BORING ZONE LEADER STUFF:
I have a lot of sweet news to share with you. Things are going great here in Queenstown for Elder Radebe and I. We are still figuring things out, but we have really been trying to serve the members and show the members in town that they can trust us. Anyway, the eZibeleni members after a prayer meeting yesterday basically stood up and were telling us how much they appreciate our work and how they want to work along side us. When the Town members heard that, I think they gained a lot more trust in us as well. It's been great. Our bishop, Bishop Vali, is really happy with the people who are getting baptized and he is staying on top of getting them the priesthood right away which is awesome.
This coming Sunday we have that brother named Dumisa who is going to be baptized. We have really tested the promises of God when it comes to him. We found and started teaching him just under five weeks ago, and he is SO solid. He is getting baptized just five weeks after us saying hi to him in the spaza shop. I think sometimes we really do drag out the conversion and teaching process. It can happen quickly as we involve the members. As we have been having Cottage Meetings with members in eZibeleni, we are inviting our investigators to come, then they get smothered in love, invited to church, and the adjustment is no problem for them. It's been really amazing to see how the members are the key.
So as we have been talking about, Elder Radebe and I decided it's time to test the promises of God with baptizing people. So we are planning on setting and preparing several more people for baptism on the 30th of this month. Hopefully that will come to pass. I think we finally have caught the vision for how this is all going to work together. We are pairing up a tailor made fellowshipper + one family with each investigator. We are getting them to family home evenings and cottage meetings and getting things done that way. Things are great. I'll have to give you more details in the future.
--We just got some really rough news, my companion just got news about his father passing away two weeks ago.. he just found out now over email from his sister. So support and prayers for Elder Radebe will be welcomed for sure.--
The zone is doing well, but we are seeing a streak of casualness with all the elders out here in Queenstown. We are going to have a meeting with them on Friday and talk about that. Also, they are setting sky high goals and not even getting close to reaching them, so we will train them on that as well. We have great elders, just a lot of young ones. Goals, when we set ones that make us stretch, but that we are able to achieve can help build our faith, but if we are still miles below our set goal, then that can lead to discouragement. So yeahh, just more of the boring Zone Leader stuff that you all probably all just skim read through anyway. All in all, that's my life right now, so there you have it.
RANDOM GUY STORY:
We met a guy who drifts cars and stuff for a living. Anyway, his name was Papi Super Magic. Pretty powerful name I have to say. I thought y'all would get a kick out of that. I guess he is pretty big in Durban with all his drifting and stuff.
HUMBLING EPISODE OF THE WEEK:
So I had a cool spiritual experience, and a very humbling one this past week. Last Monday, us elders were all playing basketball outside the chapel. We finished up after a pretty nice game (I thought it was a nice game because for the first time in forever I actually killed teams) and were about to leave, just as my companion was locking up the outside gate he said, "Elder Thayne, do you think we should go make sure the chapel is locked up?" there had been workers that were working on the grounds. I just said, "Nahh Elder, we gotta get going to shower so we can be on time for our first appointment." When I said this I felt an impression that I should go check on the chapel door. But I thought... nahh, we will be back at the chapel in like two hours, so then we can worry about it then.
So ignoring what I felt, I just had him hop in the car. We were about thirty seconds away from our boarding then a car ran a stop sign right in front of us and we slammed into the side of their car... yeahh. Bam. That was a whole dramatic story and I wont bore you with the details, but let's just say, I have learned how to keep my head while I have been out here on mission. But yes, that crash resulted in a lot of problems and hoops we had to jump through. At the end of all that, we drove our brand new, now busted up Chevrolet Aveo over to the chapel only to find the door unlocked and wide open. At that moment everything hit me. Not only had I felt the impression to go close the door because it was open, but I also had the impression, and if I had followed it I would have completely avoided that car crash. We would have been at that same intersection a couple minutes after that car ran the stop sign, we would have gone home safe and just carried on with our day. We went home that night and I realized why God had impressed those feelings upon my heart. I repented and vowed to follow every feeling and impression that comes to me, no matter how inconvenient or small. Then throughout this past week we have had different moments almost every day where I felt an impression, acted on it and witnessed something amazing.
I felt an impression to go check up on a brother named Zinathi. We went and had a lesson with him and he was saying how he was so shocked we showed up. How he had been feeling like he wasn't needed or loved and he had decided to not worry about church anymore.
While we were in a lesson with Dumisa, Siya Dlanga and newly baptized Anamandla Homane were fellowshipping. I had the impression to invite each one of them to share how prayer and receiving answers to prayer has changed or blessed their life. After they all shared the spirit was so powerful and they grew closer together as brothers. Which is making all the difference. That weekend we had the Ndabeni's and Anamandla with us doing a massive service at Dumisa's house. It was awesome to see how service brings people together.
AND SO MANY MORE. I just don't have time to tell them all.
While we were at a big FHE we were having with a bunch of less actives, members and investigators one of the sisters, Nokuthula Funcuza, was having a terrible headache and asked us to give her a blessing. We calmed everyone down and brought the spirit back again. Elder Radebe anointed her and I was able to bless her. Then, as we laid our hands on her head to give her the blessing, I started speaking and this little six year old kid from the Xaluva family came and laid his hands on her head as well. Elder Radebe quickly swatted them away, and he kept trying to put them back till someone grabbed them. After the blessing the spirit was strong, but when Elder Radebe and I got back in the car we couldn't stop laughing about that kid. I don't know, it was funny. Maybe you have to know him. Just imagine a little chunky six year old kid, who randomly says funny things in broken English and probably loves ice cream more than life. That's him.
Well, I love you all. Hope everything is going good. We are going to baptize a lot of wonderful people, the Lord truly is raining his blessings down.
Mdala Mitchell Ryan Thayne