Monday, November 3, 2014

Darkness and Diligence

Hey all!

This week has been pretty much all that I have expected.  I dropped off Elder Chantry at Rotterdam Central Train station and picked up my new companion Elder Lovin (Salt Lake City, Highland High School) and we were off.  

Rotterdam Central Train Station

Finally!  Ran into Elder Knudsen from my home stake!

Daylight 'savings' was on Sunday, and this week has been really dark.  The sun isn't really completely up yet until almost 9 am and is completely down by 6 pm at night.  For those first couple days, I'll be honest - it was a little depressing with all the change going on and the sun never being out.  It is hard to work when the sun isn't out.  But no worries, as soon as I realized what was the cause I've been able to whip it and get right back on path!  I have to laugh though, Dutch people are funny. In general, they are already a little less likely to even talk about religion than most.  But now that the sun is going down, they use that as even another excuse to turn us away.  Haha, it's just kind of funny. 

Park in Gouda

View Across a Dyke in Woerden at Night
Doesn't quite give it justice, especially since there was a windmill lit up by
lights in the background that you can't see in this one.

Rope Tower in park in Capelle

Me and Elder Lovin on top of the Rope Tower
We just had to - it was so random and cool!

Anyways, going into this transfer I had the feeling that what I would need to focus on studying and applying would be diligence.  Elder Lovin and I have been super diligent thus far in working hard to get some people we can teach, because as of when I picked him up we had one person we were teaching and one less active we are working with.  We decided to put all our efforts in going through the area book and potentials list, and in trying to find some new potentials on our own.  Every time before we walked out the door this week, we prayed that the Lord would bless us, that we would be able to be successful in finding people whom we could teach, even sometimes praying specifically for the blessing we wanted. One such case was Saturday. As we walked out the door, Elder Lovin prayed that in the next 3 hours we could find 2 people whom we could teach.  The Lord answered our prayer, as we found 2 within the first hour of our look ups and door knocking.  (We actually worried that our prayer had been answered too fast and that in the next 2 hours we would find no success, but the Lord really rained His blessings down as we found 3 more!)  The Lord not only blessed us in this situation, but for our diligence in all our work this week.  We went from having no appointments for next week to now having 5, as well as 4-5 others who said to come back in a couple days. We also were able to place 3 Book of Mormons!  It is my testimony that the Lord will bless all of us for our diligence.

Along with this is finally really starting to see the fruits of my labors in the language. Since I have gotten here, I have gone from not understanding nearly anything, to actually being comfortable listening to an entire Priesthood lesson, Sunday School lesson, and Fast and Testimony meeting this Sunday, and learning from it!  I am also seeing progress in speaking the language, as I was able to give my testimony of the Book of Mormon without having to translate any of it in my head for the first time!  Part of this progress I believe is not being able to fall back on Elder Chantry as much, but I know this and all the blessings like it are from the Lord. The gift of tongues, and interpretation of tongues are true and are given as I seek them diligently.

Click here for more information on the Articles of Faith

This is the way nearly all gifts, revelation, testimonies, and other things are gained.  Our Heavenly Father wants to give us all that he can, but he does know what is best for us. Thus, we must first put our work in, both to prove our faith and to give him something to work with.  Then he can give us the blessings we want because we have learned from Him, and trusted Him to do so.  The Lord will make us equal to all of our challenges if we are diligent and obedient.

This work is true, it is the Lords work.

Love you all!

-Elder Hayden L. Lott

PS shout out to my little sister, it's her birthday this week, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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