The district I'm in covers four areas, there's us here in Tzaneen (town) there's Lenyenye (village), Modjadji (village), and Motupa (deep village).
A legitimate concern and barrier of missionary work for mountain villages surrounding the valley of Tzaneen is that everyone think's we're Satanists who steal people's children and baptise them. Some people think we have a tunnel that we take people down that goes to america. Other people think that we are vampires and that we suck people's blood if they let you come teaching. Interesting how the adversary works, he inspires others to think that the good is actually him- kind of says a little bit about yourself as a person. But legit I'm telling you kids run crying, and in Motupa, there's one tar road in the whole village, and our little shack of a chapel is down the hill from the tar road in a little valley so you can see it from the road- we have a sign that says the name of our church w/ an arrow pointing to it, It's like the first sign you see when you enter Motupa.
So the sign is on the left side of the road when you're coming into the village. People straight will be walking on the left side of the road. they get like 20 meters away from the sign. They cross the road to the other side to walk past the sign, and then they cross back again to the left side, and carry on their way once they've passed the sign. Wild stuff.
Anyways as a district we've been brainstorming some ways that we could overcome this predicament- because the only reaction you get out of people is when they shoot 'fire' at you cuz that's what the pastor says keeps demons away.
So anyways, to prove to the world that we believe in Christ, we went to the market in Modjadji, bringing hymnbooks and guitars and sang "I believe in Christ" at the top of our loungs, along while singing a bunch of other hymns. Felt the spirit super strong, couldn't help but think that Jesus was probably smiling. Guys from America, Belgium, Malawi, Ghana, England all with white shirts, nametags and ties, singing what we know to be true; Declaring it to the world. Not sure if a ton of fruit will come from it, but at least people will know that we- first and foremost worship God, our Eternal Father- and believe that there is "no other name given, nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, only in and through the name of Christ, the Lord Omnipotent."
Just surreal to declare it at the top of my lungs in a bustling village in Limpopo.
Anyways, we have a baptism next week. Not sure how the Lord made it happen but it's happening. On Friday we had to pry open our baptisimal font (which took six missionaries pulling) and we got a little bit of a suprise when we found a bunch of cockroaches and a pair of bright red poisonus African frogs at the bottom. Gonna be a chore to clean the thing out. But stoked outta my mind reguardless.
Anyways I love you guys. My closest friend has a favorite book of mormon scripture; Heleman 5:12. This week, an investigator had a concern that the Book of Mormon was written by the devil as a means to draw people away from the bible. I opened up that scripture and bore the most powerful testimony that the Lord could've put in me that Satan in no way, shape or form wants people to read the book of mormon. So thank you for sharing that verse with me my friend, it's always been super close in my heart.
Love you guys so much. Try to enjoy your summer, I'll try to enjoy my tropical winter. I fear my days in Limpopo may be coming to a close, this place has etched a holding place in my heart. It's been super hard, super discouraging; But I wouldn't have wanted it any other way.
Elder Tanner Clegg
Also pretty stoked that Africa will be welcoming Brazil with the arrival of my Muzungu Elder Leo Fuchs. So stoked that you're coming to this corner of the world with me to share our Father's story. It'll be the best decision you've ever made. Love you bru.