Monday, July 27, 2015

#56 Robot contacting

Tanner, President Dunn, Elder Whitesides.  E. Whitesides goes home next week.

Tanner didn't have time to do his usual email today.  Here's something he wrote to me in an email that I thought I'd share:

we robot contacted for the last cold hour of the night. i dunno, cops kept driving past us and told us we were crazy to be out on the highway. But it felt good. we went to the place where he highway is pretty populated.. It's the place where hobos goo and beg for money. I just love doing it- it's a change. It's weird for people to see nicely dressed young men GIVING YOU free stuff instead of asking you for free money.

I dunno, maybe it's not productive, but I love it and feel good doing it. Even though it was cold and everything and lonely and dangerous, i love robot contacting. All it is is planting seeds. Giving a lot of people pass along cards with a picture of christ, a quick testimony and smile, and a flash of the black nametag... who knows, maybe it'll help someone join the church. Everyone thinks we're trying to get money, but i just yell at the top of my lungs 'mahala!'

it's just nice cuz you get to briefly meet so many children of god and see a couple of them stubbornly reject you, but some of them who you can tell have the light of christ and take one and say thank you so much. So it's really good, even thought  it's not effective. plus i think it's more comfortable for me than contacting . i dunno, it is just fun to run up and down the highway at night talking to people in their cars, people think we're crazy.
One year ago, Tanner started his journey in the SA mission & became comps with Elder Smith and headed out to the hazy smoke filled streets of Daveyton.

This awesome man Jeff Swarts added me as a Facebook friend.  He is currently in Tanner's ward & has sent me a couple of "realtime" pictures of Tanner on my FB.  I'm so grateful!  This was a few nights ago.

Monday, July 20, 2015

#55 Defend the faith

Got some solid rejection this week.

On Tuesday in some mall we were contacting, I showed this Afrikaans dude a copy of the Book of Mormon and he started yelling at me that it was false, and of the devil. Straight in public.

He then told me how he was a pastor and how the "Christ of that book" was "Lucifer's brother" literally shouting trying to make us look like fools. I had to smile big when he said that because it's true, Christ is technically Lucifer's brother. lolol one point for team pastor. His church just has to be true.

Anyways, I guess one of the nice things about town (if you'd like to call it that), is that you get to defend the truth and stand up for what you believe in a lot. Everyone over here 'knows mormons', even though they don't know Mormons. While robot contacting the other day, I legit had a guy who was interested, then he saw the Book of Mormon and he said. 'oh, actually never mind I'm Christian', and drove off. Jokes on him cuz Mormons are the most Christian of any Christians.

Anyways I was reading this book about Lucifer's Brother this week, and stuff just started to hit me.
President Ezra Taft Benson taught: 'We are commanded to take the gospel to all the world. That is the cause that must unite us today. Only the gospel will save the world from the calamity of it's own self-destruction. Only the gospel will unite men of all races and nationalities in peace. Only the gospel will bring joy, happiness, and salvation to the human family'.

Ok, first off: Insane how a prophet of God straight tells us, "Only the gospel will save the world from the calamity of its own self-destruction,"

That gives me chills running down my spine when I look at the world. When I look at how values and chastity is desecrated. How standards and virtue are trampled under the feet of men. How the sanctity of marriage has been altered even by governments themselves. How the same 'Nation, under God, indivisible' is inevitably 'dividing' itself from the soul source in which it was founded and created, protected and preserved: God.

It's no wonder that during the destruction of the Nephite nation, the young prophet Mormon used such descriptive words: 'I (Mormon) do not desire to harrow up the souls of men in casting before them such an awful scene of blood and carnage as was laid before mine eyes; but I, knowing that these things must surely be made known, and that all things which are hid must be revealed upon the house-tops. And also that a knowledge of these things must come unto the remnant of these people (native Americans), and also unto the Gentiles... that ye might not have too great sorrow because of the wickedness of this people."

