Bom dia família!
(Sorry, no pictures this week either... the computer we used to use doesn´t have internet capacities anymore!)
Well, life just keeps moving on! It´s kind of crazy to me that it´s already P-day again, except that Sunday just wore us out so thoroughly. It´s such a blessing that we have P-day after Sundays, because they´re always the most emotionally exhausting: the anticipation and excitement of going to church and seeing who will come (like they promised us), the disappointment of who isn´t there, and the excitement as you see who is changing their life and who is ready to keep the Sabbath Day holy for the rest of their lives. And for some reason, it´s always the hardest day to find people at home (which is COMPLETELY different from what the Missionary Handbook says), and we always come home ready for a day of rest. :)
So let´s see... this week.
One thing that was really encouraging and exciting this week was that one of the people we´re teaching, named Davy, came to church even though he had been interior all week and hadn´t been answering his phone! It´s as if it´s already part of his routine, which is very different from a lot of people. But so exciting.
Also, we had divisions with Sister Spolador and Sister Ellsworth this week, and they were on Sister Johnson´s birthday! It was really good, because with six sisters in Santo Antão, we were able to make the day pretty special for her. I was a bit disappointed that I didn´t get to tell the world that it was her birthday, but Sister Ellsworth made it really special for her and made sure everyone knew. :) I think we both learned a lot, and we especially saw some new styles of teaching. It was really nice, because we´ve kind of been stuck in a rut with our teaching pattern. But, now we have some good ideas of how to improve, how to make every lesson even more personal, etc. Pretty fun.
We also had a zone meeting on Friday, which was great. We have incredible leaders here! I´m so grateful for the opportunity I have to learn from them. Sis. Johnson and I both felt rejuvenated and re-excited to go out and work this week after our zone meeting. It was such a blessing... such a tender mercy.
We have been working with a few groups of people (two sisters, and three cousins), helping them have conversion (not just a testimony) so they´re fully prepared for baptism. We were talking to Patrick, Lenisia, and Flávia (who are cousins), and verifying that they are keeping all the commandments. Flávia told us that they have been drinking Mokambo instead of coffee. We asked our leaders to verify, and Mokambo is a brand of coffee! We were a little disappointed and not exactly sure how to break the news to them, because they seemed so excited about it. After we got back from zone meeting in São Vicente, we explained that they couldn´t drink it. Flávia got especially passionate about it (she has had the hardest time with not drinking coffee), telling us that we were mistaken and that it doesn´t have coffee. Finally, Lenisia´s mom brought out the container, and we finally understood. They weren´t drinking Mokambo, they were drinking Nesquik chocolate milk! Haha, it was really funny. They explained to us that Mokambo is Creole for Nesquik (probably because Nestle makes both of them). But wow! It was pretty funny.
The Lord takes good care of His children. This week was pretty similar to the past few weeks, but with some more tender mercies, reminders, and events that charged my spiritual batteries. One big tender mercy was that even though all of our appointments fell through on Saturday, we still got to have six lessons with people we needed to talk to. Wow, it was such a tender mercy! Even when our plans fall through, the Lord´s plans never do. And there are some INCREDIBLE people here!
On March 1, one of the members did a Noite Familiar in her house for the first time... I think I mentioned it last week. It was incredible, and because of that, we have two families that we are now teaching... two INCREDIBLE families, with mothers who have some of the most sincere hearts and real intent that I have seen while being here. Such a blessing.
Also, we got to see Zuza again, too! Wow, she is incredible. She has been interior for a long time, working up there to pay for the necessities of her family and especially to pay for her son Elvis´s university schooling. Well, we got to see her on Saturday, and she told us that she has been reading the Book of Mormon every day that she has time. She has had a change of heart, and told us that when she comes to Porto Novo next week, she´ll go to church and we can talk about a baptismal date in specific with her! So incredible. Also she´s been a great support to Elvis, who is preparing to get baptized this week and has had a lot of discouragement about it from his dad (he lives in Portugal).
I love this work. We´re still really trying to get the members more involved in missionary work, but we got some great ideas from some amazing members yesterday about what we can do. This week we will have a fun activity to help people get really excited about the work, and we want to start doing that every week.
God is good. He loves each of us so, so much. I feel so blessed to feel a portion of that love He has for His children here in Cabo Verde. Even though the work is hard, I have never been happier. I love this work and I know that when we serve people, helping them come closer to the Lord, we can have more joy than we could possibly have in any other way. Love you all!
Sister Zimbelman :)