Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Winter in Estonia...

Tere IgaĆ¼ks,

Another couple weeks have gone by and I am still alive.  It has been bitter cold lately.  On Saturday it was -20 degrees Celsius (-4 degrees f) and yesterday it was -28 degrees Celsius (-19 degrees f).  One thing I have learned since I have been on my mission is that missionary work does not stop for the cold.  The cold stops for missionary work.  It has been very cold but it hasn't been a hindrance to us at all.  We still are able to press forward with faith.

Some great things happened this week.  About four days ago, we were knocking in an apartment building we hadn't knocked before.  Someone buzzed us in so we were able to get out of the cold and knock on peoples doors verses using the domaphone.  We knocked on one lady's door and she answered and said she couldn't talk because someone was sick.  Her husband was in the background sitting on the couch looking at us like whats going on?  He got up and walked over to the door just in time to hear us say we will come back another time.  He didn't know who we were or anything.  We went up to the next level and knocked on a door where an 80 year old man answered.  While we were waiting for him to answer I heard yelling from below and a big ruckus.  I thought nothing of it.  Right as I got a glimpse of this 80 year old man when he opened the door the ruckus got louder and louder so I stepped down the stairs a little bit to see what was going on.   Meanwhile my companions were talking to the man at the door.  I looked down below us and the guy from the door before was trying to get out of his apartment. His wife was trying to hold him in.  They were yelling at eachother back and forth.  He was grabbing the stair railing to pull himself out of the door. At that moment I realized he was coming after us.  This big huge angry man was going to attack us.  I turned to my companion and whispered, that guy is coming after us.  Right at that moment this old man let us in and locked the door.  I thanked him over and over for letting us in even though he didn't even know anything was going on.  Here is where the miracle comes in.  This guy didnt want to talk about religion for even a split second.  He didnt want to hear about it.  He wouldn't even say a short prayer with us at the end.  His wife came walking down the hall saying there's 3 men in the building, such and such just called, don't let them in.  Then she saw us and was shocked he let us in.  She told him she was sure he wouldn't let us in. We didn't know why he let us in after talking to him, and I don't think he knew why he let us in, because clearly everybody in the situation was shocked.  It was a miracle that we were able to avoid a conflict with this other guy just by being let in the door.  I didn't and couldn't have thanked him enough for what he did.

Another great thing happened just two days ago on Saturday the 23rd.  Our day started out great with a baptismal commitment to a guy that had been taught twice.  He accepted so we were really happy.  The rest of the day went down hill from there.  We knocked the rest of the morning, and no one let us in.  We knocked for 3 hours straight in the afternoon, and no one let us in.  The temperature was -5 degrees f outside so we were all miserably cold.  We knocked after dinner and still no one.  With about 1 hour left in the day, I called into a lady on the domaphone and said, ´We want to speak to you about God, do you have time?´  She said ´Sure, come in!´ We were all shocked.  We went in and thought this was to good to be true.  The first thing she said was that she has really been thinking about God lately and had a lot of questions and that we came at the perfect time cause usually she would never let someone in to talk about religion.  My jaw just about dropped.  I thought this was to good to be true.  It was too good to be true.  It still is because she is the most ready investigator we've had yet. She believed everything and wanted to know how to pray.  After we left, my companion pointed out to me that when I called in on the domaphone I only said we are here to speak about God.  He pointed out that I never say that and that I usually say We want to talk about Jesus Christ and his Gospel, or about our church, or some variation thereof.  He thought it was interesting that I only said we are here to speak about God, and that's what her questions of the soul have been about lately and that is possibly why she let us in.

It is interesting how God works in mysterious ways.  We were out all day long in the freezing cold, and finally we found the most perfect person ever, just from pressing forward in faith.  I hope all is going well and successfully with everyone.  You are all great and I thank you for your support.  I hope you enjoy the pictures.

With Love,
Vanem McGavin