Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Swallowed in the Sea

 As Chris Martin sings in a dearly beloved Coldplay song, 'You cut me down to size, and opened up my eyes; made me realize what I could not see'. I guess if I've learned anything so far in my three months in Cape Verde, is that often times, things really don't ever go according to plan, no matter how hard we may try. With this, we really have two choices: we can either get frustrated about it, or, we can roll with the bumps in the road, trusting that our Heavenly Father has in store for us that which 'could not see'.

This week, this really was the story that went totally along with how things unfolded with our investigator Louisa, who had been progressing super well, but had her fair share of struggles. We were under the belief, at the beginning of the week, that she would be going to Praia for a few days, and likely wouldn't return for a week or so, which was gunna push us back a bit with her baptism, but on Monday night, she expressed to us that she would not go to Praia until she'd been baptized, and that she was ready to put aside everything so that she could be baptized. It was freaking COOL! So, as we worked with her to progress to baptism on the Saturday, we also talked with her daughters, who are 9 and 11, about being baptized with her. It was all going super super well, and Louisa was like rock solid in everything, including Word of Wisdom, Law of Chastity, all that stuff, so we were like PUMPED for Saturday. I think it was the Thursday we went by her house to go over the baptismal interview questions with her and her daughters, and again it was going super well, like her daughters told us they believed Joseph Smith was a prophet, all this kinda stuff, and then we got to the last question, which was, 'will you follow and be baptized?', and Louisa, right off, said yes, but her daughters were like 'well, I've already been baptized. I was baptized in the Catholic church. How many times was Jesus baptized?', which were all answers that were fed to them by Louisa's ex-man, John, who doesn't want any of them to get baptized, so they declined being baptized, which kinda bummed us out, but it was all still good. Then, when we passed by her house before her baptism to pick her up, John called us up and started telling us all this crap and asking if we were the church of Satan, and fun stuff like that. We pretty quickly realized that this baptism day was not going to go smooth, like we had hoped for. We managed to get out of the house with Louisa, and got everything all sorted out before the service, at which point we thought, 'PHEW, we're all good now', but, being Cape Verde, it can never be as such. The service itself was just not well run, because our branch president is out of town for the weekend, and Elder Stone and I were just getting frustrated because of all the little things we saw going wrong. We got down to the beach after a short service in the chapel, and we were still feeling this same frustrations, but I guess the Lord decided to 'cut us down', because the second we walked into the water with her, all those feelings washed away.
 As we stood there and watched her become swallowed in the sea (man, my water puns are ON today), I just felt such a strong relief, it was awesome. It's suuuuuper easy to get caught up in soooo many little things, but when we kinda take that step back and let it all go, it's incredible to see how much our Heavenly Father does to take us where he knows we need to go. Louisa's been such an incredible blessing, and from the time we first met her as a drunk on the street to seeing her be baptized, the change in her was indescribable. It was freaking BOSS, and it's times like that where it's freaking AWESOME to be a missionary.
                                 What happens when young men are left without adult supervision...
                                     they come up with an idea to "eat" their departing district leader!

Other than our work with Louisa, this week has been an awful strange week. Elder Ernst, our District Leader, has died (as in, finished his mission) and left us on Friday, so for 3 full days of the week, we existed in a tri-panionship, which was a lot of fun. Before Elder Ernst left, he did a division with us, so I went and worked with Elder Martinez in his area, and stayed over at their house, while Elder Ernst worked with my comp, Elder Stone. When I was out with Elder Martinez, it was kinda cool to see how much I've learned since my last division with him, back about 9 or so weeks, and we just had a super fun time walking around with our branch mission leader, Joao, who is DEFINITELY slightly crazy.  
One other fun thing that happened this week was a night we had at Chano and Milcialita's, after Elder Ernst had left. We'd found this Creole guide, which had a TON of just totally random Creole words, such as a funny word to obsess over something, a word for being cross-eyed, to fail a grade in school, name ANYTHING and basically they have a weird word in Creole for it. What we did was read off the strangest ones we could find, and Chano or Milcialita would try and describe it for us, and MAN we were all laughing pretty darn good. Half the fun of being in Cape Verde is learning Creole, cuz it's seriously such a funny language.
So, with that, this week marked the END of me being a Greenie, and I have now reached status as a full-functioning, not-totally-incompetent, missionary. However, since the transfer ended, transfers came! For us, Elder Stone received his transfer to go to Tarrafal, on the island of Santiago, while Elder Martinez and I will be staying here, as the ONLY companionship on the island of Maio. We had figured as such would be happening, but it was a relief when we heard from President Mathews and had it confirmed.

                     Goodbye to Elder Stone!  A great trainer!  Wishing him all the best in Tarrafal!

Well, there's my week for ya! I hope my ramblings aren't tooooooo annoying!
Love y'all!
Elder Massey

1 comment:

  1. Sure looks beautiful over there. Glad you are enjoying your mission and that you are rolling with the punches. Hang in there!