Monday, December 29, 2014

#26 Soccer Balls & Christmas in South Africa

I’m gonna say this week was the best week of my mission thus far.

Number one because obviously i gotta skype my wonderful family. Seriously not sure where I would be without them.

Also cuz we watched “Meet the Mormons” on Christmas because my mission president is a boss. I came outta that so thankful and honestly proud to be a mormon, and stoked to be on mission.

Also have a huge testimony that a really big playin piece of where you get sent on a mission is due to the mission president of where you’re serving.

Anyways, this week has been absolutely insane. It’s rained every single day, except Christmas of course, Christmas was literally like 35 degrees and I’m talkin' celsius here brus it was scorching.

Christmas Eve was the best. My grandma sent some money this side so we went and bought out all the soccer balls from this store. We drove out and just gave them to little kids who looked like they needed some love on Christmas. I’ll attatch a couple pics.

Christmas Eve we also had a little braii, it was sweet just cooking meat with our hands Africa style and thinking back 5 years ago when I was with my family in Shepherd’s Field overlooking the little town of Bethlehem on Christmas Eve. A picture perfect moment, with a complimenting star that shone brighter than the rest rising over the peaceful scene. Not really the same picture I’m experiencing over here, but inevitably the same glorious message.

Amazing how a baby who was born has the ability to impact our lives on an every day basis. Even more amazing that he loves us enough to have gone through with all of the things He did.

 Christmas day we went into Roodepoort. Since the post office is on strike the members in Johannesburg put together little presents of candy and a tie and stuff for all the missionaries, it was illa tight. And the best part i think was watching “Meet the Mormons” I was in tears more than once; but mostly one I saw the monoski guy shredding Snowbird i was frothing outta my mind. Afterwards we played soccer, President Dunn was on my team and we tore it up for like 5 minutes.

Then we went back and skyped at an Afrikanner guy’s house, best thing ever.

Anyways, Christmas on mission is different, honestly it didn’t really feel too Christmas-ish, just another day. But i’m seriously so grateful to be out here. You kinda catch the true meaning. You realize how much you love your family, you realize that it isn’t about getting stuff.

I’ve been in Africa for just about 6 months now. I’ve only got 18 months to go. Only 18 months with these beautiful African people to help God to touch their lives. And then I go home, back to the real world. But for now I’m on a mission for the Savior in South Africa and the time is ticking down, I’ve only got 18 months, and I can’t get them back once they’re finished.

Yesterday was unreal, probably the koolest day so far out here. Felt more like a humanitarian aid day than missionary work, but I guess they go hand in hand.  Like I said, it’s been raining every day this week, but yesterday was like off the charts. Of course it hit right when we started biking to the outskirts of our township, a place called Gabon. It rained and rained and rained. Flash floods are things over here. Pretty soon the dirt roads were literally rivers. Like I’m telling you, we were straight up biking down a river. Dead serious, the dirt trails we once knew are now like big rivers. Seriously go bike to a river back home, get in it, and start biking down it- that’s what we were doing it was sick. UnKulu matata fela, the township was in bad shape with the flooding. Trash and all kinds of stuff floating down as you made your way down the river. Lots of these homes weren’t high enough to escape so they’ve got a nice swimming pool right next to their beds.
We reached some members little zozo houses to find them flooded, so we got to work digging trenches for the water to go out. We should’ve brought our swimming suits. But there was a main river going through the middle of Gabon, so the trick was wading around to dig a trench to the main river so the water can flow out and you could be sharp. I was handed a picaxe and Elder Savage had a shovel and we went to work for a couple of hours, seriously so much fun making dams and digging trenches to the main river that would take the water out to the fields. Just going and helping people dig from their houses to the main spillway. Needless to say I had mud caked from head to toe, but we were still able to teach a couple lessons. Everyone was still confused to see mulungus on bikes in a squatter camp(deep township) alongside our brus digging houses outta water. Super wild. I’ve never been so tired at the end of a day. Definitely I day I hope I’ll never forget.

The clusters are sweet, no electricity at the one in Minanawe, but it’s shap we don’t need it, we got our sick little electric-lights for our little living room-sized congregation. I’m just stoked it wasn’t flooded for church. Not that it would’ve stopped us I mean the rats and tsotsies don’t stop us why would a little water? Or a lot of water?

I hope you guys all had a wonderful Christmas, i don’t think I’ve ever understood the privelege it is to have a functional, loving family in today’s society until this Christmas. Also how lame material stuff is and how blessed solid human relationships are. Be happy if you’ve got a good family it’s honestly such a blessing. If you don’t, then be happy cuz you’ve got some awesome friends. And if you don’t have either, be happy because you still have the best family ever- your heavenly family.

Love you all, have a great New Year’s. In the words of brother Hokanson- Don’t do anything stupid. Pray for me not to get drunk off the stench in the air of alone of the the alcohol. December+month end(when everyone gets their paychecks and goes crazy)+New Years+ hot weather=a couple little problems & possible health hazards.  Love you mfuetzus. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the absolute best I’m telling you.

Elder T Noah Clegg

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