundation and security that the gospel brings. It might not temporally solve all of her problems and her worries, but it will give her the strength to endure and it will allow her to grow in faith and understanding that the Lord watches over all of us and that we will never be given something that we cannot overcome. The other baptism will be an 18 year old girl named Ela. We've been teaching her for the past month or so and I've really actually seen a change in her. At first she was kinda like, meh.. didn't really get involved in the lessons as much as her sister, but now she's just really enthusiastic and she's really excited and it just brings so much joy to my heart that I can see these people change as they repent and they come closer unto their Savior. It's such a gift to be apart of this work. Her sister Ina will be getting baptized the following Friday.
This week Sister Smith and I asked Ela and Ina why they wanted to get baptized and how they feel and things like that, and they both said that as soon as they come to the church for a lesson they feel lighter and that they feel happier and they said that they love that we are always happy. I totally laughed inside when Ina said that because that's not true about me at all.. (Am I right family...) Haha. And it's really not true.. None of us are happy all the time, and I think I can speak for Sister Smith too when I say that Satan very much tries to insert his powers into this work and sometimes that weighs on us. But what I truly have come to realize and understand is that through living the principles of the gospel and having the Lord be in every part of our lives provides a true and absolute happiness that cannot be found any other way. It doesn't mean that difficult things won't come our way or that we won't feel grumpy or annoyed ever.. But it means that none of those feelings will have a lasting effect because when we insert the Lord into the details of our lives, into the seemingly insignificant things, a new light comes in and we can be freed from any burden that we feel has been placed on us. I absolutely love that I'm helping these people receive that gift. It's so rewarding.
We're approaching the last month or so of this transfer. I'm pretty positive that I'll be staying down here in Vlore for another 3 months after this. We'll see, I guess. But I'm definitely noticing that time is passing very slowly this transfer. It feels like forever that I e-mailed you last. Everyone says that the first transfer goes by the slowest, simply because you're still just trying to figure it out and you're getting used to the whole missionary life style. But I'm hoping that this next month isn't too hot and painful for us. Haha. Ridiculous.
I'm so glad to see/hear that everyone is doing well. I know I've only really been out for 4 months but I really feel like I'm missing out on everybody and what's going on! Please continue to send me pictures and updates because I love to see everything that's going on!
I miss you all and love you!!!