Saturday, December 31, 2011

Coming home this year!

Hello Everyone,

Merry Christmas/Happy New Year!, Can you Believe it officially starting in less that five hours (For me) I will be able to say 'This year I go home'. It is a strange thing. Things are going well. I am still in the office and keeping busy as ever. It has just been a challenge a little bit the past few weeks because it seems like everywhere closed down for the holidays. The post office and our mission area office and many other places. Its just funny because christmas really isnt that big around here but people look for anyway to get a day off and so they use it as a week to two weeks off. I guess it is more of their summer vacation then anything else.

So I had a wonderful time talking to my family on Christmas. It is always a great joy and thrill to hear their voices and to give me a boost. I enjoyed talking to each of them and to see how each of them are doing.

Now for this past week. Not much has happened this past week. The only difference really is that me and Elder Ray (my companion) were running the office all by ourselves monday and tuesday. But it was practically dead in here so I dont want to make it sound harder than it really was but still it was different and then also for the rest of the week Oborns have been gone to Botswana. They just got back today. So it really has just been a quiet week around the office with all the shops closed and no one bugging us about bills or anything else. But I am sure its going to be crazy starting this next week.

I also got to talk with President yesterday. So he says that the plan for me and Elder Ray is that Elder Ray will leave this next tranfer and go back out into the field. Then they will bring someone in to be with me for a transfer and then he will move us both out when he is ready (so like one or two more transfers). I also mentioned to him again about my desire to go to Botswana or North East Areas and he said I have earned it being in the office and working so hard so he is going to do everything he can to get me to Botswana and then if it doesnt work out then North East. So it looks like after I am out of the office then I will be way far away from everything. But I dont care it will be a nice change. But I still got months to go for that.

As it has been the new year I have thought of ways how I can improve. There are many different ways that I thought of and already started into practice some of the things. Some of the things is I want to become more officicent with my scripture study. It has been slacking since being in the office has me totally booked. Also to keep up on my journals. Then also I want a more positive attitude and to look at people's intentions before I jump to conclusions and such. I just all around want to be a better person. I guess that is one reason that I came and have stayed on mission is so I can change and become better. I hope I am doing that I will do everything I can not to slip back to where I was when I get back home.

Well there really isnt that much to say this week except I hope everyone has had great holidays and making them ones to remember. I love all of you and hope and pray that you will continue strong and do things to make yourselves and others happy.

Good luck and miss you all with much love
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Who knew??...I'm alive!

Hello Everyone,

Yes it is true I am alive and you are reading another letter from me. I don't know how many times I can write and tell you each that I am sorry for not writing and I can give you many different reasons but the main reasons are just that every time I get an opportunity to write I am either pulled away or too tired. I am so sorry I hope everyone can forgive me. I hope everyone is well and that things are going the way you hope and dreamed.

So let me just say thank you to all those who have been writing me letters; Catia, Trent, Linda, Melody, Liz, Grandma and Grandpa, Aunt Tammy, Laural, and many many more others thank you so much for your letters they really do keep me going I always look forward to hear from everyone and to know how they are doing (Even though I haven't been a good person and at least writing a letter to everyone). Well tonight (Where I am at anyways) I hope to make up for at least a little bit of the time I have lost and I hope I can relate lots of stories and information for you.

Well maybe I can just start out by saying I AM PAST THE SEVEN MONTH MARK! and what is even crazier I can officially count down the number of transfers I have on one hand. Time is going by so fast and when I hear about all my friends coming home off their missions I think its crazy because I am not too far behind them. I have to admit I am excited to get home but then again mission has helped me in so many ways I don't want that part of my life to change. I want to continue the way I am now and not go back to who I was before.

So let me think what I should read about...wouldn't it just be rotten of me to get all your hopes up of a big long letter to make up for things but then I just cut it right here? OK I wont do that I am not that mean. So as many of you know I have been working in the office since the last time you have heard from me. They have mainly been having me help with the charges for the missionaries and the vehicle coordinator (very ironic I know), and just keeping the supplies coming in for the missionaries and whatever the mission needs. It has been a very great experience. Yes like anything else it has its down points. But the thing is I have seen missions from a whole new stand point now. I know a lot more about how missions run and make it possible for missionaries like me to do their jobs. It is really interesting and I am so glad right now my job is to help the other missionaries be able to spread the wonderful gospel we have. The down side is I really don't get to do that part much my self. Every time me and my companion make plans to go out and do some finding or something we always get called back in it seems like and so I haven't taught a lesson for a few months. But as a side note I get to go out to the assistants area with one of them tonight I am so excited. I am probably going to butcher it because I haven't taught in so long. But anyways another down part is that it seems to be cycles. You get one thing going and doing well then have to move to something else but by the time you are almost getting that smoothed out it seems like the old problems come back again. But we as an office staff are working on getting all those little problems dealt with.

So in the office I am working with Elder Oborn who is you can say the head guy of the office staff he bounces around making sure everyone gets their jobs done and helps in anyways he can, and then his wife Sister Oborn who is in charge of the flats and the medical things. I also help her with inventory for the flats and and getting all the supplies ready for moving missionaries and such. Then there is Elder Leavitt who is the head finance guy and who deals with anything with money. He used to be a Federal Judge before he came so that is kind of neat. Then there is his wife Sister Leavitt who is being prepared as President Omer's Secretary and she does all the prep for missionaries coming in and out of the mission and the visas and the scheduling and all that. And then there is the two assistants Elders Ramos and Rivera. Elder Ramos is going home next week so he is done. A great guy though. Then Elder Rivera is the one I am going with tonight. He is rough around the edges a stickler at times but over all he is an amazing missionary and many great experiences behind it. Then there is Sister Baily who comes in and puts baptism records on the computer for a church calling. She is so funny every day she either complains that Elders sat in her chair or her computer wont listen to her or Elders don't do records right or that after we die the Savior is going to judge us according to how we fill out our baptism records. She is an older lady but she is really great. She reminds me a lot of grandma Lindsay. Same kind of stubbornness but a very kind and loving heart. Once and a while I get to work around President Omer. Most of the time he is out doing interviews or setting up meetings or doing something that causes him to run around constantly with no stop. I really respect him. He is up past midnight every night and up around four in the morning for traveling or paper work or some reason or another. He literally has very little time to stop and rest. Its amazing to kind of see his schedule and the way he keeps running. But one thing is for sure whatever he does he does it out of love and consideration for the missionaries. He wants the best for them and for the people that they come in contact with out in the fields in whatever area they may be in.

Then last but not least I work with Elder Ray who is my companion. He is mainly helping sister Leavitt with whatever she needs done right now. They are thinking he will be out in the field again starting at the first of the year. Elder Ray is awesome. He is without a doubt the best companion I have thus far. It is just so easy to get along with him and to talk with him. I think me and him are making each other a little trunky but hey we are missionaries it is good for us right. He knows how to work hard when there is a task at hand but he also knows how to have fun before, during and after the work as well which is an amazing quality with him. He is from Arizona and so not to far from Utah. I definitely hope we will have the opportunity to work together more and we will definitely stay in touch when we get back home. You can just say he is another side of me we get along so well and like too much of the same things. We quote movies and shows all the time its great ha ha.

So that is a big summery of my life here in the office. We come to the office at about 8:30 in the morning and then leave around 5. But sometimes work takes us longer and so we get out of here later. We scrounge for shopping time and time to clean our flats. So by the time we can do things then that leaves like no time for proselyting.

So one of the great experiences I got to do in the past few months I got to shake Elder Russel M. Nelson's hand and got to listen to him speak in person. I was sitting with the all the other office staff and the senior couples up in the front two rows so it was truly amazing. We got to listen to him and his wife and Sister Cook and then Sister Renland. It was just an amazing experience the spirit was there just prompting each of us and letting each of know what we need to do in order improve. But Elder Nelson talked a lot about asking for angels by name. When we pray we tend to ask for angels to help us but he said we can also ask for specific angels by name to help us like people who we know that went through the same challenges as us that can help us. It was something neat that I never even thought about before. Then he also talked about sacrificing for the Lord and being obedient. It is a moment I hope I will never forget and I will always remember the feeling that I had.

