Guest Testimonies

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Holidays, Transfers and Work, Work, WORK!

January 12, 2015

I know, I know, even missionaries stay busy during the holidays! No rest for the wicked OR the righteous if you want to put it that way. But I finally made some time to relate the news of the holidays, transfers, and the missionary work.
Boy I don’t know if you could receive a better holiday on mission than what we experienced! I think I made a voice recording of our Christmas experience with the breakfast, Meet the Mormons, and sports but if I can throw in my feelings about it. It. Was. GREAT!!!! Haha we had a great new years as well! It was testimony building as well as fun! We had worked very hard on the 31st and were looking forward to being able to go to the Maleka’s house for a dinner and to see Brother Morgan Flynn (previously known as Elder Flynn who served here a year ago but with whom I got to serve around in Benoni)!! He came back and was touring his mission and SA with his mom, brother and sister and their spouses. It was a lot of fun, we got some awesome braiied meat, and we were able to keep the rules! It was very tempting to just leave at the end of our 80 min. by saying “oops we’re out of time to share a message” but we shared a message. It would have been easy to justify staying longer than 80 min for any number of reasons! But we left after our time was up J it was these decisions that made later decisions easier. When we returned, we were planning on having the Kanyamazane elders over to celebrate New Year’s similar to the way we had done it when I was a new missionary; playing board games in the flat until 12:00. But something told me it wasn’t right. I had been justifying it for like a week though until finally, after dropping the car off at the Scotts and hearing elder Scott say “enjoy it with your eyes closed” I just thought in my head “eish you’re right, I know what I need to do.” That was even further confirmed when I called Elder Allen to see what his district was doing. So I told Elder Ah Wong and at first he was kinda like “really Elder Smith!?” but being the loving guy he is, he agreed to support me. I cancelled the other guys coming and I got crap from them but we were able to go to bed at 1030 that night and feel good that we had lived the higher law and knew that it’s still okay! We can survive even if we don’t celebrate the New Year right at midnight haha. ß-- Huge testimony builder for me! We got a “day-off” from President Dunn for our New Year’s Day in which we went with the Scotts and saw the waterfalls in Sabie, Pilgrims rest right near Graskop, and the 3 Rondewaals again! Ey it was too nice to be able to just rest in the car :) I got to nap! Haha I figure your mission president is only going to give you one day off so you might as well live it up! **hey dad I think I have some small semblance of how you feel when you get to take a nap now ;) haha All in all, the holidays were great and the missionary work was great during the holidays!
Sadly, it came time for Elder Ah Wong to leave me in Nelspruit. We had been companions for 2 transfers but eish it felt like a couple weeks. It went by too quickly! I truly love that guy as my brother! I can confidently say I have loved each of my companions but elder Ah Wong was REALLY easy to love and he helped me a ton as I was a new leader. I’ll miss him for sure! He got called to white-wash Orangefarm with Elder Van Heerden and he says it’s hard but has the right man for the job. My new companion is……Drumroll…… Elder Kankkunen from Finland!! Haha I just keep chalkin’ up the international guys! Hey keep em coming cause I’ll have to spend the rest of my life with Americans hahaha. The really cool thing that Elder Kankkunen and I have in common is that we both were companions with Elder Raymond and we both have served in Johannesburg city! Haha when I left Raymond there in Jozi, he trained Elder Kankkunen! So when our pictures showed up on the slideshow, we both got excited because we kind of knew each other! So far we’ve had a lot of fun together and he is a wonderful guy and an amazing teacher!! I’m blown away when I teach with him! Haha it’s funny to see people’s reactions when they see his name tag because there is something about just looking at it (idk maybe it’s the double “k”) that makes people go “hawu!” haha but it’s awesome. He, just like me, is carrying his camera around everywhere now that he’s new in Nelspruit so that he can get all the pictures he needs to show his family how beautiful it is here! I’m looking forward to our time as companions!
New companion, new sport
Work, Work, Work: 
As far as work goes, it’s still going strong! We’ve taught 15 quality lessons this week and we even had 2 days out of commission because of transfers! And the people we are teaching are golden! Ben Mahlangu, the great guy we met with Elder Neuenschwander is now progressing with his wife joining the lessons! They like the message of Joseph Smith and they are praying to know if it’s true! We put one of our investigators, Portia, on date for the 22nd of Feb.! We’ve dropped several jokers so that we can spend our time doing valuable things and helping those that are prepared. I’ve learned a lot of lessons, especially with a sister who shall remain nameless. Eish this situation is very much less than ideal but it’s something that we deal with. In fact, to be kind to all people involved I’ll just leave it at that. But the lesson I am learning is how wonderful it is when someone decides they want the gospel and all you have to look at is their commitment and their qualifications as found in D&C 20:37. It’s not up to us to solve other problems but to focus on helping God’s children back into His fold in ways other than financial help. It’s a great lesson that’s been hard to learn but I just hope I’ve learned it haha.
                Wow, a lot has happened! And it’s gonna keep on happening cause that’s how life is. I enjoy mission life though it kinda scares me to think that one day I’ll have to say goodbye to SA but for now, I’m here :) and I’m loving it! I love you all! Sala kahle :)
Love, Elder David Spencer Tony Smith