Monday, April 25, 2016

Week 6: By Their Fruits Ye Shall Know Them

Hello Family and Friends!

Another scorching hot, but great week in Chi Town!

This week was so stinkin great! Sister Jili and I were getting pretty frustrated, because our area is was feeling so dead. People have a terribly hard time keeping commitments, and so nothing was really happening at all. But this week, we have started to see the fruits of our labors!

We were able to set 6 baptismal dates this week, and that is huge for our area! We are so happy. We're praying that everything goes well, and that our investigators keep coming to church. The Lord truly has led us to those who need to hear the message of the gospel. Amazingly enough, people have come to us and said, "Sister I need you to teach me. Please, just teach me". There's no better feeling!

The Elders had a baptism on Saturday that we were able to attend, and one of the little boys who got baptized bore a powerful testimony after. He's only nine years old, but stood confidently in front of the congregation and said "Brothers and Sisters, I am happy to stand here and bear my testimony. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the only true church. I know that The Book of Mormon is true. And I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen." It was so simple, but so incredibly powerful to hear this testimony from a nine year old convert.

We saw one of our investigators preparing for baptism on Saturday, and he was so drunk. Drunk people are so chatty! He could've gone on and one. Anyways, he brought his other drunk friend to the lesson, and we made it verrryy short because we didn't think they were really getting anything. At the end of the lesson he turned to us and said, "Sisters, I really think my friend needs to hear what you taught me last time." We had taught him several of the commandments, but I couldn't tell which one he was wanting us to teach. And then he says, "The Law of Chastity." Oh shoot. Well before we can say a word, our investigator has started teaching the lesson, and even has his friend reading quotes from the pamphlet. Here I am, sitting in Chitungwiza, Zimbabwe, watching two drunk guys trying to get to the bottom of The Law of Chastity. It was probably the funniest thing I have experienced up to this point in my lifetime! Then his friend said the closing prayer, and asked that all of our enemies burn in the fiery depths of hell. My companion and I LOST IT. It was one of those silent laughs where your body just shakes because you're trying not to make any noise. Safe to say we will be reviewing The Word of Wisdom again this week.

As we went over the parable of the Ten Virgins this week in District Meeting, it really hit me that the oil of conversion cannot be borrowed. As you come on mission, you are testifying of dozens of things eight or nine times a day. You can't testify of something you don't already know about. We have to convert ourselves, save up our oil, so that one day we can testify of the gospel - whether it be about the cleansing power of the Atonement, the reality of God's love for each of us, or of the Book of Mormon. The oil of conversion cannot be borrowed.

I love this gospel with everything I have, and my heart grows more fond of it every day. The church is true!

xoxo Sister Richards

We call our house the celestial kingdom because it's the nicest house in the mission. Here is my bed with the african sun shining through the windows. Doesn't it look celestial?

 My Area

 My Area

 My Area

 The African Sunset

 My favorite kids in our area! They're trying to teach me shona. 

 We are not allowed to hold babies on mission, unless the people would be offended. And we were not about to say no to this Gogo (grandma) who handed us this newborn baby, because she didn't speak a work of english, so we didn't know how to! So we took advantage of the opportunity and took pics.

 The tan. The tan is real.

Sazda and fish. Mmm. Tasted just about as good as it looks. But the spirit helped get that down. 

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