Another thing that has blessed my life is I got to go on Mission Tour with President Omer and Carl B. Cook from the Seventy and some of the guys from the office. Now what mission tour is, is when a someone from the area presidency comes and they literally take a tour of the mission. They visit each of the zones and they talk with the missionaries and give them some instruction. Carl B. Cook came and he talked a lot of obedience and that we teach for converts not just to have another baptism and establishing the church rather than just building it. It kind of got me down because I don't do much teaching myself but still a neat experience never the less. So I got to go to all the different meetings with them. Now my job was to inspect all the cars. I had to check the oil and the tires and the cleanliness and all that so if anyone needs a car check when I am home I can do one. That took up most of my time so I didn't get to be in the meetings much. But I did get to see alot of the mission I have never saw before. I got to go to the North East Zone which is about four to six hours away and then I got to go to Botswana. I think I really want to go to Botswana or North East after I am out of the office. In the North East we got to split and go do some teaching with some of the Elders. Now that is the area you more imagine when you think of Africa. The family we went to lived in the middle of a Banana farm and had four sticks in the ground with a tarp over them for a home. They understood very very very little English and their clothes were torn and dirty and it would probably take them almost an hour or two walking just to get to the main road and then another ten to twenty minutes to get to the town (that is if they managed to get a ride if not it would take another hour or two). It was truly a different experience and one I wont be about to forget. The whole mission tour was a great experience but just being able to hear Elder Cook talk (even about his conference experience this past October) and being there in the North East made it all the icing on the cake as people say. Something I will cherish forever.

I have been receiving lots of help from different people lately and I am truly grateful to each and everyone one of them no matter how big of the thing they have done for me. One of the guys I have been meeting with told me once; "The Lord is aware of you isn't he. He has his hand in everything that you do." and I have thought a lot about that. And you know it is so true. I am not saying I am the only one that the Lord does that with but as I look back I can see it fitting all together so perfectly. As Elder Oborn has said once "As you go through challenging times it may not come into focus until you look in the rear view mirror." Some times we just have to look back to what we had or who we were or whatever it may be just to see the difference. Its not so apparent looking forward because we are to focused on what we don't have at the time to realize how far we made it.

Well I think that will give you a picture of what I have been doing the past few months and what has been keeping me so busy. Again I am sorry I haven't wrote in awhile and I hope I can make it up to each and everyone of you. I love you all so much and thank you again for all your prayers and all you do for me. I will be focusing more on writing individual letters starting this week and as well I will make sure to write something to everyone in an email. I will do better. Again I love you all and you are always in my thoughts and in my prayers and I hope to hear from everyone soon.

-Your Friend, Brother, Lacoua (probably spelt wrong), etc
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay
"Life is what you make it so Fake it Until You Make it"

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Thanks, braai, training, funeral, teaching, baptisms, & love

Hello again everyone,

I am so sorry about last week where I sent pictures I had very little time to write things but I am taking lots of time to write today so this should be a longer letter. So first of all I just want to start out by saying thank you to everyone. I love all of you and I am so grateful for your love and support. Thank you for the prayers that you have said in my behalf. I truely feel them and know the lord is blessing me and helping me so I dont let any of you down. So again thank you for all that you do for me.

Ok so what has been going on this week... where should I start. Ok so last week after emailing we went shopping for our food and then we also bought stuff so we could have a braai/ barbeque. It was alot of fun. The other elders played soccer with some kids while me and some other elders watched over the meat to make sure it didnt burn. Well we had fun and all but part of me wishes it could have gone just a little bit longer. But thats ok.

Then on Tuesday and Wednesday I went to the office again for some more training. This time they told me that I would be responsible for everything in the office. We will be rotating jobs around and so that way I will be doing a little bit of everything. So its going to be good and I am going to be super busy. I should be going into the office sometime this week and so who knows maybe next time you hear from me I will be sitting behind a desk all day. Haha funny to think that I am the one to do that but the lord works in mysterious ways and who am I to question when he has a specific assignment for me. I will do it the best of my abilities and it will help me grow as much as going out into the feild and teaching all these great and kind people has.

Then this week we have also met a new father led family that are going to be good investigators I feel like. Last sunday I guess they came to the chapel to ask if they could use it for their marriage. Elder Khumalo told them they would have to call the presidentcy. So on Tuesday we went to their place and we gave them the numbers to call. Then on Thursday we get a call from the lady who was very upset and down because she couldnt get a hold of the presidentcy and some complications for her and her husband (they are just wanting to do the offical ceremony at the chapel but they are already married). So we helped her get a hold of the branch predsidentcy and then they said she had to come talk to them. But when we saw her that day it was amazing. We went and she had lots of questions and concerns because nothing has been going right for her and her husband since they have started planning this wedding. so she told us she tried to kill herself and she was thinking of canceling the wedding and everything. That is when we watched the movie 'Together Forever" with her because she was asking for advice but we are not aloud to as missionaries. So we watched that movie and by the end of it she was coming up with everything she was asking questions about herself. She address all of her concerns and she even learned. She even said that she felt she needed to be a part of the church not just for the wedding but even after and everything. the spirit was so strong we as missionaries never said one word to her. She came up with it all through the spirit. All we did was go in and listen to her and then my companion said we should watch the movie with her and after she did all the talking. We never said a word. Its amazing how the spirit works. They both even came to an activity we held on saturday and she even came to church yesterday. They should be a good couple for sure to teach.

Then with good times there is also sad times. We got a call one night telling us that sister posisie (one of our members in our area) passed away. A few days before we saw her and gave her a blessing and I remember after the blessing she just looked at us and said "Thank you I feel reliesed from all pain and sorrow and suffering" Im sure she really did. But at least we know she went peacefully. I am going to miss her she was a terrific member and lots of people loved her. She was a great example to me and to others. Her presence will definately be missed in the church.
Then on Saturday we held another U-night at the chapel with all the areas. I kept geting told that it was going to be impossible and that it wouldnt work but it was the biggest one that we have had and it was a huge success. It was amazing. We watched a movie about Christ and then played some games it was a good experience.
Then yesterday I had the oppertunity to baptise Phillemon. That makes it 60 people I have seen baptised and 11 I have taught but I barely missed seeing them baptised and so a total of 71 people with 22 of them I got to personally put them in the water. It was a great experience exspecially with the confirmations we had of a few other recent converts in the morning as well. The lord knows what it takes to bring people to the truth. I am just so grateful I can be a part of it. Not to brag or anything because it is all the lords work but it does remind me of my mission scripture Mosiah 23:10-11 "Made me an instrument in bringing so many of you a knowledge of his truth."

I know that the lord loves each and everyone of us if we will just submit and do what he asks. If we want blessings all we have to do is obey.
That is my week and I loved it. My time is up but I love each one of you and I hope all is well. I hope to hear from you all soon. Hope you are doing well. May God bless all of you with whatever you need and want.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, September 5, 2011

No letter but... PICTURES!!!!


Monday, August 29, 2011

New Assignment

Hello everyone,

Sorry I didnt write last week I was very short on time and things just were not on my side. So I will make sure today is one of the longer letters I will write. So this week has been a good week. Things have been going good between me and my companions (yes its companionS not compnaion I will explain). So last monday we went back to the lion park agian for the new missionaries that just came into the area. It was fun as normal. The lion cubs were alot more playful this time which was fun. Then afterwards it was just a normal typical day from there.

