Christmas Will Exceed Our Finest Dreams

Christmas Will Exceed Our Finest Dreams

 

I heard the bells on Christmas day

Their old familiar carols play,

And wild and sweet the words repeat

Of peace on earth, good will to men.

 

I thought how, as the day had come,

The belfries of all Christendom

Had rolled along th’unbroken song

Of peace on earth, good will to men.

 

And in despair I bowed my head:

“There is no peace on earth,” I said,

“For hate is strong and mocks the song

Of peace on earth, good will to men.”

 

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:

“God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;

The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,

With peace on earth, good will to men.”

 

Till, ringing, singing, on its way,

The world revolved from night to day,

A voice, a chime, a chant sublime,

Of peace on earth, good will to men!

 

With these word of Longfellow, I invite you to feel a little spring in your step and joy in your heart. There are hard things in our life, but the atonement is what makes things better. Possible. Even amazing.

This last week we were able to enjoy being together for the Christmas conference. I was able to see some old friends and we had a really fun time together. We ate a turkey dinner, and had lots of America treats because of all the things that were brought from the military base nearby. I enjoyed the passing of the white elephant gifts and came home with a wind up, goggly eyed chattering teeth.

 

Chrsitmas 3

Christmas advent Wreath

Chrsitmas 2

Christmas Conference

I was really touched by the words of the song we sang as a special musical number, that sister Wilkes and I put together. ” In the Bleak Midwinter” I was glad to bring my fond memories from my time in choir to my mission.

My  Daughter

Sister Strihavka my “daughter”.

We were invited to help make cookies and gingerbread houses this week, the members are so kind. We have been meeting with so many people; people wanting to say goodbye to Sister Wilkes and people excited to bring the Christmas spirit. F invited the elders and us to celebrate “team F day” during our Friday dinner hour. We walked around the chocolate festival and drank warm chocolate with whipped cream on top. Why team F day? Well, that would be because after coming to church for the first time last Sunday, F has set a baptismal date with the elders. So we celebrated. I never would have guessed after meeting F that first day hearing him whine about coffee being part of the word of wisdom, that he would be where he is now, he seems happier, less nervous. More at peace.

Today we met for p-day in Esslingen. On the way, I sat down in a foursome on the bus with a man who gestured for sister S and elder M and I to come over. We did and he immediately started quoting bible scriptures against us, saying we do not believe In the true Christ. The way I deal with people who attack my beliefs is bearing simple testimony and asking about the love of Christ. If they have personally felt it. And then inviting them to pray and ask God, explaining that that is how I have gained my testimony. When Christ went back into heaven, he left the Holy Ghost to comfort us. I firmly believe that. I hope that when I share my faith others can feel that I have a personal relationship with both my Father and older Brother.

We are going to have a bit of a Christmas party for D and G, we are trying to get them to have some friends in the ward so it is not such a hard transition every-time a missionary leaves. That will be good, they are a wonderful family.

I love you, keep thinking of Christ. Go watch that new Christmas video, it really gets better each time you watch it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_TEOyhy7Bg

” from our sins, from our sadness”— that kid makes my heart rejoice.

I love you. Tune in next week for more from the land of Tübingen .

All my love,

Sister Gardner

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