Tuesday, 9 July 2013

8th July 2013, Zone Leader, Queenstown South Africa

Hi mom and dad,

Whenever I tell anybody here about the weather that my family and others back at home in Canada are enduring at this time and even during winter, they always tell me that that is insane and that they would never EVER live there!
     I'm extremely fascinated by the natural disasters happening in the world and how pretty much all of them are happening in the America's. Weather here is extremely mild compared to home. The other day it was a bit windy and people were freaking out because it was "SO WINDY!!!" These past few weeks it has been a little cold outside, yet people are wrapped up in blankets in bed or wearing big coats outside saying "IT's SO COLD!!!" If there were to be any kind of weather here like it is back home, thousands of people would die because they are unprepared for such weather.
That kind of weather is only ever talked about on the news in places like the America's. The prophecies in the Book of Mormon are being fulfilled, especially about the America's. Don't think that I'm happy that these things are happening to people, cause I'm not, and I feel bad for those people and I wish I could help them (I bet the missionaries there are loving the extra service projects they have now), but I am fascinated by the increased testimony I'm receiving about the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon by seeing that the prophecies of old are all coming to pass, and I wouldn't have realized it as much if I wasn't here in South Africa to see the contrast.
 I'm happy that the members are helping out so much and fulfilling their Baptismal covenants to lift and serve others, "to mourn with those that mourn, and to comfort those that stand in need of comfort." I'm so grateful to have this incredible truth of the restored Gospel in my life, and to know exactly what my purpose is and what my potential is and most importantly, how to get there! It humbles me to know and realize that there is no possible way that I can reach that potential on my own. I must rely on others in order to progress. I must submit myself to the Lord and do His will. Only through Him can I reach that potential that He's prepared for me. All God has ever done, now does, and will ever do is give. All he expects of us is to give. As we learn to give (more especially, wanting to give) and overcome all fleshly (or selfish) desires, we can return to live with Him and even become like Him!
Sorry I could go on for ages and if I was sitting down with my scriptures open I could sit for hours just flipping through scripture references and talking about the Gospel. I love it with my whole being! I love sharing it as well! The more I share, the more I learn! I'm so grateful to be on mission! This is an incredible gift that Heavenly Father has given me. Mission is not a sacrifice, it's a blessing! For anybody who ever has the opportunity to serve the Lord in any capacity, TAKE IT!!!! There's no substitute and there's nothing you could possibly every do better for yourself.
Well this past week has been nice but difficult. We are struggling a bit in the area. We aren't losing hope though, we are still pressing forward with faith and diligence. I know that great things will come. The holidays are just making things difficult, but we have been doing more finding and are trying to increase our teaching pool (it's going to be a huge teaching pool when everyone comes back from holidays!) So Ezibileni has a ton of potential, and we are seeking to tap into some of that. Of course we can't do anything of that sort without the help and direction from the Lord, so we are also seeking to be as obedient as possible in order to have the companionship of the Spirit to help guide us in the area! I'm loving it! I'm growing a lot too! Obedience is starting to run through my veins and I love it! We were supposed to get a new car last week, but it didn't happen, so this week we are supposed to be getting it. I'm excited! My companion (who I love so much! He's awesome!) and I were talking about how we complain about how our car is getting old and has dents and scratches and over 100000 km's on it and all of these little problems with it and how we need a new car, yet there are thousands of missionaries in the world who will probably never ever even have the privileged of having a car their entire missions! It's easy to take things for granted when you have them so abundantly. I might go my entire mission never ever being in a walking or biking area! Can I even classify myself as a missionary? hmmm...
We have some really awesome investigators though who we are teaching, and 2 of them came to church on Sunday (our area is far from the chapel, so the biggest struggle is to get investigators to church). That was awesome! We may not have any baptisms this month, but next month for sure we we will be having baptisms! We also have a Father led family that we are working with and there is great potential for them as well! I'm excited! My companion and I are getting along great! We are good friends!
Last night I received a phone call from Elder Dale (from the mission office) telling me that a member from my ward is in Cape Town and he wants to see me. I'm in Queenstown though, so apparently he has purchased a phone and is going to call me instead. It's Bro. Vandendungan (I don't know how to spell it) who is here for a wedding or something. So this afternoon we will get to talk to each other. It's too bad I wasn't in Cape Town to talk to him in person. I'm excited though!
Well I best be going! I've taken up too much time with this email. I love you all toooo much! Stay safe! READ YOUR SCRIPTURES!!!
-Elder Jones

P.S. I forgot to mention that My comp and I went to East London for a Leadership Counsel this week as well. We took some pics. Enjoy!

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