So the next major thing that happened this week was on Wednesday me and Elder Kapata were teaching and when I got a phone call fromt the Assistants. Well I have a new assignment from the President. In a few weeks I will be leaving here in Sebokeng and I will be moving to the office. One of the seinor couples that have been working there in the office got moved to an area to help that area and so for now they are placing me and one other missionary there in the office until they can get another seinor couple in there (or until further notice). So I will be there for at least a few transfers president said so it should be interesting. I will be taking care of paper work and computer work and all that thing. So until I go to the office I have to go in a few times per week so I can recieve training in my new postition. And now as I said I have companions because to fill in my spot they have sent down another elder named Elder Khumalo who I need to train him and my companion on the area before I leave since I have only been with Elder Kapata for a few weeks. I am excited to accept this new assignment but I am also sad because I have only spent three months in this area and its just starting to take off. But hey if thats what the lord wants I will do it. And just so everyone knows my P-days are going to be switching from Mondays to Saturdays when I am in the office so just look for my letters around then.

So on Friday we had a zone confrence. It was a more different one that the ones in the past. People were just yelling out randomly and they werent taking things seriously or they were just complaining and it was just different. But on the brighter side one of the branch missionaries from my last area is helping in our mission for a transfer and so I got to see him there at the zone confrence and kind of get updated on my last area. Apparently alot of the people I was working with were baptized and now fully active in the church. So it sounds like that area is looking up as well.

Then on Saturday we had our yearly 'Mormon Helping Hands Service Project" We went and we helped clean up some of the places around our area with the members. It was a great experience. So as we were cleaning (of course Im the only white guy) a drunk guy comes and starts yelling "Lakua (La-coo-wa)" Which means white person. Haha. He kept trying to get me to come over to him and so he could ask me for a job. Well obviously I dont even have a job myself. All the members tried getting him to leave me alone tried getting him to go away. But nothing was working. So all of a sudden theladies living around the area we were cleaning come rushing from cleaning their clothes or what they were doing and they start yelling at him and throwing rocks at him telling him to leave and to stop bugging me because I was actually helping them and doing good. Haha it was a crazy neat experience.

Then on Sunday we had two baptisms. Sello and Solly. It was a great experience but also kind of disorganized because it was the first one we had combined with the other area. But also after the baptisms yesterday we were going around to some former investigators and we came to one named Joesph. He was being prepared to be baptized but he doesnt know why but missionaries just stopped going. So we talked to him to find out what he remembers and he remembers alot and he knows alot. He still wants to be baptized and so he should be coming up in the next coming month or so. Its great how the spirit works some times to lead us to the people who are truely prepared.

So that was my week and its been a great one. I will always love and look back on these times often. I am so grateful I came on mission. Well everyone else is waiting for me so I got to go but I hope to hear from everyone soon. Thank you to Jacob, Emily, Shauna and Kyler for your letters. I hope I get to keep hearing from you and seeing how things are going. Talk to you soon.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Companions, Cottage meetings, & Car wrecks

Hello everyone,

Sorry about last week I guess I was down in the dumps and all blah. So I am doing better this week and things are going to continue improving I hope. The lord has plans for me that much I know. So yeah last week monday after emailing everyone we went shopping with our district leaders. Afterwards we went back to the flat and I was getting the cold treatment beyond all cold treatment. So we got ready to leave and then we left late and so we missed our first appointment. But I am so glad we went to the second appointment. We held a family home evening with a full member family combined with a recent convert and his family who are not members (yet haha). Well for the activity we watched 'Finding Faith in Christ'. It was so amazing and the spirit was so strong. The recent converts family was making comments and participating when they usually dont like to. Well that is also when I recieved inspiration on what I needed to do with my companion. So that night when we got back to the flat I just did what we call the the 'swallow and bury technique' Pretty much I took all the blame upon myself and just let him know a few of my opinions. Well it worked but he still doesnt talk to me too much or anything and so we have just been working together. Sometimes you just got to 'let the dead bury their dead' as Jesus Christ tells us. And I know I am one to hold a grudge alot of the times and so this was a major learning experience for me.

Then we have been busy teaching people until about Wednesday when my companion starts going to the other area and another missionary with me because he was sick so the work was slow. Also me and my companion hasnt really done any planning this week because the two missionaries in the flat across from ours lost their keys and so they have been staying in our flat with us even until now. To get clothes and things they had to climb up the balcony and go in through the patio door. It crazy I am surprised we havent been arrested for burglary or anything. Friday night we went to a dinner together just as a district. We went to a Portegese resturant. It was fun but it also wasnt well planned out and so it was a little crazy but thats ok. So in the area we have been holding what is called U-nites or Cottage meetings. Its where the members gather together and hold like a big familly home evening. Well our area is divided into zones and so we are trying to get one of these u-nites started in each zone. Well we held one in zone seventeen for the first time on saturday night and it was a big sucess. We had fourteen people there total and one of them was less active and another one was an investigator. That is the biggest u-nite we have had since I have been here. Two other zones have been having u-nites and we might start combining zones soon. Well saturday morning we held a fireside at Sharpville. The mission president came and he helped us teach the people and he over saw everything. It was alot of fun I want to try to get one of those going for our area in Sebokeng.

So saturday I also recieved the news that my companion will be leaving on Tuesday. I will be getting a new companion and hopefully I will be able to implement more of the plans I see for this area. Ever since we found out my companion was leaving we have just been driving around and letting him say good bye to people. Well last night (sunday) we stopped behind a car that was turning and about two minutes later we hear this screeching and another car came and slammed into the back of our car. The only thing damaged on our car was the bike rack that holds the bikes on the back but the front of the other guy's car was demolished. (I will hopefully get pictures of this too so you can see) but the bumper was off and smashed into pieces. Glass was all over from the lights breaking and all. Well the guy was drunk and so he didnt see us apparently. But thank goodness no one was hurt and the only thing damaged on our car is the bike rack which is still usable and good. The lord was definately watching over us and that guy last night. We dont even know how the bike rack survied the impact because it was not that strong in the first place but it did. And it save us from injury as well. Well today after emailing we will be going to a zone activity where we will have a meeting and then play some sports. So that has been my week. I love all of you and thank you for the love and support you have given to me. I hope I can hear from you all soon and I promise your letters are coming soon. Love you and talk to you next week.

-Your Brother, Son, Friend and others

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, August 1, 2011

Lion Park

Hello everyone,

Sorry this is going to be a very short letter this week because I am out of time because I had to write a big presidents letter. So today I finally got my dream and I went to a lion park today. I got plenty of great pictures. I will be sending them home soon so everyone can have a look. So things are going ok. I am still trying to get on my companions good side but it just seems like no matter what I do nothing is going to help. But I wont give up something will work I just need to find out what. So this week has been pretty boring but its ok not much to write. So I am sorry I am not writing much but my time is up. I love you all and I will write more next week I promise. So keep me in your prayers and I am keeping you in mine. Talk to you soon.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Comps...hmmm...

Hello everyone,

How is the week going for you this time? This week has been a busy week for me with many different things happening lately. So the power has still been out off and on during the week and so it has made teaching some what difficult. But teaching still has been steady and going on anyways. We are also getting even more on the good side of the branch presidency. They are talking with us alot more and letting us be aware of things and they are also joking and having fun with us. They have also started giving us special work to do. They have listed some families that have less active members and that are part member families. We have went and been busy with that list. There is one less active lady that I have been working closely with because she is an older lady and she has family that wants her back so much. So the other day we invited her to an activity we were having and she came to me at the end of it and gave me a hug and said thank you. She said she wants to come back so bad she just needs the strength right now and I am helping her to get that strength back.

Now it seems like the only problems I have been having is with my companion still. This week he was yelling at me twice and he refused to work with me as well. I dont know what to do because I am just asking questions and I get yelled at and then when I dont say anything I get yelled at so right now I am at a complete loss. But time will tell. So that is my week nothing too much exciting but things are going alright. Well I will talk to everyone soon hope all is well. Have a good week.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, July 18, 2011

An up and down week

Hello everyone,

So times are going crazy. Sorry I couldnt write last week you know lots to do and so little time as I am sure all of you know. So things in ways are looking up here in Sebokeng and in some other ways its getting down. So our stats dont look as good as they did when I first came here they slowly and slowly keep going down. I am trying to keep them up but I have lots against me. I know stats dont mean much but the thing is when I see what they were at and what they can be it just bugs me too much. So one of the things that is against me alot is my companion. Well my companion is the type that is very laid back and relaxed and if things dont happen it doesnt bother him none. Instead of doing things that really help the area grow he wants to go finding at night when all gates and doors are locked and there is no way in to talk to people. I have tried to ask him questions and talk to him but I am struggling to get any response. But over time I hope things improve. Even without him I will help this area grow.

