Tuesday, June 23, 2015

weekly letter 15

This week was such an awesome week! The new companionship is going well! It is different having start from ground zero since we do not know how to teach with each other because we both teach differently. I guess his previous companion was pretty weak at teaching and so there was legit one lesson where I did not say a single word last week haha. All goods though because we fixed it and we are progressively getting better and he is coming along so it is all sweet! I have already kind of seen in what ways he is going to teach me things and also how I am going to teach him. 

This week was so awesome though because on Tuesday we got to have a ward activity! We had a little pioneer trek sort of thing haha. We called it The Walk Of Faith. We just walked to our bishops house and back so it was not like the treks back home but it was awesome! Instead of wagons we used wheelbarrows haha it was pretty funny though. Right after we left Bishops house though it started to rain like crazy though! The wind was so strong and I legit felt like I was swimming because we were in our Whites and we were soaked! It sucked but it was awesome because it sucked together haha. It was really just so nice to see the ward get together and to spend time with them!

Elephants!! We went and rode elephants today and it was too sweet! YO! It hurt my butt though because them elephants got some spiny rock hard backs and so it was totally ridin up and stuffs haha. It was awesome though because we got to ride it around like Zebras and some Kudus and things like that so it was super cool. We fed them and I guess a cool thing to say to people now is that I have had my hand in an elephants mouth so that is pretty cool I guess. 

So like I said last week, this transfer my companion and I are really trying to focus more so on the members, less actives, and the recent converts more. Not necessarily going to neglect investigators or anything like that but really focusing and seeing every member family. I have already seen a change in the ward and YO! The members are feeding us a lot more then when I first got here that's for sure haha so that is always nice. We are learning so much about the ward and about how it used to be years back. It is so hard because our ward is so unique for good but also for bad. It makes me sad to see that there is so much racial problems going on here. It is still so hard to get the two different cultures to just join each other. Outside in the world I feel it is expected but it makes me sad to see segregation within Christs Church. I even see it between Elders as well which is super disheartening. All goods though because that's what I plan to focus a lot on this transfer is helping the best I can with uniting the ward.
We are on track for our next baptisms which are going to be next week and I am so excited for these two! They are so awesome and when I found out that they passed the baptismal interviews my companion and I were so happy! I love these two but I will talk more about them next week!
This week we met this awesome guy named Lubabalo and man he is awesome. So we were kind of running late for a recent convert/investigator sisters lesson and so my comp was like 

"Should we just reschedule?"
I was thinking about it and we legit had like half and hour till our next appointment. I felt the need to go and so I finally just said
"We cant just bail on them lets just go and share a really quick lesson with them."
We change our lesson to sharing the Mormon Message Lift. (Awesome one about service) We walk in and they are with two other guys and so we ask them to join us. We do the lesson and it goes awesome and Lubabalo seemed to be the one most interested in our message. We end up setting up and appointment to go and see him two days later. So two days later before the apt we were like,
"Well, I hope this dude doesn't drop us"
This guy is actually waiting outside, we say whats up and we go in and teach him the First Lesson (Donaldson Style of course). Get this, towards the end we introduce The Book Of Mormon and then he goes
"Yea, I remember seeing that book. It is black and has like gold lettering right?"
I was like, "Yea, how did you know what it looks like?"
"Before my Dad passed away, he used to read it to me when I was a kid."

WHHHAAAATTT so we finish the lesson and then we invite him to get baptized and he said Yes! This dude is too legit. He said that he wants to join our church. He said that God lead us to each other and we could not agree with him more. He said that the only reason he was at our recent convert/investigators house was because he missed his transport and so he decided to hang out with his cousin who knew our RC/I. He then told us that he was hoping that he would run into us so that we could teach him. I am so happy that we ended up going to that house and not rescheduling with them. He is seriously so awesome and I can not wait to help the spirit to help him progress in this gospel! 
Yo though. Church is True I love all of You! Listen to the still small voice. It was telling you something for a reason!! 

Ps. I Be Teaching That Elephant Dough

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Weekly letter 14

What an awesome week! The beginning of the week was pretty hectic because we were scrambling around trying to get Elder Meijen to say all of his goodbyes! I can already tell that I am going to have the hardest time saying my goodbyes. I love these people so much and have gotten really close to them. The Members have been feeding us like crazy this week which has been awesome! I have so many different "Mamas away from home" now. Ill miss Elder Meijsen but I know that his help is needed else where. So my new companion is pretty cool. His name is Elder Mendenhall and he is a cowboy from Idaho. He is outgoing so I am glad because then it wont be all that awkward trying to get him to talk to the peeps out here. Teaching with him was a little rocky at first because I guess his last companion, teaching was not one of his strengths haha so he had to adjust to me and we adjusted nicely and I think that this is going to be an awesome transfer teaching with him. 

