|Deep township called Chris Hanni|
Man, words really can’t describe this week, but I’ll do the best with what I have. I’m going to be completely honest- I’ve always been a bigtime doubter. I’ve always questioned aspects of the gospel. I’ve always been the one who looks at things through logical eyes rather than spiritual eyes. I’ve always failed, whether purposely or not, to see God’s hand in my life, because to be honest, I really didn’t have much faith that it was there.
I can now tell you guys, that I really, truly believe. I believe in Christ. I believe in miracles. I believe in angels. I believe that it wasn’t an accident I was sent to the South Africa, Johannesburg mission. Sadly, it took me being humbled to the dust to realize this, but I dunno-
There’s something to be said about the pioneer’s willingness to trek through miles of tears and despair and hoplessness for refuge.
There’s something to be said about Moroni, running with those plates from the Lamanites, protecting them with his life because He knew they would help the future generations.
There’s something to be said about the Sons of Mosiah, Alma the younger- who lived in their sins and through the grace of Heavenly Father, totally did a 180 and changed their lives around; who laid their lives on the line to bring the truth to their Lamanite brothers.
There’s something about the army of Helaman, who were taught by their mothers to not fear, because they knew the God who they were serving.
There’s something about Abinadi, who would rather die than deny his testimony.
There’s something about the Prodigal Son, who realized that forgiveness is available to even the lowest of us.
There’s something about Joseph Smith, Emma Hale- devoting and giving their lives away because they had it figured out.
There’s something about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. There’s something about the members across the world.
There’s something to be said about these township saints who are willing to give up all of their already small life-savings and any respect their families have of them to serve a full-time mission.
There’s something to be said that an unbelieving ski rat from Utah has a real, actual testimony of the atonement of Jesus Christ. I don’t know much, but I do believe. I believe that with the Lord on our side, we can overcome anything, because in Alma 7 we learn that the Savior suffered and felt all that we go through, so that he would be filled with mercy in our behalf. So that he would understand why we act the way we act, and think the way we think. So that he would be able to “succor” or help us better than anyone on this earth can understand. It’s my testimony that because of this, we can become strengthened and get through any trial, no matter how deep or painful it may be.
This week, we received news that a new "cluster" (a form of a ward that the church is introducing in Africa) is going to be formed in our Area in a deep township called Chris Hanni. At last the saints who are too poor to afford transport won’t have to walk miles, or stay at home during church. The reason being that a 91 year-old gogo, gogo Mhlanga is giving up her house to act as a meeting house. I seriously was almost in tears talking to this wonderful Xhosa lady. Someone who has battled through the apartide, through this country’s wild backgrounds; But she has it figured out. She didn’t have much to give, just a small house, about the size of my family room back at home, but this is gonna make all the difference to alot of people over here who will finally be able to make it to church. Seriously it’s one of the most selfless things. But I know that almost any member of the church, if encountered would do exactly the same thing- and that’s the beauty of it. It is really a blessing to physically be able to watch the Kingdom build in front of your eyes in this far corner of the world.
This gospel changes people. After one time teaching this dude named Sam, he said he had no more desire to smoke, or drink and he came to church on Sunday and bore his testimony (in sacrament meeting) and said how he is changing through the gospel. Also, another kid named Oliver, after a few times meeting with him, resolved to not wear earings anymore, and to stop listening to Eminem and Tupac, and not to mention he walks to church like 7 kilometers every Sunday.
The days have been crazy hot. It’s only the 2nd week of Spring and it’s like an oven outside. Not much different in the houses in Africa, considering there’s no such thing as AC or heating systems, it’s essentially the same as outside. Back at home I didn’t even have to wear deodorant, I just like don’t sweat, but out here it’s a different story, Africa is HOT. With the hot come the bugs. Lil bugs all over the place. Also it’s rough cuz like nowhere in South Africa is hipster enough to develop film so I’ll probably have like 20 undeveloped rolls of film by the end of my mission but I guess that’s how it goes. It’s nice though, being in a township. You take 20 rand, or the equivelant of 2 bucks into the area and you can buy tons of fruits and candy and stuff to last you the whole day plus more. Seriously everything is so stinking cheap here.
Anyways, all is well in Africa. I appreciate your prayers, they seriously mean so much to me. I love you guys, and a big s/out to all my muzungus who are heading out on missions this week. Also read 2 Nephi 26:23-33 if you aren’t sure whether God loves all, every single one of His children. Verse 33 sinks deep.
Area 1: Daveyton
Trainer: Elder Spencer Smith
Area 1: Daveyton
Trainer: Elder Spencer Smith