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Monday, March 30, 2015

"Just Be Ourselves"

I can't believe that its already P-Day again!

This week we visited for the first time with Frau Selimovic (from former Yugoslavia) and her husband (from Albania). They have 6 children ages 3-14 and when we walked through the door, we were immediately smothered in love and kindness. Sammy, the three year old girl, ran up to me and gave me a huge hug around the neck and wouldn't let go. Frau Selimovic said that she had missed the Sisters reading her the Book of Mormon (she's illiterate) and that it was so beautiful and she wanted that in her life and in the lives of her children again. At the end of the lesson, they kept saying over and over again how grateful they were that we came over. They pray together as a family each night and talk about God and the Savior. These people are so ready for the gospel.

Later in the week, we were sitting at a bus stop when a lady approached us. I offered her my seat and she smiled and said in English: "No thank you, Sister. But that's very kind of you!" Apparently, she had been to our ward's open house when the new building was dedicated and then did a lot of genealogy work a few years ago with a member in our ward. She told us that when he explained to her that her ancestors would be baptized and married, she felt so happy and close to them. We talked to her on the bus and she committed herself to come to Sacrament meeting the next morning. We exchanged phone numbers and lo and behold, SHE CAME! We are so excited to work with her.

Finally, as we were walking upstairs to our apartment after church, we said hi to a guy in his late 20s who was just walking out of his apartment. He asked us if we were from the "American Church." It turned into an almost 2 hour conversation in the stairwell. We explained to him why we are here, what we do, and a few things that we believe (he was one seriously chatty guy.) We gave him a Book of Mormon and read Moroni 10:3 and he seems really open-minded, respectful, and curious. We exchanged numbers and he wants to meet with us in the coming week.

The thing that became really clear to me with all of these experiences is how important it is to just be NORMAL and ourselves. People will feel if you're being genuine or if you are playing a role. We chose to come on a mission and share the light that we have found. Everyone we come in contact with needs to feel the conviction that we have in our hearts.

I did find comfort this week in a scripture found in 2 Corinthians 4:5-9:

5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.

 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

 8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;

 9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed

Paul crushes it every time. We will keep on working and letting this light shine through us. That is what it is to be an instrument of the spirit. 
I love you all so much and am so grateful for your faith, examples, and prayers. 

Liebe Grüße,
Sister Grace Hendricks

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