Monday, June 2, 2014

Maxixe 42nd week - June 2, 2014

"Every person here on earth is a child of God and chose to come here to make choices and to progress. Everyone has divine potential".

I think the saying “time flies" is a very big understatement, this Monday marked eleven months on the mission for me. It hardly feels like I have been out for two months. I still feel (and quite honestly, am) very new. But alas time just keeps ticking on. 
Elder Kanaga is on his 8th transfer

Last P-Day Elder DePina got food poisoning or something. We called the mission Doctor who told us what medications to buy. We went to the pharmacy and bought the medication and returned home. He took some and slept for a couple of hours. Then we went shopping, and returned home. He slept for a while longer. He got up for a bit, then slept for more or less the rest of the day.

I made pizza again. I've decided that the “P” in P-Day represents pizza. Therefore, P-Day means pizza day. Logic! It was really good pizza! Not much happened on P-day as we were more or less house locked because of Elder DePina being sick. But I will say this, as I spent a good 30 or 45 minutes chopping and dicing vegetables for the pizza the thought crossed my mind, multiple times, of how nice it would be to be the Wolverine from X-Men :-). This week I also bought and cooked (after playing with) a crab. I put it in my stir-fry. It is good, however way too much work. Boneless skinless chicken breast is so much easier.

"Give me back my name tag"

Tuesday Elder DePina was better and when we went out for the morning there was quite beautiful fog that had set down over Maxixe. Sadly the harsh sun burnt it off so I was not able to get a picture. Hopefully, it will happen again so I can snap a photo. Later in the day as we were walking, I saw an older lady walking around with a Game Stop Resell fabric shopping bag. Oh the things we see in Mozambique.

We had a great lesson with Jxxxxxx & Lxxxx on Tuesday. They are awesome! They are actually reading and praying together daily! That is so awesome and what's more they are slowly but surely working on getting their documents for marriage so they can be baptized! So that was a nice. Thursday, we had another good lesson with them. They are solid! They are still reading, praying, and slowly getting documents. Jxxxxxx told us how most people go fishing for crabs. They walk in neck deep into the water barefoot. When they step on a crab, they go under and grab the crab with bare hands. Uggh! Not a thing I even want to do. He says sometimes you get pinched and cut but, you get used to it. It made me think about the story of the three truck drivers applying for a job. The first two bragged about how close to the edge of a cliff they could drive the truck, however, the third wisely said, "I drive as far away from the edge as I can." Putting our hands down in murky water knowing there is something that can hurt us is like driving too close to the edge. Let us spiritually keep our trucks far from the edge, and keep our spirits in safe places. Let us never place ourselves anywhere close to spiritual or physical danger or temptation. As they say “The best cure is prevention".

One day, as we were out contacting, a lady stopped us and asked "Is it true, you are Interpol?" I didn't know what that meant so I asked. It means International Police. We chuckled a bit and I said, "I am a 19-year-old kid, I am not part of the International Police" and that cleared that up. If we were Interpol I certainly would not tell and I would have a good cover identity. Missionary work has 50% people with real interest and 50% without, but Brett Favre is all real that's $200.

Pxxxx asked if he could bring the book of Mormon with him to work. He is a guard and as such has a lot of down time to read so of course we said yes. It is always nice to have people show real interest. Later in the week, we started off the morning on Thursday with a good lesson with him. His wife Axx is currently sick. He is great, we taught him about the gospel of Jesus Christ. He is trying little by little to get his wife's documents so that they can be married and baptized.

We contacted a good family on Wednesday. Ixxxx and Sxxxxx. We had a really nice first lesson with them. Both of them paid attention and understood well our message. We re-marked for Friday. So hopefully we will see them progress well.

Later we had a bit of a different lesson with another couple. The wife was with it, and understood, but the husband would not act for himself. Every time we asked him a question, he would look over at his wife. It is great to consult together as a couple, but he needed to just be his own self and answer how he felt. But they were both really nice, and aside from a couple of "hiccups" from him, the lesson went well, so we marked to visit them again on Friday.

