Monday, August 29, 2016

Freaking bus drivers

Well this week was definitely a learning lesson for sure!! The Lord
definitely throws trials and challenges our way and sees how we are
going to take them. This week was a perfect example for that.

On Tuesday we went to a town outside of Mannheim called Veirnheim.
It's not tiny but not big enough to be a city. Anyways we did service
for a member there and when it came time to leave we took a bus back
to the tram stop because it's a long walk from her house. Well the bus
pulled up and we showed the driver our year cards (these just allow us
to go anywhere on a tram and bus and last for a year, just so you know
they were not expired!). Well the driver said they were old and he
took them and wouldn't give them back. So we got off the bus and he
drove off. So we walked to the tram stop and bought a ticket to get us
back to our apartment. We found out a couple days later that our cards
weren't expired and the bus driver pretty much stole them.

And it goes on! The next day we totally forgot that we didn't have our
cards anymore but we had places to go so we were riding the tram all
day. When it came time to come home we were about to get off on our
stop and there just happened to be a guy checking people for travel
cards. We obviously didn't have them and were fined for it. So we went
to the company building and tried to get out of paying because of the
situation with the bus driver. Anyways long story short we still don't
have our cards back and have spent quite a bit of money on a daily
ticket to ride the trams.

So when all of this was happening I was thinking that because of all
of this we were going to be blessed with that golden investigator that
leads into an easy but powerful baptism. I was completely wrong. I
realized that because we were going through this trial we weren't
going to get something we wanted from the Lord, rather He was humbling
us and helping us to see how much He has done for us. I realized that
this trial may have sucked and is still not over, but we have grown
from it just as much if not more then any other trial.

So I hope everyone is looking at the best side of the trials and not
beating themselves up! Just always turn to the Lord in thanks, we have
no idea how much he has done for us!

Elder Rogers

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Monday, August 22, 2016

Too much fire for Germany to handle!

Well this week was pretty good! We had transfers and now Elder Morley
is at the Mannheim hood! Haha this dude is way sweet! He is a lot like
me it's crazy! And he only has a couple transfers left so it feels
like I'm getting trained again! Haha but let me tell ya, nothing on
Elder Stiles at all, but I loooove not being trained anymore! It's so
nice! I feel like a real missionary now! Haha!

Anyways we did a lot of finding this week and go by's in inactive and
less active members! No one answered their doors to talk and a couple
did answer but didn't want to talk! Haha it's all good though because
what makes you successful as a missionary is trying!

Church was way awesome and I'm loving the members more and more
everyday! We only had one member appointment this week and it was with
my favorite member Saša! We went to his house on Saturday just to
surprise him and I felt bad because he was trying to make us a cake
real quick! He is seriously the coolest guy I've met here. Anyways we
decided to share the story in Matthew chapter 14 when Jesus walks on
water and helps Peter up. We had just read the scripture and were
about to get to the punch line in our little spiritual thought. Then
out of no where his kitchen had flames shooting out of it and the
kitchen was just bright red!!!! Come to find out, the cake had baked
just a little too long and he was baking it on top of the stove in a
pot!!! Hahahah! He threw a soakin' wet towel over it and it just
puffed smoke everywhere!! His fire alarms just started going crazy!
Eventually it settled down and we got back to our chairs. The spirit
was still a little there but it was nearly impossible to get the
spiritual thought back onto track. We finished it and talked with him
some more, then left. It was definitely crazy and it was good to see
Saša just laugh about it! I absolutely love this guy!

Anyways just to wrap this up, I'd like to talk about Jesus on the
water real quick like we did with Saša. I always knew the story but
never really did any real thinking on it. Often the first thing
we think about when we think of Peter was him denying knowing Christ
three times. I think it is very interesting that out of all the
Apostles, Peter was the  only one that was willing to try to walk out
to Christ. Just the word "try" is good enough for our Savior and
Redeemers atoning sacrifice. It's not taking the easy route, it's not
cheating the Savior of His eternal love. When we try we should be
completely giving our all, that is when our perfect example, Jesus
Christ, will "lift us out of the depths of the sea" so to say. I know
that His grace is sufficient for everyone and I am so very grateful
and I also KNOW that He gave His life for us each personally. We
always need to be doing our best and giving our all, but as long as we
are trying to do better He will ALWAYS be there. Never ever doubt the
power of the Atonement.

