Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Liebe Familie,
This week was super hot. It got up to 36 one day, and with the humidity, a daily shower was not enough. We only have one fan in our apartment (and they don't really believe in air conditioning here), and we just moved it with us throughout the house. Since we are opening the area, we are spending a lot of our time finding. We have awesome tan lines on our feet and necks, and such. But it cooled down a little more the day before yesterday, and we have been enjoying every second of it!
We were blessed for staying outside and talking to everyone, as gross as we looked. At the end of the day on Tuesday, we were walking back to Bahnhof. It was hot. We were gross. We had walked all over Freiberg am Neckar all day, and no one wanted to listen. But, as we are promised in Ether 12:6, as long as we just talk to one more person, we will be blessed for it. We were across the street from Bahnhof and could have easily enough said, ''Here we are! We don't need to talk to that guy! We can go sit on the bench and rest until the train comes. We deserve it - we have been walking and talking all day long. We smell worse than a couple of pigs, so probably no one wants to touch us with ten-meter poles right now, and we quite frankly don't blame them.'' But I felt strongly impressed to talk to this one last guy. I went up to him and told him that we were talking to people about Jesus Christ, and asked him if he believed in Jesus Christ. He said that he for surely did. I asked him if he wanted to develop that faith. I have asked others that question before, but they more often than not say that they have enough faith and do not need to get any closer to Jesus. But this man excitedly said, ''Yeah!! How?!'' I introduced the Book of Mormon, and when he found out it was free, he just about lost it with how excited he was. I asked if we could meet sometime so we could talk more about this book. He gave us his phone number and address and entered our number into his phone right away. We made an appointment for the following Friday, and wished him a pleasant night. He said he was so excited to get home and start reading in the book.
The next night, we were waiting by Bahnhof, and he walked by. He called out to us, and we looked over. He said, ''See you Friday!!!'' We were pretty stoked because we thought that we had for surely found a legit guy.
Friday night came, and we went to his apartment. He was watching for us, and waved out of his window as we got to the building. By the time we were getting ready to cross the street, he was downstairs, ready to greet us. HE led us back upstairs, we sat down, and he just had the biggest smile the whole time. We started with a prayer. Then he showed us how far he had read in the Book of Mormon. He had already read all of the testimonies. He asked who the Gentiles were, and we explained that. He understood and then sat back to listen to whatever it was that we had to say. We started working our way through the the first lesson, with the point that God is our Heavenly Father, and He loves us. He told us about his family - how his wife had left him and taken his two daughters, and the only time they visit him is to ask for money. He asked why so many bad things happen to him, even though he is trying to be so good. We opened up to 2 Nephi 2 and talked about opposition, agency, learning, and growing. He loved every scripture we read. He was so excited when we got to Joseph Smith, especially when he found out we have a prophet today. He just kept staring at the picture of Thomas S. Monson. He really felt the spirit. At the end, we promised him again that his Heavenly Father loved him.  He said, ''Not me.'' He went on to explain how his parents emotionally abused him when he was younger. I shared a personal experience of someone who had had similar things happen to him, and how I had seen the healing power of the atonement in his life. I promised Bernie that he could be healed. He is so excited to continue meeting with us. We taught him how to pray at the end, and in his prayer he thanked the Lord for sending us and for the good feeling he had. He needs the gospel so badly and is so ready for it. We were so thankful to have found him! And it only happened because we talked with one more person.
We had a ward party on Saturday, and Sister Smith and I made some new friends in the ward. They are three girls who are all 8 years old. But they think we are so cool, and we had the funnest time playing with them. Amely came up and sat by me in Sacrament Meeting yesterday, and was just so excited to be there. She was craning her neck to see Sister Smith's nametag, and then I heard her whisper, ''Sister Smith...Sister Smith. I can remember that!'' A few minutes later, she craned her neck to see my nametag. I took it off and handed it to her so she could read it easier. She did a little happy dance as she held it, and then she put it on her shirt and held it there. I handed her the magnet, and she excitedly put it on. Then she asked if she could wear it for the rest of the day. I told her she could wear it until the end of church. She was just so excited! She put her cardigan back on and said, ''Look! I am just like Sister Reid! I can be a missionary, too!'' She excitedly went off to primary, and I had to go to Relief Society. After church, she met us in the Relief Society room to give me back my nametag. I asked her if she liked being Sister Reid, and she said that she loved it. I told her that next week she should go to Relief Society and I will to to Primary so we can properly switch places. She nodded excitedly, but then stopped and said, ''But then I won't get candy!'' Dang it. Oh well:] She asked us to make copies of our nametags for her and her friend Madlene so they could cut them out, and we could all be missionaries at church next week. She also asked her mom to invite us over next week so we can play with her. We love our new little friends:]
I hope you all have successful weeks!
Sister Stephanie Reid

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