Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Celje, Slovenia: In thoroughness is satisfaction...

HI people!!! We spent so much time this last week tracting in the countryside.. and I honestly do not think I have ever been in a more peaceful place - birds chirping, green everywhere, blossoms on trees - I LOVE SLOVENIA. I could walk around there and tract all day - the world is such a beautiful place!

Tracting in the country side not only is beautiful.. but it is fun because there are more people who have not heard of the missionaries or our church because they live farther out than town center.  We met a man who was doing some farm work, and then invited us in for a drink. We talked about the restoration with him and although he was not interested in us teaching him more, he agreed to let us pray with him before we left. There was a sweet spirit in the little cottage. 

While we were tracting, we saw this old lady who had 12 HUGE lambs out in her yard.. and then in her shed-like-thing there were 6 cows that looked like oxen they were so big! We tried to talk with her about the gospel a little.. but that lost her interest quickly, so I thought I would try to ask her about her farm. It was going well and all until I quickly learned that I do not know any animal words in Slovene. We quickly started laughing together as I had to make animal sounds in order to communicate. And bless her heart.. she was so sweet but could not hear me well, so I literally was talking as loud as I could saying, "koliko BAAAAA ali imate?".. or "kaj pa tvoj MOOOOO..." She thought it was so funny and somehow was able to understand what I was asking! She gave us a tour of all her animals after. It is a good thing the Nydegger Family nativity scene on Christmas eve paid off for my all my animal sounds ;) 

Well we had a WONDERFUL week.. we had lots of fun and Sister Higgins and I are working hard to be diligent missionaries. We have been meeting lately with one of our investigators, that Sister Brown and I found at the beginning of my last transfer. She has agreed to keep letting us come over once a week and share parts of our message. We had a very spiritual lesson with her about prayer this week. I read in Eden's email last week that they will specifically ask the person what they want the missionaries to pray for at the beginning of the lesson, so that the investigator can see the faith that we have through prayer. So I tried doing that for our investigator here, and it really brought the spirit in a sweet way as she asked us to pray for her son in school. We are hopeful that she will progress. 

The Christlike attribute I have been working on this week is DILIGENCE.  Diligence is steady, consistent, earnest, and an energetic effort in doing the Lord's work. Diligence in missionary work is an expression of your love for the Lord, and his work. Elder Holland once said, "From the second you get up in the morning, EVERY thought... word... and action should resemble your call." 

One of my favorite examples of a diligent missionary is Nephi, the son of Helaman. After a long day of missionary work, Nephi prays to the Lord saying that no one would listen - which as missionaries, we sometimes feel that a lot!! The Lord comforts Nephi as he says, "Blessed art thou Nephi, thou hast with unwearyingness declared the word." It continues on in verse 12 and says, "He (Nephi) did not stop and go unto his house - but did return back to the multitude and began to declare the word of God." Nephi did not go lay down or take a break and complain that doors kept being shut... but immediately returned back to the people to keep trying - DILIGENCE. I am striving to be more like Nephi. 

After a day of contacting on Saturday, we were walking home along the river and walking back into center. This man came up to me and quickly greeted me and said he was happy to see me! I assumed that he was someone I contacted before, because I could not remember - and when all you do each day is contact, you meet so many great people :) I quickly told him I was sorry, but I could not remember his name. He reminded me and told me last time we talked was before Christmas. I quickly then remembered that Sestra Cuthbert and I had contacted him one of my first few weeks in Slovenia. He told me that he has been waiting to find me today because he heard the song "New York" on the radio and thought of ME. (Side note: I tell everyone here I am from New Jersey because that is a lot cooler to them than Utah.... And no one ever knows where New Jersey is, so I say it is close to New York - and then they understand.) I laughed and told him I was so happy that he thought of me! I also told him I was a little shocked he remembered that because I talked to him once for maybe 5 minutes on the street, five months ago and he remembered. He started singing the song and said "I was so excited to tell you today." I confusedly asked him how he knew he would see me today. He told me, while pointing to a window above us, that his apartment was right there and each and everyday he watches the sister missionaries walk by. He said "everyday it is the same, you talk with people, allllll day long.. Each and everyday! I always see you. So I waited to see you today so I could come and tell you." My heart was filled with warmth as I realized that this man, who I had completely forgotten about, was aware of us each and everyday - inviting people to come unto Christ and constantly talking to people. This man was a cute reminder to me, that if I am a diligent, hard-working missionary, people will notice. And although some decline the gospel right now, they will remember the missionaries they met or sometimes see, and one day, when the time is right, accept the gospel for themselves, when missionaries talk to them again. 

Sorry this is so long - Have a great week! HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARY!!! You are a light in my life - thank you for being such a wonderful friend and sister. I hope you have the happiest day!! I love you and miss you. 

Thank you for your constant love and prayers. I am so grateful and I love you all SOOO much! Continue being diligent disciples of Christ is your words, thoughts, and actions. 

Love, Sister Nydegger

My friend Herman!  He offered to take us paragliding after the mission...

one day this week while contacting we noticed there were a lot of these "what a tricky culture" graffitis.. so we took a picture next to all of the ones we could find 

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