Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Hello from Maine!

guess what?  we got like 20 inches of snow in a 24 hour period.  needless to say it's been pretty crazy.  we actually heard that we were supposed to get the storm starting on Saturday night, so when in the morning nothing had fallen yet we laughed to ourselves and thought that everyone was freaking out about another dud like last week.  we got a few calls in the morning of people telling us the predicted conditions to then say "just so you know, we're not going to make it out to church, so If I were you I'd stay in."  and we were like 'no! the roads are clear there is no reason why we can't go to church.' we got dressed and started driving and the snow started falling.  going up to Caribou was just fine, the wind blew everything off of the road, but as we went through the morning and ward council the snow kept falling, and they decided to shorten church to just sacrament meeting, and then finally just the sacrament and some hymns.  out of our regular attendance of 150 there were about thirty people there, including one of the guys we've been teaching who quit smoking last week.  

after church there was at least six inches on the ground already and we'd only been there for two hours. we went to drive out and found that our rear left tire was at 13 PSI, and thought, we should probably fill that up. (funny story about how that really happened later.)  so we drive to the shell station, and our non-snow tired vehicle struggled the whole way.  filled it up, talked to the guy who worked at shell, and set off thinking, we should probably not go the way with the hill, and instead take the freeway.  every car that passed us left a trail of snow that took our vision out for at least 10 seconds.  We prayed a lot, and ended up making it safely back within 45 minutes on a drive that usually takes 20.  

the rest of the day we worked on some paperwork, and when the snow stopped falling went out to dig people out.  we got to help an older fellow who'd worked really hard to finish the rest of his driveway.  

so yeah.  apparently when it snows here they mean it.  and we have to drive to Fredricton NB today for Zone conference. YAY.  I'm glad I'm not driving. 

Funny tire story:  so we went to go find this lady's house so we could pick up a less active and take her home for our appointment that she somehow apparated away from knowing that we were coming. the house is on this road out in the booneys so we plugged it into the GPS and start out.  we drive for 20 minutes on paved road, another 5 on a dirt road, and then it gets narrower and narrower until it's a one lane drive out into the middle of nowhere.  We trusted the GPS so we kept going, but the road is clearly not one most traveled.  the ruts are deep, and in a few places we scrape bottom trying to follow the tread of the maybe three people who'd driven that way in the last month. eventually it gets so dark, that the thin snow looks untouched, and there are wildlife tracks crossing either way into the black woods on each side.  for some reason it didn't feel like she lived that far out, so we called, and found out that she didn't live that far out and we needed to turn around on a one lane road with bushes and trees hedging on either side.  so I backed my companion up 500 meters to the last fork and we turned around, to make our way back up the steep hills with ruts in them and snow to the wider dirt road where she lived.  all the way praying that our car's all wheel drive would be enough to save us from the bears!  it was during the way back that we heard a loud CLUNK and our tire was flat the next day.  but we got it fixed, and now we are safe to drive to fredricton.

Missionary work!  so it's pretty great, but sometimes it's hard to enter an area where you can just tell that the missionaries before you weren't exactly trying very hard.  our paperwork is terrible, our investigators barely know what the Book of Mormon is and all of the members for some reason think that it is okay for us to be spending more than two hours at an appointment, and/or come over for no reason multiple times a week.  


But it has been really fun to see that as we focus back on the basics, that there is reason to all that we do.  and out of all of that I think the greatest is how important the Book of Mormon is to helping others come closer to Christ.  When people understand that the Book of Mormon stands as another witness to Jesus Christ and testifies of the reality that the Gospel and Church of Jesus Christ was in fact Restored then it brings reason to why we ask people to read it and pray about it.  without that foreknowledge there is little reason for anyone to take us seriously.  but beyond that it is because of the spirit that the Book of Mormon brings to people's lives that helps them to know that there is something different and real about what we come to share.  when we search for truth and ask in faith, we will be rewarded for our effort.  

Jacob taught us specifically about the scriptures, when he was confronted by Sharem. "believest thou the scriptures?" and he said yea."then ye do not understand them; for they truly testify of Christ. Behold, I say unto you that none of the prophets have written, nor prophesied, save they have spoken concerning this Christ.  And this is not all--it has been made manifest unto me, for I have heard and seen; and it also has been made manifest unto me by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, I know if there should be no atonement made all mankind must be lost."

simply, the scriptures testify of christ, and as we seek to know whether or not they're true the Holy Ghost will testify to us that Christ Lives.

that is something that I know is true, and changes people's lives every day.  have a good week everyone!  

Sister Christensen

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