Cheesy email title bc we spent today at b e a u t i f u l Lucca! Just picture a beautiful Toscana city with trees on top of towers and city walls. We hiked up said towers and walls, so it was kind of the best🌲🌿🌳🏰
This week definitely kicked me in the butt lol, and not just because I've been hard-core studying the Book of Revelation🙃 We had back to back scambi, which was really tiring but also a tooon of fun! We first had scambio with the Pisa Sorelle, Sorella Diciolla and Sorella Rindlisbacher. I don't think I've ever learned more from a scambio than I did during this one. Those two are soooo amazing☀️💕 Our other scambio was with the Prato Sorelle, Sorella Harris and Sorella Weaver. We were dying of heat, buuuut we also visited some amazing people☀️🌊
We got to meet with lots of members this week, which was super awesome! One experience was especially neat. There are 2 families that most missionaries have said were cold & unfriendly, sooo I made it my goal to get an appointment with them lol. I just kinda forced myself in, hugging & bacci-ing them each Sunday & talking to them, & we scored an appointment with one of them! It ended up being one of the best member appointments I've had. For starters, the Fallani fam is AMAZING & I just really enjoyed being with them! Then out of nowhere, their nonmember uncle showed up. One of the kiddos leaned over and whispered "it's the perfect missionary opportunity!" So we taught him, & the family bore amazing testimonies! It was legit the best❤
Church was crazy this week! For starters, we've talked to a ton of cool people on the bus lately & exchanging numbers, & a few of them randomly showed up to church! Pretty cool since that NEVER happens. Although one came asking for money...? ALSO during scambio, there was a great lesson with Carolina, & her cousins who are members came. Well, they brought her & her boyfriend to church, & it was great! Well, except for gospel principles... our teacher is American, so we have to translate for the class (weird, I know). Well he decided to teach the most complex, deep lesson I've heard about the abrahamic covenant. Lol what a nightmare. We ended up making up our own stuff during the translation lol. Luckily it went over their heads haha. The rest of church was full of lessons directed specifically at Carolina! But for future reference, if you ever teach a class full of investigators/new converts, PLEASE don't just spout off deep doctrine😂
Our ward also got to have a special fireside with the guy who makes the stained glass windows for the temples! 🎨We got to translate that one for the ward too, which is fun because we hadn't really studied words like "vetrata" lol, it was super cool though, and he gave us a sneak peek of the windows he's done so far for the Rome temple😍😍😍 guys, it's gonna be gorgeous.
ALSO the investigators Claudio and Victoria from my fav fam in Muggiò got baptized on Saturday!! Shout out to my girl Sorella Orr for getting them there!❤❤❤
This week, we learned a ton about recognizing the Spirit. I mean, we're both pretty comfortable receiving & acting on promptings to talk to people or share certain things during lessons. This week, however, was different. We were slapped by the humble stick & taught that while the Holy Ghost comforts, guides, & teaches, that's not all it does. At times the Spirit simply guides our will to align with God's. We had a lot of experiences with this last week, but I'll just quickly share two.
We had an appointment with an investigator, but we were pretty stressed because we couldn't decide what to teach her! We did everything. We prayed about it/studied a ton, but nothing felt right. Well, we finally settled on something & went to the appointment. We showed up and a new lesson just kind of happened. We ended up kind of dropping each other just because she's content with her current way of life and isn't quite ready to change. She also had some questions and problems she asked us for help on. It was one of the most Spirit filled lessons I'd ever had.
Flash forward a bit to scambio. It was super stressful leading up to it, because no one was available! Scambio always has a bit of pressure to schedule a lot of good appointments, so we can essentially have what Presidente calls the "ideal missionary day". We literally called everyone in our contacts, & only 1 person was free during that 24 hour space. We were pretty stressed, to say the least. Well, we showed up & quickly realized there was a reason God hadn't helped us get a full scambio. The sorelle had needs that needed to be met, & that was more important. We wouldn't have been able to do what we did if we'd had a normal appointment-filled scambio.
Now with both of these experiences, we noticed something interesting. Our desires were good. We wanted a good lesson for our investigator, & we wanted to teach & help a lot of people during scambio. However, God knew that in order for us to meet the needs of our investigator, there wasn't a lesson for us to prepare. He knew that in order to help these two sorelle He loves so much, we needed to not have many appointments. However, at the time, we weren't thinking very clearly. We tried to force a lesson for our investigator, & we tried to force appointments for that scambio. In reality, we should have been staying close to the spirit where we could've realized that although it wasn't clear at the time, God had something different in mind for us.
There's a quote by Elder Rasband that I found the other day during studies that I reeeeally liked.
The Holy Ghost binds us to the Lord. By divine assignment, He inspires, testifies, teaches, and prompts us to walk in the light of the Lord. We have the sacred responsibility to learn to recognize His influence in our lives and respond.
I just love the way he phrases it, that the Holy Ghost binds us to the Lord. It's through the Holy Ghost that we learn the will of God. If you have a righteous desire that God isn't helping out with, there's a reason. It's because he has something better/more essential planned. The best things of my mission and my life have happened thanks to God's plan, not mine. This week taught us a lot about the importance of paying attention to the Spirit, so we can follow the will of God.
Because, ya know, He kinda knows what He's doing🤷🏼♀️
1-Fireside speakers! 2-Claudio’s & Victoria’s baptism! 3&4-Pisa Scambio
5&6-Prato Scambio 7-13 Pday in Lucca