Monday, September 30, 2013

Matola - Week 76

2 anos realmente sao 2 semanas

I almost don't believe how fast one week can past. Every week goes by faster and faster. But we did have a good week here in Matola.
Being the first week of the transfer, all of the missionaries in the zone were excited to work. I'm going to do my best to help everyone have this desire always. And we did see some miracles in the zone this week. More marriage processes have been opened, and more families are continuing to be found.
But on the same hand, Satan is constantly trying to destroy the work here in this country. One thing that this mission has struggled with in the past is gossip. I bet just about all missions have this problem. It is almost as if there was a rivalry against missionaries. Many Americans think that the natives are out to get them, and many natives think that Americans are out to get them. We ran into a little bit of tension in our house this week, and it is completely unacceptable. Every missionary needs to think before they say something. I had the idea of doing nightly prayer as a district, and since then, there has been no problems. It strenghtened my testimony on the power of prayer. ALWAYS, will I hold daily prayer with my family. It defintely keeps the Spirit in the home, which is what we want.
But the work goes on! This Wednesday, me and Elder Brandao put on a training for the district leaders. A lot of missionaries overlook the responsibility of the district leader, and the influence that he can have. We helped them understand they they have a big role in the real growth in their branch. We also showed them how the zone is growing. Over the last 6 weeks, we have been teaching three times as much as we were. And more investigators are coming to church. The zone has been seeing big differences over the last few weeks, and will only continue. Receiving the numbers last night from the companionships, I was pleased to see that everyone really is working a lot harder than before. "They key to missionary work, is work!"
Yesterday, it rained here in Maputo. And mozambiquans do don't like rain! That is always to first excuse to not go to church. The frequency went down in all the branches in the zone. One thing we are working hard at, is to help the members develop more faith. The members need to be the examples for the investigators. Rain is no excuse to not come to church. It strenghtened my testimony of the Sabbath Day. We will be teaching the Sabbath Day many times this week. 
On the way to church yesterday, we passed a Catholic church. They were singing and the church was full off people. Hundreds and hundreds it seemed like. There were cars parked all over the neighborhood. I thought to myself, 'how to they bring so many people to church so easily?' I got a little discouraged and thought to myself, 'how is it that we have the true message, true authority of God, and a living prophet, and we can't even fill up one building in Matola? and these others churches have mutiple all over the city and thy are easily filling up?' I don't understand how people are so blinding from the truth. I don't understand why people don't want to follow Christ's true church on the earth! Sunday afternnoon read the following verse in 1 Nephi 14:12-
"And it came to pass that I beheld the church of the Lamb of God, and its numbers were few, because of the wickedness and abominations of the whore who sat upon the many waters; nevertheless, I beheld that the church of the Lamb, who were the saints of God, were also upon all the face of the earth; and their dominions upon all the face of the earth were small, because of the wickedness of the great whore whom I saw."
That was a huge reminder to me that the truth will always be rejected. Just because the church of the Lamb has fewer members, does not change the truthfulness of our message. I wouldn't deny the truthfulness of this work and gospel, even if I were the only member in the whole world. So that was a pretty cool experience I had this week.
We have been very busy with preparations for zone conference! Tomorrow morning at 10 am we will be having zone conference here in Matola. We have ordered food, and this afternoon, we will be going to set things up at the chapel. We ordered food from Mimo's, the local pizza place. We were asked to order a total of 70 pizzas! So we will eat pretty well. They aren't big pizzas obviously, but still. haha
There will be a total of 55 missionaries participating in the zone conference, so I'm excited to receive more trainings from President and Sister Kretly. I talked to President Sunday night, and he asked me to conduct the zone conference tomorrow, so that will be a good experience. I write abut the things we learned next week.
Our investigators continue to progress as well! We had to wait til the end of the month to get some marriage documents, because our investigators were waiting on their salary. This week, they will get paid, and jump all over the documents!
We will be baptizing 2 more families in the zone this weekend! One of them being Narciso and Telma, a family that we had contacted in the street, and started teaching during my weeklong division with an Elder in the district. THe Lord defiintely blessed us that week! I will be doing some more baptismal interviews this week, so that's always exciting becuase people are getting baptized!
This week, I got a little emotional... I guess it hadn't really hit me that we are entering October already. It is so scary. I will continue to make the best of the time I have in this amazing country. I honestly think I could go on forever! I never want to take of this missionary badge. It has been the most rewarding thing that has ever happened to me. And it is something very personal to me. 
I love you all so much, and I hope you continue to do what is right! We really do live in a state of happiness when we keep the commandments. I love you all!

Love, Elder Williams