Till next week!!

Elder Rogers

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Saturday, August 13, 2016

A crazy old lady and a bridge

Moin moin!!

This week was sooo crazy, stressful, awesome, crazy, and all around
just another week as a missionary. Some crazy things happened and if
you don't read this whole email then that sucks for you!! Haha! Just
kidding, I always worry about my emails being to much me or just too
dorky or whatever, so if they are then I'm sorry you feel that way!!

Anyways, I just have to say this Saturday is going to be a sad day in
the Mannheim hood. We went on a split this week and it was the hardest
longest slowest time of my mission so far. The Elder I was with just
wanted to go sight seeing and I just went with it because he has been
out longer then me. Last time I do that!!!!!! Next time I have a comp
that wants to go sight seeing I'm going to laugh at him and just do
what we are supposed to. But it made me really miss Elder Stiles and
made me very nervous for transfer calls this Saturday. Pretty sure he
is heading out because he has been here since January! So he is due
for a change, but we have gotten so close in these last few transfers!
I can't believe how close we have gotten, I have never opened up to
anyone this much in my life in such short a time that went so fast! He
is a total stud and he is seriously such a homie. There isn't one
thing that I would say bad about him simply because there is nothing I
can find! And trust me, I have thought about it! Hahaha! That being
said, if anyone where to say something bad about him I would
immediately know that that don't know the same Elder Stiles! I'm
really going to struggle with him gone. He is definitely the first
person I have felt comfortable and have had fun with ever since I left
my family for the last time. But it is what it is!

So this week we had not met with Ali. He works a ton with his new job
and because of that hasn't made it to church for a month or so now.
Which is a total bummer. But we had met up with an investigator named
Obeji! This guy is one of the coolest guys I've met on my mission so
far and he is from Nigeria so that makes him even cooler! But the
downside is, he is a refugee which means no lessons and definitely no
baptism. Unless he can get an apartment, job, and visa then we will be
able to. We took him to the church and showed him around. The first
thing he asked was where is the baptismal pool! Haha we showed him and
it was amazing! The fount was closed by the doors that hook together,
as soon as we opened them up it was like the Holy Ghost was just
waiting behind the doors and just hit us hard. It was powerful and he
wants to get baptized so bad. I really hope he can get those things!

Earlier in the week we met with an active member that hasn't been able
to get to church for 4 weeks until yesterday!! But, we were able to
meet with him when he was home and talked to him about how he has been
doing. His name is Saša and he is probably my favorite member here. He
was very depressed from a number of things, we tried to help him with
a bunch of talks and scriptures. Before we left he asked for a
blessing. The Spirit works so powerfully and I would NOT be where I am
without its help and direction. The power of the Priesthood is truly
amazing and I know that it has been brought back onto the earth by a
humble prophet and it was the same power that Christ had while on the
earth. Absolutely amazing!

Now for the funny part of the week, haha. We went by on an inactive
member that had a stroke a year or so ago and can't speak but can
smile huge, and also lives in a senior care home. Usually what we do
is just go in, share a message, talk about the week, and then leave
with prayers before and after. Before we went into the room this time
this older lady was walking down the hall but holding onto the railing
on the wall moving really slowly. She was just outside the door when
we walked in. We started talking to him and she got through the door,
then she slooooowly walked over to me and was about to corner me into
the wall! I kept asking her if everything was ok or if she needed help
and she just starred right at me!! Thankfully she sat down in the room
and we just continued on with the lesson. We stayed a prayer and right
when we got down she was standing right next to me!! It was freaky,
then I helped her out of the room, we had the lesson and left. Hahaha
it was freaking crazy! Haha you really just had to be there honestly!