When speaking of Thursday, sadly, the first thing I have to do is rather angrily, complain. I do this because starting at 3 hours 30 or 3:30AM, the rooster next-door thought it would be a good idea to start cock-a-doodle-freaking-doo-ing *eye-twitch*. I truly honestly almost, got up to go "silence" him. Instead I got some ear plugs and happily stuffed them in thinking, "Ha! Dumb flightless bird! I don't have to listen to you!" Then soon after those baby foam pillows expanded in my ears, he went off again and I could still hear him. I mean when I go to air shows (Go Thunderbirds!) the earplugs help quiet the sound of F-16s almost breaking the sound barrier. Do they work for this this dumb rooster? No… Finally, when it was time to (very tiredly) get up, only then did he stop *eye-twitch*.

After our lesson with Pxxxx, a bit of the sad thing happened, we had to drop Vxxxxx. He has stopped coming to church, and started turning off his phone when we try to contact him. He has been hiding from us when we pass by his house. Honestly it is heartbreaking, but, everyone has agency. We, as missionaries, are here to give them the chance, not force them, so he has chosen for now.

Friday was a pretty good day, a lot fell through, but we still got a lot done, and I for sure still want to kill a rooster, just one though. Friday morning he started up at 1 hour 30.  Somehow, through a tender mercy I managed to get decent sleep.

While we were walking on Friday, I thought about my Nana, who knows why, but I did. The memory of my last time seeing her came strongly to my mind. The last things she spoke to me in this life were about always being worthy of the priesthood. Sadly, I do not remember her exact words; however, it left a very strong impression on me. How amazingly important it is, so important that my dear Nana chose it to be her last counsel to me. As a young man often the thought of Nan, watching over me has influenced my decisions “What would Nana think of this?” and things like that. It was a nice remembrance for me and a strong lesson to always be worthy of the priesthood.

 Also on Friday, we had a really good lesson with Cxxxx and Axxxxxx. Axxxxxx is super sound! She read about Joseph Smith receiving the golden plates. She remembered all the details and discussed it with us. She is going to really help the church here in Maxixe. Then on Sunday, We had another good lesson with this very same couple. I love them. She is so awesome. During our lesson, his cell phone started to go off. She instantly said "Desliga, poi no silencio" or "reject the call, silence your phone." It made me smile. They are awesome.

Mama Editor: Elder Kanaga takes notes and snaps pictures of his notes. He emails them to me so I can transcribe them for his blog updates. Unfortunately the paragraph that goes here was too light to decipher. It sounded like it was about a new couple they were teaching. At the very end of the paragraph was something about hope J

We taught the Temple preparation class to all the members with one year or more as a member. The lesson went really well but made me miss going to the temple. A lot! Afterwards everything fell through. Our plans, our backup plans, and the backup plans for our backup plans. That was a bit discouraging but there is nothing I could do about it. Literally, I mean literally everything fell through.

At lunch time I bought a papaya, now this was not my first papaya. I had papaya in my first transfer and didn't like it at all. This time around I loved it! Papaya are the greatest.

Sunday was fast and testimony sacrament meeting. I was a little scared because of how it went last month. However, this time around I was kind of surprised. It went very well. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Afterwards, I was taught a good lesson not to judge (in a natural man way):
A man we are teaching has really latched onto the gospel. He is inviting family and friends. We've had two lessons with him. He has read and re-read the restoration packet we left with him. He now will be starting his exciting journey through the book of Mormon. When we sat with him the first time, I very imperfectly judged him as a deadbeat that wouldn't go anywhere. Well Elder Kanaga, slap to the face! I needed (and need) to look at people with an eternal perspective. The way God sees them, not in my very limited, earthly perspective. Every person here on earth is a child of God and chose to come here to make choices and to progress. Everyone has divine potential.

Sunday was June 1st here in Mozambique, which is a holiday, Dia das Crianças, or Children’s Day. It is probably the first holiday everyone didn't go drinking what a blessing. I am not, however excited for the 25th, National Independence Day.

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