Unfortunately, the "Dream Team" is coming to a close this upcoming week! It has been the best opportunity that I could have asked for, serving with Elder Skinner. I feel like my skills, determination, passion, focus - have never been better than the time we've had serving together. Elder Skinner is an absolute beast and I look forward to being friends with him for a very long time!
To put the time we've spent serving together into perspective, I'll just share what happened to us yesterday. We taught several lessons throughout the day with random people on the streets, but there was one, specifically, that sums it all up. Just before 9PM last night (when we're supposed to be home), we were out contacting in a dead city center. Just about everyone is on vacation here, but it hadn't stopped us from being out and believing that there were people to teach. We stopped a young guy on the street - he had many tattoos on his arms and a necklace of a cross around his neck. When we stopped him to talk about Christ, he mentioned that a miracle had happened to him when he was a young boy. His grandma put a cross by the bed that he was in - he said that he could have died, but he survived it. It has led him to have a small belief in Christ, but he is still skeptical. So Elder Skinner shared with him the First Vision that Joseph Smith had from the pamphlet that we were carrying around. We asked him what he thought. He told us that he hoped that it was true. We told him that he could pray and receive an answer. He said he had never tried to pray before, but he agreed that he would pray that night and that we could meet him later in the week.
It was a last-minute find, but every single minute counts on this mission. We cannot go throughout our days thinking that a dull moment just means we need to call it a day - in dead city centers, or in Norway, "The Land of So Many Atheists". I've heard just about every reason as to why we shouldn't be here as missionaries. I know with certainty that every single one of these people are God's children. He sent us here to find them and to bring them back to Him. If there wasn't anyone ready to hear about this message, He wouldn't have called us here.
I am so grateful for the time that I have had to serve here and to become someone I never knew was possible. I know that an unwavering faith in Jesus Christ brings about miracles that we often don't see in advance. It's the principle of faith, and it truly is powerful. I just hope everyone takes the opportunities they are given to act in faith!