Monday, March 24, 2014

"...having a gang of wee girls following us around asking for free stuff."

It's been a pretty great week. I feel like it's flown by, but at the same time I feel like it was really long. That's the mission paradox it seems.
The highlight was that Nelson, the father of the family we've been teaching, came to church yesterday!
He is old and can't walk much at all, so it was a bit difficult finding someone to give him a lift to church...but in the end we figured it out ok!
He loved it; said that he already has more friends in our church than he did in the church he went to for 10 years. So that was great. Our ward is solid at fellowshipping new people.
He can't hear very well, in fact, we're not sure if he understood a word that was said during sacrament meeting or the lessons, but he said he really loved it, so he must have just felt the spirit and liked it. Pretty cool stuff.
His son Ashley, who we originally contacted on the street, said he doesn't want to come without a suit, even though we told him it was fine. He has a suit, but it's too small so he says he'll buy one before Easter and come to the service then.
His mum said she'd come as well, and who knows, maybe Ashley's wife and kids as well.
The kids are so funny, age two and five, and they just run around and love us being over at their house. It's just a great family overall and we're blessed to have found them!
Now some funny stories.
We were walking around the neighborhood where Ashley's family lives, and these three girls ages 6-8 came up to us and said "Hey, what are yous doing?"
We told them we're missionaries, and we talk to people about God and Jesus.
They saw we were carrying copies of the Book of Mormon, and they said "Can we have Bibles?" We said yes, because I think it's a good seed to plant...the kids will take them home and show their parents, who will maybe read it...who knows?
But we only had two Books of Mormon, so we gave them to two of the girls and to the other one we gave three pamphlets, and we told her that they were just as good, if not better, and she has three now.
So then they started trading books for pamphlets. Then they told us to go visit their parents' houses.
We did, and the parents were usually confused and uninterested. But oh well, it was a funny experience, having a gang of wee girls following us around asking for free stuff.
Then another day we were walking around the city just trying to talk to everyone we could, and we met two teenage girls around 17 or 18 years old.
They started asking us all these random questions, and then one asked "Hey, wanna take a selfie with us?!" So we did, and she put it on facebook saying she was "hanging out with Mormons."
We told them a bit about the church, but it was hard because they were easily distracted. But it was a way funny experience.
They asked our names and added us on facebook, so if there's a girl named Ellen who mysteriously adds me on facebook, go ahead and add her, and then maybe I'll convert her after my mission using facebook, if we don't' get the chance to while we're here in Lisburn. They said they'd come to church but they didn't.
Then while we were talking to them, two guys walked up carrying a brand new mattress. It was actually one of our investigators named Christ who we've taught a couple times, also an 18 year old.
He was carrying it to his house, so we offered to help. It was a big queen size mattress, and we could tell they were struggling to carry it quite a distance, and then when we all lifted together they were just so thankful because we got it to his house in about 30 minutes rather than probably an hour if they had to do it themselves.
So we are slowly building friendships with YSA, youth, and primary age people, and I think that's just as effective as it is to walk around talking to everyone about Jesus Christ and the message of the restored gospel.
Although that's great and everyone needs to hear it, most people just brush it off because they don't give themselves a chance to even hear it.
So yeah, it was a fun crazy night full of facebook selfies and carrying a mattress.
Other stuff...we had six dinner appointments last week which was pretty rad. All with really fun families in the church.
We volunteer once a week at the British Heart Foundation, a charity (thrift) shop, where we help organize and put price tags on donated clothes. Fun time.
We were through a park near our flat yesterday and tried to stop and talk to this man...I just said "Hello sir, how are you?"
He made eye contact, took off running past us, and then stopped running about 10 feet past and kept walking. We were just so, "What just happened?!" We've asked ourselves that same question with all the other random crazy things that have happened this week.
We approached another lady about to cross the street, and we said, "Hey, sorry we know you're going somewhere and you might be busy, but we're sharing a message about how families can be together forever. Would you be interested in learning more someday?"
She said, "Yes absolutely. Can I give you my address?" We eagerly took it, and we were impressed and both had a good feeling that she was very prepared and searching for truth in life.
But then when we went to her house another lady answered and said it was the wrong address. Such a downer, especially after we felt so excited that she wanted us to teach her quite badly. Oh well, we'll get over it.
That's my week.
As usual, very long, but I thought they were cool stories.
More funny and random than spiritual this time...maybe next week will be super spiritual.
Either way, missions are awesome and I'm loving it.
Love you all!
Elder Burt

Can you spot it?

Some memorial thing.