Monday, February 23, 2015

Hard work pays off that's for sure. For the last 6 weeks or numbers have been very low. 0, 0 , 0 but this week, we were able to finally see our area start to progress!! We have been meeting wonderful families and individuals ready to hear the gospel.  There is a quote my mom shared with me a couple weeks ago that I feel applies perfectly to what happened.

“When we are desperate everything changes. Our vision changes. We are suddenly able to see things we’ve never seen before. Our ability to do increases. We are suddenly able to do whatever it takes. ...
“My dear elders and sisters, I pray that on your mission you will have many moments of complete and overwhelming and even anguishing desperation. Why? Because then, and only then, will you desperately ask, desperately seek and desperately knock. Then, and only then, will you find the courage and determination to follow through with exactness everything the Lord needs you to do in order to serve a valiant vibrant, worthy and very successful mission for Him.”
The weeks before I was very desperate. We had no idea what to do with the area that we had been given. But I knew that something needed to change. I need to work harder. But not work harder but work more effectively. Plan more effectively. Find more effectively.  Use the atonement each and everyday as I got more frustrated and confused about the area. Recognize the spirit and follow the promptings. Fast. And getting on my knees and praying for His help to do his work. I am not here to do the Lord's work my way, but His way. And I need to conform to that. Change things to do what He would want.
And because of that, we have 3 people on date. 
Shenaz, an investigator we've had for 2 months, has received answer to her prayers that she needs to be baptized again by the right authority and ready to commit herself to be baptized on the 15 of March.
Irene and Hannah. Isaiah's (recent convert) two sisters who have been coming to church for the past 3 Sundays and preparing themselves for March 29.
Grateful to be in this area at this time. To grow and become the missionary/person the Lord wants me to be. 
I know that this church is true. We had a Missionary return from his mission in our branch and as he was bearing his testimony he said " This church is the only true church on this earth. And even if you say it isn't, it won't stop it from being the only true church." And its very true. No matter who strays from the truth fulness of the gospel, the church is still true and I know it! "Doubt your doubts before you doubt your Faith!"
Loves!

Sister Rasband



Monday, February 16, 2015

This past week has been full of ups and downs. Our numbers look very low, but I am still happy with how the week has gone. The hardest part about our area is those who live in our rich area won't be home until 6, which is when we have to be in, so most of the rich people we have to squeeze in on Saturday and Sunday, and then the rest of the week, is basically finding, but yet we can't really find when they are at work. This "be home by 6" is super frustrating at times, because I know this area could be progressing if we could stay out till 8. My dream. But won't happen beecause of stories that we hear of So-and So got killed last night here in Sector 2.  But you would never know that this place is scary in the day.
But anyways yesterday we met the sweetest people. We contacted this guy who just moved here from Nigeria, and the first thing he says is "I went to blah church and I didn't like it. But I need to find a church here that shares the truth. So I will try your church this week." And I'm like... OKAY how about being baptized. Haha. But yet again, we can't see him until next Sunday.
Then we met this sweet family. The dad comes to the door and has us sit outside his gate. The he asks us if we are Jehovah's Witness, and we say no, and then instantly he lets us inside his home. Hahah story of missionary life here in Africa. I don't really know what I can tell you about this family but they are just sweet and you can tell how the gospel could bless their family! We will see them next weekend.
Our Village is doing well, but harder because peoples schedule are changing and we can't see some of our recent converts. But one of my favorite members, Sister Kapobo, is less active. She is so funny. She doesn't speak any English but yet loves us so much and we are always laughing. Love her so much! Last week as we were leaving she asked us just to stay and sleep there. She is so great. Anyways SHE CAME TO CHURCH.The first time since I have been here.
Well the work continues to go forward. I'm excited for this next transfer and to do all I can in this area. I am determined. Yes this area is super hard, but I am just going to give it all I can, work like its the last day of my mission each and everyday, and then I know that Heavenly Father will bless us.
Love you all!
Oh and Congrats to Lilongwe for becoming approved to be a district. Holla at us! Since I have been on my mission, they opened a new district in Copperbelt, a stake soon in Lusaka and now a district here in Lilongwe. The Lord is truly hastening his work!


Monday, February 2, 2015

Mission Tour was so amazing! We headed down Friday and the plan was Saturday the meeting would start at 8:15. We get a call that night saying, "President and Sister Erickson, and Elder and Sister Cook's flight got canceled so it will start at 9:00. In my mind i was just thinking what if they don't get here. But they did!
When they arrived Sister Cook explained how it was very weird how everything seemed to get in the way of them coming to Blantyre. And when they got here the rain was so heavy it was hard to hear each other at the church. She said Satan really seem to want to stop whatever was going to happen.
But the spirit I felt as Elder Cook talked to us was incredible. He truly is a man called of God to carry on the work in Southeast Africa. We talked about the difference between a testimony and conversion. We gain that conversion by living the gospel each and every day of our lives. It is unwearied diligence of reading our scriptures, praying, going to church, and being Christlike, that helps us be converted to the gospel.
Not much else to tell you! But my companion and I have a lot of work to do this week as we have no investigators!
Love you all!