Monday, November 25, 2013

So this is what it feels like to live in a classy apartment in France

We found out late last night that we were moving apartments. An emergency move. They've been wanting to put us in a big apartment for a while because there are always people staying with us for exchanges, for coming into the mission, for leaving the mission, and we have not the space! So finally last night it happened. We threw all of our stuff into our suitcases as fast as we could and moved a couple of streets over (dramatic, huh) and now live int he classiest apartment in all of France. Let me just describe it, because it is soon going to be filled with 10 triple bunkbeds (TRIPLE. they're turning us into the Lyon Barracks), so I'm gonna enjoy it while it lasts! You walk past a fruitstand and come to tall, thick, double wooden doors. We push those open into a big marble entry way to the building. There's a skinny elevator and cold marble stairs that spiral up into the building and an old wooden handrail. On each floor, there are tall windows, the glass so old it's wobbly and thick in places. Outside there is a chimneyed house with ivy crawling up the side and the red tile roof and the brick chimney. The ivy leaves are changing color with the seasons. And then our apartment--chevronned wooden floors that creak and that have woodworm lines in them. A bedroom with tall Cinderella windows and drapes, a fireplace and marble mantle with a huge mirror above it. Old doorknobs, old keyholes and keys in every room. Beauty-and-the-Beast-tall ceilings, and another fireplace in the parlor. Lovely. A walk-in closet. Parlor room window that open out to lacy wrought iron balconycages and a street beneath lined with big French autumn trees.

That's all, just livin the highlife. :)

Now here are the really beautiful things from this week: 

There's a family that an old missionary recommended we try to go see. We've gone before, but it's impossible to get into their building. They live in an apartment, and to get into the building you have to have a badge that opens the door. In other words there's no way to even ring their apartment and have them let us in. So we kinda gave up on it. Well a few days ago we walked back kinda by their house, and I thought, "Maybe we should just see if the door is open." So we walked wasn't open, but RIGHT AT THAT VERY SECOND, the man who puts magazines in all the mailboxes came by. He opened the door and didn't care that we followed him in :) So we went up all the floors looking for their name on the door. Finally we found it, and they opened and they are wonderful! They were so happy to see us, and they gave us their number and we're going to see them later this week! That really was a miracle though, that of all that night, the one man who would let us in happened to be there at the very second we were pushing on the door trying to get in. Best.

My other favorite part of this week was doing genealogy with a grandpa who is incredible. He called us because he really really wanted to do his we set up a RDV and oh lala he brought a big folder full of pictures and letters and driving licenses from the 1910s, pictures of his school class back in 1940, and better yet, stories. His ancestors were clockmakers in western France, but then they were forced to moved to Switzerland for religious reasons (along with many other clockmakers, apparently), and that's one reason there are so many incredible French clockmakers that are based in Switzerland. He said these ancestors (we're talking around the 1800s) had a family clock on the mantlepiece that got passed from generation to generation, and each generation would inscribe on the back their name and their life they got a ton of genealogy info from this clock! It had generations and generations of father-son carved into the back of it.

These are my favorite scriptures this week: Doctrine and Covenants 7:

 1 And the Lord said unto me: John, my beloved, what desirest thou? For if you shall ask what you will, it shall be granted unto you.

 2 And I said unto him: Lord, give unto me power over death, that I may live and bring souls unto thee.

 3 And the Lord said unto me: Verily, verily, I say unto thee, because thou desirest this thou shalt tarry until I come in my glory, and shalt prophesy before nations, kindreds, tongues and people.

 4 And for this cause the Lord said unto Peter: If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? For he desired of me that he might bring souls unto me, but thou desiredst that thou mightest speedily come unto me in my kingdom.

 5 I say unto thee, Peter, this was a good desire; but my beloved has desired that he might do more, or a greater work yet among men than what he has before done.

 6 Yea, he has undertaken a greater work; therefore I will make him as flaming fire and a ministering angel; he shall minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation who dwell on the earth.

 7 And I will make thee to minister for him and for thy brother James; and unto you three I will give this power and the keys of this ministry until I come.

8 Verily I say unto you, ye shall both have according to your desires, for ye both joy in that which ye have desired.

I love verse 8--you'll both have according to your desires, because they're both good and they'll both bring you joy! When I first read this chapter, I thought what the Savior was saying in verse 4 and 5 was, "John desired something better than you did, Peter, so he's going to be better off in the end." But actually he's just saying, "Don't compare yourself, Peter! John wanted to do this thing, and he'll have joy in it, and what you asked for is wonderful too, and I'll give you both what you asked for, because you're going to find joy in it!" Looks like we can have our cake and eat it too. Oh how he loves us.

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