I will start on Wednesday night when we walked into the Garcia home. Something struck me about the home and I didn't know what it was. Elder Berry turned around to me and said "Does this house feel different to you?" I answered in the affirmative which led Elder Berry to say, "I think someone has been saying his prayers." Our lesson with Brother Garcia went amazingly and he told us that he had been saying his prayers every day and that he knows that God is helping him. We taught the plan of salvation and he was so amazed by it. He asked amazing questions and was so excited to know. He is an incredible human being that is really searching for the truth. This is what missionary work is all about.
Thursday was a series of late and delayed trains which led to me and Elder Berry being an hour and a half late to district meeting and then I finally got back into my ville at 8:10. I had a great conversation with this lady on the train. She asked questions such as "why is the Catholic church different than what is in the bible?" and "Why do people pay to be forgiven?" and "where do I go after this life? No one has ever told me." I tried to tell her that I just know all of those answers and I started to explain, but she didn't want to listen to me talk. So, I listened to her talk about her views on immigration.
Contacting this week was so hard. We have recently had a push to love people more when we contact them. Since I got to France, contacting has basically become a game. A game to contact as many people that I could without losing a conversation or getting denied. The best way to explain it is that these people have daggers that they throw at you when they deny you. When you close yourself off from the situation and you just talk to talk, the daggers don't hurt. But, when you open up yourself and really try to show them that you love them, their words cut you to your soul. This may sound a little dramatic but it's true. I tried so hard to love people this week and just got denied all week. Thus, this week turned into one of the hardest of my mission so far.
BUT, one day, I was really struggling and I was just trying not to complain to Elder Berry, Then, he started opening up to me and I realized that we both feel the same way! Knowing that someone else was feeling like I was really helped me and now Elder Berry and I are really ready to smack France with the Love of Christ.
This week, I had the opportunity to give a priesthood blessing. When I was asked to do it, my mind started racing to think about what I was going to say, but then I remembered that the spirit would give me all of the things I needed to. So, I just calmed myself and placed my hands on the head of the person I was blessing. I don't know how it works, but the words just come. I listen, they come. Then afterwards, I don't really remember what I said because those words weren't for me.
Well, I've learned a lot this week and I'm excited when I see my spiritual progression. I love the gospel and how it changes not only the lives, but the hearts of those that follow Christ.
Love a lot,
Elder Marshall Cluff Underwood
Missionaries in my district