Friday, July 28, 2017

July 17, 2017 - Another Week in the Land of Zim

Hey everybody!!

This week was pretty good! It's difficult to have a bad week as a missionary because of all the tender mercies the Lord blesses us with. On Thursday we had interviews with President Mkhabela. I love interviews and getting to know my mission president. Lately I've been having some feelings of inadequacy and not knowing if I was that great of a missionary. However, President Mkhabela assured me that I'd been doing a wonderful job and that he was happy with my work. That was comforting to know. Sometimes I forget that being a successful missionary isn't always based on tangible results. It's based on what our Heavenly Father thinks of us, and we can tell that He is pleased when we have the Spirit with us!

This is Jayden, the 2 year old nephew of an
investigator. He's terrified of us,
but calmed down after he shut his eyes
so he couldn't see us. So funny
On Wednesday we met a new investigator named Tatenda. He's one of the people who came on their own to church for the first time last week. He lives alone in Borrowdale with his mom and is an odd but awesome guy. He had even made us sandwiches and snacks, which was so cool. It was a great first meeting. Elder Horton played him in chess while we discussed our purpose as missionaries and answered some of his questions. He came to church again this Sunday and I hope that he will keep progressing!! We also taught Wilson again. He's meeting every goal as he works to stop smoking and we had a great lesson with him on the Holy Ghost. It's amazing to meet such humble and determined people.

I had a cool experience this week. We decided that we finally needed to talk to Elisha's mom to encourage her to let him come to church. While we were waiting for her to come, we sat with Elisha and I was humming a hymn or two. When his mom came back, we went out to ask her to meet with us and Elisha's sister (who is an incredible singer) said she heard me singing from the other room. She asked me to sing for them. I was suddenly super nervous, but I remembered that music can bring the Spirit. So I sang a verse of I Need Thee Every Hour, and everything felt different. They said that their spirits were lifted, and it was a good start to our conversation with the mom, who said that she would think/pray about whether Elisha would come to church. It was unique and kinda cool.

We had several investigators who hadn't been progressing make some good steps this week! Bethel and her friends actually read the Introduction to the Book of Mormon and Sis Pardon came to church again on her own! It was exciting to see them work towards keeping commitments and exercising their faith! We also taught Bridget, a single mom who is kind of a mess. She'd been dropped by other missionaries and we didn't know if we should teach her because she isn't really serious. Then we met her 12 year old daughter Kara, who is super smart and just awesome! She even likes volleyball! When we left, Elder Horton and I both expressed how we felt that we had found an even better reason to teach Bridget: her daughter. There are so many people who need this gospel.
Doctor, doctor

On Friday night we started teaching this guy named Martin. He's...too friendly. It's kind of creepy actually. He bought us some snacks and stuff which was nice, but then plunged us into a long discussion on why he thinks tithing isn't a commandment anymore. He knew his scriptures, but he was really unnerving as he was explaining. Both Elder Horton and I felt a little weird about the lesson. Neither of us were comfortable, and we made a few jokes about how strange it was. Elder Horton then didn't sleep all the next night and got sick the night after. Haha he blamed it on the creepy guy that we taught. It was pretty funny.
The fence we are building at the school

On Saturday morning we went to Hatcliffe 2 Primary school with our ward and started our Helping Hands project. We cut down some brush and started building a chain link fence for the preschool. It was nice to get my hands dirty and to be a part of a great project. Plus they gave us surgical masks for the dust, so we had fun with those. We taught Mai Arnold and Brother Tendai again on Saturday night. They both read in Alma 5 in the Book of Mormon and had great questions!! They always ask for things to read before we leave, which is a testimony to their conversion. I have come to love their family so much and I can't wait until they are married and baptized in two weeks!!

Like I said, Elder Horton was sick on Sunday so we didn't do much. We did have 10 investigators at chruch again!! That was great. After that we went home and I got some great study time in. I love the scriptures!! They put things so simply and so perfectly. Where better to turn for counsel than the word of God? I know the scriptures are true, not because they match up historically or because anyone told me so, but because I have gained a witness from the Holy Ghost that they are true. I know as we do our best to make them a pattern for our lives, we will find ourselves reaping God's promised blessings!

I love you all and hope this next week is a great one!!

Love Elder Barlow

The bunny wisperer

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