Converting hearts by just Being

Since arriving in Germany, I have seen and experienced in many, sometimes, powerful ways how God is using us as instruments to touch the hearts of the people here. Before any other missionaries arrived and even before we had a mission house, there was a lot of fear in the community around the idea of missionaries coming. People tended to keep their distance and seemed to not want to be involved in my life or that of the future missionaries. Last year with the arrival of 2 missionaries, Amanda and Danielle, I started to see more of an openness to our being here. People who had not approached me before were now talking with us. We were invited to people’s homes for dinner or Kaffee und Kuchen (coffee and cake-a traditional afternoon custom). Teens were starting to just “stop by.” Typically a person would call first before visiting someone. Now there are 8 of us missionaries here. I am experiencing more and more people open their hearts to us. One particular way I have seen this is through people’s generosity in providing what we need. We decided to put a “needs list” in the local area church bulletin. Since we now have 2 male missionaries and 3 more female missionaries we needed more furnishings. We have received many calls from people saying they read in the bulletin that we needed some things and wanted to help. A few weeks ago, a man who works for the church approached me after mass. Though I had seen him many times before, we had never really spoken. We had been in a parish council meeting together where it was discussed the fact that LT missionaries were coming to the area. There was some resistance in the meeting about this fact. This particular man expressed the fear that missionaries would come and take away the jobs in the church. So, when he came up to me a few weeks ago after mass I was surprised. He had read that we needed furniture. He took out a pen and paper and started to write down all the things we still were missing. He wanted to support us. I really could not believe it. This man went from a place of fear to a place of wanting to help us. This incident and others like it have really made me think about how much our presence is impacting people even after only a short time. We don’t even know all the ways God is using our being here to touch hearts but I can’t wait to see more ways that God will work through us and around us.

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