It has been an interesting and yet wonderful week in the life of a missionary. I guess I should give you transfer news first. I'm staying in Den Haag and so is Zr. Reber. We should have a wonderful transfer together. Haarlem is opening up again--which makes me super happy. Part of me wishes I could be the one to open it back up, but the Lord has His plan and His path...
It has been quite the week in Den Haag—with a lot of cancelled appointments, which led to a lot of looking up people and talking with people on the street. This week we had quite a number of super long conversations with people during finding-- and they weren't interested in an appointment in the end-- but hopefully the conversations we had will help them think and have invited them to come closer to their Savior Jesus Christ.
We had Zone Conference at the temple this week, which was wonderful! I love the temple so much! I really felt the love of my Heavenly Father while I was there. I hope that you are getting the chance to go often.
Saturday was a WONDERFUL day! I got to see Kim!!! She came to Den Haag to visit Jordana with us. Jordana has a lot of the same concerns Kim had before she got baptized, so we got permission to ask her to come out here and go to an appointment with us. Kim and Jordana were able to just talk and we asked Jordana to focus on learning if the Book of Mormon is true--we've taught her SO many things, but talked about how if the Book of Mormon is true, that she'll come to know the rest of the things are true. It was a good appointment.
Then Saturday evening there was a baptism! Elders Black and De Mass have been teaching a wonderful family from Ghana. A recent convert is renting a room from this family, and he began sharing the gospel with them. The mom (Victoria) is a single mom and she and her daughter (Deborah) got baptized on Saturday evening. We have had the privilege to teach them a couple of times and it was such a wonderful evening with everyone who came. We had 8 investigators come to the baptism, and afterward we were talking with a couple of them and one of them said, "I think we may be next." We will hopefully visit them this week and see how they are feeling.
The big miracle of the week is Ranjeet. Last week Saturday we had a consecrated hour right before we were going to a dinner appointment before going to General Conference. Friday night we had prayed and both felt really strongly that we should go to the park. Well, Saturday turned out to be a day full of pouring rain in Den Haag. We prayed and asked Heavenly Father that we would still be able to find someone in our consecrated hour. When we biked into the park, the rain had stopped just a few minutes earlier. We were locking up our bikes and I saw a young man walking past. He looked really familiar, and I thought maybe we had talked with him the day before. We locked up our bikes, prayed, and started walking through the park to talk to people. Most of the people just were not interested, and it was looking like it was going to start raining again, so a lot of people were staring to head home. As we continued through the park, we saw the young man again. I mentioned him to Zr. Reber and asked if we had talked with him the day before. She said she didn't think so. We then talked to an older gentleman who didn't have any interest. And when we turned around, we saw the young man again. I said, „Okay! I've seen him three times now. It doesn't matter if we talked to him yesterday or not, we're just going to go talk to him.“ We went up and talked to him about Jesus Christ. He told us he was from India, here to study and had been here for about a year. He told us that he believes in God, and that he prays to God every day. He shared with us how as a child he had no belief in God, but a few years ago he broke his arm in an accident and prayed and asked God to help him, and now he is healed—and he believes that God played a huge role in that so he now prays to God daily to ask for his guidance throughout the day. We testified of the power of prayer and talked with him about how we teach people about Jesus Christ and want to help him to learn about Christ (as he had told us that he has no knowledge of who Christ is and he wants to know why Christ is so important to so many people). We set up an appointment for Thursday and shared a prayer with him—in which he felt the spirit testify that this was something God had sent to him. Well, we had our appointment on Thursday and we just taught him about Jesus Christ—who Christ is and how He is our Savior. We testified that the only way back to God is through Christ. Our joint teaches testified of how Christ has blessed their lives, and we talked about how to accept what Christ has done for us, we need to be baptized. He said he wants to prepare himself to be baptized. He went to the JoVo Centrum that evening, and he came on Saturday to the end of a baptismal service. After the service, the Elder's Quorum President took him on a tour of the church and then we talked with him about the things he had learned and felt. He said that every time he has come into the church, he feels something and he feels like God is giving him the confidence he needs through what he is learning about Christ. He pulled out the booklet we had given him about the Plan of Salvation and said, „Through reading this, I now understand where I come from, what my purpose here on earth is, and where I am going. I know God has a plan for me.“ We testified of how Christ is central to that plan and committed him to be baptized on May 22 and he accepted. We gave him a baptismal calendar and set out all of the activities and lessons we will have to prepare him to be baptized. It was a wonderful experience and I'm excited to help him prepare!
I know the Lord is preparing people and as we go and work with all our heart, might, mind, and strength, that we will be led to those who are being prepared for the gospel.
I'm excited for this transfer—to see all of the miracles that will happen here in Den Haag and throughout the mission.
Oh, I'm not sure if I've told you about Familie Santos--they are from Cape Verde and we team teach them with Elders Fritzler and Hansen. We had a wonderful lesson with them on Thursday about the Word of Wisdom. We talked about how we receive blessings when we are obedient and then explained the Word of Wisdom. She said, "Okay--well, I don't need those things. I'm just going to quit!" She is such a wonderful person! And her 10 year old son, Pauloe, is a cute kid. They both want to get baptized, but she lives with her boyfriend and he isn't so interested in the church and doesn't really want to get married or move out--and she doesn't want to break up, so she's trying to talk with him so they will get married. Please pray for them!
My studies in the Book of Mormon this week have been mostly in the Isaiah chapters. It has been quite the time, and I've decided that I really need to learn more about Isaiah so that I can understand them better. However, one thing I read today was that when the things come to pass, we will be able to recognize them--and one of the reasons we have prophets (such as Nephi) is so that they can explain the things that are of importance to us from Isaiah in plain terms. Studying Isaiah is definitely something on my list of things to do when I come home.
Well, I love you. I'm going to run so that I can attach some pictures for you! Have a wonderful week!