Friday, February 24, 2012

Più Miracoli!!!

Hey guys!

Well I'm here in Olbia waiting to take the train down to Cagliari so we can take our flight tonight! Things are going good. I probably won't have a ton of time to write today because we are using the computer in the church and there is only one for four missionaries so we'll see. This hasn't been the most eventful week besides with our lesson with Adhemar on Saturday, so it will be quick. 

I'll start from Thursday: In the morning we did some finding work and then in the afternoon we met with some less-actives with one of our members. The whole situation was extremely comical because the member we brought was the fratello with the deep voice and he is very intimidating and also a "box breaker".  Well the father in the household that we went to visit had something wrong with his ear that he wasn't going to get fixed (because I'm guessing that not hearing served him better than hearing in a chaotic environment). Anyways, after us as missionaries taught our lesson (practically yelling) the fratello finished off with a lesson on the importance of coming to church. Hearing him speak on that subject, loud, and with his deep voice would have scared anyone to come back to church! It was way funny and you had to be there!

On Friday the Anziani da Olbia came because Anziano Vitali had to begin renewing his Permesso di Soggiorno to stay in the country for the remaining year of his mission. We did a split and I took him to his appointment and we had a great time together. After serving with each other for almost six months we truly consider ourselves brothers! He is doing a great job as Zone Leader. Well on our way back home Anziano Vitali and I were waiting on the bus and as we were talking Adhemar popped out right in front of us! It was so cool seeing him at random (or was it) and we had a great time talking to him. He said he was excited to meet with us the following day, and we parted ways after we rode the bus for a little while together.

Saturday was fantastic! The lesson we taught didn't go exactly as planned, but it went amazing anyways. The Spirit was definitely there! Well we came prepared to teach the first lesson to his family. When we showed up his family was out and about running errands, cooking, etc, so it was just us for the lesson, until his mother-in-law sat in and joined us later on. Well we didn't have anything planned to teach him right at the moment, or so I thought at first. We decided to just talk about the things we left him to read-which was a ton of stuff! He read everything, and asked great questions. Then his questions became more difficult. He said he had a bit of a problem about an interpretation of the scriptures. He took us to 1 Corinthians 13. When we opened there, I immediately knew that God had prepared me for that moment. At our last Zone Conference President talked a lot about charity. That has been my focus of study for the last while, and I spent about three days of study in this particular chapter, so I knew it pretty well. It says:

 Charity never afaileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whetherthere be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
 10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
He then shared that what he learned from the Jehovah Witness teachings is that they say Jesus Christ is the "perfect which shall come" and that when He does, all prophecies, tongues, and other gifts of the Spirit shall be gone away. Well we know that here Paul is only speaking about how important it is to have charity and that even if other things failed, charity would not. It's important to read the whole chapter to go in depth on this. It's really just a simple chapter about the beauty of charity, but it is misinterpreted to something completely different. After we explained this to him I shared that I have a testimony of the gifts of the Spirit. I told him that they were real, and that eight months ago I had never known a word in the Italian language, and now I'm here sitting with him and teaching him these things in that very language. After we shared these things with him he began to get teary-eyed. He told us that that was exactly what he needed to hear. He then proceeded  to share with us some personal stories. He said that he too has a gift through dreams. He told us a few of these experiences that he had when his dreams have helped him out some way in his life. One example of that was when he was back in Bolivia. His cow was lost (and it was very important for them to have it as a valuable source of produce and a way of survival) and that night, after a long day of searching for it, he had a dream of a location he was very familiar with, and saw in his dream that the cow was there. When he woke up in the morning he went to that spot and sure enough the cow was there. Things like this have happened to him several times and he knows they were all help from our Heavenly Father. Well when he began  studying with the Jehovah Witnesses, he shared these experience with them and they referred him to this misinterpretation, and said that since these dreams were only for his benefit they weren't from God, and possible from the devil and that he needed to be careful. He said that those words destroyed him spiritually, and shaked his faith. When we told him that he truly did have this gift, that these things are from God, and that he is literally a child of Him, I can only imagine how good that felt to him, and he gave us his thanks for enlightening him on that subject. He then said he now understands this verse:
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
After we all felt the Spirit very powerfully, bore testimony, and closed the lesson, he introduced us to his family. They are all so cool! He invited us over to stay for lunch, and we had a great time making friendships. Their family reminds me so much of ours! They are so close and love each other a lot. We only met them that day but I felt as close to home as ever when I was there. I will tell you more about them as time goes along, but I have a very good feeling about this family. 
Well I am out of time! I love you all so much and I look forward to writing again soon! Take care and have an awesome week! I love you Dad, I love you Mom, I love you Morgan, I love you Brooke, I love you Heather, and I love you Greg! Vi voglio benissimo! 
Con amore, 
Anziano Clay Lacey

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