Monday, April 13, 2015

TIA - This Is Africa‏

Moloweni Usapho! (Hello Family!)
Well it's been an amazing week this past week! We as an entire Zone are doing MUCH better than we were last week. I'll start with my companion and I. We really focused BIG time on testing Gods promises and applying 30 minute or less lessons and pamphlet teaching. It has made all the difference in the world! As we have been working and striving to get things done the Lord's way and applying faith we have seen major success. Not only with teaching lessons, but also in strengthening and supporting the ward. My companion and I have been going through the ward list and have been visiting/finding many less actives and establishing contact with them. We are really excited about it. 
Also, we had the thought to really get the members involved. So we picked a family per investigator. Example: The Ndabeni family (members) are responsible for smsing, scheduling and hosting the Danileyo family for lessons. They also will be helping them find a way to church next week. Or the Labazi family with the Anthony family. etc. So we are really excited to see how that goes. We are giving the part member families a visit as well. We have 6 recent converts in our area and they are all sisters, so we are hoping to pull in some of the guys in their lives as well. We need Priesthood here.
Last week I had exchanges with Elder Williams in my area, and Elder Freitas and Elder Kjelson had exchanges in Illinge. As for Elder Williams and I we had an incredible exchange from the very first moment. We contacted former investigators, followed up on others, and met with members challenging them for referrals or offering help/service. We had a wonderful exchange. Elder Freitas and I have been pamphlet teaching (which is basically teaching the message of the restoration purely off of the pictures in the pamphlet and asking, like the angel asked Nephi, "What beholdest thou?" then teaching based off of what they see in the pictures. It's fast and really simple. It helps us missionaries get out of the way of the spirit and let him do the real teaching), but I don't think I received my witness fully until this exchange. We were in then out of the house within thirty minutes of all 8 lessons we had that day. It was incredible. Elder Williams was so dang excited about it. He was just talking on and on how he wants to come serve with me in eZibeleni next transfer and keep this going. He was so stoked that he presented and had his entire district meeting on pamphlet teaching/short and powerful lessons. He really is a great elder and is pumped about the work. It was awesome to see how as a leader, you can influence and inspire others to want to be and serve better.
Two weeks ago we had 12 lessons, and this week we had 30. Faith makes ALL the difference. Rejection has been good for me though. I haven't experienced as much as my cousin Sarah has in her mission in Finland. I have had hard times, but not day after day rejection and trials like I have had the past couple weeks. It's been so good for me. I have learned and grown a lot. So yes, things are good for me. I am feeling so happy and so content with my service and with the efforts we have been putting forward. Sometimes we forget that the work can be the reward.
Shoutout to Talmage!He should be in the England MTC right now killing teams.Love you brother.
Well I have a couple stories for you this week to make you chuckle.
A drunk mama came up to us very concerned. She told us how she knew us Mlungu's held salvation. So she asked us if we could come teach her family and her. We said we of course would and she took a pamphlet of the restoration out of my bag then held it up to her chest and proceeded to bear testimony of how Jesus is her Lord. She said that all of us here in america should send food, clothes and money to her family so they can live like Jacob Zuma (SA's president). Since you are all good Christian people, I am sure you will send all of that this way.
Please send all donations for this Mama to:Elder Mitchell Ryan ThayneSouth Africa Cape Town MissionP.O. Box 181, ObservatoryCape Town, 7935Republic of South Africa
Naturally, I'll keep half the donations for myself as a finders fee.
Just kidding. Don't actually send anything.
Another story real quick before I close. Brother Labazi, who was just called into the Stake high council, called us Wednesday morning and asked us to come over. We headed out the door right after studies to see him. Once we got there we saw that HALF of his house had been burned to a crisp. He told us he heard a tapping on his window, woke up and opened his bedroom door only to have fire burst into his room. He got out and they threw lots of sand and eventually put it out. Not after a lot of damage had been done though. We walked into the house and asked Mama Labazi how she was doing. We fully expected her to say things are hard or something of the sort. Rather, she said, "We are so blessed. God is so good to us my elders. We could have died, but he saved us and also kept half of our house." Wow. What a woman. So sweet and so sincere. AND SO FAITHFUL. We gave them blessings of comfort, prayed with the family and went on our way. 
This tragedy, while really sad, is huge blessing for our fellowshipper brother Siya. He is preparing to go on mission. While the Labazi family lives elsewhere, he is getting paid by the insurance company to live in their half burnt house so no one robs them. He needs the money so badly so it is such a blessing. And it is a blessing to us as we have a hard time getting a fellowshipper. Now we can take him out everyday. It's something we had been praying for help with. So awesome. I'll attach pictures with him.
Also, there is this guy named Lelethu who swore we would never teach him. We had a really funny relationship with him where whenever we would see him we would ask, "Hey, can we come teach you today?" He'd laugh and usually say something like, "You wish! Get lost!" Well one day we were talking to him and he invited us to come over for his birthday. He was turning 28. We came, brought a little cake and sat down with everyone there. He turned to us and said, "Alright, pull out your Bible's. I know you want to share something with us." Well we then pulled out our scriptures, said a prayer with everyone there and started to talk about how he is growing up, and how he has the potential to one day become like God. We stressed how he is His son and how important he is to heavenly father. Well, he started asking questions like, "So do we die then it's just heaven or hell and that's it? Will we really be burning forever in hell?" We addressed his questions and talked with everyone about everything. The spirit was extremely strong as we bore testimony of the Atonement and told him all this will be accessed by baptism. He was blown away. He couldn't even pull sarcastic remarks out. He just said, "Alright elders, let's set an appointment for next week." Elder Freitas and I just stared at each other for a second then fumbled for our planners. Then Lelethu, of course not wanting to show that he was at all interested said, "Of course this isn't a formal thing. I just want you elders to tell me about the pretty girls in your church."- Haha what a joke. Nice try man. We all know you want this. Anyway, yesterday, a couple days after his birthday party, we were driving past his house and saw him outside, we yelled the usual, "Hey Lelethu,can we come teach you today!?" Then he said, "Sure, why not? Come over in 30 minutes!".... I think I just about wrecked the car when I heard that... WHAT? "Well...uhh... Okay! Sweet! See you soon!" Haha didn't see that one coming. We then taught him the restoration and addressed his questions. He said, "Alright, well I need to go, but I'll pray or whatever, then you guys can come for our ACTUAL appointment on Wednesday. Remember, I don't really care about all this though." - haha... Yeahh.. so he says. Anyway, we are going to see him wednesday and let you know.
Things are good. The church is true. We can't stop smiling. And that is all because we are doing everything we can to live up to our purpose. One of my now all-time favorite scriptures is Isaiah 61:1. It says what we are out here to do. Mom, if you can, change my mission plaque scripture to this one.
Love you everyone.
Elder Mitchell Ryan Thayne

No comments:

Post a Comment