Bonjour Ma Famille,
I hope that everything is going fantastic for you, it was another wonderful week here in Aix...like always. For...safety reasons (don't stress, but thanks for your prayers for your missionary in crazy France), we couldn't go to the church all week. But, it totally ended up being a blessing because we went to lots of the outer-villes and visited less active members. There were several cool experiences with this...
So in our mission, we have this thing called "The Missionary Game" (I know...really creative). Anyways, it's a way that President has given us to work with members to encourage them to do missionary work. It's a game where there are lots of questions, points, scoreboards, etc. with the goal of having the members give us names of people to teach and setting up plans for how to do it. We used it a lot as a mission when it first came out, but it's kind of slacked off the last couple months. During the last zone conference he encouraged us to start playing it again. Personally, I think the game is kind of awkward (random fact: there's not a word for "awkward" in French, it's a bit of a struggle sometimes) and I haven't seen a ton of success with it on my mission. But, we decided that we would have faith in the counsel from our leaders and set up several appointments to play it this week. It was because of setting up these rendez-vous and our desire to play the game that we were able to see some cool miracles this week.
Frankly, we never ended up playing the game with anyone. But, our first rendez-vous to play it was with the family of the old DMP (ward mission leader). When we showed up at their house, it ended up only being his wife there. We finished the lesson, and just as we were pulling out the game, the lady burst into tears. She told us that she's really struggling with her testimony, that she has a hard time believing that it's true, that she has lots of doubts, etc. We ended up being able to talk to her for a while and hopefully helped her a bit. The Spirit was so strong in that lesson. When I got to thinking about it, it was interesting to observe how the Spirit in that lesson was so much more powerful than it often is when we have lessons in the homes of even the strongest of members. It reminded me of the scripture in Matthew 9:12 where Chirst explains that "they that are whole need not a physician, but they that are sick." All of us are in constant need of Christ. We all have need of His Atonement in our lives daily. However, I feel like when we are teaching lessons to strong member families, we are acting as physicians doing preventative care. We're strengthening them and fortifying them for the future, while maybe helping with a few of the small current symptoms. But, when we go into the home of someone who is truly struggling, we are part of their active treatment. I love when I am able to help the Savior go after them who are lost.
Later in the week, we went to a less-active family that we’ve been working with for a while to, yes, attempt to play the missionary game. Didn’t happen. Before we were even done with the lesson, they were bringing up the names of their friends who they wanted us to help. They had already set up a rendez-vous with them this coming week to meet with the missionaries. So cool! They are changing their lives and are ready to share with others the same joy. Moral of the stories: follow your leaders.
Fun sidenote… We were able to go to stake conference this week in Marseille. Presiding at the conference was Elder Leimer of the Seventy, Dad’s old mission companion. Haha, please take a moment here and laugh because I am even meeting people that my Dad knows in France. I knew he was friends with everybody. Anyways, it was really awesome to meet him and get to talk to him for a little bit. It was especially great because I’m pretty sure that’s the first time that I’ve heard my name pronounced correctly in the last eight months. He said that Dad was THE best missionary that he’s ever met in his life. No pressure, but now I’ve got something to live up to.
Speaking of, it’s both Dad and Mary’s birthday this week. Happy Birthday! I guess this encounter this weekend is a great representative of my dad. He is truly the most Christlike person that I know. He loves the Savior and is constantly in the service of others. I’m pretty sure that everyone he has ever met thinks highly of him, I’m the luckiest girl in the world to have him as one of my best friends. Haha, and he’s keeps me updated weekly on football stats. Mary. Oh Mary. My funny sister. When I think of Mary, I think of personality. She is friends with everyone and constantly is making me laugh. No one else starts letters to me, “What up girl?” and puts over 100 exclamation points after “write me back”. I love you both, have a great day!
Je vous aime,
Soeur Alisa Hulme