Fun with Faith!
Transfer News: I’M STAYING IN NDIRANDE WITH SISTER AROK!!! We both already knew that but here is the exciting stuff…..Sister Brown is coming with Sister Porter to serve here in Blantyre and they are going to live with us for at least a month!!!!!!!! I can’t wait!! But also I am SO happy that I am staying in my area. Especially this past week, my love for the members quadrupled. They continue to amaze me with their strong faith and determination to live the gospel and to join us in doing the work of the Lord.
FHE: Sister Arok and I are focusing on building up the few families that we do have in our area so last week, we did Family Home Evening with the Paseli’s and Sister Fellium. We got there and Grace was conducting. It was so cute!! She said, “We want to welcome you to Mr. And Mrs. Paseli’s family home evening”. She was so professional and serious, it made me laugh and cry at the same time! She is doing so GREAT! Then Vaida, her 15 year old daughter, gave an amazing lesson about the woman who washed the Savior’s feet with her tears and ointment. Everyone shared a few thoughts. Grace even pulled out a verse that she had read from the Book of Mormon that day. The entire time, Sister Arok and I kept making eye contact as we felt so proud and excited for this family who is becoming so strong in the gospel. I think being in this area for awhile has been the greatest blessing as it has allowed me to see the growth of recent converts, less actives, and members. It was also really great for Sister Fellium to be there to feel loved, included and part of a family as she is facing some family difficulties in her life right now. We sisters were in charge of the games so we played charades and had them act out different animals….they all acted out every single animal the exact same way. Lol. Later that week, we helped the Paseli’s learn how to conduct music….we were crying we were laughing so hard! But they got it…sort ofJ
Aggie Mpepe: She is progressing really well!!! We went to their house 3 different nights at 7 to teach her and her husband but he hasn’t ever been there which is a big bummer. He just lost his job so he has been busy trying to find one. We usually sit outside on small stools and buckets or on the ground because she usually complains that her home house is too small but this week she let us in. She has a 6 year old boy, Valentine who is the cutest! Every lesson, he sits there and copies everything I do. Anyways every time we are with her the Spirit is so strong. After an especially long day, every fall through was forgotten as we sat in their TINY one room home, teaching the plan of happiness revelaed through Prophets of God. I felt a new desire and love for missionary work that I never want to go away. She has been reading the Book of Mormon very slowly but almost everyday. Last night she told us that it makes her so happy and she loves it! She couldn’t come to church because she had family visiting but she accepted the invitation to be baptized on September 18th! The cherry on top of Aggie’s lessons was that Joseph (our recent convert) has been join us. It really is amazing to sit in a lesson and hear him teach and testify of truths that just months previously we had taught him! One of the lessons, he shared a scripture that he had found a couple days before….it didn’t really connect with what we were teaching at all but it was so sweet. Oh quick update on Joseph….he couldn’t come to church because of work. He has to work every otherbut this week we retaught the importance of keeping the Sabbath Day holy. He wasn’t at church yesterday but we ran into him and he was so happy to see us. He told us a 15 minute long story how he went to work and requested to not work on Sunday and how he got in an argument and the guards ended up chasing him and all this crazy stuff. He ended up working but as soon as his shift was over he went up to his manager and said, “Money is yours. Life is mine.” Hahahah I wish you could have heard him say it but man, he is so converted to the gospel and is making so many great changes in his life!!!
Addsum: Another investigator that has been prepared by the Hand of the Lord! This week he could not stop talking about how much he loved church and how comfortable he felt and that he was the one who answered the question right in gospel principles class. I love how unique the impressions of the Holy Ghost are to each person. I love how it doesn’t matter who we are, what background we come from, or whatever, we each are entitled to feel the whisperings of the Holy Ghost. I am so grateful for the influence of the Spirit that is guiding so many of the people in our area. At the same time, it is so frustrating to see so many people completely ignoring those feelings! Anyways, Addsum went out of town to visit his family in the village but he called us a couple of times to let us know he has been teaching his family and friends all about the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.
John Phiri: We are so confused on what to do….this week we found him at home and he was drunk. We set an appointment later that week sort of doubting he would be there. We stopped by and his niece said he was gone. We were really disappointed but then later that night we felt prompted to stop by. Turns out that he had been there waiting all day for us. We hadn’t planned a lesson but felt like we should read from the Book of Mormon with him. I felt we should read Alma 7 and it ended up being exactly what he needed as it taught us about the Savior’s Atonement and our duty to fear not and repent of our sins. He is still really struggling with the word of wisdom but slowly he is making progress. He ended up coming to our Mormon Helping Hands service and Church!!! He is just so addicted to alcohol but it is a miracle how the gospel is changing someone who has for years been struggling to overcome such a terrible thing, to now coming to church, praying and studying the scriptures. Someday he’s going to enter those waters!
Peace: She was supposed to get baptized in April but had some family problems. We talked to her mom this past week and we started teaching her again. She is the cutest. She made us lunch, nsima with these nasty looking dried fish but we both loved it!!! I honestly love nsima now. We read from the Book of Mormon with her and then acted out the story of Nephi and Laban. Sister Arok suggested we use my water bottle as a sword and joked that she could pour the water all over me. So Peace was Nephi and I was Laban and she ended up pouring the water all over me!!! It was so funny though.
Acting out Nephi and King Laban with Peace
Yesterday after we taught Peace I asked her to say the closing prayer in English instead of Chichewa. She said the most sincere prayer that I have heard her say. She thanked Heavenly Father for us and asked to bless us in our missionary work. I was really touched this week by Peace’s childlike faith and humility. We had a lot of really prideful investigators and it was crazy to go teach her and how easily she understood and accepted. As I have been reading the New Testament this week, I was reminded again and again that we need to follow the Savior’s counsel in becoming like a little child. We need to be more like Peace.
Mormon Helping Hands: As a branch we went to the local “hospital” and mopped inside and swept outside. We ended up having a great turnout!! Over 40 members came. It felt so good to do a service project like that again!!! The whole time I was having so much fun with the members. In fact when I was looking back through the pictures we took, I was taken back by how white I looked! Haha when I am with them I forget that I look different. The members here make me feel so loved and a part of the branch! This week, I thanked my Heavenly Father again and again for sending me to not only this specific mission, but to this area. It has shaped my testimony and life more than I thought possible.
Well this week was sort of a blur and I can’t believe how fast time is flying. I think I say that every week but it just goes faster and faster. But I love Sister Arok. She is really great at constantly looking for ways that we can improve. I don’t think I have ever worked so diligently or so hard. We set some high goals this past week and we got em!!! I am grateful that we aren’t always as successful as we hope or plan to be but for each and every single experience that draws us closer to Christ. I love being a representative of the Savior Jesus Christ and I am so grateful I get another week ahead of me to do His work.