Monday, December 23, 2013

Matola - Week 88

Feliz Natal!

We just finished the first week of the transfer, and it was a crazy week. I still do not have a companion! My companion is Elder Walker who is currently in the MTC. He was supposed to come during the weekend, but he got stuck in Salt Lake during that snow storm. He was at the airport waiting, but his flight was cancelled. He will be coming in on the 28th now. 
So for now, we have been walking in a threesome. Me, Elder Santos, and Elder Ebmeyer. Elder Ebmeyer was serving in Matola 1, and just got done being trained by Elder Bigelow. Elder Ebmeyer is a good Elder. I am very pleased with his growth, and is speaking the language pretty well. We are excited to have him be apart of our branch in Matola 2.
This week, we entered into Tslala. I don't know if missionaries have ever consistently worked out there. It is packed with people. A lot of peole were very curious to talk with us as well as they were wondering who we are. We were able to teach a few new families out there, and we even found a nice family Manuel and Lucia who were willing to show their faith the first week by walking a solid hour to church. So our first impressions of Tslala are nice. it has a lot of potencial and we are excited to see what the Lord has in store for the people the live there. 
We have also been working in Liberdade. We are doing our best to work in both of the areas. We founf some nice families this week! Felizberto and Alzira is a couple that is legally married and they recieved an answer of the Book of Mormon the first day. He is very smart, and said after reading the introduction pages of the Book of Mormon and the first 3 chapters of 1 Nephi, he said that there is no way the book isn't true. They are very strong in their church and he is worried about leaving his church, although he understands that he needs to. Helder and Fatima went to the same church that they go to, so we plan on bringing Helder and Fatima over to their house. We are excited about this family.
We took a new family to church this week as well, Gito and Joana. We had two good lessons with them this week. And we picked them up early Sunday morning and walked to church together. Those are our Sunday mornings. Waking up early to go get our investigators. We need to do everything in our power to help these people keep commitements. Our other prrogressing families are doing good as well. Especially Sebastiao and Celeste. They always show so much faith saving money to get their marriage documents. It is very impressive. They usually have to take 2 chapas to church, and two chapas home. With time, that money adds up! 
Not to mention the distance that they live away from the chapel.they made a big sacrifice and walked to the branch christmas party on Saturday with their almost two year old baby. Super impressive. Don't take your cars for granted.
Recent converts are getting callings as well which is good to see. Faustino and Sonia were called to be family history leaders, and Sonia also teaches in Relief Society. Manuel was also called to be second counselor in the young mens presidency. They are all doing well! 
The branch christmas party was good as well! There were a few weird things that went on... but it was a good experience for the investigators that were there. 
We also watched the Christmas Devotional again here in matola. We did our presentation as well for the members. We sang many Christmas hymns, and it turned out very nice. I'm so grateful for Christmas and this season.
We will be another conference tomorrow as well here in Matola. It will be our Zone conference/ Christmas party. I am so excited to here another training from President Kretly. He always gives the best! Zone conference always leaves the missionaries pumped to work even more. Looks like that's what we need now in the zone. T3 has been struggling a little bit lately. But there are some good Elders there that are helping others be obedient.
Helder and Fatima have been interviewed, and will be baptized on Saturday. That is with out a doubt the best Christmas present I could ask for. It's been a long battle with them! It's been like 6 months now. I have developed a relationship with them that I have never developed with out investigators before. I know them so well. I absolutely, knew them before this life. I will have an eternal relationship with them. I really do love them.
One thing that I have been focusing on is Christlike attributes. I strive so hard to develop the Christlike attributes. But man, I have so long to go. I feel like I'm not making any progress! Developing Christlike attributes is something that will takemy whole life for me to develop. But I am able to recgonzie my weaknesses and work on what I feel I need to. Elder Santos told me of an apostle that once said, "We don't realize how imperfect we are, until we strive so hard to be good." I can testify of that.
So that's how the week was! Other good stuff happened as well but I can't talk about all the good things that happen. There just isn't time. While I was halfway through this letter, the power went out and we had to come back to finish. 
But I hope everyone has a great Christ-centered Christmas. We always try to focus on Christ during this time of year, but He also needs to be the focues of our lives. Each and everyday, we should remember of Him and strive to become more like Him. My strongest desire, to be completely honest, is to be more Christlike. I know that through the Atonement, it's possible. We can all become better. Have a great week!

Elder Williams

"For God so loved the world, that He gave his only Begotten Son. That whosoever would believe in Him, should not perish. But have everlasting life."