So another challenge that has came my way this week is the power or electricity. People in Sebokeng were without power for a day to two days this past week. The thing is it is winter now and so everyone is staying in doors and turning on all the heaters and all the kettles for tea and the tvs and they are using lots and lots of power and so the city turns it off for a time so they can save and well when they turn it off people cant do cooking or washing their clothes or what they need to. Most people just lived off of bread for two days straight and they were without heat so they were cold and in the dark. And as if that isnt enough the gas tankers that deliver to the gasstations to fill up are on strike. So petrol is going to be short very soon and we have been on a limit with the car we can only drive to the area park the car and walk the rest of the day until we can drive back to our flat. So we have been walking alot and its causing even more problems for everyone else. So needless to say its been a crazy week.

But on a happier note. This week we had one baptism. His name is Sipho. He is thirteen and the grandson of one of our older members. He has been coming to church for a very long time and he was excited to be baptised. Also the branch presidentcy is starting to take down notes when we missionaries talk and they ask us questions and they volenteer to come teaching with us as well. So things are looking up and things seem to be getting better. Its just like pulling teeth in other areas but hopefully soon we will be overcoming those challenges as well. Well that is all for me this week but I love you all and hope to hear from you soon.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, June 27, 2011

The land of Sebokeng

Greetings from the land of Sebokeng,

Yep that is right I am in my new area now. On Monday and Tuesday last week again I was all in tears and sorrow because I was leaving behind some more amazing people and families with the area. But now the time has come for me to open up another door in my life when on Wednesday I came here to Sebokeng. My new companion is named Elder Mponda. He is from Mosambeque and he has been here on mission for about 15 months now he said. He is a cool and very relaxed guy and I am looking forward to the time I have to spend with him in this area.

So about the area. Well yesterday at church I found out that the area has been open for eleven years and that there are over five hundred members of the church. But the thing is yesterday at chuch we only had about eighty people at church and everyone else is apparently less active. Most of the members at church are older people and there is little youth or YSA or middle aged. We are going to be trying to find younger couples, people that will be able to have the energy and strength to go about doing everything they need to.

There is a major language barrier situation too. Lots of people have very little understanding of English around here and so I am sure I will have even a bigger chance now to learn more of the language. The people are also more quiet and kept to themselves around here. Its been hard for us to get in to peoples homes to teach them and to be able to get full families baptized. There are bits and pieces of lots of families that are members but we are trying to get the rest of the family members.

So you can basically say with the old year gone the lord has given me totally opposite things for my next and last coming year on mission. The lord has given me an area with plenty of challenges but I know that with his help I will be able to help this area is some way or some form. Or who knows maybe he just sent me here for myself because there is something I need to learn not the people. But we will see what the great land of Sebokeng has in store for me in the next coming weeks.

My time is up and I have to go but I love all of you and miss you. I hope to hear from you soon and all the letters are coming soon just give me time.

From your Elder
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, June 20, 2011

Not much going on

Hello everyone,

Sorry I didn't write last week its just that not much has been going on that has been different and it just wouldn't be that interesting...So I thought anyways. So here we are in June now and it is already almost half way over. Time is just getting faster and faster everyday. I will admit that I am excited because I want to be home because I miss everyone so much but then it also kills me inside because I know how much I am going to miss these people here in Africa as well. But the lord knows what will make us stronger and what will make us what he wants to become.

So this week in study I have learned a lot. I am working on things one step at a time but I am learning so much. The more I have been on mission the more things have been making more and more sense. If I never came on mission and/or if I left early I now notice how much I would have been missing out on and it kills me to think about.

So now in my area we are teaching lots of families and there is one family who we teach its more than 10 people and plus at different houses we are teaching their cousins and parents and we are just teaching that family left and right. We are focusing on families with only some members or families in general. It has helped us a lot because right now we have about 25 people who have accepted a date to be baptized and then we have about 20 more we could put on date so we are teaching a lot of people as well.

This week we have also been talking with the Elders quorum president for help. He doesn't have any councilors and we have been getting complaints and such from the bishopric about things that we have no control over or its just things like baptizing too many and reactivating too little but that is our purpose and so we have been working with him so we can give support to each other. We are coming up with many plans to help the area grow and progress.

But it is sad because next week Wednesday I could be leaving for another area. It is a big possibility because at most missionaries stay in the area longest for six months well I have been there for six months now and so it is a big big big possibility that I will be going sadly. It always seems to happen that right when things start going the way they should and things start picking up that is when you get moved. But that is ok I will take what I have learned in this area and use it in my next area as well. I am going to miss people here too much especially the families I have taught.

Well that is my week so not too much new but I will write more next week because my time is up. Hope all is well and I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks to Grandma and Cassi and Aunt Tammy for their letters they have sent me.

From the Elder who's name is growing,
Elder Aaron Giles Pule Nkanyso Lindsay
(Pule is Tswana meaning rain and Nkanyso is Zulu meaning Light)

Heading to a new place

Hello Everyone,

How is everyone doing? I think the mail system has come to a stand still I havent been getting any letters anymore. But thats ok it just shows everyone is being busy so no worries. So this week was my last full week in the great land of Dobsonville. I am going to be moved to another area on Wednesday and I only find out where they will be sending me on that day when its time for me to go there. I am excited to leave but I am also sad as well because I get to see more of Africa but then I also will miss the people too much. I have had the opportunity to visit with some people from Khutsong my last area this week and it got me missing those people too much as well. But I know that where ever I go I will have the Lord with me and I will love the area as well. Some how some way I will even get back to my areas and see everyone again.

So this week has just been pretty basic. I even started saying good bye to some people. We have been holding family home evenings with two of our convert families together every monday night. That has been alot of fun and the families seem to be enjoying it as well. We also have been teaching a good family. They are great. They had lots of problems and challenges when we first came but from what the mother said things have been getting better since we have been coming. She says they havent been fighting as much and their house is now a place of peace.

We have also been teaching a married couple with the seinor couple the Watts. They are progressing so well and doing good. The only problem and challenge that we have had with them is that the husband is a security gaurd at the MTC and so he cant get off in order to come inside church even for an hour but we are working with them and they are both very excited to be baptized.

Then there is another family who all are baptized except for the father but then he wants to be but the only problem with him is that him and his wife are not officially married and so by baptism requirements they have to get married where they are living together. They are making plans and they are working on it and sometime this year they will be able to be counted as husband and wife and he will be able to be baptized.

One of our recent converts has been having alot of challenges as well. She was baptized and then her husband started bringing up all these concerns and problems he has with the church and they started fighting and I guess it has been getting physical and she has said she has even thought about killing him a few times as well. But me and my companion went to her and talked with her and now she is fine.

Then on saturday we attended a funeral for someone in our ward and it was a hugh turn out. There was chairs clear back to the stage but and there still wasnt enough chairs. People were standing up and all around. Then after the funeral MTC missionaries came and we showed them all around. Then after that we had an elders quorum activity. We baked and just spent time with the Elders Quorum. It was fun.

Well that was my whole week. Its been good and its been different in ways. Well next time I write I will be in a different area and I will be having more stories to tell. I love all of you and I miss you much. I hope all is well and I will talk to you soon.

From
Elder Aaron Giles Pule Nkanyso Lindsay

Monday, May 30, 2011

Meeting new families

Hello everyone,

So I cant believe that another week has come and gone the weeks are just getting faster and faster everyday. So this week has been a better week but still with its usual ups and downs. I have had some chances to run the area and to be able to see what I can do when I lead. So things are going good but they could also have room for improvement like anything else right.

