We finally got our Christmas tree decorated! We bought a real one for €15 our first P-Day together, and we kept it on the balcony to keep it fresh. Then on Monday, we finally decided we could bring it inside and decorate it. We love the little Christmas cheer it brings to our living room:]
On Tuesday, we had our Zone Christmas Devotional. The whole zone came together, we had a white elephant gift exchange (I found Bayerisch suspenders that were very fought over - it's always nice when your gift is a wanted one), we sang Christmas songs, we had a potluck lunch, and we listened to a wonderful Devotional from Presidents Monson (via technology) and Miles. It was so wonderful! There is a company called ''Obey,'' and a hat with their logo is what President Miles got:]
We had lunch with a member and her friend, Sabine, on Thursday. The member told us in advance not to push the friend, but if the gospel came up, we could for surely talk about it. We smiled and told her that with us, most conversations find their way to the gospel. But what was cool was that the member just started bearing testimony about the gospel and what a blessing it is in her life. Then she gave her a Book of Mormon and apologized that it wasn't much, but also that it really was the best present she could give her. She bore testimony about how much this book meant to her, and Sabine just gave her a hug and almost cried - she could feel the love this member had for her, and she could feel the spirit her testimony brought. We set up another appointment for lunch for this week, but this time, we are going to make lunch in the church so that Sabine can come to the church and see that it isn't a big, dark, cold place, but a home. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: we cannot do hardly anything without the members.
We experienced another miracle this week on Wednesday. We met with Elena again. I talked about her a little bit this last week, but her husband's heart is softening so much! This week, we came later in the afternoon when the children were home. They just love us. While we were there, the husband came home and actually joined us for the end of the lesson and the closing prayer! It may seem like a small thing, but the fact that this whole family prayed together in their home is huge, people!
Then yesterday, in church, the elders did this cool thing where they watched this Mormon Message and then had all of the brethren write their testimonies in Book of Mormons and wrap them to give to their friends for Christmas! Meanwhile, a little family from Nigeria walked into the church for the first time and, well, long story short, the elders set baptismal dates with them! The elders first asked about February some time, and then the mom asked if she could be baptized on her birthday - January 16. What?! The Lord truly is hastening His work. We are living in a prophecy being fulfilled. The stone cut without hands is rolling and is filling the earth.
Sorry this is short, but I love you all and am looking forward to seeing you on Christmas!
Sister Stephanie Reid