Keep Me Awake Before September Ends
It feels as if I was just here writing a week ago and rolling on the floor celebrating the win over Boise State. Even though I am rolling on the floor in pain this week, the experiences and blessings we have sown this week are worth more than mentioning.
Tuesday we helped out the Groningen district and went up to Fryslan where a monument stands locating the first ever Dutch converts who were baptized in a canal. We cleaned it up a lot and were able to have a fun time up there with the zone members. It felt like we were camping and doing service since we were in THE middle of nowhere and it was windy and rainy. I loved every second of it.
I was also hit by a load of bricks when I looked at my planner Wednesday. Elder Morrell had written above the day ´1 year in the land mark´ . I have lived here in Europe for over a year now and have less than 10 months left with all the treasure and history here. I couldn´t believe it. I talked to other MTC groupies this week and they all feel the same way. The zusters are almost gone. That will be a hard thing to get by.
We stopped by and had a quick lesson with Maria this week, also taught our other investigator that is a member referral and we go by this next week to do service with her :)
Saturday the music project came to Apeldoorn and performed that night. Elder Abankie was greeting people at the door when one of the best things on my mission happened. All of sudden I see a familiar face and hear the words `Kom je lekker schat! Ik kwam ekspres voor jou!´ Before I know it I am being swarmed into a 75 year old Dutch lady´s arms and then realize that it was Zr Poorthof who came across the country from Vlissingen to stay with her daughter a few cities down the road and see me in Apeldoorn!! She said she came just to see me and her daughter made all the arrangements so that they could make it to the concert where I would be. I was on the moon. I was soooOOOOooo happy and excited to see her. It was so special for me and even though I was only there for 6 weeks, Vlissingen and each of the 20 members there will NEVER leave my heart.
We also expected Maria to come to the concert (we had her personally write it in pen into her agenda to come) but as the concert began we just sat down and started to listen. Even few minutes I would look out the window and see latecomers head in to the building hoping to see Maria come in. After 10 minutes, nothing. 15 minutes, nothing. Even after 30 minutes when the concert is half over, nothing. It was a bummer because I know she would have loved the music and be touched by the Spirit.
Then out of the corner of my eye I see the front gate open. I see in the darkness a small Indonesian woman with her hair falling out pedaling a bike waaAAay too big for her and heading into the church. I almost fell out of my seat. I jumped up and ran out to greet Maria at the door as she is panting and saying IM TOO LATE IM TOO LATE! We went and sat down and she had to catch her breath for the rest of the show, bless her heart, BUT SHE LOVED IT. We are headed back in about 2 weeks to teach her again and she loved the church environment. MIRACLE.
Friday we had Mission Leader Council in the Mission Home which was very nice and very comforting. The Spirit in the Mission Home is as close as you can get to the temple without having to have a recommend scanned at the front door. It is definitely a refuge from the storm. We learned a ton about effective planning and member work which is a very inspired focus moving forward in the mission right now. It was a great meeting and I got to see great friends that are scattered as leaders across the mission right now. The Apeldoorn zone is doing well and on the increase. I really feel that in the coming weeks we will become better and more efficient.
After the meeting we went to stop by an investigator that Elder Abankie taught in Den Haag. It was so great to go back and see Den Haag again and enjoy the place that I spent a quarter of my mission. I love that city. The temple is close by, the ward is fantastic and the city is on the beach with such a wonderful missionary vibe. Definitely gonna be a highlight stop when we come back to visit again :)
This week we will have another exciting week with big plans and trainings. And BYU is going to beat Michigan in the Big House so that’s nice as well. Nothing will be better to heal the broken heart.
Also, today the Proclamation to the Family turns 20 years old. Read through it. Ponder about it. Apply it to the world today. It is 100% inspired and you would think it was written yesterday to address the problems we have today. I testify that prophets and apostles warn us and prepare us for what is to come. Listen to their counsel. They speak only truth as given from God. I testify that the family is ordained of God and that no other social unit was, is, and ever will be more important than the eternal family. We are His children. We are His family. I strongly believe that the 5th commandment to honor thy father and mother is intended on each side of the veil. What are you doing every day, in public and private, to do that? As missionaries we wear 2 names on our tags. The name of the Savior Jesus Christ and name of our family. I love my family with all of my heart and love watching them grow through the photos. It´s like watching a flipbook.
Be careful if you don´t exactly know which direction you are going, because you might not ever get there.
Verlieft op Nederland en de taal,
Elder Trevan Scott Reese