Last week our mission learned at the feet of Ronald A. Rasband. It was an incredible experience! He initially came for a Priesthood Leadership Training, but we booked two hours to see him. He spoke about his recent general conference talk "Let the Holy Spirit Guide". We also had the chance to ask him some questions about missionary work! As he spoke I felt a clear confirmation that he is an apostle of Jesus Christ; while the same message taught that I am a witness and an agent of Jesus Christ while I'm set apart as a full time missionary!
I never cease to be amazed at the growth that I've seen in myself throughout my mission. My "greenie fire" has become conviction. My faith in Jesus Christ has become deep and abiding. Today we were teaching our waiter about the Book of Mormon. In the middle of our conversation a man came to our table and began to share anti-mormon doctrine with him, he told us that he lived in Southern Utah for years and felt that he had been oppressed by a cult. It was pretty sad to witness. After he was finished, our waiter said "well, everybody has their own opinion, and I'm looking to form my own". He accepted our invitation to read the Book of Mormon and pray.
I share this experience because it caused some reflection to occur within myself. I thought about everything he had said, but none of it mattered to me. The light and truth of this gospel has been woven into the fibres of my very being. No man or ungodly influence can deny the divine witness I've received of this restored gospel. It was a special moment for me, to realise the growth of my testimony. It reminds me of 3 Nephi 9:20, that mentions how the Lamanites were baptised by the Holy Ghost and they knew it not.
One last thing that stood out to me from our meeting with Elder Rasband was the question "is your word your bond?".
This week was great, aside from the fact that Elder DePriest and I were sick, again. But the Lord consecrated all of our efforts regardless. We attended two zone conferences this week, both were really inspiring!
Perhaps the highlight of the week was on Saturday, we did a media stand in Durban Central. As we were talking to people (and we were talking to EVERYONE), a missionary pointed to a group of people who were signing. He was like "go teach them in sign language" and I figured it was worth a try! So I went over and started to introduce myself (in American sign language) and they actually understood me! And even though they were signing in South African Sign Language, I was understanding them!! We ended up having a loooong conversation, through which I introduced myself, chit chatted for a bit, and then I taught them about our purpose and the Restoration! It was great at the end, all the other missionaries were just staring at me... haha all of my new deaf friend committed to come to church! So on Sunday morning we went back to where we met them ( we had arranged to meet them there so that we could take them to church with us ), but nobody showed up... We got bunked. Shame. BUT THIS WILL NOT BE THE END!!
Sawubona (Hello) Durban 😍
I realised that this is getting long, but I haven't written the hundreth part of all that I'm experiencing here!! Life is so great! The gospel is so true. If you pray properly, sincerely, and with real intent, you will ALWAYS get answers. My most cherished moments recently have been in lessons with investigators as they pray and ask God if what we've taught them is true. The Spirit has testified every single time, and all of us walk away edified.
I love the Lord and I love His work!!
P.S. Also, there's an incredible mexican food resturante in Durban North called "four15", they have a burrito challenge that I've been dying to do. They make a "double wide" burrito ( a burrito the size of two normal burritos ) and if you eat it in ten minutes you win a free t-shirt and a R100 voucher for your next visit! Three of us did it, I was the only one who finished. I'm not sure if I'm proud, or ashamed... hahaha