Guest Testimonies

Monday, September 15, 2014

"What a great birthday present to all of us as God’s children!! The ultimate gift!!"

WHAddup er’body! Hey hey hey it's been a freakin great week and guess who got a typie for their birthday!? Yebo, muzungu Clegg! Haha he's kind enough to let me use it to again start doing my blog post in my short spare time so I can manage my email time better! :) Email time is golden so we don’t waste a single second!! But this week had a ton of great moments! My 1st of 2 birthdays on mission, Soweto towers, birthday lunch (thank you VERY MUCH grandma and grandpa!!!!!), transfers, adding to the list of crazy stuff that happens to SAJM missionaries, and many many wonderful miracles! So let's get to it eh?
                Well, I've heard from many different missionaries about their birthdays on mission and I'd say that the positive vs. negative responses were about 50:50. Which IS a shame but I decided that I wasn’t going to be a part of the pessimistic club. The wise advice of “you get out what you put in” as well as the reminder that "these two years are the Savior’s" helped me to really get the most out my birthday! In the several times that I remembered “hey, I"m no longer a teenager” and “it's my birthday today” I was able to think about the Atonement! What a great birthday present to all of us as God’s children!! The ultimate gift!! (John 15:13) And what a great opportunity to be able to share the message of the Atonement with the wonderful people of Daveyton! I thoroughly enjoyed it and even the bishop was kind enough to invite us over and feed us dinner and then a birthday cake!
Birthday dinner at the Bishop's house
I don’t know how anyone couldn’t love these wonderful people! So from breakfast, to all the great things Elder Clegg did for me, and to the sharing of the best present ever, I had a wonderful birthday!! I was also blessed with the sweet birthday emails from all my friends!
Thank you guys it means more than I can put into words! I even got a present to go to birthday lunch with three of my favorite mission friends: Elders Clegg, Maraetefau, and Allen!! We went to Soweto towers (and couldn’t go up cause the electricity was out -_____-) and got SWEEEEET pictures and then went to lunch! Ah just a sweet beginning to the week!
Soweto Towers
(The Orlando Towers used to be cooling towers for a coal power station but now they are used for bungee jumping and other activities.)

Birthday Lunch

               My birthday was on transfers so we went and dropped Kewuti off (he is going to Soweto) and picked up the new elder in our district: Elder Melese from Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape; another Xhosa boy!! Haha he's a sweet guy! He spent the first 8-9 months of his mission in Sierra Leone (where he was originally called) but they shut his mission down because of the Ebola virus that’s killing people left and right in central and west Africa. So we’re lucky he’s safe and glad to have him in our mission! And since Clegg and I have another transfer to go, we stayed together!! Elder Allen went to Germiston which is a town in the Bedfordview zone but he's only 20 minutes away so maybe we can chill on p-day who knows!? Other than that, that’s transfers!
                Hahaha now to add to that list of crazy experiences. So townships on the weekends are full of drunk people! So idk, have any of you guys back home been kissed by a drunk man that you’ve never met before? I hadn’t until Saturday but that’s changed! Haha luckily it wasn’t on Elder Clegg’s or my mouths but the neck is probably even more awkward! Haha eish that’s really all we have to say about that. Haha mission stories :P
                But aside from the fun and unique birthday as well as the drunk guy, this week has been miraclulous. And I use that word because we have seen miracles all week! And I can't thank my comp enough for saying “let's look for miracles this week!” we met about 4-5 less-active families we’ve never met before, had people progress towards baptism, and had 2 new investigators bear their testimonies yesterday at their first time at church! One of them, Samuel met us on the street on Tuesday and said he had a revelation experience that confused him and that he wanted to stop smoking (holding a cig in his hand). So we gave him a pamphlet and arranged an appointment to meet with him. To our delight he was waiting for us!! Sweeeet already haha he didn’t ditch us!! But he told us he's ready to live a gospel life  and wants to do it right so he's going to come to church and he did! But not only did he come he participated in the classes and bore his testimony! Telling the congregation that since he's read the pamphlet, he hasn’t had any desire to smoke! And he read a line from the pamphlet about how he wanted to change his thoughts and actions to do good and follow God! Afterwards, he told us he felt at home at church :) Couldn’t ask for a better miracle! Maybe the runner up is finding a place to possibly open up the Chris Hani cluster of the Daveyton Ward!
But this week has just been all ups! Hardly any downs and any downs that maybe crept in were swallowed up in the greatness of our week! This is mission! This week was the shot in a round of golf that keeps you coming back! It’s the save in a lacrosse game that gets the team and crowd fired up! It's what makes all the hard work and trials worth it! I LOVE IT!!
Cheers until next time! Salani kahle bafwethu, ngyikuthanda
Elder Smith
Elder Smith and Elder Clegg celebrating their birthdays together.
(Thanks Grandpa & Grandma- they look like they had a fun time!)

Gogo (Grandmother) Mhlanga! the 90 year old Xhosa version of Great-Grandma Homer!
(Gogo Mhlanga has offered her home to be the new meeting place for the Chris Hani cluster- a pilot program that will allow members to meet together every Sunday for church, even if they can't afford the taxis to take them to the meetinghouse.)
 those little kids giving high 5 are the funniest naughtiest kids!
they're a crack up in sacrament meeting but sometimes its too much!
my old seminary scriptures now covered in really cool rino leather.