But, just to wrap this huge puppy up with a spiritual side haha! So
yesterday following church, Elder Stiles and I went finding on the
streets. We eventually got to this bridge that we have crossed only
once before. It's a bridge that doesn't have any road on it so it's
strictly for people walking and riding bikes, perfect for talking to
people. Anyways, the last time we were on it I stopped a guy and just
couldn't put the words together right in German for him to understand.
We had walked away from him and I began to beat myself up. I thought
that I wasn't good enough, that this wasn't for me and that nothing
could help me so I might as well give up. Well, yesterday we stopped
an older couple and introduced who we were and how we want to help
them, they replied and said we are to old. The Spirit told me to
immediately fire back and say that no one is to old! So I did, they
just laughed and said good day. I was bummed they weren't interested,
but I was happy because I had redeemed myself since the last time!

So, just like the first time I talked to that guy and failed on the
bridge compared to the older couple, its a lot like the Atonement. We
may mess up here and there and beat ourselves up. We may say we aren't
good enough to use the Atonement, that it's not for us, and that
nothing can help us be better then we are. Well just like I redeemed
myself on the bridge, the Savior, our perfect all knowing older
brother, redeemed us by giving up His life so that we can be back with
Him and our loving Heavenly Father. He loved and loves us so much that
He was willing to give His life for every single person. Just think
about that for a couple seconds, actually always think about that
because that's how powerful and meaningful it should be in your life!!
His Atoning sacrifice was enough and always will be, no matter how bad
we think that we are! We will always have a chance to be redeemed,
because They will always love us. I know it to be true and I have
witnessed it in my life and in others!! It works! Don't underestimate
the power that the Creator of the world has, no one is greater nor
ever will be!!

Also, just a quick challenge. Every time you say your personal prayer
just make sure it's quiet and after you say amen to close, don't move
and just keep your eyes close. I feel like it gives the Spirit a
chance to talk back to us, and just think about Gods love for you!

Elder Rogers!

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Monday, August 1, 2016

Moin moin!!!

What is up!!!!

Just so you all know, "moin moin" is something some Germans say
instead good morning and it sounds hilarious!! Anyways, this week
ended a lot better then it started so that is always good! At the
beginning of the week I was just real fed up with people telling me
they can't understand me cuz of my freaking accent. I wanted to knock
a guy out that asked why I was speaking English. But I'm a missionary
so I love him! Haha sometimes you just have to say it even if you
don't mean it! Haha!

Anyways we stayed really busy going by on inactive members and finding
people. We finally got to meet with Ali!! We had a member come with us
and he helped out a ton! We got him to commit to keeping the word of
wisdom for at least 4 weeks and he stayed he will read 2 pages at
least out of the Book of Mormon everyday. We also told him that if he
asked the Lord for help then there is no way he won't be able to do
it. I hope he can stick to it and can see the blessings!! Also a guy
from Egypt stopped us on his bike, pulled out one of our cards and
told us he doesn't know how to get to our church. We told him and he
showed up!? It was crazy! He speaks a little German and the whole time
at church he kept asking us about marriage. I think at first he liked
our church because of the whole plural marriage thingy, after we told
him we can only have one wife now he looked a little bummed, but he
didn't leave!! Haha! There is a catch to this guy though, he doesn't
live in our area but comes to our church because he won't have to pay
for a train ticket ever Sunday. Plus he could be a refugee so if
that's the case we can't teach him at all. So even if we can teach him
we can't! Haha it's all good someone else will hopefully baptize him.

Another awesome thing happened when we went by on an inactive member.
No one in our ward has ever heard of him, but he said he wants to come
back to church! We are way happy for him! Other then that it was a
pretty normal week, we had lunch with a member family and they are way
awesome! We have been there once already but it's just an older couple
and they are really nice! I got a picture with them but it's a little
awkward because I didn't know where or how to stand! It's all good.

I can't really think of anything funny at the moment so I'm just going
to wrap this puppy up talking about the power of prayer!! Sometimes I
feel like I pray for something I need to happen over and over and
eventually for some reason I forget about its importance but still
bring it up in prayers here and there. And then Heavenly Father
follows through like always! I'm very grateful for the blessings that
my family and friends get at home. A big thing that helps to keep me
going is that yeah even if I'm struggling everyday, everyone at home
is getting blessed and our future families will be blessed! So keep it
goin and simply pray! Never forget or overthink the power of prayer.
Love you guys tons!

Elder Rogers

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