Monday, July 24, 2017

Week 51 - Miasa Mafy Vao Mikaly

Salama aby! Hope everything is going good with all of you! Life is great and just gets better here in Fort Dauphin! We had a killer week! First off Dorgivier and Pascal were baptized and it was a great baptismal service. They are both studs and will be great members and a big help to the branch. They both gave great testimonies and it was awesome to be a part of! Then the next day was just about as good! We had lots of investigators come to church and lots that we have been working on for awhile finally came! One particular couple that I we have been praying for finally came! As they walked in late, I had to restrain myself to not get up and give the guy a chest bump. I was so pumped! It was a great day at church with lots of great lessons also. Looking forward to another good week to keep this great work moving along. One thing that has amazed me is how faithful these Malagasy people are. Those in our branch have to walk a long ways to the church building as there is still not a building in our area. And yet we have been seeing great success lately and it has been awesome. I know Elder Shelby and I are not that good at convincing people to walk a couple miles to go to some church service for 3 hours. I know it is the Spirit as this is the true work of the Lord. It is a great blessing to be a part of it! I feel so blessed to share this great message everyday! It is amazing to see how many people and families' lives change as they accept this message and are baptized into Christ's Restored Church. A lot of times we talk about self-sacrifice in the church. It is true we must sacrifice some things of the world to follow Christ and to be able to accept this Gospel. But I am sure if we could understand and see how many blessings we have received and will receive because of this Gospel we would not be calling it a sacrifice but more of an investment. All these investigators and members here in Tanambao Fort Dauphin walk a long ways to get to church. And I know that they will be blessed more than they can imagine because of it. As we submit our will to the Lord we sometimes sacrifice things we might want to do. Although I like to think of that as more of an investment rather than a sacrifice. You put something away and after some time you realize you have more than you could've ever given at first. That is how God's promised blessings work. As we follow Him, we receive blessings though not always right away. As Gordon B. Hinckley said, "What appears today to be a sacrifice will prove to be the greatest investment you will ever make." I know that if we could all see the future of what our lives would be like in this church keeping the commandments versus out of the church, we would choose to follow the Lord and the modern day Prophets. Although hard at first, it will be the greatest blessing and choice we will ever make. I am grateful for this last year of investment I have made. It is by no means a sacrifice in my mind as I have learned and received more blessings than I could have ever given. I know that is how the Gospel works. It takes faith to make an investment. But the Gospel is the most secure investment we could ever make. It is 100 percent guarantee as long as we do our part. I know this message we share everyday is true. If you will listen and search with your heart you will find that truth also. I hope you all have a great week!!
 Last P-day we went to this little village outside of the main town of Fort D and it was beautiful! The kids and people were scared of white people but then we had tons of fun with them! It was sweet! Here are a ton of pics from it!

 Went to the pig farm. Pic of the water tower we helped build that is now finished and some pics of when we climbed up on it.

 The missionaries in our house and I were talking about how our standards on good food has changed. This is a meal I ordered this week that I really like. It is leaves from a tree smooshed up and some onions and other stuff mashed in and some beef. Pretty tasty haha.
 We found these two studs from the Amparihy Branch going around teaching people about the Book of Mormon in our area. Just like us missionaries! They teach them and read with them and if they wanna learn more they tell us about them! They are studs and I had to take a pic with them! True example of Member Missionaries right there!!!
  These guys work at this little restaurant we go to and they wanted a picture haha...knuckleheads.
 Went and taught Mbola and his huge family. They live out in the middle of nowhere. They are the people President invited to church. Mbole hand-carves souvenirs for tourists and sells them at the airport so that's how President met him. Two of them came to church Sunday and it is forever away from their house! Really cool.

  A pic of some of the carvings I bought for cool souvenirs.
 Baptism! Dorgivier has the glasses and Pascal has the buzzed head. Solo is the other guy who was baptized in the other branch! All of them are studs!! 

 Dorgivier and his mom who is also an investigator. We gave her a Book of Mormon at the baptism. She held it up and kissed it she was so happy.
Pascal and his friend...sad but no one from his family came to support him.