Monday, November 30, 2015

"Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature (except chickens)"

This week is one for the books!! Seriously it was such an adventure and guess what....I am loving Africa more and more!! I didn't think it would be possible but I have grown in my love for Ndola and being a missionary!! We got rained on like crazy this week but I finally was smart enough to pack an umbrella but boy am I grateful for my Chacos! they have been a lifesaver. Hahah you should have seen my feet this one day though....I should have taken a picture but you couldn't see them because of all the mud. I love the rain so much! 

 we had a lesson with the Simanwes and it was so great to be gathered with them and their family! We read a scripture about praying as a family but i loved just playing a scripture game with them and all laughing together. When I first met them, I thought they were the happiest people in Ndola but their happiness has just increased more and more each day!! The gospel truly brings happiness!!

Our last district meeting all together! Elder Duncan and Elder Maele got transferred:(

 district meeting was really really emotional. The two elders that were leaving bore their testimonies and were crying so of course I started to cry. Yes I will miss them but as they were talking I just realized how much I love this area. I have felt really really stressed and overwhelmed this past week to help certain investigators. I have felt this huge responsibility on my shoulders and that I need to be doing so much more in this area. Elder Duncan shared how he felt he was leaving a lot of work to do and wants to stay but is grateful for the seeds he could plant. It was then that all the discouragement I had felt left and I felt nothing but gratitude for what I have been able to accomplish here with the help of the Savior. We really have been blessed and the work is up and down but I have learned that the Lord's time is not ours and maybe I am here just to help prepare people for the next missionaries that will come. The Elders also talked about how much they will miss their companion and I couldn't help but realize how much I will miss Sister Motsi. Transfers are coming this week and I am pretty positive sister motsi and I will be split up and uh.....I actually don't want to talk about it because I'm starting to tear up right now. Anyways she is the best! 

 Exchanges with Sister Mulomba!

 I was blessed to go on exchanges with Sister Mulomba! She is incredible and has such an amazing conversion story. She is so happy and positive and I really enjoyed the entire day that we spent together! We had a bunch of fall throughs...I think I am bad luck or some thing because every time I go in that area it happens. But we still had backups and taught a lot! She is 3 months old and is so great! Its crazy to think how fast time is going and that I was just in her shoes! That day we met the bats....seriously they are so creepy! Remember the bats at the Omaha zoo or the birds in the museum? Ok it was 10 times worse and I was praying the whole time we were walking past them. I love exchanges and getting to be with other sisters but at the end of every exchange I get nervous to discuss things that they can work on. Its scary to tell someone what they can improve on and every time we get there...all i can think about is all my imperfections and weaknesses. How can I tell anyone what to do when I myself am not perfect? This time I sought the inspiration from my Heavenly Father and said what I needed too and prayed that she would take the advice and not be offended. It was hard but it taught me a lot especially how grateful for my leaders and the advice they give me. 

Ok fun fact...Ndola is home to MILLIONS OF BATS!!! Of course I was so scared to walk down this street and somehow managed to get a picture. They are so awful but kinda cool I guess. This one guy was taking pictures and told me it was the most amazing thing he has ever seen in his entire life...hahah and I was freaking out!

We packed cold spaghetti, beans and a hard boiled egg and finally found a clean enough place to sit down and eat. Sister Motsi and I walked away laughing at our humble lunch but it was the best!
p.s. don't mind my sunburned nose

..happy thanksgiving!!! thanks for all the pictures and emails!! I thought I would really really miss home that day but it actually was my most favorite day of the week and thanks to my beloved companion, I was so happy! I wish i had time to write all that I am thankful for this year but that would be the longest email in the world. At dinner that night I had the sisters say what they were grateful for but it wasn't quite like home. We saw Ntusha and her uncle Justin and they both are on track for baptism! It has been incredible to watch this family grow closer together because of the gospel. Ntusha hasn't been to her uncle's house in 3 years and went with us for the first time to teach him. The gospel really does bless families and I have noticed this with other families. Especially the Sambe family...although they still have doubts, they have seen the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ especially with their family. What better blessing than to see changes like this?! By small and simple things are great things brought to pass. I am sooooooooooooooooo thankful for my family and you truly are my greatest blessing. We went and visited Sister Lunia and her niece. Near is her niece and she lost her mom a couple years ago so Sister Lunia wanted us to come and teach her about the temple and family history. There was such a special spirit in that home as Sister Motsi and I bore testimony that families can be together forever. I am so grateful for the temple and the covenants I have made there. I felt really close to grandma and grandpa that day and my testimony has never been stronger of the plan of salvation. I know that we will live again and can be with our families and enjoy complete joy! And all we have to do is 5 simple, repentance, baptism, gift of the holy ghost, and endure to the end. The gospel is so simple! I got frustrated this week as I struggled to help others recognize this as well. A scripture that really comforted me though was 2 Timothy 1:8-9. This scripture helped me to put my trust more in the Savior and lean not unto my own understanding. I won't be successful or find joy in the work if I try to do things my way but as I seek the inspiration of the spirit, I will be able to meet the needs of our investigators and accomplish all the Heavenly Father has for me to do here in Ndola. But my ponderizing scripture was Alma 34:38 because of thanksgiving and that night as i wrote in my journal I was amazed at all the tender mercies I have witnessed on mission. I love my mission!!!

