Another Week in Hamburg!
How goes it everyone? I can't believe how fast time is flying! I'm loving my last transfer so far and Sister Busche and I are having a jolly good time. We had quite a few CRAZY experiences this week... and by crazy I mean I have a very interesting story to tell... I really thought a lot about whether or not I should tell it... but I just decided I have to... so parents please proof read before reading to your children... and if you are scarred after reading I am so sorry... but just know I am still recovering... ;) haha! We call this story, "Naked and Afraid."
Last week received we a referral! Her name is Ella and she is from Nigeria! We gave her a call and she sounded pretty awesome! She had investigated the church a bit in Italy and has been in Germany for six months now and wants to meet with missionaries again! So we set up an appointment for Friday at 16:00! We get to the appointment but we aren't sure which house is hers because she told us that she would come outside when we got there because the house she said she lived in she doesn't actually live in... (complicated... but not too important.) we tried to call her but the phone just started beeping as soon as we would hit the call button. So we searched all up and down this street for her! But couldn't find her name on the Klingle anywhere... so just as we were about to lose hope... Ella called us! She said, "Sisters! I am so sorry! I am on my way my doctors appointment went a little late! Wait there for me I will be there soon!" So thinking she'd be there soon like she said... we waited. We waited at the very top of the street so we would see her get out of the bus at the bus stop! As we were waiting... we see a very large black cloud rolling towards us... I looked at Sister Busche and said, "I've got a bad feeling about this..." just then it starts raining... then it starts pouring! And we had no place to go for shelter! We just had to stand there and take it... so we stood there in the pouring rain... for an hour waiting for Ella to show up! By the time she got there... we were soaking wet! But at least she was there right? So we walk with her back to her house! As we walk up to her front door we see two more African ladies who are apparently her roommates and they were also waiting. One of the African ladies we could tell was very pregnant. She looks like she could be having twins at any second! But what we later discovered was shocking... as we walked into the apartment it was small and dark. No one seemed to bother turning the lights on... (which I was grateful for later!) as we sit down the other friend of Ella's took her coat off... and we notice that she is also pregnant! So we were surprised that two of them were pregnant! But then... Ella walked into the room and took her coat off... and she was pregnant too! Oh my gosh! All three of them were pregnant! So... brushing aside the initial shock of it all... sister Busche and I sit down on the couch. Ella pulls up a chair and sits in front of us... the other two ladies are preoccupied finding something to eat for themselves! We start teaching Ella the first lesson... it's going really well! The other so pregnant ladies grab their food and sit on the floor and they start eating! Africans normally don't eat with utensils... so they were eating with their hands. And it was the loudest eating experience of my life! I am sitting here trying to bare testimony of Joseph Smith... and all I hear is, "NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM!!!!" followed by much finger licking... so luckily... they were eating very fast and it was over pretty quick. They get up and go into the other room and we continue teaching Ella about the Restoration! We are having a really good lesson and she understands everything pretty well! So we invited her to read in the Book of Mormon and to come to church! And then we got up to leave... here is where the really scarring part comes in... We are walking to the front door and there is a little bedroom right next to the front door... two of the ladies were sitting there on the floor talking. But the shocking part was... the bigger pregnant woman was now lying on the ground and clearly did not love wearing her clothes. She was nude. I turn around and look at my companion and I said, "Careful!" I didn't know how else to warn her! So that is my story of our first appointment with Ella! I have had a lot of African appointments... but that one was by far the most interesting... Quite the story huh? ;)
Good news that came out of all of this stuff... is that Ella did came to church yesterday and she brought a non-pregnant friend! And we were able to teach them the second lesson and we had an amazing joint teach, Bruder Saalmann, who was such a huge help! It was an awesome lesson! We were talking about the three kingdoms of glory and why there are three kingdoms, etc. they couldn't quite wrap their heads around the idea which is understandable! But he knew exactly how to answer their questions and it was awesome! We explained the Celestial kingdom and how awesome it's gonna be... and we also explained the fact that families are eternal... and they were filled with joy! It was an awesome lesson! So that's something good that came from our first appointment with Ella... ;)
In other news... we had a wonderful lesson with our investigator Daniel! Daniel is from Colombia and is a concert pianist! He's like 23 and such a cool guy and a very deep thinker... sometimes it can be difficult to answer his questions but it's good because we can tell he is truly trying to understand things. Thursday of last week he called and asked if he could watch the movie "The Restoration" because he had missed it a while ago apparently. So we met and talked about the restoration in detail and made sure he understood everything... then we watched the movie! It was awesome! And then we invited him to be baptized! So we have Daniel on baptismal date for July 8th! My last Saturday in Germany! We are praying it works out! We have some things we need to work through but we know he can make it! :)
I have been studying the Book of Mormon a lot recently. It has been incredibly inspiring and i have learned a lot from the examples of the people written about in this sacred record. I wish to speak about some of the things which have struck me as I have studied. I would like to talk a bit about Zeezrom. The story of Zeezrom is found in the Book of Alma starting in chapter 10 all the way until chapter 15. I find Zeezrom to be not only one of my favorite examples of a change of heart... but also a wonderful example of Gods love for His children. In chapter 10 we see that Zeezrom was a very evil man who was preaching lies to the people trying to turn them from the church of God. Of course later we see Alma and Amulek catch him in his lies... and he starts to shake and tremble as he comes to a realization of all the evil he has spread through the land. And he actually starts to believe Alma and Amulek himself. He realizes that he has brought destruction down upon the people of Amonihah so he immediately starts trying to make things better by trying to defend Alma and Amulek and admitting to all the lies he had told... but to no avail... he was cast out of the city as were many others... and was left to worry about what turmoil his actions has caused to the people of this once great city... not to mention what Alma and Amulek were about to go through. But in chapter 15 we witness a miracle occur in spite of all this...
3. And also Zeezrom lay sick at Sidom, with a burning fever, which was caused by the great tribulations of his mind on account of his wickedness, for he supposed that Alma and Amulek were no more; and he supposed that they had been slain because of his iniquity. And this great sin, and his many other sins, did harrow up his mind until it did become exceedingly sore, having no deliverance; therefore he began to be scorched with a burning heat.
4. Now, when he heard that Alma and Amulek were in the land of Sidom, his heart began to take courage; and he sent a message immediately unto them, desiring them to come unto him.
5. And it came to pass that they went immediately, obeying the message which he had sent unto them; and they went in unto the house unto Zeezrom; and they found him upon his bed, sick, being very low with a burning fever; and his mind also was exceedingly sore because of his iniquities; and when he saw them he stretched forth his hand, and besought them that they would heal him.
6. And it came to pass that Alma said unto him, taking him by the hand: Believest thou in the power of Christ unto salvation?
7. And he answered and said: Yea, I believe all the words that thou hast taught.
8. And Alma said: If thou believest in the redemption of Christ thou canst be healed.
9. And he said: Yea, I believe according to thy words.
10. And then Alma cried unto the Lord, saying: O Lord our God, have mercy on this man, and heal him according to his faith which is in Christ.
11. And when Alma had said these words, Zeezrom leaped upon his feet, and began to walk; and this was done to the great astonishment of all the people; and the knowledge of this went forth throughout all the land of Sidom.
12. And Alma baptized Zeezrom unto the Lord; and he began from that time forth to preach unto the people.
Well folks... that's my week! Sorry if I scarred you with my story... it's just part of mission life I had to tell it! But I hope you enjoyed the rest of the email haha! ;)
Love you all! See y'all soon!