So on Mondays we have been playing soccer alot again and just relaxing. Then on Tuesday it was a crazy day of finding people. We had a person stop us on the street and ask us to come and then we contacted a person in a park. But the one that stands out to me the most is me and my companion were late to meet the other missionaries but then we were walking past a house when my companion stopped walking and just said we should try talking to the people at that house because he just had a feeling he needed to go there. Well we went and now we are teaching the family from it. There is a mother and father and 4 kids. So we are going to be helping them now and helping them learn as well. The mother says she wants change in her life and so we are going to be helping alot I hope. Our stats havent been the best as they have been this week because me and my companion took it easier than normal because of the "cold" Apparently everyone is very cold but it feels like spring to me. Some mornings are pretty cold though but it warms up towards the middle of the day. Yesterday it was a good day. So on thursday me and elder zuma went to Henry and his wife to prepare them to be confirmed and he owns a diamond business and he has been struggling for business. He told me and Zuma that if someone was to offer him a 20 karat diamond on sunday he wouldnt take it because he had to be at church. When he walked in on Sunday I asked him how that 20 karat diamond was and he just laughed and gave me a hug and said it means nothing to me. So we had four of the six confirmed and then the other two will be next week because they were at a family activity. Then last night we had testimony meeting at watts (a senior couple) I bore my testimony and people were telling me it was so strong and it helped them so much and I was just like ok whatever? like normal I dont understand or see the big deal but ok sure. The spirit was so strong I really enjoyed it. So me and my companion are planning on new improvements and things to help this area grow I will write about them next week but for now I am out of time so I got to go. Have a good week everyone. Love you mean it.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A tough week

Hello everyone,

So another week has came and gone and things are staying pretty much the same all around. So this week has been one of the tougher weeks because I have had alot on my mind and things just seemed to be going against me at all times and at all places. So this week me and my companion went on splits alot this week and it seems like everyone that I went to was never home or they just canceled. It was a crazy week to try and teach. There was elections here going on this week and so that effected alot of it. People are just to egar to vote and then partying afterwards and then being upset when their party didnt win and so on and so on.

So on friday we had seven people interviewed for baptism and only six of them passed but that is ok. We completed the Diseko family now and they are going to start working towards going to the temple together as a family and then we baptised another couple who were eager and then another little brother of a member and then we baptised a mother of a family (she is the only member now but planning on working with the husband soon).

So yesterday gettng these baptisms ready it was very challenging lots of different complications came up from the water to family members. But in the end all six of them were baptised and were as happy as could be. It was a great experience.
So not much going on this week that I can mention because I would just be complaining mostly all the time. But I can honestly say this though. The lord has strengthened me in so many ways I never thought even possible this week and I am so grateful. I am growing stronger and stronger each day and I plan on staying so.

I love you all and miss you so much I hope all goes well for you all.

-Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, May 16, 2011

Elder PULE...gets arrested?

Hello everyone,

So last week I promised you a more interesting letter this week and you will have one.

So last week after we got done emailing we went to the Apartheid Museum. Its a museum here in south africa talking about the racism and the fighting and all the protests and everything going on about it. It was very interesting but sad at the same time seeing everything. I was also kind of disappointed because we kind of had to rush through the museum but thats ok I still learned alot. There was one part in the museum where it talked about 'What was going on in the rest of the world' and it was interesting to see at the exact same time that is when martin luther king was doing his protests in the untied states and there was fighting for black freedom all over the world at that same time.

This week we have had lots and lots of appointments. We had to go on lots of splits (my companion goes with one ward missionary and me with another) to teach everybody. And its going to be that way again. We almost already have a full week planned from last week saturday and so I dont know what we are going to do because we have to see people at least twice a week but there is no way it can happen this week so I just pray the lord will be with us so we can get things done.
So this next week alot is going to be going on. Transfers is this week and Im not going anywhere me and my companion are staying together. Then we are preparing 7 people for baptism. It was suppose to be more but obviously there is always going to be complications when it comes to baptisms. We have a husband and wife couple named Henry and Dineo, then we have a young brother of a member named Shandu, Then we have two mothers Shibei and Sis. Mtetwaa and then we have the diseko mother and youngest daughter. So things are going well. All these people have made sacrifices in their lives and I have seen things changing for them.

So the most interesting thing to happen last week was this: I almost got arrested. Here in these areas they do road blocks and check peoples cars occasionally. Well I was driving me and my companion and a ward missionary when I got pulled over in one of these road blocks. The officer asks me to get out of the car and to open the boot (the trunk). So I do so. Well nothing was in there and so then he asked me for my licence. He saw that it was from Utah and he said I couldnt use that one but then I showed him the letter from the government saying I could. And so after that he asked to see my passport and I told him I had a copy of it but he said that I couldnt use a copy I had to have the real actual passport. I told him about the office copying it and keeping it for me so I dont lose it and he said he would have to arrest me for not having the real one on me. He started calling the other cops over so they could put me in a car when my companion got out of our car. Well my companion came over and just then the cop said it was fine that I could use the copy version. So if it wasnt for my companion getting out of the car to check on things I would have been in trouble. But then my companion said that the officer was asking him for cool drink (soda) afterwards. So my companion is just thinking that he was just doing that to scare me into giving him something. Its crazy I guess that happens alot cops pull you over and they come up with any excuss then they ask you for something or they will have to arrest you or give you a ticket. But anyways I am fine.

So that was my week and a little about the week to come. I hope all is well with everyone and I hope this week was a little more interesting than other. Its going to be a rough but rewarding week I am sure but with the lord on my side all things are possible. I love you all and thank you so much for your support. I hope to hear from you all soon. Keep smiling.

-Elder Aaron Giles Pule Lindsay

PS: A family gave me the tswana name PULE (pu-leah) It means rain. They gave it to me because I always brought the rain with me

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Short but sweet

Hello everyone,

So another week has come and gone and yet nothing much has been happening lately. So I am happy to say that the stats have gone up some what but the thing is its just the same old thing lately. But hopefully this week will spice things up a bit. So far I got to talk to my family and Emily on Sunday and then I got to go to zone confrence yesterday and now today is P-day and so far this week is pretty different but because of the differences the stats will suffer as well but thats ok we will do the best with what we work with. So this week is also the last full week of transfers and so that means I could be leaving in exactly a week from today. Its going to be interesting to see what will happen.

So I know that this is another short letter and I am sorry its just that nothing is happening alot lately and that I am short on time. But next week I should hopefully have more exciting stories to tell. I will let you know as soon as I know.

I love you all so very much.
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, May 2, 2011

Getting back Dobsonville

Hello everyone its me again,

So I just want to start out by saying I am sorry for not sending a letter last week its just that the internet was sooooooo slow I barely was able to read everyone's messages they sent me. It was a pretty uneventful week anyways and this week is really no better. Since transfers our stats have been going down...and down and down some more. I know this is just a time that the devil is trying to get to me. I feel like I am working the hardest I ever have and yet my stats show nothing for it. But that is ok because numbers dont mean everything right?

So the only "Eventful" thing that has happened this week is that I had to go to the doctors. I was having some pains in my stomach and back and then I would get nausea alot. Well when I first went everyone thought it was my appendix but when they took a blood test they found out it was actually a infection in my digestive system. They now have me on antibotics that I have to take every morning and night after eating and trust me they taste AWFUL!!! Then again what medication tastes good right. But I am feeling loads better now and so hopefully I will be able to work more effectively than this past week and I will be able to bring more souls unto christ.

So this week me and my companion have discussing alot of deep things. I wont mention them because I dont want to confuse everyone else. But I have been learning alot which is always a good experience. I also got a big envelope from my family with my sisters wedding announcement and with cards from all the kids at my Dan Peterson class. I miss them all so much I think of them every single day and just hope and pray that they are all doing well. So that is pretty much for me. Me and my companion have set some high goals this week so I am hoping that will bring things back up to a rising and then we can start getting our Dobsonville back to the way it was before.