...hahah this day we did a lot of waiting around for members to come teach with us which was hard but the members here are the best! They sacrifice a lot to help us out and I am encouraged by their enthusiasm for the work! We needed to see a boy named Greg but we didn't have a female and we spent the whole morning trying to find someone with no success. I knelt down for my personal study and asked that we could find a member or at least know what to do if we couldn't go see him. As soon as I finished my prayer the phone rang and Olivia said she could come with us! I was so touched by this immediate answer to prayer and felt the love of my Heavenly Father. Not only was He concerned with me, but he also cares about Greg who we were able to teach the great plan of salvation and Olivia who could strengthen her testimony of the gospel by teaching with us. Missionary work doesn't just bless missionaries and those they teach but the members here and especially the missionaries families. I hope that you can feel these blessings! We taught Barton that night was the craziest lesson on the law of chastity in the world and we learned WAY more than we wanted about Barton and hahahahah uh yeah that's all I'll say. He was on date for December 6th but he still needs awhile. We are keeping the faith though. 

 was a great day! we taught Sister Daka and she is golden...almost too perfect. She talked about how she has asked the same question as Jospeh Smith and has been to every church she can think of in search of the truth. She has read a little of the Book of Mormon and really likes it. What was good about this lesson was how I finally felt like I was lead by the Spirit to teach according to her needs. I finally felt confident on how we taught that lesson and that heavy burden of meeting the needs of our investigators was lightened. Sister Motsi and I had put into practice the very principles from 2 Timothy and I felt so guided by the Spirit. I know that as we rely on the Atonement and are worthy of the companionship of the Holy Ghost that we will be effective messagers of Jesus Christ. I am grateful for the struggle I had this week of learning how to do my best and put the rest into the hands of the Lord. It was a tough couple of days that I probably just put too much stress on myself but it really helped me and strengthened my testimony of the Savior. Ntusha passed her interview so will be baptized next week! I have seen a change in a lot of people but with her its been huge! She is really really excited to be baptized and can't stop smiling every time she talks about it. That afternoon we walked in the rain and I learned a lot of lessons from the rain that maybe I'll write about in a letter home but i have found that there can be something learned from every experience and how true D&C 29:34 "all things unto me are spiritual." We began quite the walk to the Nondes and Sister Motsi and I were pretty quiet. It was one of those days were we don't have a lot to say but it gave me a great opportunity to just ponder. As we walked down the long dirt road to Dola Hill, I was tired, hungry, and kinda sick to my stomach. I said a quick prayer that I could have energy for this last lesson and I was then reminded of the pioneers and also of that poem called footprints in the sand. I felt so much love from the Savior and felt he was right there walking with us. I thought of how He has carried through so many rough patches on mission and how He has helped so many others! I was comforted in that moment and so grateful to be His missionary. We started our lesson and sister Nonde talked about giving us a chicken. I thought she was joking but at the end of the lesson she ran outside and brought us a chicken! She wanted us to take it home and kill it!!! hahah we asked if we could just kill it there and said yes. Well of course i didn't want to miss this opportunity for adventure so I asked if I could kill it and Brother Nonde started arguing with me that sisters weren't allowed to. I told him to read to me in the missionary handbook where it says i couldn't kill it chicken. hahah well I stood on the feet and the wings and took a knife to its throat and that was that! hahah I asked Sister Motsi to take pictures but she was too grossed out so wouldn't get close. I don't have good pictures but man i wish you could have been there! We then cleaned the chicken and took it home and ate it! It was so good! We saved the feet and heart for another day so I'll let you know how those are. That night as we drove home on the bus, i just couldn't stop smiling at how perfect this mission is for me. Not because of the chicken but because of every single experience i have had. 
just like home...still killing chickens:)

Sorry its blurry but my expression says it all.....
cleaning the chicken

the cutest little girl in Dola Hill!

Our feast from the chicken I killed! was raining all morning so turnout for church was really low. We went from 12 investigators last week to 2 this week but honestly i just loved this Sunday!! We met the new senior couple, Elder and Sister Salmon from Centerville! they are self reliance missionaries in lusaka but were visiting. It was fun to talk to Elder Salmon about BYU football....he's a huge fan! I love love love the branch so much....honestly i just felt at home on sunday! We were small on Sunday but the spirit was the same and plus...the smaller the numbers, the bigger the pieces of sacrament bread. hahah they were huge! Sister Njamba, the wife of one of our branch members, was baptized by her husband which was so awesome! After he baptized her though, brother njamba said something in his native tongue of Lozi, turned around in the font, and fell backwards. hahahaha we were laughing so hard but it was kinda weird and i think he was baptizing himself or something but it was funny.
The sister's baptism! Robert is the one with the glasses...he told me he would swim to America! He is quite the character!

I look so white..hahah this is justin! Today at church he said he wants to be baptized next year! He comes to church every week and we teach him with Selina at least once a week but has never been that excited about baptism but he said that and I was sooooo happy!

 Olivia and her sister Ntusha! These girls are so much fun!!!! They showed me how to pose like an african...hahah
 Sister Violet
 This is our first counselor in the bishopric but also one of our best friends from the branch!

I love you all so much!!! Keep being the great family that you are!! Give all those cute kids big loves from Aunt Alli!!!!
Sister Bingham

 Zambia's presidents!

I made Sister Motsi take a picture of me crossing the bridge because it reminded me of backpacking! Actually a lot of things happen that reminded me of backpacking!

1 comment:

  1. Great shot of a colony of straw-coloured fruit bats (Eidolon helvum)! Would you add your bat photo as a citizen-science observation to the AfriBats project on iNaturalist?:

    AfriBats will use your observations to better understand bat distributions and help protect bats in Africa.

    Please locate your picture on the map as precisely as possible to maximise the scientific value of your records.

    Many thanks!