Duo demonic creatures have been discovered by Elder Benson this week in Protea Glen:
1. A demonic, flying snake without wings, inviting darkness into whatever corner it possesses. It lurks in the marshes and reeds of the Glen. To tame the wild and unpredictable beast, a local sect has taken it upon themselves to worship this unknown reptile to save the people of Soweto from it's fury.
2. A chicken. But not just any chicken, a black-skinned chicken! Wherever you find it, in the markets or in the streets, run! This all-seeing creature is at the employment of the local witch-doctors as spies, snooping about to uncover any secret information that may be useful to their plots. Beware of the chicken!
(No worries, the snake is just a local myth and the chicken's still as stupid as ever.)
Now, back to reality.
What an amazing week here in Protea Glen! I wish I had photos to share about all the travels of this week. I can share, with all the humility in the world, that I am current UNO champion in all of Soweto (with Elder Mkhize running up second). Quite an accomplishment, I know, especially seeing that the tournament this weekend consisted of two elders and five investigators, a total of seven people!
Putting aside my title and my glory, having an UNO tournament with all of the investigators in Ext. 3 of Protea is super fun! It provides us with the opportunity to come to know who these people are. A mystery that I can never fully appreciate is the process wherein one comes to see behind the mask of a face and peer into the incredibly unique and intricate personality. And how awesome it is to see these people of whom I've come to understand begin the process of conversion.
One of these amazing people that I've had the privilege of coming to know is a girl named Khabonina. She may be seventeen years old, but she's one of the most matured girls for her age. She's truly allowed the trials in her life to uplift her and mold her into what her Heavenly Father needs her to be.
Back story: we first met her as we were teaching her mother, Nono, and her sisters, Khanyisile and Buitumelo. Khabonina joined us for the lesson and afterwards agreed to have another appointment later in the week. It turns out that she was quite hesitant to follow through, due to the fact that her mother has introduced her to so many other churches. But as we've all witnessed, she's blossomed from a indifferent investigator to a converted daughter of God. She's even introduced her friends to the gospel, who all have so far accepted the invitation to be baptized. What made the difference in Khabo's conversion? Was is the elders? Was it the amazing UNO skills of Elder Benson?
I'll share with all the secret of this conversion: in the bag of every LDS missionary, there lies a book. This piece of literature is comparable to the Bible, yet uncovers a secret of millennia Printed on the blue cover, in golden writing, announces to the world: The Book of Mormon. It is a free, and everlasting witness to the world of Jesus Christ, and will draw you closer to God than any person, preacher, or book could ever do. All you have to do to unlock this amazing promise to your benefit is to open the book, read it, and ask God in the name of Jesus Christ if it His word. If you can so do, with real intent and faith unshaken, God will reveal the answer to you by the power of His Holy Spirit.
Khabonina has applied this amazing promise. And in her own words, "You may feel like you will only read a chapter, or just read for ten minutes. But you will keep reading and reading until two or three hours pass away." I am a witness of her words, as are millions of Latter-Day Saints around the world. Because Khabonina has received this witness, she is entering into the waters of baptism, to commence her journey towards eternal life, on April 16th.
You may be a member of this church. You may not be. But all need a restoration of these eternal truths for themselves at one point or another. And the only way you may gain of these hidden treasures of eternity is to read, ponder, and pray about the Book of Mormon, with real intent and faith unshaken.
"Now, as a missionary, you'll mature, develop a confidence, learn to speak up, to organize, to set goals. You will learn about people and places, you will learn to learn, and many other things. These are lasting benefits that come as something of a reward for your dedicated service.
"But these things do not compare with the most lasting reward. The choicest pearl, the one of great price, is to learn at a young age how one is guided by the Spirit of the Lord- a supernal gift. Indeed, it is a guide and protection."
-Spencer W. Kimball