Again I love you all so very much and miss you as well. I hope I can keep hearing from all of you I want to hear from you as much as possible. And please forgive me in being slow to reply. Thank you for all that you do for me and I look forward to speaking to my family this week. Hope you are all well.

Sala Khahle (Good bye),

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, April 18, 2011

Happy Conference and Easter

Dumalang everyone,

How is everyone doing? I hope this week has been filled with joy and with happiness. I know that there has been some trials and struggles with some of you if not all of you but keep your faith and do what you know is right and stand strong. Always remember what Gordon B. Hinkley said; "The greatest heights someone ever reached was on their knees, So do all you can stand and then kneel." I have seen the blessings so much from my life in the past few weeks. I have struggled the past few weeks but the more I went to our father in heaven with prayer and the more I put my cares and faith in him the more the burdens became light. Like it says in Alma "and the lord softened their burdens and they became light" Just remember the lord is always there for us no matter in what we do or in what we say he will never give up on us.

So this week has been an exciting week. On Monday after emailing and shopping we went back to the flat (our apartment) and did major cleaning. We cleaned the flat so much not even the dust wanted to fall on the clean surfaces...ok maybe not but still its the thought that counts right. Then on Tuesday we had our presidents interviews and we got to be able visit with him and receive more council from him. Our president is leaving in July and it will be sad to see him go. He has done so much for us and for this mission but he will always be around in spirit and in our prayers.

Then on Friday we went to the temple again. We were suppose to be there at eight but we got there a little bit late because of construction and traffic and so we went to the nine o'clock session and afterwards we also got to watch a few baptisms for the dead performed. It was an amazing experience and it came at the right time. I needed the spiritual boost that comes from feeling the lords spirit and feeling like you are in his pressence. It was great I will never forget it as long as I live on this earth and in the life after.

So this weekend we also had the amazing oppertunity to be able to watch confrence. It was interesting though because it is April and I still saw snow on the trees and on the ground when they showed outside the temple...whats with that huh? People even say the weather is odd around here because its cold and rainy at the same time but I guess its suppose to be cold and dry. But anyways it was a great experience to hear the prophet and the apostles speaking to us. It also gave me the spiritual boost that I needed. I learned alot from confrence and I cant wait until the Liahona magazines come out so that I can read the messages and reteach myself what was taught. I am so grateful for the current prophet today to be able to give us more of the Lords words and direction.

So this week has had its challenges with things but for the most part it was all better with being able to feel the spirit with me all weekend. It was a great experience and I hope I can keep having more like it. So now that Easter is coming up I hope all of you will take this time to remember our savior and the sacrifice he did for us that through him we can all be forgiven and have eterenal life. I would just like to end by saying that I know this church is true and that Joesph Smith was a true prophet. I know that Thomas S Monson leads and guides the church today and that we all will get closer to Christ by listening to his words. I am grateful for this oppertunity that I have to be a tool in the hands of the Lord. There is nothing in the world I would rather be doing at this time because all the other things will just fall into place.

I love you all and I hope things are going well for you and that you can keep the lord in your thoughts and hearts at all times. I hope to hear from you all soon.

Your Friend, Brother, Son and Other,
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, April 11, 2011

"New Companion"

Hello again everybody,

So this week has been full of new and exciting things happening. So as I told you last week it was transfers. Well we went to transfers like normal and to my surprise my "new companion" is elder Ndlovu. He is the one that came to be my companion in Khutsong after my second companion had to be Emergency Transfered out. So we have worked together before and now we are working together again. We have had our ups and our downs like any other companionship but we are working closely together and trying to get used to each others ideas and personalities and so things are going fine for now. Only going to go up from here.

So this week we also had 7 more baptisms. We had the Dibetsoe family (a father, mother, and two kids), Then we also had Sbongile, Lucinda, and Stpetso. It was a great experience. I also had the oppertunity to put all of them in the waters and so I got more practice. I am so greatful for the oppertunity to serve and be here in South Africa.

My time is very short today and I appologies for writing such a small letter but time is not on my side today. I tried finding a talk and now most of my time is up. Thank you all for the love and support you give me and I thank you for all you do for me. I love you all very much and I hope to hear from you all soon.

Until Next Week
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, April 4, 2011

More baptisms

Hello Everyone,

You know I just got thinking maybe I should start my letters another way.... It kind of gets repetitive all the time and its not fun to read the same thing over and over even if it is just a little bit but we will see what happens. So this week has had its high and its lows like any other week. So this week me and my companion have been working so hard to find members to work with and to get the investigators more friendship and support in the area. So this week we have had higher stats than normal. We have 29 people that have a baptism goal to be baptized, we had 18 at sacrament meeting and we had like 11 or so new investigators for the week. So things are going good.

So a few things that me and my companion noticed and that we are trying to work on is that when we went through all of our investigators we realized all the ones that were progressing very well and keeping the commitments that we were giving them is the people that had friends or family in the church. And those are also the people that were referrals for us and not finding on our own efforts. So that is why we started getting other members to go with us and hopefully it will start going up. We also realized that missionaries tend to put their focus on in the wrong places. So one thing that me and my companion have tried doing that is working so well is that we focus on the people who are keeping commitments and we fully focus on them and then we rotate. If the people are not just progressing and now keeping commitments or few then we take them off baptism date and we dont focus too much on them. We dont drop them completely but we just go by once and a while and check up on them.
So those are things that have helped me and my companion alot. Its sad because this whole time we have struggled to be on the same page as each other and now that we are working the best together and other missionaries are asking us what we are doing that is when he gets transfered. So tomorrow my companion is leaving and I will be getting a new one. I am sad about that because he has been the best companion I have had since I have been out here in the field. He has taught me so much and we have learned and grown together. I wish him all the luck in the world.

This transfer they are reopening up several areas that have been closed due to no progression or just short numbers of missionaries. Two are leaving and 12 are coming in so things are looking up. Elder Chaka the other elder in the flat is leaving to open up an area and my companion is leaving to open up a new zone. They made the new zone because they just reacently made a new stake. This area is really growing and progressing and it just gets bigger and bigger each day. And its a wonderful feeling to know that I am part of the Lords work.

This next coming Sunday we could be having 8 more baptisms. I am crossing my fingers. What has happened is that we have had people just introduced to us the past couple of weeks that are just so ready for the gospel. We go teaching to them and they just know the information. Its a great feeling that I am the link the lord uses to help these people come unto Christ. I mean these people have been coming to church for the longest time (well most of them not all), and they just didnt know how to become a full member. And now through their faith and hard works they will be entering into the waters of baptism and making those promises to God and themselves. Some people say it doesn't bring as much happiness to baptize people that just come without little teaching but honestly for me those are the experiences that build my faith. I see how much those people believe and want to be part of this gospel and it shows me exactly how I need to be. I am grateful for every single baptism that I have ever had the chance to whitness and I wont look down on them. Because I know its the Holy Ghost that is making me a tool in the Lords hands in helping these people.

So to close Im just going to say I am jealous of everyone. I didnt get the oppertunity to watch confrence this past weekend and I heard it was very nice. I heard there is lots that I will be able to learn from it so I am so excited. I get to watch in on April 16 and 17. Im even more excited for the Liahonas and Ensigns to come out so I can reread and really disolve what the prophet and the apostles are saying to me. I love this time of the year so much its great.

Well I will be writing next week and I will give you an update on how everything is going with me and my new companion. I love you all so very much and thank you for your support. Hope to hear from you soon.

-Your friend, Son and Brother,
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, March 28, 2011

Rainin' on the Missionaries

Hello everyone,

How is everybody doing? Thank you so much for the love and support that you all are giving to me. So I got some more letters this week from Trent and Kiaya (or was that one last week...? time goes too fast I am telling you). So its been a more challenging week this time but that is ok that is how the lord makes us stronger to do his work. There is a quote off of the joesph smith movie that I like it says "The lord calls us in our weakness but he qualifies us for his work." It is so true. The lord plays with our challenges but before we even realize it those weaknesses are made strong.

