Monday, March 11, 2013

Week 17: Donetsk, Miracles, & Lots of Picture

K, so this week has been pretty cool, but VERY busy! I have only been in my area 3 days this week. So Tuesday morning I went on a split with Elder Lubeck (one transfer younger than me) to Donetsk to sign some registration paperwork. We got there at ten, found the notary, and were free until 5PM, which is when we were supposed to meet up with the Donetsk ZL's for splits. Needless to say, we had an awesome day of exploration. Attached to the following emails after this are some of the pictures we took around the city. We stopped and ate at a little bakery, and as we were sitting there I was thinking about how a mission in general is a once in a lifetime opportunity. One year ago, I never would have imagined myself sitting in a bakery looking out into the city of Donetsk, Ukraine. Crazy how the Lord guides us in the directions that he wants us to go. The following day, we had ZLC with President Podvodov presiding since Pres. Campero is in the U.S.A. As I mentioned before, it was all in Russian. I was honestly surprised that I could follow the conversation as I did. It was totally a divine gift of understanding, haha. 

This week we saw a miracle as well. We met some older lady on the street this last week, and she didn't want to meet with us but wanted a Book of Mormon and the meeting time of the branch here. We parted ways, thinking we would never see her again, and lo and behold, she came this last sunday. We will be stopping by today to talk with her a little bit.

Lastly, I was taking a gander in the good 'ol book of Kings. Second Kings to be exact.  2nd Kings 6:8-17. This is the story about the king of Syria trying to kill Elisha. Elisha reveals to the king how to conduct the war with Syria, and the Syrian king gets sick of it so goes out of his way to try and kill Elisha, the prophet.Finally, the syrian king finds out where he is. He surrounds him with horses and chariots, and a "great host". At this point, and normal human being would be freaking out I would imagine. I know I would be. Instead, Elisha wakes up early, looks around, and waits for his servant to freak out. Of course, he does. "Alas my master, how shall we do!" Isn't this how life is? Sometimes, we are like the servent of Elisha. We only see what is surrounding us. We are intimidated. We are alone. So what do we do? We turn to someone. The decision of who we turn to is up to us. Whether it be God, parents,  or friends. I hope that when we are faced with a situtation like this, we turn to someone like Elisha, who will open our eyes at the blessings that are around us, and can offer us a comforting hand regardless as to how miserable the situation may seem. Elisha turned to his young servant, and said " Fear not: For they that be with us are more than they that be with them" "And Elisha prayed, and said "Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes that he may see" and the Lord opened the yees of the young man, and he saw; and behold the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha". God loves us, and his angels are always around us. Whether those angels be in the form of family, friends, guardian angels, people you meet on the street, does not matter. What matters is that they are there. God always "has our backs", and there will always be more of us then those that are with "them".  Tough times only last so long. Never ever, ever forget that every one of us has our own armies of reinforcements. We just have to ask to see them. We have to be willing to recognize them.

With that being said, I love you all! I hope you all know that I am one of those that is on your side. I will always be here for you, regardless as to where I am in the world.

I love you! Have a fantastic week,

I'm gonna meat and meat and meat and meat and meat until I die.
Donbass Arena (Where Shakhtar Donetsk plays)
I think we're all capable of making a joke to this ourselves..
Generic Titanic joke
They call me wind-rider..
Sadly, the sword in the stone was not meant to be pulled by me..
Ukrainian Temple
It's REALLY big! 
Lounging Russian tank pose
Yet again
This is one of the temples that is in Donetsk, and was on the way to the ZL apartment.
Grooty making some blin

Groothuyzen enjoying Church 
This vent is in our kitchen, and yesterday it decided to drop a bunch of nasty water onto our stove. We had no idea that it looked like that on the inside. Needless to say, we are cleaning it today. Hardcore.

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