Another great week with a lot of changes. First of all, the Christmas celebration is still going strong here in Bangui. Seriously, everybody is still playing the Christmas music. There were like 3 Christmas parties the other day, even though Christmas is over. And the new year celebration was ridiculous. All missionaries had to be inside by 6 pm because the fireworks are so crazy hahah.. and it’s not even like the fireworks look cool. They are just so loud. Sounded like WW2 outside. And the firework party continued until about 2 am. Somebody literally right outside my window was blasting them off all night haha. He had a big cannon that he kept on launching. Sooo loud and annoying.
So this last week I was in a trisome with Elder Costales and my new comp, Elder Cervantes. He is a true Ilicano, so people love him here. He’s really great. He only has 3 transfers left in his mission, so this will be his last area. And he wants to go out with a bang, so I’m very excited for this next transfer. We both are super motivated to work hard. I’m happy. We have a lot in common, including getting up every morning and going to the beach to work out/ play basketball.
with Elder Cervantes
where we work out/play ball in the morning
So the frustrating thing most recently for me is realizing that in this area, we are having to focus on reactivation. Obviously as a new missionary, you just want to baptize as much as you can. But we sat down and just talked about how we are really going to focus on reactivating this cycle because there are sooo many less actives and inactives in this branch.
Funny thing, we ate with a family the other day and they made ham. It looked soooo good, and then I took a bite, and it tasted sooo weird ... almost tasted like a cupcake. Another thing, the other day we woke up to the sound of a screaming dog. And we go outside and someone was slaughtering it right by our front porch. SO that was pretty sad. Pretty sure I’ve eaten dog a few times though, and it isn’t too bad.
Well I don’t have too much else to say, but I would like to share something that I learned that helped me this week, and can help all of us. I was reading Devn Cornish's General Conference talk the other day. A really, really good talk. And one of my favorite parts of it is when he talks about how we need to stop comparing ourselves to other people. We need to stop caring what other people think of us. God is the only one who we should care what he thinks of us. That helped me a lot because being a young missionary, and a competitive one, I am always comparing myself to other missionaries - on their progression in the language and stuff. I’m always wanting to be better than them. Yeah, it sounds selfish, but it’s true, and it was the same back home. But this past week I’ve really tried not to compare myself at all to the others. And it is sooo much less stressful when we stop comparing ourselves to them, and just try to better ourselves humbly. So you should all go read his talk, it was really great. (link to copy & paste: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2016/10/am-i-good-enough-will-i-make-it?lang=eng)
Alright, that’s all for this week. Love you all talk to you soon, Happy New Year!!!
(we asked for pics of his house...
looks like a place that should have toilet paper and hot water, right?!)