Well it has only been 5 days since I last emailed so this will be rather short. It is amazing how much happens when you have 2 more days before you email.
We changed our P-day to Saturday because Sinter Klaas (Santa Claus) came into Lelystad Harbor today to greet all the kids and we had to see it. In Nederland they celebrate Sinter Klaas and Christmas. Sinter Klaas is more what we associate with Santa Claus in regards to presents and candy. That is celebrated on the 5th of December here. The kids put their shoes out and they wake up the next morning to gifts. Christmas is more centered around Christ’s birth. Christmas here is becoming more and more like the American Christmas but they still enjoy their Sinter Klaas at the beginning of December. So before the 5th, Sinter Klaas comes to all the cities in Nederland. It is really cool! He brings his helpers the Schwarte Peten they are black (covered in soot according to the legend). It was really fun to watch today and we really enjoyed it. I will attach the photos.
Well this week has been rather interesting. Sister Robbins and I learned a lot. One of the miracles we had this week was that we had a lesson with Vivian and he realized that he knows that the Book of Mormon is true!! It was really amazing. He still has a ways to go before he can be baptized (smoking, some weird family traditions, and church attendance) but we are getting there!! It has been really cool to see him really progress in the last few weeks.
So this week was strangely incredibly hard. Every morning I would wake up with a tread of going outside. I didn’t want to talk to anyone and I had really lost my faith. It was really weird. I haven’t felt like that since my first transfer here in Nederland. It honestly really scared me. We kept doing the work but my heart wasn’t in it. Yesterday when I woke up I prayed that I would regain my motivation and that something would change. My prayers were answered. We sat down for companionship study and Sister Robbins and I started to kind of talk about the way we were feeling. She expressed that sometimes she just really wants to go home. I helped her realize that those feelings are normal for your first couple transfers and that they go away. It was really good. But then later that day we came home and started weekly planning. I became really concerned when I looked at all the names of our investigators and I didn’t want anything to do with them. I didn’t want to plan for them and just felt really discouraged. I wanted to plan but for some reason I felt over shadowed with doubt. We didn’t even make it through the first name when I said to Sister Robbins that I was having a really hard time. We proceeded to talk for the next little bit about how we were both feeling. Turns out, Sister Robbins was feeling the same type of opposition that I was feeling. We both didn’t want to go outside. We were scared and the thing was we didn’t know why. Sister Robbins at some point told me that her mom before her mission said that you can pray for a shield to protect you from Satan’s powers. When she said that I knew that we needed to kneel down right there and prayer for the Lord to protect us. We did and the effect was immediate. We both felt like we could breath again. We both felt happy again and that we could do the work and wanted to do it. We also discussed how sometimes before miracles come we are faced with greater opposition. For a while I have been feeling like incredible things are going to start happening in Lelystad. It makes sense that we both felt so strongly the power of the adversary. Satan does not want us to talk to people. He doesn’t want us to be happy or for us to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to others. Also, sometimes the Lord allows us to be tried more than usual to see if we will call upon his help. In this instance, we did call upon the Lord for strength and protection. I feel like I can breath and that miracles are going to happen. I know that the Lord has things planned for Lelystad and the adversary doesn’t want us to succeed but as we rely on the Lord nothing can stop us. I don’t know what the Lord has in store but I know that it will be incredible and that Sister Robbins and I are stronger now and that we have the Lord’s angels around us. We have the Armour of God and nothing can stop us from bringing others closer to Jesus Christ. If you ever feel like you are overshadowed with doubt and darkness, pray for the Lord’s protection. We have been promised that the Lord will always be with us to bear us up. Opposition always comes before the miracles. I am grateful for the power of prayer and that I know I can rely on the Lord when there seems to be no other way.
The next week is going to be so busy and I am really excited. We are eating our first Thanksgiving dinner next Saturday and it is going to be wonderful. Next week Wednesday, I also hit my halfway point on my mission. I can’t believe how fast it is going by. I am grateful for all that I have learned and I am anxious for what the Lord has in store for me in this last half of my mission!
Vertrouw in de heer en hij zal je waarschouwen