Monday, April 18, 2011

Letter # 3 from Russia April 18, 2011

His Work Will Go Forth!! April 18, 2011

Hello from Russia!

Oh, and I'm sorry. I was misinformed, I had heard that we are able to have people that aren't family e-mail us and then we can snail mail back, but I was wrong, so only snail mail or dear elders! Sorry about that! I had our Assistant to the President check on it....Wow!! This has been a CRAZY AWESOME STRANGE WEEK!! Well, it started off with a Family Home Evening lesson in a part member family. We read about the importance of the scriptures in our lives by reading Alma 37: 39-47! I asked Mom to write the scriptures in the Book of Mormon etc. so you could read them. I know you all have the Bible so you'll have to look those scriptures up!! It says:

44 For behold, it is as easy to give heed to the word of Christ, which
will point to you a straight course to eternal bliss, as it was for
our fathers to give heed to this compass, which would point unto them
a straight course to the promised land.

45 And now I say, is there not a type in this thing? For just as
surely as this director did bring our fathers, by following its
course, to the promised land, shall the words of Christ, if we follow
their course, carry us beyond this vale of sorrow into a far better
land of promise.

46 O my son, do not let us be slothful because of the easiness of the
way; for so was it with our fathers; for so was it prepared for them,
that if they would look they might live; even so it is with us. The
way is prepared, and if we will look we may live forever.

47 And now, my son, see that ye take care of these sacred things,
yea, see that ye look to God and live. Go unto this people and
declare the word, and be sober. My son, farewell.

It's awesome! Read it and apply it to you too! The dad is not a member and during the lesson he said that he wanted to get baptized because he knew that many blessings would come and he wanted to go to the temple with his family!! WAHOOO!!!! Ya!! So this week we set up another appointment and taught the first lesson. At the end we challenged him to prepare for baptism on May 22 and he said......... YES!!! Cectrpa Undejzorova then asked if he had any cigarettes and if
he could give them to us and not smoke anymore. It was the coolest thing to see him bend down underneath his bed and grab a box of cigarettes and then get another box from a shelf and give them to us. Wow! We had a member with us who had also had to quick smoking and it was powerful to have his support and testimony too. Alexander wants a new life and wants to change and become better. Unfortunately he did smoke this week, but we are going to work with him and with the Lord's help anything is possible!! He will gain the strength. He came to church this week though with his family!! :)

As we were contacting this week my companion stopped a lady and started talking to her. As I walked up, she spit at us. I don't think she was actually aiming at us, but spit at the ground near us. At first I was just totally appalled but laughed. How could she do something like that? As I thought about it though, I thought about our Savior Jesus Christ. He was also spit at, but as it says in D & C 19:18-19

18 Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to
tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer
both body and spirit—and would that I might not drink the bitter cup,
and shrink—

19 Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook and finished
my preparations unto the children of men.

He endured everything to bring about salvation for us. I thought about this woman who had spit at us and felt so sorry for her. How low and down she must be feeling to have done something so degrading to someone else, and how the gospel of Jesus Christ can lighten her load and help her change and become clean!

Then, I was apparently wearing a very American outfit this one day. We were contacting and the man realized I was from America. He was totally normal and not drunk, but then suddenly he grabbed both my shoulder and started coming toward me to kiss me!!! AAAHHH!! I don't
think he was going to actually kiss me on the lips, but on the cheek. I still yelled "NET" (no)! haha ya... kind of strange. But later we were walking on the sidewalk and this man came up to us and said, you're from America and started talking to me in Russian telling me not to trust my companion because she's Russian, and then these two boys came up at the same time saying hello in English, and then at the same time this girl came up asking if we needed help!! HAHA We were
surrounded by 4 people and had NO idea what was going on! oh well!

On our way home from a lesson we were riding on the Marshootka and my companion likes to flip to random verses and read them. She flipped to 3 Ne. 8:13. It describes Russian roads to a tee! It was very funny! It says: "And the highways were broken up, and the level roads were spoiled, and many smooth places became rough."

This Saturday we went to a garbage clean up with some of the wards in the area. We definitely didn't get everything, because there was a TON! But it made me think back on the highway clean ups in Rhinelander and the home made hot dogs from Bishop Lindner and when Anne and I found that Fishtank!! haha Do you remember that Anne?! :) Good times.

I was pretty frustrated with Russian this week, just really feeling like I couldn't say anything and wasn't doing any good. And then I lost my language graph with all the case endings. I really need it and I couldn't find it ANYWHERE. As I knelt and said my evening prayers, I asked Heavenly Father to help me find it. Immediately the image of my pillow came to my mind and I kind of saw myself placing my pillow back on my bed with my language card and dictionary in my hand
and then accidentally setting them all on my bed. Sure enough I reached under my pillow and it was there! Wow! It was SO cool to get an IMMEDIATE answer to my prayer!

My companion told me one morning this week that she woke up to me laughing in my sleep in the middle of the night... haha! Maybe i was just SO glad I found my language card!

The Elders asked me if I would help sing at a baptism this past Sunday, so we practiced I need thee every hour about 15 minutes before the baptism. It was a little hurting, but the 3 of us pulled through and it was nice to be able to serve! So I have to go, but really quickly. Here in Russia for Easter they greet each other by saying "Jesus Christ was Resurrected" and then saying "He truly is Resurrected." And so we've been thinking how we can take this common
greeting that is said by everyone and turn it into a chance to contact people and talk about Christ! This week I read 1 Cor. 15:12--22 and loved how it talks about it!! If Christ is not risen then there is no resurrection. Also verses 55--58!! But He is risen and death has no sting because He is risen!! And as we go about doing good works our labor is not in vain!!

I feel like in Acts 4:13, I am plain and weak and unlearned, but I hope that like Peter and John I may also be bold and people will be able to see that I am working at knowing my Savior, and hopefully know Him enough in some small degree that I can share that knowledge with

Love you all!!
Sister Cunningham

Yes God does exist! What a glorious message! There is Sunshine in My Soul Today. We like to sing this song often!
He looks like President Monson huh? Our yummy pancake crepe place.
Sunset near where we live. Muddy and awesome... but great members!
The dog skull we found.



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