Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Week 46: God Is Our Lovely Heavenly Father

Family! Friends!
Another AMAZING week in Kwekwe! We are enjoying so much here and the work is sweet. So sweet. We were able to extend baptismal dates to six more investigators this week and they all accepted and are all preparing. Miracles! We had 21 member present lessons this week and it was just so great. We're working like it's nobody's business and we come home from the area just BEAT. It's the best feeling in the world!

Life as an STL is not that different but more exhausting. Our first week of exchanges was really good but totally wore us out! We had two sisters from Gweru come up for a couple days and it was really fun to be with them and help them enjoy their missionary work! We were sooo tired after they left. As in completely DEAD. In one of our lessons we had after they had gone, my companion started teaching the restoration by saying "God is our lovely Heavenly Father" instead of LOVING Heavenly Father. Hahaha. Hopefully we don't wear ourselves out too much this week. We have two more sister from Bulawayo coming tomorrow.

This week we had a really amazing experience with Ishmael again. We've been taking everything really, really slowly with him because he doesn't have a Christian background. The first day we met him he told us he didn't believe in Jesus Christ at all. He had heard people speak about Him but he didn't know anything for himself. Well this week we had a huge breakthrough. For a number of lessons, his commitment was to pray and ask if Jesus Christ really is the Son of God and then to notice if he felt anything in his heart as he prayed. Well this week, he finally said he got his answer!! He said as he continued to pray and ask, he felt something in his heart telling him that Jesus Christ is our Savior. Incredible. As we were bearing testimony at the end of the lesson, one of us testified of the living reality of Jesus Christ and he jumped in and said, "me too! I know that He lives!" This was just one of the many miracles we have seen this week. God is blessing us with so much.
We're also teaching someone name Isheanesu, meaning God is with us. He's 23 and was a referral from his best friend named Charleton. Ishe's parents go to a Pentecostal called Ziojah, and so he's been going there but didn't really like it. He said "As the pastor was up there yelling and asking for money with people shouting hallelujah, I just thought to myself, 'is this how I would feel if the Savior was teaching me?' and that's when I knew that church was not right." He had a really really powerful lesson on the restoration, and at the end he accepted a baptismal date for the beginning of March. He said, "In two years, you'll be seeing me with a black name tag teaching this same lesson." Folks we have a missionary in the making!
I really love a quote by Henry B. Eyring which has meant a ton to me this week: "Life (or I add Mission) at it's longest is short. What we do here determines the rest of our condition for eternity. God our Father has offered us everything He has and asks only that we give Him all we have to give. That is an exchange so imbalanced in our favor that no effort would be too much and no hours too long in service to Him, to the Savior, and to our Father's children." Don't give up, shamwaris. Even if you're tired, just keep going. If you keep going, there's a reward better than anything you could ever imagine waiting for you! NO effort is to much and NO hours too long!
I love missionary work, I love Mbizo, I love the gospel I love life. As my nephew Daniel would say, "Everything in my life is awesome!" Have a great week everyone!!
Love, Sister Richards 

one of my many battle wounds of the week. clumsy kills. 

this church in our area has a tree with so many monkeys. so stinkin cool.

how we feel when we get poured on. rainy season please go away

fresh guava from someone's tree. it was nice.

so we had a DA on monday. we were helping sister kofi dish out in the kitchen on this table, and then just carried the table into the living room to give to people. haha i love zimbabwe!

she made some killer beef stew with rice, and butternut!

MIRACLE: we saw these oranges on this lady's tree so we went to ask her if we could have some (welcome to zim) and they invited us into their house and accepted a return appointment! amazing family. We call these "salvation's oranges"

 exchanges with sister burt! so fun.

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