We’re working hard here in Katowice. As every missionary knows there are some times when you have a ton of investigators and you are rushing from one lesson to the next and then there are sometimes when you feel like you’re starting from scratch. We’re at one of those points where we have one great progressing investigator that we meet with every couple days, and the rest of our time is spent contacting on the street and in the parks trying to find new people. However, for all the street contacting time we’ve had, some of our most successful contacts were just conversations we struck up on a tramwej or bus or randomly walking from one park to the next.
A short picture of missionary life:
Sometimes contacting can be difficult. For every 100 people that you try to stop, maybe only 15 will even listen your second sentence. Most of those 15 are going to tell you that they aren’t really interested, a couple might take a Book of Mormon, and maybe only 1 will be willing to meet with you. It takes a lot of patience to stay happy and optimistic, but something I’ve learned is that as I do, the Lord always blesses me. And that one person that is willing to talk fills me with so much joy that talking to all of the people that were less than kind is some how worth it.
Two of my favorite examples are from last week:
One woman we contacted is a practicing Catholic and when we first offered her the Book of Mormon she wouldn’t take it. But then we talked about life and how faith can help us over come difficult times and read in 2 Nephi 2 how trials help us understand our blessings and learn and grow from them. At the end when she gladly took a Book of Mormon she said, “I hope this book can help bring me some of the hope and peace I’ve really been looking for lately”!
Another woman was found in the middle of nowhere walking her dog. When we asked “what meaning would this have in your life” she said, “None. I’m atheist”. But then we asked her what had made her choose that path and she said that she had never thought about God much, and then got out of the habit of going to church when she went to college. She was concerned that so many Christian people say one thing and do another. But we talked to her about how God really does exist, but if we do nothing to build a relationship with him, he will not force us. Then we talked about how real faith is shown through actions and all of the sudden she was a open and gave contact information so we could meet when she gets back from vacation.
It is when I meet people- who all of the sudden are thinking about how faith can bless their life and what they can do to come closer to Christ and they want to read the Book of Mormon in hopes that it will help them do that- that I remember, “This is what I’m here to do”. This is AMAZING.
I know that this is the restored church of Jesus Christ and that the Book of Mormon really does contain the writings of prophets in Ancient America whose sole purpose was to help people believe in Christ. I know that prayer works. God listens to us, loves us, and blesses us when we qualify for those blessings through obedience and diligence. I love this work and am so grateful for my chance to be apart of it. My heart literally aches when I think of how little time I have left. I want to make the most of it and serve every day with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. I love you all and thank you for your support and encouragement.