I've adopted a new motto that I'm going to apply to these last few weeks. It goes like this:
Bring it on!!!
Whatever challenge comes, whatever trials come, whatever anything-bring it on! I'm just going to take whatever comes and make the best of it for the little time that I have left. I'm determined to come home with no regrets and I'm going to make that happen.
Ok, I have a correction from last week. I told you that my new companion's name was sister Sbmpa and that no, in fact it wasn't spelled wrong. Well turns out it was. I spelled it the way my zone leaders told me but they got the name wrong from the APs. Her name is actually Sister Sempa. Much easier to say. She's from Uganda. She just turned 19 in the MTC. And she is probably the sweetest, most sincere, most humble person I have ever met. I really do just feel like her mother sometimes. I love her so so much. She is struggling to adjust to Zambia though. I feel so bad for her. I'm doing my best to help her but she's having a hard time. But I know she'll be ok. The best way to adjust is to just jump in head first. So that's what we are going for. When we are out working she seems to be happy. Its just when she has free time to think that she has a hard time. So we'll just keep working!
Luanshya is sooo different from Lusaka. On Wednesday morning we took the 6:00am bus from Lusaka to Luanshya. Even at 6:00am in Lusaka, the streets are just full of people. Its always busy and noisy and there are a lot of people. Luanshya is way smaller and quieter and a lot less populated. There are still a lot of people but not nearly as many as in Lusaka.
We stay in a flat with 3 other sisters. Sister Hirwa, Sister Mudinda, and Sister Solomone. Sister Hirwa is the sister I started training with Sister Vea a few months back, Sister Mudenda is a member from Lusaka that got called to Uganda but is serving here while she waits for her visa, and Sister Solomone is brand new from the MTC just like Sister Sempa. Our flat is so international! Sister Hirwa was born in Rwanda but grew up in South Africa, Sister Mudenda is Zambian, Sister Solomone is from Fiji but her family currently stays in Kiribati, Sister Sempa is Ugandan, and I'm from the US. I love being able to get to know people from places all over the world! I'll send pictures next week hopefully. The computer I'm using can't upload them.
The branch and the members here are amazing. And the work is on fire!! There are baptisms pretty much every week. TONS more people are willing to listen to us. We had more lessons and new investigators in the few days this week we were here than we would have in 2-3 weeks in Lusaka. Its so nice to actually be teaching again! I missed working like this. I'd missed people actually listening to us! The work here feels more like it did in Botswana. We are still trying to figure out the area and how to get everywhere but bring it on! We never get lost, we just go on adventures. The members are super helpful. They have
walked us around our area showing us where to go and how to get everywhere. Its been super nice.
Here's a funny from the week: The other sisters contacted a guy named Simeon who stays in our area so they gave us his name and address. They told us he was really nice and open to learning. I asked what church he goes to and they told us that he is Rastafarian... bring it on! So on Sunday after church a member showed us how to get there. We found the house pretty easily. Outside on the clothes line there was one of those beanie hats with Rasta colors and we heard reggae music playing. As we got closer we saw him with some friends laying under a tree. They were suuuuuper high. I felt like I was watching a Bob Marley movie or something! It was hard not to laugh. After talking to him briefly we decided to reschedule. After we left though, we all just cracked up. It will be very interesting to see if he goes anywhere in the gospel.
I really love it here. I feel like this is going to be a really great place for me to finish. I do miss Lusaka but I know Im supposed to be here. I love you all! Have a great week!
Love, Sister Gehring