Talofa (Hello in Samoan & Tuvaluan)
The area is really heating up! We are being blessed so much. I'm constantly on my knees giving thanks to my Heavenly Father for blessing us! I went through a really rough patch where we had 5 people set for baptism in one week to 1. Where we had people move out of our area, one might get deported, another is thinking of dropping us, and another is waiting for his in-laws to come from the states for his baptism. And it was really hard on me. Because I felt like we were doing everything we could to help them and I felt like we were qualifying for baptisms. But then we had this happen. And Corrin was supposed to get baptized on Saturday but because her partner won't move out she can't get baptized. So we are praying for a miracle.... But just when we lost all of these investigators and things were looking down and I was stressing like none other, Heavenly Father blessed us with some amazing people this week!!! And not just a few, but 13 New Investigators!!! That's unheard of! And most of them are very keen! That's the most that I've ever gotten in one week. We have found over 30 new people in this transfer, which is well over double what we found all of last transfer and we still have another week before transfers! So we are doing everything we can in being obedient and diligent, and being humble, recognizing God's hand in everything so we can continue to qualify for "miracles".....
We have found heaps of Tuvaluan! Ha have you ever heard of the Island of Tuvalu?!??! Because I didn't even know it excisted til I came up to the city! But these people are wonderful. It's like the 'Other Side of Heaven'. We sit on their mats that they weave, and we teach them. And it's very similar to that movie because they believe that your saved if you believe in God, so once you get the point across that this IS GOD'S CHURCH, then it becomes easier for them to accept the church!
We found a Tuvaluan name Malae (Ma-lie) I would compare him to the guy on the 'Other Side of Heaven'; the guy that dies, (ha I know that sounds bad) but his characteristics. He's the most humble, nicest guy I've ever met. He took us to church yesterday! And we just found him last Sunday! He was wearing an Italian jersey and his son was wearing a U.S. soccer jersey. So I went and talked to him about soccer and who he's supporting and such, and then I asked if we could come around and share this message with him. And we are going back tonight to teach him as well! I'm soo excited for him!
We had interviews with President on Friday. It was really good. We talked about the area and such. ha President gave me a scare. He strongly believes that every companionship can baptize multiple souls monthly. I believe this as well, and because we haven't baptized this month I know President wondering why we haven't and what's going on, so he asked. I told him everything, and he says, "So you want me to believe that your working hard?!" In the tone of, "I don't believe that your working hard", and I reply shakely, "Yes." He says, "Yes, Elder Belnap, I do believe you are working very hard, and things like this happen." And we talked all about it. And he says, "I think I'm going to leave you here for another transfer so you can report to me next month and tell me that you had a huge month and that you can bapize lots of souls." And I told him that's what I wanted to hear, because I want to show him that I (not me, but the Lord, using me as a instrument) can baptize. And he asked about Keyes, and how we get along. I told him we are a great companionship and he is great for me. Now usually when you get along well with a companion, he transfers one of you. So I expected him to hint towards moving him or something, but he said, "Well I think I'll keep you guys together for another transfer. I still need to consult with the Lord, but if things go as planned then you will stay together!!!" So I was stoked to hear about that!!!.........Then he was talking to me about my progression and "why" he put me as senior companion. He said he gave me a leadership position early in my mission because he said I'm showing all the right signs of being a leader in this mission. And he wants to see how I handle things at a early age in my mission. And to continue to improve/progess. So in a way that's a really cool thing. Because people always talk about "Oh I want to be Zone Leader or District Leader" or whatever. But honestly, it's a "big" responsibility. Now I'm not saying that I'll be any of those positions, but those are the leadership positions in this mission. And so I need to continue to progress and I will do whatever the Lord wants Elder Belnap to do!!
Haha funny story.... So yesterday we were walking over to Malae's house because he lives soo close to our flat so he can give us a ride to church. Well on the corner of our street. There is this insane dog that barks his head off everytime we bike/walk pass this guys house. Well yesterday as we walk pass and cross the street, I hear this guy yelling and cussing, saying every swear word in the book and just going Irrate!!! So I look back just to see what's going on, and this guy was looking over his fence yelling at us and just going off on us calling us dirty names I don't know how many times. So I turn around and say to him, "What?" And he says how we did something to his dog. I said, "We didn't do anything to your dog. We are going on our way to church." And he's going off so I said, "Have a good day sir." And we leave. And we go to an investigator's house right around the corner. Well this jerk, bikes after us. And as we are talking to our people. He hops off his bike and goes irrate at us. And he gets all up in my face. But I wasn't worried or scared one bit. Ha I was actually a little on edge. Because I didn't back down one bit. I just stood right back in his face and asked what his problem was. And he goes off about his dog and how we make fun of his dog, and da da da. He says, "Practice what you preach" and all this crap. Then Alan, our investigator, steps in between us. Then he gets all up in Alan's face. And so I told him, "We do practice what we teach. And I'm sorry, but we didn't do anything to your dog." And as he starts biking away, he looks back and he says, "Oh you think it's funny now, I see that smile on your face." And I told him, "Yeah, I'm smiling because we didn't do anything wrong. And your making a scene all about nothing." Then he says he's going to call the cops and going to call our "chief" who's in charge of us lol! (what he doesn't know is that the Stake President is very high up in the police core, and one of the top officers in West Auckland and is our good friend and a member as well lol). I told him to call the cops and to get them over here! Because we didn't do anything wrong. But he bikes off going irrate. It was stupid. People will do anything to get at the missionaries even when we do ABSOLUTELY nothing wrong! Satan is always looking for ways to break us down. But we have to stay strong!