It's becoming obvious why Mormon was inclined to write about the destruction of his people. Think about it- Mormon could see our day. He wrote repeatedly "I cannot write an hundredth of the things that happened among this people", if we take him literally, it means that the book of Mormon (531 pages) was quoted and abridged from 53,100 pages of plates and scrolls, meaning that out of an entire reservoir of scriptural writ, God inspired these short 531 pages.

He could see what happened to an entire nation if they apostatized and 'cursed God'. He knew the consequences of what happens if you choose to willfully rebel against our Father who is lending us breath. He could see the modern-day 'awful scene of blood and carnage' sweeping every nation, kindred and tongue.

No wonder the exhortation "O ye Gentiles, how can ye stand before the power of God, except ye shall repent and turn from your evil ways? Know ye not that ye are in the hands of God? Know ye not that he hath all power, and at his great command the earth shall be rolled together as a scroll? Therefore, repent ye, and humble yourselves before him, lest he shall come out in justice against you-lest a remnant of the seed of Jacob shall go forth among you as a lion, and tear you into pieces, and there is none to deliver."

Anyways, after Mormon watches 210,000 of his friends, caught up in the pride of their hearts- Fall in great battle, left to 'molder upon the earth', it's  no wonder that his last words were: 'if it so be that ye believe in Christ, and are baptized, first with water, then with fire and with the holy ghost, following the example of our Savior, according to that which he hath commanded us, it shall be well with you in the day of Judgement.'

You can see why the Book of Mormon was written. "Behold the Lord hath shown unto me great and marvelous things concerning that which must shortly come, at that day when these things shall come forth among you. Behold I speak unto you as if ye were present, and yet ye are not. But behold, Jesus Christ hath shown you unto me, and I know your doing."

We need to stand up for what's right. We need to defend the faith. Our faith in the Living God. The bounds have been set. His truth has been restored. The world is waxing stronger in iniquity. We need to wax stronger in righteousness, to avoid the physical, spiritual, mental and emotional calamities coming upon our Earth.

Anyways sorry for the crazy spiritual email. It's just weird to see how in-line the Book of Mormon is with today. It's weird to see how the last Nephites and the modern-day world is very similar.

Anyways gonna go hunt some lions or something today. I'll try to send pictures.

Elder Tanner Noah Clegg
'The waves, and winds still know
His voice who ruled them
while he dwelt below.'

PS.  Cool story today- i totally nailed this curb in the car and we had a flat. luckily it was by our next appointment so we just walked and taught, then came back and fixed the tire. then came this homeless guy walking around the corner, it looked like he was having a seizure. 

People just walked past him. I kept watching him and thought 'what would Jesus do?, well he would go and heal him'. my comp was like 'it looks like he's on drugs', the member with us said 'yeah he's been doing drugs', because they knew I wanted to go over there to talk to him even though he looked like he was going mad. I don't think they wanted to. But I grabbed a Book of Mormon and crossed the street to help him. When I got to him we figured out he was having an asthma attack, and he was fine. But i was freaked out cuz he couldn't hardly walk, or breathe. He was trying to get to the homeless shelter a kilometer down the road. 

So I told him to get in our car, then we drove passed a supermarket and he (still spazzing out) was like 'leave me here so i can beg for food, or else I'll just die'. I felt bad. So I told my comp to park, and before my comp could say anything I was just like 'stay here in the car with this guy'. And I took the member into the store and bought the guy bread, maize meal, peanuts, peanut butter, and some beans and rice. Then I put the remainder of my allotment into the bag of food. Not sure how much it was. Probably 250-400 rands or so. (so i totally broke a rule leaving my comp alone in the car with this homeless guy but it was the right thing to do). Then walked back to my comp w/ the guy. Then drove him to the homeless shelter, leaving him with a Book of Mormon. I was just happy to help the poor guy out. He literally was like flopping against the wall in tremors or something I don't know. But we helped him. And it felt good. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

#54 "Follow the spirit baba..."

