Thursday, November 19, 2015

What it means to be free...

It means : 
Not having to plan for conferences
Not having to plan for transfers
Not needing to do ANYTHING besides MISSIONARY WORK!!


I can't even tell you how good it was to have a week like this right after conference!
Let's start from the beginning!

Monday -- monday...
So, many of our beloved members left to the temple!  Among them was our senior couple, the Plasters.  We were asked to help them get a taxi... but it was rainy and stormy outside, so there ended up being no taxis available.  I called and told them that we would find a taxi, and to be patient. We ran down the hill from the church, and like a white lightning crack out of heaven, we saw one taxi parked on the side of the road.  We enlisted the driver, and were off to the Plaster's house!  They had around 40 minutes before their train was supposed to leave. I called them, and asked where they were.... and they had already gotten on a Tramvaj!  ​They would be late if they took that all the way to the train station... so we told them to get off at the next stop.  They did... and then wandered off into some ally way to wait for us! Here, we have a lost senior couple and a couple of missionaries with an agitated taxi driver trying to find eachother on one of the busiest streets in L'viv.  Awesome.
After Elder Plaster had explained where they were for the 100th time, we finally just swung a right turn, I said a little prayer, and we saw them standing right on the street corner!  We found them, and they made it to their train on time.  That was pretty awesome.

We also went on exchanges with our beloved Carpathian Zone Leaders.  I got to go with Elder Huth!  What a great missionary he is!  Diligent, dedicated, and dignified.  We had a funny moment that day, where we had run to the store to grab some stuff for sandwiches that we could eat at the church before our investigator showed up for a lesson.  Elder Huth had made himself a sandwich, when all of a sudden, our investigator calls and says he is walking up to the front of the church.  Elder Huth wasn't fast enough to eat it, so as we ran out, I saw him hide his sandwich behind his back and shake hands with our investigator.  We began the church tour, and at some point, he managed to hid the sandwich in a back room.  After our lesson, and after the investigator had left, he said nothing about the sandwich.  We ran around all day doing lessons and such, and when we got back, he snuck into the back room, and grabbed his sandwich.  HA!  Apparently, he had told our district leader to get it and finish it, but Elder Hunt didn't want it... so it just sat there all day.  

Also, we did this activity on the street where we stand behind a table and invite people to come and test their english skills on us.  It was such a positive experience!! I met a man who was born in Chernivtsi, moved to Philadelphia, married a woman from Argentina, and had returned to visit L'viv!  A couple of people from the United Kingdom, another man from Iowa.  One guy started singing "If you could hie to Kolob" right there on the street when he found out that we're "Mormons".  I was impressed.
Overall, in the space of 2 hours, we got 15 numbers and a set up lesson.  Talk about a good use of time!

Then... the rest of the week blurs together into all the people that we're teaching!

First, Paraskeva -- she's the 90 year old mother of a member of the church, and she really wants to be baptized.  I've never raised my voice so loud on a lesson.  She's mostly deaf, and mostly blind.  It's actually really fun to teach her though, because she laughs and jokes with us (when she can hear).  Her son is really supportive, and even wants to take us to see some really cool art gallery in L'viv sometime.

Then, Brother Oleg's mom started talking with us about the gospel, and she became a new investigator!  She's progressing okay, but her son needs to show a bit more enthusiasm about life to be a real help for her...  being really sad all time doesn't really help people believe you when you say, "the gospel makes you happy!".  Gotta figure that one out.

OH! and my favorite right now -- Viktor.  He's GOLDEN.  We called him up from a number that another missionary gave us.  Basically, we had two stellar lessons with him already, and he's thinking about baptism on the 7th of December!  We're definitely going to be helping him as much as we can with that.   We meet with him every tuesday and thursday, and it's just a joy to talk with him!

I also learned this week that my companion knows the scriptures insanely well.  I mean, seriously well.  He can whip out 15-20 verses to explain one topic from all of the books of scripture without even blinking an eye.  It's nuts.

I love teaching with him.

I'm sad and happy at the same time, because soon we will have transfers.  Transfers means 2 things -- Sad, because that means that I'm going into the last transfer of my mission.  Happy -- because IT'S GOING TO BE THE BEST TRANSFER OF MY ENTIRE MISSION!  I'm going to make this time really count!

So what does free mean really?

It means that when we follow the Lord's plan for us, we open up the doors that give us the most positive array of choices.  I've already seen how the sequence of my choices has gotten me to this point in my life, and how bright the future looks because of the Lord's loving influence.  Search diligently for Heavenly Father's guidance through prayer and scripture study.  Listen very closely to what was said at conference!  You will find the path that God has prepared for you.  That path will bring you the happiness and peace that you are looking for.

I sure love you all a lot! Thank you for being a support for me, and friends in the faith.  I hope that I will be able to return the favor to each of you some day for the good role you've played and are playing in my life!

Have a great week!
Get ready for one more week of joy in the vineyard! :)

-- Elder Le Baron

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