Monday, May 18, 2015

Week 29 - Kosovo

 (reading PMG in our native languages)

 BEST view ever


 love all the markets/fresh fruit stands! bananas on ever corner yesss (and bartering down the price lol)

 Hello Kitty water bottle.. it's the little things in life ;)

 haha nice translations... appetizing or nah?
 P-day.. internet cafe and pants

V made us spinach Pita.. basically spinach pie.. YUM. no cheese or anything, fave Ushqimi popullore, hands down

pyll pa derra s'ka

hejjj si jeni aty? kini humb si kripe ne uje!

Currently in Peja, a beautiful mountain city that was recently opened and then last transfer shut down for missionary work for the time being.

Kosovo is beautiful! And hottt wow never woulda believed it back in January!

Another incredible week. It is such a contrast these days having consistent, progressing investigators to work with as opposed to "planting seeds" aka street contacting 24/7 like last transfer. It's a blessing for sure, finding some open and sincere people to teach!

First and foremost are V and Gj, the amazing sisters who were introduced to the church by a model LDS American family they were great friends with 5 years ago.. before the church was established in Kosovo! There were a handful of members (Americans working in Kosovo, it sounds like) in Prishtina back then so sacrament meeting was held in someone's living room and these sisters attended that but yesterday was their first time in church with our branch and not just sacrament meeting but Sunday school and Relief Society as well. They are such an asset already! Anyways they are amazing and I love them and their faith and understanding of the gospel amazes me and they just absorb the scriptures which makes me look twice at my own studies.. gotta search/ponder/pray, merely reading is never enough (name that primary song btw!)

S, the one in the wheelchair who was on baptismal date, has been MIA but hopefully we'll get to check in with her soon!

L, our Muslim former English student and FRIEND (loove her but we decided it may be best to drop her which I'm kinda dreading) is making amazing progress but the whole accepting Jesus Christ as the son of God and savior of the world is a big obstacle for her (and a pretty essential principle). After an English course we planned to show our students (beginner class) the Restoration video for the spiritual thought but the only video that would play was "duke gjetur Besim ne Krisht" (finding faith in Christ) which was def. meant to be because L LOVED it and stayed after to watch the end and took notes, and later we met with her and explained Christ's role in the justice and mercy equation and she loved that too.. she's amazing, so much potential in this girl if she'll just let herself believe! </3

N, our super smart and German-speaking 15 yo investigator friend brought up all the controversial topics in our last meeting with her: gays, priesthood, womens' roles etc. and we also talked a lot about how to KNOW when you've found truth.. some of what she said sounded a lot like the Prophet's feelings recorded in JSH: 'so many different groups.. which one is right.. is one of them right?'

And, on the rare occasion we have finding time (NEVER thought I'd say that in Prishtina lol) we have had great luck with tracting and get let in for impromptu lessons every time, usually with friendly college students (just girls don't worry) or nice young moms but as usual the Muslim tradition is pretty strong. Still!

Oh and before I wrap up, a cool experience: The other week we were tracting a bldg. behind the church and while knocking doors some girls were coming up the stairs so of course we talked to them and gave them cards which they didn't accept but on the way down they were leaving too and this time they accepted our cards (#sepseaijeton + numri yne) and then a couple days later we were back in that bldg. visiting some new investigators who we'd had a lesson with that first day and we saw one of the girls again, and I thought she'd be so sick of us but she smiled and said "hej si ke qen!" and THEN a couple days later we were taking the bus back from a lesson (so rare that we take the bus) and I glanced over and saw that same girl hahaha so went over and talked to her and she was just as excited to see us and was so friendly and nice and we got off at the same stop and she even walked home with us a little ways to keep talking haha cool right?

And also shoutout to our solid recent converts who I love working with! S and her sweet kids loved learning about/acting out Lehi's dream and the Hydricks have been helping us work with the J family to get them headed to the temple eventually and it's been great. And returning members. Love them. Wish we saw them more lol. I, our RS pres, may share her strong testimony full-time and serve a mission woo it's worth it I promise ! Anyone considering a mission, I encourage you to just go because it's not like you're giving up anything more important than sharing the gospel, and it's only for a year or two.. it flies by trust me and there are enough blessings of serving to outweigh any reasons for staying home.

The other day I did an insanity workout during lunch (a rare day where we took the full break.. why don't we do that more?! because there aren't enough hours in the day to fit everything in lol that's why!)) which was soo nice but I don't think I'll be able to do that too often b/c it's exhausting to walk all over and take our 7 flights of stairs multiple times a day.. (and run at the park most mornings, soo nice there) and usually by the time we're done planning at night it's all I can do to get up and brush my teeth and go to bed. Haha. Last transfer I said I wanted to push myself/ do more work/ come home EXHAUSTED.. be careful what you wish for ;)

I love Kosovo, especially Prishtina, and I LOVE these Albanians/ Kosovars so much and am so grateful for and amazed by their generosity and kindness ( generally speaking, of course.. not the cuns whew!)

Read through 1 Corinthians 2:4 and I've been thinking a lot about teaching by the SPIRIT not tryna use logic or impressive arguments or phrases etc.. so much more powerful with a simple, SINCERE testimony, and the only way to a lasting conversion apo jo?

Also President Uchtdorf mentioned in a talk (if you know which one please tell me !) that if we could comprehend (or explain) all the doctrines of the Gospel it would be proof that it was made up by mortal minds. Good to remember. However, continual learning is part of 'enduring to the end' we keep TRYING our hardest to understand and live according to our faith but, if we don't understand every little thing, don't get hung up on it because one day we'll have a perfect knowledge but it's not gonna be in this life!

Gotta go because I got some pics me dergu!
Ju dua shume kaloni bukur aty ne Plazh, shiimiiii puuth :* :*

<3 Madi :)
From Wikipedia: The Newborn monument  is a typographic sculpture and tourist attraction in PristinaKosovo, unveiled on 17 February 2008, the day that Kosovo declared independence from Serbia. The monument consists of the English-language word "Newborn" in capital block letters, which were painted bright yellow when the sculpture was first revealed. The monument was later re-painted with the flags of the states that have recognized Kosovo. Newborn will be painted differently and unveiled on 17 February every year

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