Before I proceed any further, I keep forgetting to share something very important. I DREAMED IN GERMAN! I have to elaborate a little more because it was actually kind of funny. The four Schwarzenberg missionnaries were there. We were at some kind of big speaking event (probably a TED Event) and we were back stage just hanging out. We started talking to each other about random things in German. Before I even knew it, I saw Angela Merkel walk onto to the stage. Before she walked on stage, she walked over to me and asked us, in German, where we were from. I said America and that we were missionaries. She was very impressed with our German. Ha! Of course Angela Merkel would be in my first German dream (that I can remember).
On Monday after emails we spent the rest of our Pday at the Ebisch’s home baking bread and cookies and watching Church films. We didn’t have anything to do and were out of ideas; so we called Schwester Ebisch up and asked if we could hang out with her. It was actually one of my more favorite Pdays.
Afterwards, we stayed at the Ebisch’s for our regular Family Home Evening. And we askyped with one of the Sister’s investigators. It was way cool!!! We had an opening prayer via Skype and talked a little bit. Then we watched the First Vision video on YouTube. We found the link, sent it to him, muted our Skype, and then we watched it with him at the same time. Then we all came together and talked about what we watched. He is making so much progress. Heavenly Father has really been showing him that this is the right way for him to travel down. Before, he was atheist and had a hard time believing in a Heavenly Father. Now he reads in the Book of Mormon (he is Jacob now), prays daily, and knows that he is a son of God! The Gospel is so true. He is a completely different person now he has this knowledge. I am so excited to see him continue to progress.
My other spiritual experience was on Wednesday. Wednesday was a good day. We had District Meeting. Elder Lyon talked about our purpose in Missionary during his spiritual thought from the White Handbook and that we need to consecrate ourselves for this sacred work. Then the Annaberg Elders talked about Faith and Hope. We often think they are different and separate. But, when we read Moroni 7:41 and Ether 12:4 in the Book of Mormon, we find out that we need both. One doesn’t come before the other. Faith is knowing Heavenly Father is there and that his Son, Jesus Christ, is the Savior and Redeemer of the world. Hope is knowing that Christ can help us come closer to God and do hard things: to go go forward when there is no light. Faith and Hope are like the two blades of scissors. Which one does the cutting? They both do the cutting. Likewise, we need both to succeed and to grow. Our District Leader, Elder Ashmead, had us read the story of Abraham sacrificing his son in Genesis. We wrote down what we need to sacrifice and talked about why we need to make so many sacrifices as humans, as members, as children of our Heavenly Father, or as missionaries. God can see everything. He sees times as light and can see everything at once. So he can help us. When we receive prompting to do something or say something, we need to faith and hope to do that. Faith that we know he sees everything and hope that what he tells us is of value. We took those little papers and then burned them. It was a really cool experience.
Later that evening, we had our Family Home Evening at the Church with some members. Normally it really isn’t all too much fun. But, for some reason, we laughed so much and really enjoyed everyone’s company. Then, out of nowhere, a less active member that we had been sporadically visiting came and joined us! It was so great. I think he finally starting to make progress and will start coming to Church again soon on his own. He just has to make his own decisions at this point. We were very proud of him.
We are off in a few hours to learn how to cook some German food today from a member. We are excited!
I have a favor to ask of all the members at home and abroad! Pick one commandment that you have a strong testimony of and write a letter to me. It can be short. Write a letter of how following this commandment has blessed you. This is something that I want to try using with investigators and Less Active Members in the future. This will also be a fun project to help all of us grow spiritually. Thanks for the help!
Elder RR Hoffman
Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der letzten Tage
Germany Berlin Mission