I love this mission!!! It is so beautiful, the people are amazing and I am having so much fun. This week was busy but not busy, if that makes sense.
We had so many lessons fall through, and combine that with the traveling day for Zone Training Meeting and this week seemed to drag and fly by at the same time.
Zone Training was fantastic. We took a 6 am train to Sibiu, which is beautiful. It’s very similar to Brasov with lots of trees, and all, but Brasov is definitely bigger. We got to the Church and saw everyone else from Cluj and Sibiu and then started our meeting. We talked a lot about attitude; believing that there are people for us to find, that there are people that are ready to accept the gospel of Jesus Christ, believing in ourselves and believing in the people that we teach and meet with. There were several presentations, and at the very end the Bairs, Elder Mayans, and Sora Honey bore their testimonies. It was a simple but powerful training meeting and I came away feeling really inspired and excited to find people and teach them.
One of my favorite lessons from this week was with the Pavel family. They have just gone through the temple and are some of the most amazing people I have met so far out here on my mission. We planned a lesson centered around Luke 22:31-32, which are two of my favorite verses in all scripture. The Bairs came with us to their lesson. We came into their home and you could just feel the Spirit there, in a way that was different than when we visit others. The Spirit was already there, before we got there. That was truly special to feel. We talked with them about their experience at the temple and then read the scripture with them. They bore such strong testimonies of sharing the gospel. We talked a lot about how Jesus prays for us, how He has suffered for us and how He knows exactly how to help us, in any situation. It was truly amazing. At one point in the lesson, I was almost in tears and I told them that the Spirit was there. I asked them if they could feel it, and they all said yes, they could. I just had to acknowledge the fact that it was here, with us, with them, in their home. They had their grandson there with them, who was 5 years old and is about the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. I know, I know, I say that about all the kids here, but they’re just too cute! He is super shy but has opened up to me and will talk to me now. He’s adorable.
We also had the chance to meet a less-active member last night. When we met her, she was so excited and pleased to meet us. She told us that no one has come to visit her for over a year! No one. That made me so so sad. And so grateful that we were there to visit and teach her and love her. We had a lesson with her, her husband, and their two little sons, ages 7 and almost 2. We talked about President Packer’s conference talk, especially about his witness of the Savior Jesus Christ. Both she and her husband read with us and afterwards, she and I talked for a little bit. She was quite open with me, which was awesome because it helped me get to know her better and it showed that she felt comfortable enough with us to share as much as she did. She was the sweetest woman. She told us that she was sincerely sorry that she hadn’t been coming to church. At the end of our lesson with them, we invited them back to church and told them the blessing it would be to their family if they did. We also told them that we would definitely be back to visit again. I really want to do a FHE lesson with them and with the Bairs. I know this woman and her family will come back to church! They just need to be reminded of their testimonies and of the love their Savior has for them and most importantly, of the importance of taking the Sacrament each week. I know they’ll come back. As I reflected on that lesson later last night, I was again amazed at how Heavenly Father lets us feel of His love for His children. I love that woman and her family. And I hardly know them! Yet, I just genuinely love them. It’s amazing. It is one of my favorite things about a mission, how we are able to feel how much Heavenly Father loves us all.
This week honestly, was a little rough on me emotionally and everything was multiplied because I’m a girl, haha. That’s just the way it is sometimes. Thank goodness for Sora Honey. She suggested that I get a blessing and so we both got blessings from our branch mission leader Marius, on Tuesday night. He is a return missionary, who speaks fluent English (he served in England) and is an amazing member missionary. The Bairs were there with us and to help bring the Spirit, we sang some hymns and primary songs before we received our blessings. It was amazing. As I received my blessing, I knew, without a doubt, that it was from the Lord. Isn’t the Priesthood amazing?! I can’t even imagine this world without the blessing and power of the Priesthood. My testimony of the Priesthood is continually growing. I am so so grateful for it. I know that I definitely need the Priesthood in my home. I also want to tell you all (again 🙂 ) about the power that comes from studying your scriptures. There is nowhere where you will find as much strength as you do there (apart from the temple. It’s even better if you read your scriptures in the temple!! 🙂 ). Every day, I find answers to questions I didn’t know I had, prayers I don’t remember praying, etc. The Lord knows us and knows what we need, and if we would just search His scriptures, He could tell us so much more easily. Sometimes I think we are so hard to reach. I know the Lord answers every prayer/question/plea that we have, but do we let Him actually get the answer to us? Sometimes we do, but we would receive so so much more if we would be diligent about reading our scriptures. It is something I have come to absolutely love while being out here. It’s like the Lord himself says in D&C 88:63. “Draw near unto me and I will draw near unto you; seek me diligently and ye shall find me; ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”
I love you ALL!!! I hope everyone’s doing great. If you ever need to talk, or anything, email me! I love talking to you all. 🙂 (And no, that is not a plea for more letters, I promise, haha)
Love you! Stay classy 🙂
Sora Emily Marcheschi
P.S. Another Spiritual Thought from my personal study this morning:
Luke 22:31-32 says:
And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.
But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not; and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.
If you go down and read the JST of verse 31, it says:
And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired you, that he may sift the children of the kingdom as wheat.
Think about that! To me, that shows how influential every one of us is!! Satan doesn’t just want to make you miserable, he wants EVERYONE to be miserable. And if he can get one of us to fall away, he can lead away so many more, because we weren’t there to influence others for good. That was a super cool thing to realize this morning. 🙂