Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September 22, 2014

Well another week in the books... time is going by soo fast its crazy!
But this week was pretty good, with some interesting things going on. 
On Tuesday, Elder Maduna and I got to go on exchanges with the Elders in Westlands, so i got to be with Elder Griffiths again! It was a lot of fun, it brought back memories of being together in Mautuma! For the most part thought, most of our appointments got bounced, so we spent a lot of time contacting.  I'm still trying to figure out the area, so i thought it would be a good idea to go tracting in this area called Nairobi West. I thought it would be a good idea.  Only problem is... every house has gates in front of it.. so we couldn't do anything. We tried talking to people on the street, which was ok.  Found a lot of Muslims though.... they weren't so interested..... haha. Except one guy! He was a muslim, and knew about the Book of Mormon and was interested to get one.  Not sure if things will go very far with that but we will see!
Then! Wednesday was quite the day.  It started at 4:00 AM for me and elder Griffiths... haha.  We had to drive President Hicken and the assistants to the airport so they could fly to Eldoret for a meeting.  So we woke up super early to drive them there.  Then around 8:00, we had to drive to Westlands to pick up Elder Maduna and Njuguna and the sister missionaries, then to Riruta to pick up the Elders there.  At 10:00 we exchanged back to our normal companionship and had our ZTM (zone trainig meeting), so Elder Maduna and I lead some of the trainings that we learned about at MLC last week.  It turned out really well.  Everybody was engaged and participated, and it went really well.  After that we got permission from President to got to KICC(which is the tallest building in Kenya), for a zone activity.  It was way fun! It was cool to be together as a zone and get to better know each other.  We have a super nice zone in Upper Hill!! Then we had to drive everyone back to their areas, which took us up to 6:00, so we went strait to the airport to pick up President Hicken.  It usually takes one hour or so to get to the airport because of traffic, and his flight was to land at 8:15PM, so we thought for sure we gave ourselves ample time to get there.  But oh boy where we wrong.... hahaah.  Biggest traffic jam i have ever seen in my entire life.  No joke... wow.  We were stuck for 2 and a half hours.  And the roads where chaotic!! haha there were buses and matatus driving up on the sidewalk and off the road, people were making their own lanes and Elder Maduna and i were just like what in the world is going on here?? Eventually we got to the airport and picked them up and drove them home.  Wednesday was quite the day for us tho... hahahahahaha!
Sunday, we had a pretty cool experience.  President Hicken has assigned elder Maduna and I to go and help out with a group (small meeting of members, not quite a branch) in a town called Machakos, which is about a hour and a half southeast of nairobi.  So we left early in the morning with a member, Thomas Kusue, from Nairobi (who is also the group leader) to Machakos.  On the way we saw a zebra that got hit by a truck.... it was interesting.  So at the group meeting, there were only 6 people present (including elder maduna and I).  3 members, one of which was a RM, and one investigator.  So because we were there, we were able to help with the sacrament and preside over the meeting.  So elder Maduna presided, while i gave an opening prayer, passed the sacrament, and gave a talk (don't worry i had a 10 second notice).  But it was really cool to be there.  The spirit was really strong, and it was cool to see members gathering together like that.  They are really laying the foundation for the church in that area.  All of them were very grateful that we came to help.  Even the RM came up to us after and said she was grateful that we could come and admisister the sacrament to them (they can only have the sacrament when we come). Cool to see saints like this who really are converted, doing their best to stay on the path and endure to the end.  Going out there was a pretty cool experience. 
This week we really stuggled to meet with our investigators and recent converts.  We got bounced a lot.  But we are still working with 4 of our progressing investigators, Juvenal, Nifred, Jackson, and Gerald.  Gerald can basically be baptized when ever, he is super ready, just waiting for his wife to be taught (she stays in a place called Kyambake, luckly misionaries are there).  We weren't able to see Jackson this week because we were in Machakos on sunday, but he is still doing well.  Might have to move his bapt date back to some time in October.  We had a great lesson with Nifred on Sunday about the Plan of Salvation, she had lots of questions but we answered them.  Even with Juvenal, we taught him half of the plan of Salvation.  He was very interested in the understanding and knowledge we have in the church about the fall of Adam and Eve.  He asked especially about why God would put the Tree and the Forbidden Fruit in the Garden of Eden, he said he never understood why it was there.  So we explained to him how Adam and Eve needed to eat the fruit to be able to understand good from evil, and to also recieve mortal bodies and to be able to have children.  We read 2 Nephi 2:22-25 with him to explain it.  After reading and explaining it, he was pretty amazed and happy that we were able to help him understand that.  He told us it was the most productive meeting we have ever had with him.... I was happy to hear that.  Even on Sunday he came to church for the first time and loved it.  Even Sunday afternoon, Elder Maduna and I were in Uhuru Park (super big park in Nairobi) contacting people, when we randomly saw Juvenal.  After church, he went to the park to work (he owns a weight scale, so he puts it on the ground and people come up and use it and pay him 10 shillings a go).  So as we were talking he was soo excited to see us that he wanted to go and buy sodas for us.  We declined because we knew it was sunday, so we didnt want him to buy anything.  He persisted and really wanted to buy us sodas.  So we took advantage of the situation to teach him about Keeping the Sabbath Day holy.... after we talked about it he said 'oh, so maybe i shouldnt work on sunday?' hahah excactly!!! He is a great guy tho and will hopefully be baptized next month. 
Also this week, i was able to read Alma 24.  I would really encourage all of you to read it this week.  Its just a great example of the Anti-Nephi-Lehi's keeping their covenants with God, and also a good example of how truly converted people are.  LOVE IT!!!
But i love you all!! have a great weeeeeeeek!
Elder Thomas

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