So me and my companion were walking most of this week again. We only have the car on Wednesdays and Fridays. And this week it has been raining ALOT! but that is ok because apparently from what the other missionaries say is that the more that we get rained on as missionaries the more beautiful our wives will be. So with one of the other missionaries I told that to he just stopped walking and said "Well by all means lets just take our time" Haha.

So yesterday we had six of the baptisms that we were hoping for. There was two older ones but the other four were young ones but that is ok because also as joesph smith says "Every soul is precious in the eyes of our lord". We were suppose to have eight but then we had a mother and a daughter of a family who are members but when we were coming up with the program for them on saturday night the family brought up concerns whether or not the mother should be baptised. There are some problems with the mother mentally I guess that they really havent opened up to us totally before now. So for now the mother and daughter are going to wait. But that is ok because we are working closely with the family and them and also President Poulsen. Eventually all will work out and the family will be able to be together all as one instead of all of them going seperate situations.

So also this week we have had people just kind of drop off the possibilities I guess you can say. Because some of them are having family problems and others are having problems that they dont want to bring up and not willing to change anymore. So this week has just been a more difficult week. But it was also a good week dont get me wrong. I will always love this week and every week of my mission because I will always be learning something.

So you know how fast time goes? This transfer (six weeks) is already over. This saturday we are recieving news whether or not we will be staying in the area or if we will be going to another area or what new callings are and all of that. It seems like only yesterday that this transfer started and now its already over. Time only gets faster and faster I dont know what to do.

Well I got to get going but I love all of you and again I thank all of you for your support. I will write more of our progress and all that is happening in the area next week but for now the internet is slow so I dont have much time. Keep the lord close and nothing will stop you.

-Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, March 21, 2011

Mission stories

Hello everyone,

How is everyone doing? I hope all is well in all places around the world. I have been getting some letters from people and my birthday package from my family. Thank you so much everyone for the letters, fruit snacks, chips, m&ms, Reeses, Camera chips, yoda pez, the tie, and most especially the cake mix. All the missionaries have been enjoying the goodies as well not just me so they say thank you as well. I was so excited to read and look at the pictures from the kids at dan petersons I almost started crying. I miss my kids so much.

So this has been a good week. We have been keeping busy and there have been its struggles trying to keep us from working like rain and unplanned car problems like tires and unplanned meetings. But over all everything is good. Yes there has been challenges but that is how the lord works to help us build our faith in him.
So I got some great stories to tell this week. So first is about a guy named Earnest. Well one day me and my companion get a referal from the missionaries in Krugersdorp (another area), and we went to see him. When we got sitting down he pulls out a stack of books of; a few book of mormons, doctorine and covenants and pearl of great price, teachings of brigham young, and our heritage and some other books. Well we asked him how he came to have all these books and he said he was walking one day and he walked past a garbage bin with all these books and he just decided they were perfectly good books he would just take them and read them. Well he read the book of mormon and some of the other books all the way through and he knew that they were true and fell in love with them. well in front of one of the book of mormons was the phone number for the missionaries in Krugersdorp and he calls them and they refer him to us. Well now he is on baptism date and we are teaching him and his whole family.

So that is story number one now for number two. Last week me and my companion went on exchanges with the zone leaders. I was with elder Oliage in the Florida (not USA) area. We were tracting and we were going down one road when he said he wanted to turn around and go down the other side. But as we were turning I saw someone at a house on the corner and I told Oliage that we should go try them. Well we went and we knocked and it sounded like they were angry when they told us to go to the back door. But we still went and the father tells us to come in and sit down. Apparently him and his wife had just barely been fighting over which church to go to. Well just a little time before we came another person came by and gave them a pamphlet and just left so they didnt think much about it. Well when we came we sat down and talked with them and taught them lesson one (the restoration). Well they loved the lesson so much that we were able to put them on date for April. Well apparently they have been coming to church and have just fallen in love with it. And Elder Oliage just told me yesterday that the bishop in that ward met the family yesterday and moved up their baptism to this coming sunday! And the family is so excited and working hard for that day.

These stories just show a few of the many different ways in which the lord works to prepare his children for his gospel. These things have strengthened my testimony of this work so much and its just a few of the amazing stories I have whitnessed while I have been here on my mission. I am so grateful I decided to come and there is nothing I would exchange for this experience. I am absolutely in love with my mission and I am going to be heart broken when I have to leave. I already almost cry just thinking about and I have over a year left. I hope my family doesnt take this the wrong way but I dont want to go back home but I do at the same time. Im being torn into two different pieces. A part of me will always be here in south africa and I will never be able to recover that part after I leave.

I thank the lord for this experience he has given me and I thank all of you for your love and support. I love each and everyone of you and I hope you are doing well. I miss you and pray for you always. Stay true through the thick and thin of things.

Love you.
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

"The sweet caress, the twilight, theirs MAGIC everywhere"
-Timon (Lion King)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Out of Time

Aaron ran out of time this morning and so he wasn't able to write a blog letter. However, our stake asked him to write a letter for a missionary activity they are doing. He asked us to post that letter, so everyone at least has something to read.

Dumalang (Greetings),
So I heard that you are all having the stake MTC. I am so jealous. I remember my experience with the stake mtc and it was AMAZING. I will tell you that before I attended there I had no desires to go on a mission. When I first heard about it I just wanted to go to give me something to do over the weekend. But the thing is I went and I had an open mind to all the things the people were teaching me. And that is what made all the difference. Because I went with an open mind the spirit was able to work within me and was able to tell me the things that I needed to do, which was to prepare myself to go on a mission. Well the sunday after I surprised my family and everyone else when I mentioned in testimony meeting at church that I was planning on going on a mission someday.
Well let me just tell you that I have never regreted the decision that I made in order to come. So here in the great land of South Africa there have been many ups and downs. I wont lie to you and say its all fun and games. But it is an amazing experience and you will never regret the decision to go and serve the lord for two years. I have many trials where the devil has tried to get a hold of me and I will admit I have almost given in a few times but as long as I hold strong and keep to what the lord wants me to do that is when I get all the difference and that is when all the many blessings will come.
So maybe none if not a few of you could be called to the same mission as me. But I have kept in contact with some close friends I made from the MTC and they all say the same things about their missions as well. You may not be like me and have to eat chicken feet and heads and cow intestines and many other exciting things and you might not have to adapt to 12 other languages. But I promise you as you go on your missions it will be the most exciting and rewarding time of your lives.
I am so happy that you all have decided to put the trust in the lord and to prepare yourselves for his work. Keep strong and keep the basics of reading, praying and attending church. If you do those simple basics I promise you that you cant go wrong. You all are in my prayers with my friends and family. I wish you all the best.
Salasentle (Farewell),
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay
Johannesburg South Africa Mission

Monday, March 7, 2011

Visit to the temple

Hello everyone,
So just to start out I would like to say that I am sorry if everyone doesnt get a reply from me this week with their emails its just that I am so busy sending pictures for people and such. Its great to hear from everyone though. This week I got a letter from my sister Heidi with pictures. And I also got a letter and pictures from Emily as well. Thank you both so much.

So this week has been a stressful hard week because trying to balance alot of different things at once but that is ok. The missionary who broke his collar bone is still away from the area so we have been working in two areas sort of. Hopefully he will be able to come back to the area soon. So a few amazing things happened this week though. I was able to attend the temple on friday and it was AMAZING! It gave me the spiritual boost I needed and the temple it self is so beautiful. The surrounding areas of the temple are amazing as well. Pictures will be coming soon. Then the other thing that was great is that this weekend it was stake confrence and Solly (a branch missionary from Khutsong my last area) came to visit me. IT WAS AMAZING AGAIN! I got to ask him lots of questions about the area and I learned alot. There was some good but also some bad. It makes me wish I could go back all the more. But its great to know how everyone is doing though. So other than that it has been a typical week. We are keeping very busy and just cant get enough of the work. Thank you everyone for the love and support you give me and thank you for your prayers. I love you all and I hope all will be well with you this coming week.

