The Highlight of the week was a friend of a less active recent convert, that the Sisters have been reactivating recently, wanted to be contacted. We set up the meeting for Saturday after meeting him at Church. We showed up and he told us that he had quit smoking, was completely following the Word of Wisdom, had started the Book of Mormon, had been shown the Church were the baptism font is, and wanted to learn more. 5 minutes into the lesson he said that he wanted to be baptized. I couldn't stop smiling for a good half hour. We are working with him for the first part of June.
I also found out that an investigator from Center (my last area) that I worked with for all 3 transfers there has now finally set a baptism date! We were able to have lunch together and that was fun! So glad he is progressing. The work is exciting here in Odessa at the moment.
I had an unplanned exchange with my Son (Elder Glade) this week due to timing of registration and helped welcome in the new Elders into Odessa. It was great to be with them for a day or so.
We had Leadership council this last week in Kiev and it was very uplifting. Plans for Elder Ballard this Friday were finalized and I cannot wait. I am about 20 pages away from finishing the Book of Mormon challenge and I feel spiritually prepared. We did a few exercises in the meeting where we put ourselves in the shoes of the people that we meet every day and wrote stories from their point of view. I choose a mother pushing her baby in the stroller in a park. For me, that is the least successful contact and I was able to see and take a step back and realize that this a real person and not just someone to talk to.
We talked about stepping up the maturity and acting our part at Church especially. It isn't "putting on a show" or "being fake" but really turning it "on" and being a missionary and loving the people those 3 hours without stop. I guess no more "entertaining" the kids to keep them quite so their parents can pay attention:) I will miss it, but I know it is for the best.
I am beyond excited to meet Elder Ballard and listen to him speak. It makes it more real when I envision myself listening to one of the apostles from the New Testament speak. We truly have a living prophet and apostles on the earth today that lead and guide us.
Until next week, -Elder Devashrayee
Here are some fun pics from this last few weeks... Crazy how they interpret US things.