Monday, October 26, 2015

Ljubljana, Slovenia: "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger!"

Hi everybody!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am glad everyone had a good week.. it looks a lot warmer in Utah.. but the sun came up twice this week so we were SO HAPPY.. Thank you for your love and prayers, I sure am grateful. 

Last week, when Elder Charles was here.. He said something that I really thought was interesting. He asked us what we thought the strongest attribute of the Adriatic North Mission was.. We all went around and answered.. things such as our faith, great leaders, the holy ghost, the ability to take the gospel to the people in their native tongues and having 3 different languages in this mission, good food... lots of great things that we have in this mission. He then answered, and said that he believes the greatest attribute we have is opposition. I have thought about that a lot this last week.. We seemed to have a harder week, with a lot of opposition. And every time I would feel discouraged or doubtful, I would remember what he said. The greatest thing our mission has going for it, is opposition.. because opposition ALWAYS brings us closer to Christ.. Everyday when we walk out the door, we are faced with adversity.. we cannot avoid it. Trials, disappointments, sadness, feeling alone, sickness, heartache... the "ne hvala" finger, rejection, lessons that fall through, are all difficult parts of life and missions. But what is so amazing, is that they can lead to spiritual growth, refinement, and progress when we turn to the Lord. It is important HOW WE RESPOND TO ADVERSITY.. I remember someone once saying, are our trials stumbling blocks, or stepping stones? 

Although responses to adversity will vary, one response that should always been constant, is our trust in God. We read in the Book of Mormon that "whosoever shall put their trust in God, shall be supported in their trials, troubles, and afflictions, shall be lifted up in the last day." When we trust in God and in Jesus Christ, we are promised that blessing.. Because our Savior, Jesus Christ has experienced our pain, He knows how to help us. And if we look to him in faith, he will strengthen us to withstand ANY trial.. no matter how big or small. We learn that there must be opposition in ALL things.. and it is because opposition helps us to develop a depth of character that really can come in no other way. 

I am grateful for these times.. for struggles, for opposition, for sadness because we are promised that we can grow and become stronger for them.. I seem to always remember that once the hard day passes, but I really am working on remembering that in the moment of trials. It is helping me to become a better missionary. 

Although there were hard days and hard times this week, there were also great days and good times! On Saturday we got invited to do some service at a members house.. They live 45 minutes away on a mountain and it was BLUE SKY and warm weather so we were so excited to go help them do some yard work.. It ended up taking a lot of travel time and we both were feeling a little frustrated because we missed our bus and needed to take a train which would take longer. We decided to pray before we got on the train and we specifically asked for an opportunity to share the gospel while sitting on the train. The train started going and no one sat by us.. we were a little bummed, but after the first stop, a young man then got on and asked if he could sit there. He told us he was going to Celje.. so we would all be together on the bus for about 30 minutes. We started talking with him and we ended up teaching him the first lesson. He asked a great question, but our stop came up.. so we exchanged numbers and left him on a good cliff hanger so that we can get together again! The lord does hear our prayers.. 

I was sitting next to this man on a bus this week, and I was trying to talk with him.. And he was not too interested.. It was a lot of small talk, with short answers coming from him.. I ended up asking what his name was and he said JoŇ°e. When I told him I had a brother with the same name in America, he could not believe it! He soon started to warm up and smile and be my friend. I had a great opportunity to testify to him and to help him feel the spirit. He asked me the normal questions: how long I am here, how I learned Slovene, do I miss America... And then he said something that really hit me.. He said, "I bet one day when you are home, you will miss this place.. and the things you experienced." That really hit me for some reason.. Tears filled my eyes on that bus as I continued talking with him. I really am so so thankful for my mission.. and the things I am experiencing.. the hard days and the happy days.. I feel so blessed for these sweet tender lessons I am learning everyday. I am so so happy. 

D&C 6:34 - Therefore, fear not little flock.. DO GOOD. Let earth and hell combine against you, for it ye are built upon my rock, THEY CANNOT PREVAIL. 

It is so so true.. we have no reason to fear.. but to keep doing good. We are truly NEVER alone. Thank you sooo much for your prayers.. I feel them EVERY DAY. 

Love, Sestra Nydegger 

p.s One night this week we were tracting, and a man answered his door with 6 cats around him. We told him what we were doing, and he responded by saying, "I am more interested in my cats than I am in your message.." JOOOOJJJJ We got stood up for some cats!!

Visiting a member took us into Italia for a few minutes!

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