Love you all.
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, February 28, 2011

The work is moving along!

Hello everyone how is it going,

So this week has been full of great times and challenging times as well. So this sunday was the only day that wasnt like the rest. So the three people that were baptised last week were confirmed this week. Then we also had three more baptised this week as well. So this has been so great because we have had lots of people talk to us saying they wanted the missionaries to come talk with them and then we also built up our teaching pool alot. We had 22 investigators at sacrament meeting and we have 25 on date. There is over 13 for march and there could be some more possibilities. March and April are looking like they are going to be very big weeks. Then just this morning me and my companion didnt go to soccer but we were waiting for the other two to return to our flat when another missionary came and told us that one of them broke there shoulder. We went and visited him in the hospital and he is going to need surgery today and wont get back until tomorrow because he landed on his shoulder so hard. Its crazy so right now our minds are in multiple places at once but all is going well except for him. And its his first week in the area so its a welcome to the area present I guess. Well my time is up and I will write more next week I promise Im just short on time for now. I love all of you and thank you for your support. I got a letter from Linda this week and I thank her so much. I hight appreciate your time and I love you so much. I love all of you and hope all is well. Keep in touch.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, February 21, 2011

Lovin' the great land of Africa

Hello everyone from the great land of Africa,

So it sounds like alot has been going on at home lately and Im missing out on a bunch of great and exciting things. But that is ok I have got some fun things here on my own side. But first I would like to thank Mona and Laurel because I got letters from both of them this week. and I also replied so they better be watching for them haha. Thank you everyone for your love and support you are giving me. Trust me it helps alot. So If I havent got your letter yet dont panic because sometimes mail is slow around here haha.

Alright lets start with my week. So to start out I found out this past week sister Nkambisa (a member in Khutsong my first area) Had her baby! I was so excited to hear that and so me and Elder rand called her to tell her congratulations. So its a boy. and they said (I dont know if its true or just playing with me) that they gave him Aaron as a middle name to name him after me. IM STAYING IN AFRICA haha. Just kind of cool to think that I might have had that big of an impact on that family's life.

Then this week we also did some exchanges for baptism interviews. All went well. We had 3 more people baptised this week. We had Brother Diseko who his kids are members and the missionaries have been working with him almost a year, then we had Agnes a grandmother to another one of our members and then we had Sipho who is a great guy who has a little daughter. So it was a good turn out for the baptisms this week.

Also transfers end tomorrow. We got the news and I am staying in my area with my companion for another transfer. But the thing is it just seems like this transfer just started its crazy. But that is ok. Its kind of sad though how fast my mission is going. It needs to slow down some. So Elder Ssempala (another missionary who stays in the same flat) is leaving tomorrow. Im going to miss him so much.He has helped me through so many of the hard times and would be a friend to me when it seemed like no one else was there. We will keep in touch though for sure.

So other than these things the week has been a pretty normal week. Yesterday at testimony meeting (for the missionaries in the area) the spirit was so strong. It reminded me of the times when I would go to camp with the others in my ward and we would do stick on the fire. I loved that feeling and it was great to feel it again. I know that I am doing what I am suppose to. There are definately some ways that I can improve the work that I am doing but I am willing to adapt. So all is well this week. There isnt much to say but there are some cool experiences. I love my mission Im glad I came.

I love all of you and hope all is well keep in touch.

-Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Pictures!

























Monday, February 14, 2011

Same old, same old.

Hello everyone,

So how is everyone doing today or this week or whatever you want to call it?, So I know I have been promising for the longest time to write a longer letter to be on my blog but honestly lately everything is in the same routine and same old same old that Im sure everyone gets tired of reading the same thing over and over. And plus this week has not been very eventful. We have had a very slow week with not much going on. We would go to a few appointments and then we would try and go see the people who cancelled. The work has been lower than usual this week but hopefully this next week things are going to pick up.

So yeah everything is pretty much the same Im sorry not much fun reading today I know Im getting dull Im sorry. I PROMSE FOR SURE IT WILL BE BETTER NEXT WEEK! If not everyone will just have to fly to africa to hit me (haha dont I wish).
Well I love everyone and you are all in my prayers I hope everything is going fine for you.

-Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, February 7, 2011

Letters on their way

Hello Everyone,

So this time it is another month that has passed. So this week I have to be very short and brief because I dont have much time. But all of you will be glad to hear I have started sending out letters so keep an eye out for the responses to all the letters you have written to me. So this week has been a good week and its been challenging as well. But the thing is things are starting to get very better. Me and my companion are talking more. Not so much about the area right now but hey we are getting some where. Then we also had zone confrence on tuesday adn so that was very insightful and it taught us lots of new things. So other than that the week has been pretty much normal. Im sorry this is such a short letter but I have to get going. I love you all and hope all is well with you.

Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay

Monday, January 31, 2011

I will make weak things become strong.

Hello everyone.

So yet again another week has come and gone and it only seems like it started. Its true what they say by time passing you by. Well this week has really been no different from the other weeks. We have some elders with us that were working in botswana but they got kicked out because of visa problems and that sort of thing. So we find out today what is going on with them. They could be going back or they could be staying here.

So this week we also had a baptism (the first in this area for me). It was great. The guy's name is Kagiso. He is almost fifteen and he has an amazing testimony. As soon as he passed his interview he took his mom out and they bought clothes for him for his baptism and after.Its great to see the faith and devotion in people. Hopefully soon we will be able to start teaching his mom. She says she is interested its just that she is very busy at this time.

Well since we have the botswana elders with us this week we have been doing lots of splits and threesome teaching. Its been hectic trying to keep our schedules straight and everything since we double up on appointments when we are on splits. But hopefully things will start settling down so me and my companion can start focusing on things and putting them into play for the area. I have lots of ideas to help this area but the thing is I need the help of my companion and he doesnt even like listening to me right now. So we are working on our communication and listening. Hopefully soon things will start to look up. So this transfer is already halfway over. I cant believe it. Im telling you all is going too fast.

So the past few days my companion has got me missing home (even not meaning to). But he bought a dvd player and he has been playing his cds on it and some of the songs really hit home. So the first one is "I am the greatest" by kenny rogers. Everytime I hear that song I think of my mom and how much she love kenny rogers. Then the next song is "God bless the USA". Now this one hits home in a few different ways. First it makes me think of home in the USA and then it also makes me start thinking about camp and the Garrison flag. I picture the slide show and all everytime I hear it. Then the last song is "In this very room" its a song that we sang with the kids in special needs mutual. It got me missing those kids and the kids I taught at dan petersons. All will be well its just things that satan is putting into my mind to make me want to quit. But I can promise you I will get over it.

So anyways that has been my week. I thank Laurel and Tebogo for their letters. I have started replying to everyone so everyone start looking for replies to their letters they have sent (especially emily who has sent me over eight and I havent replied to like four). I love all of you and thank you for your support. Please be patient with me with doing all the things you are asking me and writing me. I love you all very much and I hope we can all feel like we are together even though we are so far apart.

Remember that the church is true. I know it is or I wouldnt be here right now. I know that all these challenges that the lord is giving me are going to make me a stronger person. "I will make weak things become strong" I know that this statement is true and I invite everyone to remember it when they face challenges. We are all human and we all make mistakes. Its all about what we do when we make those mistakes that counts. I know that the church is led by a true current prophet today. We have been listening to some of his talks the past week and they just remind me how much love I have for him and how much love he has for all of us. I know that Jesus is the Christ and that he died for each of us and we cant do anything but through him. That is the only true happienss. I know I am here for a purpose and I will not back down until I find all I need to do and accomplish it.

Again I love all of you very much and miss you. You all are in my prayers.

Your Friend, Brother, Son, Etc
Elder Aaron Giles Lindsay
 
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