Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Italy, Week 58 (12/16/15) - New Experiences

Welcome to Verona! Sadly I haven't been able to take pictures of the city itself yet, but just think back to my pictures of Trieste, Como, Lugano, a little bit of Venice... It's in that category :) aka it's gorgeous.  I didn't realize how ugly Milano was until I got here haha. But I will be taking lots of pictures this week and sending them next week, don't you worry :)
Verona has given me some fun new experiences these past few days. I'll share a few...
Riding a bike: it's been over a year since I've ridden a bike. It's weird.
Riding a bike in a skirt: let's just say Verona is seeing a lot of leg. It's a struggle. I'm learning to ride with one hand on
 the handles and one hand holding my skirt down. Luckily I have tights.
Riding a bike with a bag: balance is key.
Riding a bike in the winter: your legs are numb but your torso is hot. Your face is freezing but your head and neck are sweaty. So strange.
Riding a bike on busy streets: it's slightly terrifying and I'm honestly afraid that I'm going to be hit by a car. It happens very frequently in this mission.
Speriamo bene.
Helmet hair
Getting made fun of for wearing a helmet
Covering two wards: there's a set of
Anziani for each ward, but just us for Sorelle in Verona, so we get to go to all the activities and try to go to both wards for sacrament at least. It's hard remembering names in the first place. Now we have to remember what ward they're in.
And so many more! But I absolutely love it! I'm still getting used to riding a bike and it's causing some stress
 whenever we're on busy streets, but I'm learning and it's getting better!
We have some wonderful people here! There's one woman who has a baptismal date for January ninth and we're so excited for her! Her husband is still in Ghana and he calls while we're teaching her and will talk to us and tell us his
 counting on us to help her to see the truth and be baptized. It's awesome!
Also, my companion,
Sorella Griffin, is the bomb digiddy. We get along we too well haha. Some fun facts: she's from Utah. Her uncle was my Book of Mormon teacher my second semester at BYU. Her family is similar to mine: girl, boy, boy, girl, she's the youngest, and our siblings are pretty much the same ages. She does however have an adopted little sister which threw off our matching pattern, but that's okay. And she's just great :)
We taught some incredible people the past few days! It's been fun being able to talk about happiness a lot. I love talking about happiness. I have heard way too many times that happiness is not achievable in this life. There's no such thing, it's just a dream. Yes, we can have serenity and tranquility, but happiness? No, we have to wait for that.
Well I'm here to tell you that that's not true! In our lesson with a new investigator yesterday, we were talking about just this, and I said "Jesus wants us to be happy in this life. We don't have to wait until after this life or after a trial to be happy. We can be happy 
now." And she just smiled so big and joy and light just filled her eyes. It was clear that she had opened up her heart to let the Spirit testify of the truthfulness of that statement. And I felt it so strongly as well! "Adam fell that men might be, and men are that they might have JOY."- 2 Nephi 2:25 (emphasis added). We are created in such a way that when we are doing what is right, when we are following Christ's example, we are happy! Pure, righteous, true happiness fills our lives. A happiness that cannot be found through any other means. A happiness that only comes through making sacred covenants with our Heavenly Father and living in accordance with those promises we made to Him. Aren't we lucky? But what's better is that that joy that we feel having it for ourselves is doubled, tripled, quadrupled, when we help others find it as well. Don't you love making another person's day brighter by helping them or making them laugh? Or even just making them smile? That feeling comes from God. We're feeling a taste of God's joy when His children are brought closer to Him. Every smile that results from the actions of a disciple of of Christ helping a brother or sister brings that person, as well as the disciple, all the more closer to Christ. How beautiful is that?!?!?! Spread that Christmas joy! And don't let it just last through Christmas! People need it even more after the holidays are over and people go back home and to work and the weather is a little more gloomy. Reach out, smile, and do the world of the Savior in every moment.
I love you all so much! Thank you for your love and support! Make these next few days wonderful and remember why they are so wonderful. A child is born, a Son is given. And His name is Wonderful.
voglio un mondo di bene! Buone feste!
Sorella Hawks :)

 This is my Italian family back in Milano :)


Sorella Hogan and Sorella Avila! I may or may not be photobombing in this picture...

The train ride home was really squished. So crowded in fact that Sorella Griffin was able to take a nap in the man's backpack standing up. Not really, but she could have!

No comments:

Post a Comment