Albania ♥

Albania ♥

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Flecks of gold

Well, I know its only been three days since I last sent an email and to be quite honest in the past couple of days, not too much new has happened :) haha There has been a lot of finding and contacting, which is always super important. Lessons have been hard to get with the Holidays but this week is going to be better because everyone hopefully got the break out of their systems and are now a little more focused:) 

Sister Lakaj is doing great. She is so fun to be around and she is so positive about the work and it really keeps us going and pushing. I know that we are going to have a lot of success serving here together in Prishtina. I'm excited for big things to come... I actually want to talk about my companion and the awesome things she has already taught me. First of all she sees the little successes in each and everything we do. Literally with EVERY number we get or even every pass along card we give away, she is SO EXCITED about it and it is AMAZING. She'll say things like "I feel really good about her Sister Cheshire" or "I know he's going to call... We'll give him to the Elders and he'll get baptized".

We try our whole lives to be positive, but after disappointments and failures I think we sometimes fail to see the blessings in every single day and piece of our lives no matter how small they may be. Being with Sister L has taught me a lot already and I feel like she is training me in different ways. It has really changed my way of thinking and my outlook on the work here in Kosovo.

It kind of reminds me of a Mormon message I've seen that is based on a talk given by M. Russell Ballard. He talks about a young merchant caught up in the California gold rush. The merchant sold everything he had and ALL of his possessions so that he could go to the California rivers where people had told him he would be able to find large nuggets of gold, but when he got there he dipped his pan into the river and there was never anything. All he could get was a big pile of rocks. Then one day when he was ready to give up and quit, a more experienced man came up to him and asked him what he was up to. The Merchant told him he wasn't finding any gold and was going to turn around and go back home. The more experienced man explained to him that there was gold and that he just has to know where to find it. Then he showed him one of the rocks that he had in is pan and you could see TINY flecks of gold inside. The merchant was still frustrated and explained that he wasn't looking for little flecks of gold, but that he was looking for GOLDEN NUGGETS. The old man explained again that he was too busy looking for golden nuggets, that he was failing to see all the specks of gold that together add up to something valuable.

It was just a reminder to me of the little flecks of gold and blessings in my everyday life that I often fail to see because I'm too busy looking for huge "WOW moments" or in my case too busy looking for a baptism or new investigators when there is success just in being able to smile or share a conversation with someone on the street.

We can learn a lot from the people around us and that's one thing I've constantly been able to learn while being on my mission. I'm thankful for every experience and every chance I have to be around and learn from new people. There is so much to be happy and positive about, sometimes we just have to look a little closer:)

"I took the newbie to Newborn:)"

"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas..too bad Christmas was LAST WEEK. haha"

"She is a cutie"

"Elder Eddings trying to stay warm"


"Making a snow angel haha"

"Some of my favorite people ♥"

"My companion is a doll...and a really good cook :)"


Gëzuar Vitin i Ri!

I'm happy to be celebrating the New Year on my mission in Kosovo:) 

We had transfers this week and I was SO excited to find out that I will be staying in Prishtina for a little bit longer. We were surprised when we got the call and found out that Sister Olsen was going to Shkoder and I am staying here training Sister Lakaj from Tirana 4th ward. (the first area I served in) She received her call to the Salt Lake City Mission (Which includes Layton Utah:):)) but she is starting here with me until she gets her Visa and gets to go serve in my hometown. So I'm training her before she goes to the MTC. These past couple of days have already been so awesome. Its been kind of crazy with everyone preparing for New Years, but Sister Lakaj has an excitement for the work and she definitely has that "greenie fire" She helps me see things in a positive outlook and I love it. Its exactly what we need here in Kosovo. I'm excited to work super hard and see what this new year has in store:) Its going to be great! 
SOMETHING AWESOME:We were very blessed earlier this week to have a lesson with one of our investigators and when she invited us over we were happy to see that she had some of her neighbors over. As soon as we got there she was having us explain the Book of Mormon, why we are here, and all the things that she has learned.  We joked about it afterwards saying it was a perfect member present lesson because our investigator was already so excited to share the Gospel with her family and friends.  We had a great lesson and the Neighbors told us they want to continue learning and invited us over for next week. It was really awesome, because first of all we were able to meet some new amazing people ready to hear the Gospel, but second of all we were really able to see how important this is to our other investigator and how happy it is already making her to share the Gospel:) 
As you know, I am happy here:) I had a great week and every week just seems to get better. I could and do go on for days about how blessed I am to be here. I know that Heavenly Father loves and watches over his missionaries. I've seen many miracles happen right before my eyes. Sometimes you have to look a little closer, but you can always see them. Gods hand is in everything we do. Missionary work is Gods Work and his Glory. 
I love you all and I hope you had a fantastic week and a great start to the new year! 
me shumë dashuri
Motra çeshër

"Some more pics from Christmas at Bondsteel :)"

"Still in Kosovo :)♥"

"New Years eve locked up in the house watching movies
(movies approved by President Weidmann of course)

"My cute new companion Motra Lakaj ♥
I just ♥ greenies"

"My half asleep self outside on New Years because I
was woken up by all the crazy fireworks"

"Good luck in America Elder Simons!"

"Christmas presents from the Elders..They know me too well ;)"

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