November 7, 2011 – Charentsavan, Week 9
They Lost “Hav-ess”
This week I don’t have much to say. Most of the people that we were teaching lost what we call “ha-vess”. In Armenian, to lose “ha-vess” is to lose desire, but it is has a deeper meaning than that. When someone loses “ha-vess” they want to sit down on the couch and watch T.V. or do nothing productive.
I have lost “ha-vess” to cook food, clean, to explain to a very educated doctor that my lungs aren’t as efficient as other people’s lungs because they got cold…
I guess some people just forget how they felt when they decided to follow Christ’s example. They lost “ha-vess” and decided to be flaky or too busy.
Then we have some other investigators who are having some family problems and don’t feel/understand how increasing their faith in God and Christ can help them.
We are starting just above ground zero. Elder Larson and I have already had some great experiences together. Last night one of our meetings fell through, so we went into a near-by parking lot and said a prayer. We wanted to know the Lord’s will. We wanted to know how to use his time effectively. Then two very interesting things happened. But before I explain I want to give you a little background information.
It is cold here, it has snowed. It gets dark at 6:00. People all over town recognize us. This week we only had met seven people who would have a simple conversation with us. We approach many people and try to get acquainted with them, but they shrug us off or, ignore us or even more exciting, they swear at us (however, that rarely happens). No I’m not sick or lacking mentally, it really is an intense and a good opportunity to be “bar-ee” (the Armenian word for nice, good or friendly) toward them.
Immediately after the prayer we stood quietly, gathering our thoughts and ideas, when a thought came to my mind to visit someone that I hadn’t seen for a while. We started walking. This is when we passed a man, Armen, who said hi back to us. We asked him how he was doing and he didn’t continue walking, rather he stood looking surprised, and yet calm. We walked over and shook his hand got to know about him and his family. We shared with him about our families and why we have come. We explained in a few sentences how God loves us today just as he loved people in Noah’s or Moses’ time, and that is why he has called prophets like Noah and Moses in our day, so that we can be warned of dangers and led out of captivity. He didn’t want to learn more from us, but it was a simple five minute conversation. It was on a cold, dark street, but I felt the spirit and a love for the man.
The next man that we passed on the street said hi back to us and kept walking. The third man that we saw, Samvel, turned around after we said hi and asked if he could have two minutes of our time. We said, of course you can. We had a great conversation with him during which he said he feels that we have a spiritual power within us. We exchanged contact information. We will be seeing him soon.
These two conversations were two of the seven that we had all week. They happened in a twenty minute time period. As Elder Larson and I discussed this, we learned a life lesson. Hope is expecting that something good will happen. The attitude embodied in hope has power to make good things happen. God wants to blesses us, but when we doubt or lack hope he cannot help us as he wishes to. We must do what we know to do and do it with the hope that it will be positive and bear good fruit.
The Church recently set-up a website in Armenian (in case you wanted to see what armenian looks like): www.hqvose.am
Եվ մենք խոսում ենք Քրիստոսի մասին, մենք հրճվում ենք Քրիստոսով, մենքքարոզում ենք Քրիստոսի մասին, մենք մարգարեանում ենք Քրիստոսի մասին…
Picture 1 – Elder Larson, Elder Watterson, Marine, Elder Issac Kurth (These three Elders just got here. Elder Larson is serving as a Zone Leader and Elder Watterson is serving as a District Leader. I’m excited for them. They are going to accomplish a lot of good as leaders)