Things are going great here in Novosibirsk! It’s getting pretty cold– just hovering above 0 and we’re all waiting for it to drop and start snowing like crazy. But until then we’re enjoying being able to get by not wearing hats.
In our zone we’ve been really pushing hard for each companionship to talk to at least ten people each day. Seeing as there are 6 companionships in Novo, that means that hopefully 60 people are being approached to hear more about the Gospel or to come to English Club each day. I’m proud to say that yesterday was the first day that every single companionship made it– they all talked to at least 10 people! 😀 We’re all seeing great changes coming from this– an increase in referrals received, a better attitude towards missionary work, and things just generally working out better for us!
We’ve got a baptism coming up on the 6th of November– a girl named Marina (her mother Lena was baptized a month or two ago). She’s asked me to baptize her, which is pretty exciting. It’ll be the second person that I’ve personally performed the ordinance for.
Last night I shared a spiritual thought with the (my companion and I are convinced) best family in the entire world. Amazing parents, amazing children (five of them), super happy and loving family– you feel it immediately when you come in. they’re extraordinary. Anyway. The spiritual thought came from Alma 20:3-6 about Ammon and King Lamoni. Ammon tells King Lamoni that he has to leave and go to a different city because his brothers are in prison. The king’s reaction is very interesting. He says that he knows that Ammon can do all things with the power of God– but he happens to be friends with the king of that other city, and he can use that friendship to help Ammon free his brothers. In talking to strangers on the streets and metro and buses about God, you notice some very interesting things. One of them is the reaction to certain statements we make such as “God has called a prophet for our day, just like he did in the Bible.” People immidiately think that is ridiculous. I often follow up with the question “Do you think that God could call a prophet today if he wanted to?” The obvious answer is yes, he could. Of course God can do anything! So why is it so hard for people to accept the message that there is a prophet on the earth today? I think in part it is because people lack the attitude of King Lamoni. He acknoledges that God can do anything, but he couples that with his opportunities to act and make things happen. Sometimes when we have problems that we want solved we would admit that, yes, If God wanted to he definitely could solve the problem and make our life great. I think a lot of times we just sit there, though and don’t have enough faith to act and use all the resources that we already have– to act in the knowledge that God can do all things. As a missionary I get to see this every day, both on the side of the people that are talking to me, as well as for me personally, as I am the person talking to people, hoping for God to work with those people and help them accept the message I have to share with them.
Well, I’ll hopefully have some interesting photos for you all next week. I’m officially in charge of the “room of fear” for the Halloween party. I welcome any and all photos from Halloween– people in English club are pretty interested in the holiday. They didn’t believe that Americans actually still trick-or-treat like in the movies 🙂
Hey, also, as far as photos go, here are some other photos that would be cool to have to show people. Maybe readers of my emails/blog with cameras can go on a type of scavenger hunt for me and email me some good pictures during the week:
transportation, especially in big cities: buses, taxi’s, roads, etc
houses and apartment buildings– what the average american lives in
halloween– trick or treating, costumes, decorations, etc
maybe family activities– stuff you do for family night or family dinners or something
k, well, thanks for the emails and stuff
if anyone is sending me a package or letters soon– slip a few stamps in there, i’m running a little low
PS… Here is a photo of my zone! My comp is the one wearing the Murray shirt. (Click to enlarge, double-click for full size.)