Fiji Suva Mission

Fiji Suva Mission

Sunday, November 6, 2016

The Lord's Not Letting Me Finish Easy (Lautoka 2nd Area, Week 11)

Last MLC picture!
Wow! What a week! It's been one thing after another - first, I was sick on the way back from Suva. And then I had a fever. And then I got pink eye. And then I lost my voice. I couldn't believe it. I haven't been sick for months, and then BAM! Elder Afatasi was just like, "Hey it's cause you're going home in 2 weeks, the Lord's not letting you finish easy!" (that's paraphrased, but at least it sounds cool)

Tuesday and Wednesday we were in Suva for our Missionary Leadership Council. It was way good, and tons of changes were implemented to help the mission become so much more efficient and better at the work of salvation. It was a pleasure to be on the MLC during such a time. I had to give me departing testimony there too, and it was hard sara ga, but don't worry, I didn't cry (yet).

Thursday we got back and went straight to drop off all the tons of stuff we brought from Suva for the missionaries out here - everything from washing machines to microwaves to chairs - you name it, we probably had it stuffed somewhere in Pattie. Gotta love Pattie. But we were just exhausted - in fact, we've driven probably 800 kilometers total this week. Just nuts!

This picture is very special to me even though I wasn't there...

This is Atu - the big man in white, also from Samabula! The amazing thing about this is that when Elder Kahia and I were together, we just talked to this man outside his home, it was nuts how well he progressed and when I heard he'd been baptized, I was elated. The power of the Spirit to work in the hearts of the Lord's servants is amazing!

The rest of the week was spent getting ready for Eroni's baptism, which was awesome (pictures to come next week). We got there Sunday morning, though, and found out at 7:30am that the font was not filled the day before like we thought - and the baptism was at 8:30am. So we were rushing around, filling buckets, dumping them into the font, trying to get it filled on time. It was actually really funny - reminded me of Sister Matanatabu's baptism, when we had to change the dirty water last minute. Our Ward Mission Leader, Brother Lal, and his family helped us out and it was way fun. Stressful as, but fun.

At church on Sunday Eroni's cousin, Nunia, invited her friend to come to church and he really enjoyed it - he and I really hit it off and we easily got a return appointment with him for Thursday. His name was Rupeni, and we're way pumped to starte teaching him. After church we went on splits with some of the YSA and we just smashed out 6 lessons in 2 hours. It was way fun, and we got some new investigators too who accepted a soft baptismal invitation. We're way excited for what's coming next.

This picture is very special to me even though I wasn't there...

This is Deborah Matanatabu (the 9-year-old girl in white) from Samabula. She was the last one that needed to be baptized in their family, and when I was there we got her excited about being baptized, but the problem was she was living with her grandparents who are very against the church. Now, though, she stays with her immediate family and her dad, who I helped bring back to church, was able to perform the baptism. You'll recognize Sofaia Matanatabu too, her mom, who is still my favorite convert.

While in Suva, I ran into Sister Sautu, wife of the Bishop from Samabula 2nd, and she told me that the ward is getting way big - in the 90s and 100s now every week. When I got there in February, it was hitting maybe 30s or low 40s, and when I left in July it was hitting 60s and 70s, but hearing those numbers and hearing about all the wonderful people I know being blessing and getting baptized, it just brought amazing joy to my soul. Best of all, remember the Matanatabu family and their living conditions, where they were kicked out of their house? Now they have a place of their own!

This truly is the Plan of Happiness - and even though the Lord's not letting me finish easy, I'm loving every minute of my time here serving Him. I know He does it because He love me and wants me to grow.

Love you all!

Elda Barnaby

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