I can't believe that it is already September. The time has been flying by and it's only going faster! We've had some really cool things going on this past week.
The first off is that I've been on exchange for a couple of days. I've been with a new missionary here named Elder Dubbelt. Elder Dubbelt is from Utrecht, Netherlands. We've been on exchange for a bit and will continue to be on exchange for the next few days while our companions go to Trinidad. It's been great being with a native speaking companion. He's been helping me a lot with my Dutch a lot. I really hope some time on my mission I get paired with a native speaking companion.
We've had some sweet experiences finding new investigators. We two awesome new investigators, Ravelle and Chandra. Ravelle was the lady that came to church last week with out us inviting her. Apparently she is really good friends with a member from Paramaribo branch, and that is how she came in contact with the church. She came to church for a second time this last week which is awesome.
Chandra is also another investigator that we met. She is awesome to teach. She has been through a lot of hard times and is looking for a way that she can get closer to God for strength. Perfect for investigating the church! She too came to church this past week.
We were able to go do some service for a member here, Zuster Graanoogst. She owns her own vineyard all the way out in Lelydorp (It's about an hour and 20 minute bike ride there). She owns her own herbal tea business. Tea is big here in Suriname. Everyone drinks it. The vineyard was beautiful though, and it is surrounded by some beautiful country side (I'll send pictures).
After being here in Wanica branch for about a transfer, I've had about 6 or 7 people ask me for piano lessons. I've been looking for ways that I could help people learn piano so that Wanica could also get it's own pianist. As of right now it's seemed like I've been playing piano for just about everything! The district even called me and asked if I could play piano for district conference (like stake conference).
Wanica branch had 90 people in church this past week. Our peak has been 98 people in church. We've been shooting for 100 people in church. If Wanica keeps that 100 people, the church will build a building for the branch. The church even has the land for it! All the branch as to do is breach 100 people at church and keep that number. We've been edging towards it so we're hoping that here soon we'll hit that goal. It's been hard since the other missionaries have left. Since that has happened, our proselyting area has about tripled in size.
So this week I've been pondering about Patience. Patience is something that every missionary needs, I feel especially for those serving in the Caribbean, where everyone runs on a "Caribbean schedule". But I found a beautiful scripture talking about patience in Alma 32:42 And because of your diligence and your faith and your patience with the word in nourishing it, that it may take root in you, behold, by and by ye shall pluck the fruit thereof, which is most precious, which is sweet above all that is sweet, and which is white above all that is white,yea, and pure above all that is pure; and ye shall feast upon this fruit even until ye are filled, that ye hunger not,neither shall ye thirst.
We've given the promise that we shall 'hunger or thirst not' by planting the seed that Alma talks about, but often times, that takes a long time to happen. Think about the time that it takes for a seed to grow into a tree. That takes time! So do some things in the gospel. We may not have solutions or answers now, but they'll come. Even sometimes we have the solution in front of us but it's difficult to stick to it. But, the Lord promises us that it's all worth it because the fruit is 'most precious, sweet, and white'. These instances happen because the Lord wants us to learn on the journey; on our way. That is why we trust in Him.