Happy New year! This past week for me has been super great. For the most part it's been full of learning experiences. New Year's Eve wasn't too eventful for us, to the point where it came and went, and I didn't even realize it. I guess that's the nature of missionary work sometimes though.
So first off, I absolutely love my companion. He's the greatest, but ever since he got here, I've felt like something was wrong. Everything I did started to suffer, and I felt like I just sucked at everything. We would come out of lessons, and I would feel like I hadn't done anything to contribute to the lesson. My mind would go completely blank mid sentence, and I was really, really frustrated.
Thursday we had a super good zone training, and afterwards I went on exchange with Elder Pollmann, in Bayview. I'll tell you... That was a learning experience. Elder Pollmann has been on his mission for 3 1/2 transfers now, and he's an awesome missionary, but he hasn't been out for very long. Throughout the exchange I just kind of took charge of everything, and was trying my best to work with him, and work together, but I was able to take charge of things. We went to visit one investigator at a member's house, and the member's non-member son, and daughter in law were sitting on the couch as we went in. As missionaries do, I invited them to take part in our lesson. They accepted, and when we asked them if they had ever been taught by missionaries before, they said that they had never been invited to before. So it was awesome. We went on to teach the investigator, with them sitting in and taking part. Then at the end when we set up a return appointment, Jessie, the member's son, thanked me and said that if it wasn't for me he wouldn't have ever sat in. Now the purpose of this isn't to say "hey look at how awesome I am," but it is to illustrate a growing experience I have had.
At that moment I realized the reason I was so frustrated, and had sucked so bad at everything. It was because I didn't believe in myself. I was trying so hard to be just like Elder Engelman, and trying so hard to make sure I did things just like he did, that I wasn't doing things the way I did. Of course I suck at being Elder Engelman... because I'm not Elder Engelman. But I realized, I do make a pretty good me. From that time on, I came back and talked to him about it, and decided I was going to be me. I feel good about my ability to follow the spirit, and teach effectively again. I'm confident in myself, but more so, I've gained a better appreciation of my Heavenly Father. He knows my true potential, and he has a plan laid out for me so that I can achieve my potential. He loves me so much. Now it's my job to continue to help everyone know how much He loves them too! I'll tell ya, it is the greatest job in the world. I hope everyone has a great week! Love you all!