"Sometimes me think, 'What is friend?' And then me say, 'Friend is someone to share the last cookie with.'"
He sure has a point there. This week, we were talking about what builds a strong friendship and someone mentioned three pillars: shared interests, shared experiences, and shared kindness! Friendships help us to forget ourselves and to give. And how great is it to know that there are people that would come to your aid at the drop of a hat when you are in need.
This week, we really got to see friendships in action.
On Monday night, we were in a train headed home when it stopped a bit longer than normal at a station. First, they announced that we would just be stopped for 5 or 10 minutes, then a woman walked through and said they didn't know how long we would be stuck, then they came around to tell us that this train would not be driving any further. We were able to call up a wonderful couple from our congregation and they hopped right in the car to come drive us home.
Thursday night, a young man that we have been meeting with invited us and a lovely couple from our congregation to come learn more about his culture by attending a Rwanda cultural night at the university. It was a great presentation with many cool facts and a talented, passionate traditional drumming group. However, the best part of the evening was saying goodbye at the end and seeing the gratitude on this young man's face. He was so touched that we took the time to go support him.
On Friday, we had the opportunity to 'build' a new friendship. We were able to help a woman(that we had just met the day before) build a wardrobe for her new apartment. We had so much fun working as a team to put it all together and concluded the afternoon with delicious Chinese food that she had prepared for us. It truly felt as if we had all known each other for years. We all left with warm hearts and sore cheeks from smiling so much.
I am so grateful for all of the friends that I have all over the world!
Love you all,
What an exciting week! Not only did I get my new companion, Sister Nielson, but two days later we got a mini-missionary!! What is a mini-missionary? It is a youth from our area that comes to stay and work with us for a week. It's a great opportunity to really get to see what missionary work is like 24/7 and to prepare for their own mission in the future. Not only was I so lucky to have one of my mission dreams fulfilled by getting a mini-missionary, but she is a super amazing girl that I already know and love from my congregation back in Heidelberg!
Adventures of the week included blowing up about 100 balloons to help decorate for a Halloween dance for the youth, having a how-many-marshmallows-can-you-fit-in-your-mouth contest(Sister Nielson won that one), eating wonderful traditional German food while hearing the stories of an older German woman, taking a road trip out to a tiny village through the absolutely gorgeous fall countryside and the many many detours that came with it, meeting the sweetest old Italian man that is apparently friends with everyone!, and having a microwave-peep-jousting battle(I won that one).
"Yesterday is ashes, tomorrow wood. Only today does the fire burn brightly."
May your joy burn brightly!