It was super sad saying my goodbyes to our Zone Leader though Elder Wells. He was seriously such an awesome missionary and I was seriously blessed to have the time that I got to spend with him. He definitely held our zone together because after he left there has already been some changes that bring up some concerns of mine haha. The new ones are super lame haha but it is all good because I know we can always find positives in everything! Hes going back to BYU and he is definitely up for grabs if any of the ladies are interested in an awesome RM born in raised in California! He is super awesome though. Logan Wells look him up haha. 

This week I finally got to go to a rugby game! It was super sweet and I really wanted to play just watching them. Our Ward mission leader and a guy in our YSA were playing so we went to support and it was awesome. The people in SA have so much energy and the crowds were going wild hah. It was funny because our Ward Mission Leader "Beast" he totally cheap shotted this dude on the kick off hah and got a yellow card so we were laughing at him haha. It was super cool to see the people there and to talk to them. Righteous Publicity is what I like to call it haha. I am sure that people were thinking that we were recruits or something haha. It is funny because when people find out that I was born in New Zealand its like they want to be my best friend because of the All Blacks haha. I am glad that I played Rugby back in the States as well because that is definitely the first question they ask me when ever they see me haha.

For this transfer I have totally changed my Focus Point for the area of Uitenhage. For this transfer, my companion and I are going to focus a lot more on less actives and also the active members as well. I am going to try my best and find a good balance of Investigator, Recent Convert, Less Active, and Active Member lessons. It will definitely lower the stats that I have been getting but no worries because, No point in bringing a lost sheep into the fold if the fold is going to kick it right back out into inactivity!!! 

Spiritual Thought:
One of the things that really stood out to me for this week was the wonderful blessing that we have is having a living Prophet of our church. What an amazing blessing we have in our lives to have direct revelation from Our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. In Priesthood we were talking about how our church just seems to be not just one step ahead, but multiple steps ahead of everyone else in the world. So many different religions coming to talk and ask advice from our church leaders on managing welfare or the importance of family ect. It is all because our church is the only church in the entire world that is directed by Jesus Christ, whom is directed by The Father, Himself. The World is constantly changing, therefore we need constant direction in these latter days. That direction is giving through General Conferences and even Liahonas/Ensign magazines. These talks are given directly for our day and we need to be able to heed to the words and make changes accordingly. 

That is all for this week though! Well there were more things but I am too lazy to type them all but yup! church is true and Love and miss you all! Love hearing from everyone and keeping me updated!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

weekly letter 13

Yo! What it do though!! This week has seriously been so freezing. I miss central heating so much. Every time I wake up my face feels ice frozen. It has been raining so much since we are at the beginning of Winter now. It doesn't snow or anything but man it gets super windy and is always raining. I feel bad for the Townships because I question if their shack houses can even handle winds and rain like this. Also since the roofs on our flats are just sheets of tin, when it rains it is sooooo loud. The winds sound like we are in the middle of a tornado or something like that. The weird thing about the rain here is that it is so insanely bipolar that it even kind of pisses me off. It will legit go from super heavy rainstorm to calm no rainfall just like that. Instantly the rain will stop and then come back on and it will go through that pattern for like an hour of going on and off on and off and it just makes me so mad. Like why... I mean I love rain and everything but like why cant it just continually rain and just stay that way..... -_- Super Dumb.

So I got the news about my new companion! His name is Elder Mendenhall from Idaho but I have not met him yet. Ill pick him up from the airport on Wednesday! Also guess what super sucks... You know how the we cleaned out the fridge with all the maggots and stuff growing in it... Yea apparently we have to move into that boarding because President does not want all us missionaries staying in the same flat with each other. At first I was like wow.... Because the flat that we are staying in now.... No one is going to be staying in it so it is just going to be empty... Lame... So I gotta move into the spider infested maggot spawning boarding with my new companion away from everyone else... But I guess the other Elders that I am really good friends with now like Elder Wilhelmsen and Elder Wall know Elder Mendenhall really well so I bet President was just really scared to have us all be living under the same roof haha. Especially since Elder Wilhelmsen was Elder Mendenhalls previous companion. All Good though... The Zone leaders are super sad about it since we wont be living right next to each other but I told them that Ill be fine haha. I told them that the week I get less than 20 lessons, then they know that something is wrong haha.

This week was awesome though. I have been getting some super awesome study hours in and have been really "Feasting" on the words of Christ. I have been studying a lot out of the the D&C Manual and the Book of Mormon Manuals with reading the BOM and all the other works and it takes a lot longer to read but it is totally worth it. One of the things I want to maybe make a goal for myself is that, well first off. My pattern for the decorating of my missionary planners are that I have a Jesus related picture on the bottom and a Temple picture in the top left hand corner, and then a picture of a prophet corresponding with what transfer number it is. So since this is my 3 transfer I have started, John Taylor is up there and I am maybe going to start reading all of the teaching manuals of the prophets each transfer as well on top of my studies. I think it would be cool and I mean if I am going to have their pictures on my planner for each transfer, I might as well know something about them hahha. 

