Monday, November 12, 2012

Liebe Grüß :)

Grüß euch! Wie geht´s alles in Amerika?
So, there were lots of questions about Christmas and whether or not it looks much like it or feels much like it-- it has just rained A LOT! There was a little dorf called Lavamünd or something that totally got flooded! So we may actually go there and help clean up as a big service project tomorrow. We are still waiting to get ahold of president so he can approve it. But yeah, it´s actually warmer than it was a while ago, but not really any complaints. I always worry about our mail getting soaked tho, because our mailbox stinks...ach so, staying with the topic of Christmas, I will get all of my packages at the next Zone Conference in Dezember. Speaking of which, I may not even be in this zone by then, because transfer calls are on Friday!! What the heck has happened to my sense of time?? Dad talked about me being ready to show the new guy around if I needed to, and yeah, I feel totally fine doing that. But I will let you know next week what the transfer news is.
So, sorry Mom, but I have to correct you in that Daniele is a ward missionary, not the ward mission leader. That is still Bruder Mauch :) who is still the bomb!! I love him. It was actually his idea that we try to go do service in Lavamünd tomorrow. And he would probably be there too. Also, Bonnie, Derek´s wife, is the one who cuts our hair. And she does it for free! I will have to have her do it again soon. And I will probably get it about as short as Tyson´s (I loved all the pictures by the way.).
And yes, I have a CD player in the apartment. Most of them do. And I was actually going to ask about some CD´s because I wish I had some Disney music. Like the song in Hercules, "I can go the distance," which is one of my favorite songs. Anyway, just a random thought. I don't listen to tons of music, but mostly because we don't spend that much time at home. But new music would still help.
Well, it was funny this week, because Mom sent me a copy of my own email, instead of Tyson's :) I just laughed haha. So, hope Tyson is doing okay!
So, the last week..... we did basically nothing in Klagenfurt, because we were never here again. We were in Graz for district meeting, and that was Monday too because we had to do a baptismal interview for a man in Graz. That was cool tho. So I did nothing for Pday. Then we made fried chicken and biscuits for a less active girl and her boyfriend, but didn't get to teach anything.. And Wednesday we went with the Halls to a big furniture store called Kika and bought me a new wardrobe (meaning a stand-alone closet, not a new set of clothes--they don't have many built-in closets in Europe like we do here), which we then had to assemble (and it looks good too ;) ) Thursday I was sent to Wien because Elder Eaker ended up going to the District leader meeting in Munich. I worked with an Elder in his first transfer, and we still didn't do much missionary work besides me talking to some people on the street. And, I have a testimony of the wonderfulness of cleanliness. The Wien apartment I stayed in was a mess (it is four people there, to some of their defense). So, I love being neat and in order, and that just made me want to do it even more! (I also thought back on the nightmare that was 3103 Heritage Halls when things got out of hand, which they did seemingly often...). So, being cleanly and neat is GOOD!! It keeps a load off of my mind. Our apartment is very nice, and I even got a sugar cookie candle from Kika for my desk :) It´s great here in Klagenfurt.
So yeah, it was cool in Wien though to have to be the one who understood all the people speaking German, because the Elder I worked with couldn't. So I went to a ward missionary meeting in a ward that I don't belong to, with a missionary who DID live there but had no idea what was going on. But I had lots of fun regardless :) I know Heavenly Father answers prayers, because I prayed to be able to understand what I needed to. He answers prayers! But remember that we only receive blessings according to our faith. So do what you need to everyday to strengthen your faith.
So we were in Wien until Saturday, and when we got back home we had to plan our coming week! Which we didn't finish until this morning actually.... and then Sunday we drove to Graz again to do another bapstismal interview with A___, the Egyptian man in Bruck an Der Mur who Elders Stapleton and Riser teach :) He is being baptized next Sunday! The cool thing was that I was there for the first lesson with him (and one other) :) So I feel like I got to take a part in it. We met at the house of a translator who spoke Arabic, who said all the things that A___ just can't say in German (which is actually everything.. haha). A___ talked about how he learns something new everytime the Elders meet with him, and they can't really even understand each other! The Spirit is certainly the real teacher. Now he is on his way, the "right way" as he puts it, to living in joy with his Father in Heaven. Language barriers can't do anything to stop children of God from coming to Him. The coolest thing was that G___, the translator, kept talking about "his missionary." The Leoben Elders will always be A___'s missionaries, and I am so happy for them. I just need to find the one who lets me be their missionary haha. I work every day to do that.
Annnnd, the news with W___... Dad talked about things being too good to be true, and he is right, in that we don't know what exactly W___´s motives are anymore. We are certain he is smoking again, even though we met with him Monday and Wednesday this last week, and told him he really had to convince himself to do this while we weren't there. But we no longer have a date because he told us he wants to do it on his own time, how he wants. Plus, we have realized this last week that he just thinks we are friends. He sends us random text messages about anything, and if we answer we try to see how he is doing Spiritually. But yeah, he isn't making any progress spiritually. He sent us a text the other day and told us to study up on "game theory" so that we could talk about it when we met together. We told him that we would not do that, that we CANNOT do that, and that we have no desire to do anything save it be to bring the Children of God closer to Him. So we haven't met with him since Wednesday, because of lack of time. And when we do meet with him, we are telling him straight out that we are Representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ, The Living God. We have NO PURPOSE except for building others up and preparing them for baptism and to live the gospel of Jesus Christ. It´s going to be interesting when we meet with him tonight. We have to see what he wants from us.
Anyway, it is such a great feeling to be that representative of Christ, because I can literally look anyone right in the eyes and say the Savior of all mankind has called me here to teach them about God´s plan for us. And I know that with faith, we really can reach people´s hearts and make their lives better. I know that Jesus Christ lives, and that He is always there with us. He has the power to do anything for the blessing of His people, and we just have to exercise faith in that. He loves each one of us, and will never leave us. And that I can say as His disciple on this earth.
Till next week, alles Güte und viel Erfolg bei allem, was ihr macht. Hört niemals auf zu lächeln. :)
Ich habe euch Lieb! :)
Elder Jalen Lawrence Gibbons

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