The ginormous and breath-taking cathedral in Bourges.
We got to go to Bourges this week for District Meeting. Seriously one of the most beautiful villes I have ever visited. Sometimes I just forget how stunningly beautiful everything is here!
We're not allowed to hang stuff on our walls anymore...
so we got really creative and created this paper sheet that runs in between our bookcases.
I LOVE PORTING. (Going door to door.) It is my calling. Some of the most beautiful experiences of my entire mission have come because of knocking on strangers doors and asking if we can pray with them. This week we found something I like to call a "Batt Jungle." (Batt is short for battiment which means building. It's what we call the big apartment buildings that are treasure troves for porting.) Batt Jungles are neighborhoods just full of battiments EVERYWHERE. And we found a huge one. And we met some of the kindest people.
This is how we make root-beer. We do something nice for Elder Smith so he shares some of the root beer extract that his mother sends him. Then we go buy a bottle of sparkly water. IT'S AMAZING.
We ran into lots of Muslim families, and they were all so nice and offered us drinks and cookies. One sweet lady said "It's amazing what you're doing. This world really needs some joy. Good luck and God bless you!" She taught us how to say may God bless you in Arab: "Sha Allah."
Then last night, we were heading back to our batt jungle and we saw this man on the bus. Soeur Hopkins pointed him out to me and there was just something about him... But we got to work on our battiment and we knocked on a door... and the man answered! His name is Henri and he is about 60 and so nice! We talked and shared and we ended up saying a prayer with him and are sending the Elders his way.
This week was yet another adventure on this journey of love. When we went to district meeting, the Tours elders were running a few minutes late, so we watched some missionary videos. There was one part that really stuck out to me. An Investigator says "The missionaries just came in and loved me and made me feel so important. And I know that if I am important to them, I am important to God." I felt like a ton of bricks had hit my heart.
I thought about all of my greatest heroes, and realized that part of the reason I admire them so much is because they are liberators. They love and value people so much that everyone around them feels like they are people worth being loved and valued. They give you permission to love yourself.
"There is always something left to love. Child, when do you think is the time to love somebody the most? When they done good and made things easy for everybody? Well then, You ain't through learning-- because that ain't the time at all. It's when he's at his lowest and can't even believe in himself. When you start measuring somebody, measure them right, child, measure them right. Make sure you done taken into account what hills and valleys he came through before he got to wherever he is." -Raisin in the Sun
I just love love. Love changes everything. It changes my life every day. We went to Stake Conference yesterday and I heard something I amazing: "Being motivated by obedience or duty is simply not enough. Don't get me wrong, obedience is important. But the service we render is made so much more powerful and significent when we are motivated by something higher. And that something is love. Love lifts our actions and changes not just a few details, but its very quality and character. As disciples of Jesus Christ, love must be our motivation."
Golden pictures of the sky.
I know. I'm obsessed.
Not only should Christ be our example for everything we do, but also for the reason we do it. Go liberate someone today. Go believe in and love someone who can't even believe in or love themselves.
This is a picture of a nun. I found it one day in a cathedral, and I just loved it. It says "If you want to live, you must LOVE"
Soeur Autumn Bradley