Monday, 4 February 2013

I have something to confess

Ooo, they have a new fancy system in the email program.  Mmm, fancy.  I'm typing on an American keyboard now too, so I know where all the buttons are.  For reasons unneeded to be explained, we're in Den Bosch (S'Hertogenbosh), which is in the Netherlands.  There's a statue thing out in front of the station that has five dragons on it, one of them a gold dragon with his wings spread wide and his tail curling down the tower.  It's super cool.  Apparently, if you ask about it, people will laugh and say unpleasant things about the person it was erected for.  I guess she was a B.
Anydoodle, this week was another good one.  I have unfortunate news though, which is that things aren't looking up for Willy right now, despite all the recent miracles.  His deadline has passed and now the Bank is threatening to auction his house and kick him out.  He's looking around right now to see if he can borrow money from somebody to pay off the loan from the bank, then the money he borrowed later.  Gee, it's so difficult.  I really wish I could do something more for the man, but I've run through every option, and the only thing we can do is pray and fast.  Pray for Willy, please.
Otherwise, things were admittedly slow this week.  It seemed as though every time we got an appointment, it was cancelled the same day.  Luckily Elder Rozendaal and I are optimists, so we were able to keep our heads out of the water and we actually saw some miracles this weekend.
First one is that Elder R was feeling that we should go to Heverlee, a branch of Leuven just south, to go visit a formar investigator.  When we klip klopte on his door, a different person answered.  We told him who we were looking for and they let us inside.  It was one of those buildings (they're exceedingly common in Leuven) where there's about 8 rooms inside and just as many people.  One of two African men led us up stairs where we knocked on our formar investigator's door, while the other kinda drifted back downstairs and started making fries.  We struck up a conversation with the man about Africa and a bit of it's history--turns out he's also from Cameroon--and before we knew it, we were sitting at the table whipping out the Book of Mormon.
You know, there are a lot of African people that will meet with us just because we wear Jesus's name.  Their happy with their own church and will stay there despite what we stay, but will always open the door regardless.  Then there are the African people who truly question their own church doctrine and investigate ours.  Daniel (spelled the exact same as Daniel Campbell's name) is one of the latter.
He told us at the beginning of the lesson that he sees a lot of inconsistencies in churches.  His own church changes its doctrine all the time.  He feels like churches and their institutions try to force God down your throat, and expect you to believe.  We shared our message--with several other African people busting in and out--and Daniel and his friend (who appeared out of nowhere) were very impressed.  At the end, we read Moroni's promise and he loved it.  Oh, maybe this keyboard isn't so American.  "Of course the Holy Ghost has to tell us!  How else are we supposed to know?"  He was very excited to receive the Book of Mormon and promised to read it, as well as Eric, his bestest friend.  We're going to teach him next week, but we'll have to pause because he's going back to Cameroon soon to get married to a "beautiful wife".  How exciting is that?  He's smart too--he knows the Bible.
We also met with a Chinese student yesterday.  Her name is Xinke Li. We contacted her when Elder Mower was here.  Gee, that long ago.  But yeah, we went by and she finally let us in and we shared a super cool lesson with her.  The thing about Chinese people--in general of course--is that their gospel knowledge is usually very limited.  I was actually impressed by how much she knew.  She did mention that she went to a Religion class or something, but meh.  We took it very slow and described simply who God and Jesus are and what they do for us. She asked an interesting question that I've honestly never had before.  She said that prayer is when we express the feelings of our heart, so she didn't want to pray in front of us, because it's suppose to be a very person thing.  wham, good concern!  We told her there's a difference between personal prayers and 'group' prayers.  She seemed to get it.  she too said she'll read the Book of Mormon.  Cool!
And I have something to confess.  She hugged me!  Ooo.  Elder Rozendaal avoided it, but I was caught off-guard.  We'll have to kindly explain next time that we're not allowed to do that as missionaries.  Oops.
Otherwise, we didn't have an appointment with Fam Rodriguez--it's next week.  I think I had a whole week without something going wrong with my bike.  Can you believe that?  
And hey, we got a new couch.  It's a pretty nice one.  Thumbs crossed that it will fit through the hallway and up the stairs.
Elder Burton actually tuned my guitar for me, but the styrofoam I used was too squishy and had to be replaced.  I was able to bend a clothes hanger into place and it is a lot steviger now.  I  have to find somebody else to tune it now, but luckily there are a lot of people who know how. I replaced the string too, yay.
Thanks for everything!
Tot volgende keer,
Elder Burgess

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