Monday, November 16, 2015

What kind of happy ending is this?

Nov. 9, 2015
Sister Ratema and I heading out on a cold day. All I had was a scarf to keep warm haha 
Her reaction to our new power schedule
Yep. Never going to have lights again.
We have a tradition that after we pray we always look at each other under the table and share impressions. I have a really cute companion. 
Dearest Family,

Every missionary hopes to have a happy ending to their mission. They hope for one last baptism or a full planner of people to teach. They hope they can do one last thing that will leave a lasting impact. But as the days and weeks fly by, it seems that that ideal "happy ending" that I sort of envisioned may not come to pass. After all of this work in this area, there still may not be someone prepared for baptism by my last Sunday. 

I began thinking about Christ and the ending to His mortal mission. His final days were spent in suffering and pain of the highest degree. He suffered body and spirit. That doesn't seem like a very happy ending to His mission. But it wasn't the "ending" that meant the most. It was the ultimate outcome of it that changed the world. So I am being taught and my perspective is changing. I may not have the "happiest ending" to my mission but the ultimate outcome of these 18 months will be incomprehensible joy at what I have become. I am eternally grateful for this mission of mine. 

But I am going to be honest and tell you that though my heart and spirit are still anxiously engaged, my body is pretty exhausted. They just changed the electricity schedule and added more hours of no power so I will basically never eat a real meal again. We don't have regular food and we walk all day in the heat so my body is feeling it. I ache everywhere.

Nevertheless, there is still much to be grateful for. My companion's sister got married this week so I got to be there for her in a situation that I was just barely in. It was a really sweet day to cry with her and help her through. We both mostly cried with how much we love our families. 

We found a former investigator called Frank who is an evangelist and feels like young people can teach him a lot. We had been trying to meet with him for a few days and finally he came to our Wednesday evening devotional at church. Literally no one showed up and they showed the most random devotional addressed to seminary and institute teachers. The whole time Sister Ratema and I kept looking at each other and wondering if what to do because it seemed like it didn't apply to him but at the end he just sat in awe and then gave us a 30 minute recap of everything he learned and how it was an orchestration from God that he should be there. Heavenly Father is definitely wiser than us. It was sweet. There was a whole talk on the sabbath day and come to find out he is Seventh Day Adventist. Too good.

We got a referral from a member who met this woman on the road that asked what church he went to. She had been feeling like she needed to find a new church so we went to teach her this week and she is so, so sweet. She is definitely not what you would call an "ideal" investigator--her English isn't the best and her husband runs away every time we come--but she has the sweetest spirit about her. And she actually came to church! It was a miracle!! I'm excited to keep teaching her.

We also took the branch president and his wife to teach a couple that we are teaching in Ndeke. They are such a sweet couple but haven't seemed to take the gospel very seriously in the past. But little by little it seems like their eyes are being opened and it really helped to have president there. We walked out of the lesson and President Thole turned to us and said, "Wow sisters. That was so powerful. I don't think I'll ever work with the Elders again. I just want to work with you." Ha! That guy is super funny. He's one of the most powerful BPs I've been able to work with.

In my continuous study of the Atonement, I have thought about the beautiful symbolism of the second coming of Jesus Christ. What a breathtaking scene that will be when angels clothed in white will ascend with the Risen Savior clothed in red. He took upon Himself our stains so we could be pure. I am grateful for the sacrament that is a weekly memorial service to Him. I love Him so much!

In other news:
-The termites have come out and we walk through huge clouds of them everyday. We are constantly sweeping them out of our bedroom and I find them in my bed. It reminds me of Christmas in Blantyre last year.    
-Christmas decorations are up in the grocery stores. Is it really already that time?
-Our gospel principles teach closed his class yesterday with, "In the name of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint, Amen." I died.

-The weather is bipolar. Twice this week it was freezing and I was regretting leaving all my sweaters in Lusaka and now it's back to being blistering hot. 

Love you all!
Sister Proctor

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