Hello all! For the family this is interesting since I just talked to you yesterday! In regards to that I am happy I got to talk to you. I know that often I am not the best at showing my excitement but I was looking forward to yesterday all week. I'll admit I was surprised by how natural it was talking to you, as if it hadn't been 6 months since we last talked.
Our investigator got baptized on Christmas Eve! I'll admit that I was really happy that everything went well. I'll admit at times I got very stressed especially when it was 15 minutes before the baptism was supposed to start and she was not there. There were actually three baptisms that day and we combined them. All went well and Valeria felt great. Then on Sunday (yesterday) she received the Gift of the Holy Ghost and she was beaming.
I'll admit that Christmas did not really feel like Christmas since Russians celebrate New Years like Christmas. But it was still a special day.
Our sink should be fixed today so we can have cold water in our kitchen. We came home on Thursday after a great meeting to find that our sink was leaking and we had a good layer of water on the floor. Quickly we turned off the water and called our landlord. He said he would be there at 11pm but was almost an hour late. He didn't fix it because he did not have a new pipe so he said he would return on Monday. Surprisingly I made it through all the phonecalls and dealing with cranky Russian neighbors just fine. I only cried from relief when it was all over and I realized how stressful and nerve-wracking the situation really was. I'll admit I opened one of my Christmas presents from Sarah that night and it happened to be the scripture Proverbs 3:4 "Trust in theLord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding." That scripture was a great comfort to me.
I am excited for the new year and for the chance to rededicate myself and evaluate where I am and where I want to be. In some ways it works out nicely that the New Year corresponds roughly to my hump day (9 months on a mission!) because I realize how fast time is fleeting and how precious and sacred this opportunity is. Now is the time for me to express my love to God through my actions and how Him my gratitude and appreciation.