Family all serving at the same time: 
Grandma & Grandpa Central Eurasia
Scottie Brown Argentina, Rosario
Parker Pearson (on computer), New Jersey, Morristown
Me (in frame), South Africa, Johannesburg
You know it's a rough week when in sacrament meeting when the guy conducting the meeting says, "now, we'll have our opening talk by Elder Clegg." and you walk up and ask him "what do you want me to talk about?" and he's like: "Follow the spirit baba."

It really was a pretty good week though. Elder Whitesides and I are doing work and seeing one or two stellar dividends(is that the right word?).

First off, when contacting a petrol(gas) station the other day, I walked up to this Afrikaans dude who looks like he's off the cover of a Patagonia climbing magazine. He literally looked like he could surf circles around me.

Anyways I showed him a copy of the Book of Mormon and he was like, "bru I used to do the mormon thing back in England." So he went on to tell me that he was baptized while he was in England but then fell away when he came to SA. It was super sweet, and now we are teaching the guy.

Our father-led family has been to church 3 weeks in a row. Which is tight. Especially in a cluster with like 4 or 5 members that come on Sundays. They are gonna be anchors for the entire area.

Anyways, I've hit one year now on mission. Last Friday marked my arrival in Johannesburg, to a foreign world I'd learn to love and call home for the next two years. I've reflected back on the last year, and it's amazing to see how much I've taken in, and how much change I've seen.  I've been privledged enough to see the Savior change lives. Mine being one of them.

I feel like I've been in this transcendant country for forever, and I still have forever to go. But I'm grateful to still be here. I'm grateful to build the Kingdom right here in Johannesburg.

I can't wait to see what's in store in this upcoming year. I can't shake the feeling that it will be perhaps the greatest year of my entire life. Looking forward to seeing new life dawning in the souls of my African brothers and sisters. So grateful to be doing this work. Grateful that I can participate despite all my imperfections. It's been a great year, I've grown and stretched and changed in ways I thought not possible. And I'm not done yet. "For we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the Kingdom of God."

I love you guys. Please feel free to write me emails. Like no one writes me but my grandma and grandpa and mom. but it's kool.

Elder Tanner Noah Clegg

Monday, July 6, 2015

#53 Weaknesses & Imperfections

Getting to see Elder Henderson again, a good friend from Tzaneen area.

Good week. Tough week. I'll keep this one short:

Started off super lekker with an exchange to a nearby township called Munsiville. I was privleged to go with a new missionary from the Marshall Islands, Elder Tima. It was just so nice to be walking through 'real africa' once again. Through the squatter camps and zozo's, through the windy dirt trails with the little black kids everywhere. Tuck shops and crazy drunkards and chickens and sack-cloth footballs with wooden stick goals and dirt pitches.  I felt at home again just a little bit.

Also went clear up to the North West province to Rustenburg for an exchange.
If you watched the world cup, you'll know where Rustenburg and Phokeng are located.

Anyways, just having alot of shortcomings and weaknesses. Been thinking a little bit about God's eternal plan of redemption however. how an imperfection even brought us here today. Think of how God's perfect plan relied on an imperfection via. adam and eve to even be brought to pass.
If adam and eve were 'too perfect' to even dare eating the fruit, the plan would've been frustrated. so god, in a sense, shows forth his perfectness and glory in our imperfections.

'and lest i should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of satan to buffet me, lest i should be exalted above measure. for this thing i besought the lord thrice, that it might depart from me. and he said unto me, my grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness. most glady therefore will i rather glory in my infirmities that the power of christ may rest upon me. therefore i take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for christ's sake; for when i am weak, then am i strong.'

anyway, words of wisdom for an imperfect wandering soul in south africa. sorry the shift button isn't working so i can't make capital letters.

love you all, keep us in your prayers.
Elder Clegg

Clegg, Whitesides, Harris, Olsen, Rini, Smith.