We have been having really having so many blessings poured upon us in Uitenhage so far. We have been finding new awesome people to teach like crazy. It was funny because we have been having this guy coming to our ward for the past 3 weeks and he seriously is what we call a "True Seeker". He really wants to know some answers and he even lives in the next town over where the 6 other Elders work and he has been coming to our ward because he does not know where the Kwano ward is. He even went out and bought a white shirt and a new tie that he came to church in last week. I was like man Sibusiso you looking good in that white shirt ma man. In my mind I was like. It would look even better if you were baptized and were a member haha. So I went over to the Zone Leaders and got all of the Kwano Elders in a room and I was like yo.. I got this awesome referral for you guys and I told them his address and they were all fighting over him arguing that he lived in their area and stuff like that haha it was funny. But really this guy is legit and I really hope they don't mess it up cause then I be pissed na meannnn.

Spiritual Thought:
This week the spirit has been working wonders with me and revealing awesome truths to me. One of them being is comparing this life to a train. The Train to the Celestial Kingdom. The way I like to compare it... is... We want to go to the Celestial Kingdom, more importantly... we want to get to the Highest Degree of the Celestial Kingdom. I like to think that the train is the Work of God/The Second Coming. Regardless if you are ready or not, the train will continue to move and you will be left behind. In order to ride a train you need a ticket right. That ticket being baptism. Getting baptized and becoming a member of the church. So I thought. The ticket we want is not baptism... The Ticket we want is a temple recommend and getting sealed to our families forever! If we only get the the baptism ticket then we will have to get off of the train when we reach the baptism ticket stop or whatever you want to compare it too. We have been really trying to emphasize about how their eyes need to be set on being eternally married and getting sealed with their family. It is so hard since the closest temple to us is the Johannesburg Temple.... We still emphasize it though... Our goal should be to reach the highest Celestial Kingdom of glory to become Gods. Even though in life we sometimes get off of the train, we should always be constantly trying our best to get back on. I don't know about you but I would definitely rather be a God in the Highest Degree of Glory than a Ministering Angel in the other Kingdoms for all of Eternity.

I love all of you and really miss you all. I hope that everyone is doing well and having an awesome summer while I am over here freezing my face and toes off haha. Till Next Week!!! 

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

weekly letter 12

Hows it going everyone! This week was another awesome week! We went to the cheetah park on Monday and got to go and play with cheetahs and check out lions and stuff. I totally rode one and it was awesome. Just kidding but that would be sweet! This week was not all that extravagant but it is so crazy to think that in a few days I will have already been on my mission for three months! Transfers are happening next week so this coming Saturday I will find out who my next companion is. It will be crazy because the eight elders that I live around, four of them will be leaving and so it will be super weird not seeing some of the Elders around the flat. All goods though because I know that who ever comes in will be super awesome.

My deepest regards to L. Tom Perry's family. That is so crazy how things can change so fast! He was definitely one of my favorite Apostles. I remember seeing him and church and having him complement me on my tiger that I had hanging around my neck. I definitely throw in a brag every now and then if I am given the chance. Definitely a constant reminder about how short life is here on Earth especially in the eyes of God. I always think it is so cool to picture past prophets and apostles cheering and rejoicing when they have another prophet and apostle pass on into the spirit world. I bet they go crazy because they get another amazingly strong and powerful missionary to help further the work. 

This week we had some interesting things come up with the ward. First, apparently I have some admirers whom have pictures of me on their phones or something like that haha. I guess they have pictures of me from back home and also some of Vaughan and Rylee and the baby or something like that haha. I think it is funny and actually kind of heart warming because then maybe they will tell me that it is them so we can talk about how cute the baby is or something haha. So there is that, also I guess there has been a lot of past drama in the ward as well. A lot of grudges and gossip I guess has accumulated within the ward for a very long time. It is sad because these little grudges seriously do hinder the work and it is definitely something that I am going to try and get to the bottom of. One of the things that this ward truly lacks is definitely love. Love is one of the things that I noticed it lacked the first time I had come here but I never was told why but I got a couple of stories out. We never do ward activities and then the small times that we do, no one shows up. Apparently there are going to be changes being made to the area of Uitenhage though so we will see how that goes. I am excited to try and help with it though.

This week we had the baptism of Abulele! He was the young man that I invited to be baptized my first day out in the field on mission! He is a super cool dude and I am excited to watch him grow in the gospel! His family as well are maybe interested in joining our church "wink wink" So we will see how that goes. One of the coolest things that I really love seeing is watching the growth of a persons prayer. Sometimes we will be teaching someone and their prayer will literally be 5 words. Over time though as we teach them it slowly progressively gets longer and more heartfelt which is so amazing. It warms my heart to see and feel my investigators draw closer to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I can truly feel their love for the savior grow more and more day after day. 

Sorry that is all the time that I have today but I still love all of you! K Bye!