I know I am super late in posting this and have now combined a few weeks of information into this one post and the post titled 31 but those of you who know me know that I do not procrastinate but I do prioritize and blogging seemed to be low on my priority list this week. Alas, I have been sick again but at least I now know why I have been under the weather—I’ve had an ear infection brewing for over a month and last week it came to a head…well, inside my head that is. It seems this infection was internal and was causing my eardrum to bulge. And, I must add, it felt like it as well. I would have sworn someone was inflating a balloon inside my head. The pressure kept building until I couldn’t stand the pain running from the top of my cheek bone down to my jaw bone so I went to the Drs. on Friday and after 4 prescriptions I am starting to see my way clear and to de-inflate that pesky balloon.
But, I couldn’t put this to press without telling you of the miracle I witnessed today…or at least the end of the miracle begun in the preceding chapter. When I say end, I don’t really mean end as it is really just the beginning.
Here goes—be prepared as it is lengthy and amazing all at the same time. The young woman who approached ES when he was leaving Calisto’s house last week had invited the missionaries over to their house and they went without us on Tuesday while we visited with the Bethels and the Weitsz in Sabie and discovered that the “group” isn’t so much a group as it is a family. The Masinger family consisting of Dad, Mom, 4 daughters and one son. Dad was at work when they went there but he called the Jrs. on the phone and told them he was happy to have them in his home to teach and looked forward to meeting with them as well.
Well, we were pretty happy to hear about this family but when the Jrs. told us of the next scheduled appointment we reminded them that we couldn’t go again because it conflicted with Seminary as it was at 12 on Saturday which is when Seminary ends…or there about and remember Lydenburg is about 2 hours away. We were both saddened by the news. But, as the week progressed and I got sicker we decided it was probably for the best.
But, on Saturday, as I was already feeling better, ES and I decided that after Seminary we would drive out and show Christine (Calisto’s wife) the video, “Families Can Be Together Forever.” When we had almost arrived at Lydenburg, ES called the Jrs. to see where they were and they were at the Masinger home which was just down the block from Calisto and Christine’s. So, we drove there just in time for the end of the lesson. After all the introductions were made, ES asked if they would like to see the video too. They said they did. It is really long for a missionary video but it held there attention and even made me cry a bit. It really made me miss my children and grandchildren… Oh well.
At this point, I think I will introduce the family. Evelyn is the Mom. Peace is the oldest daughter coming in at 20. Pearl is next and I believe about 17. Syabongna is the son and is 15, then there are two younger daughters whose names escape me but they are 7 and 6. Syabongna, which means “thank you” plays the keyboard for his sisters who sing amazingly.
Well, after the video, ES asked the family, one by one, what they thought of the video and Peace said, “I am at a loss for words. I am so excited that you have come into my life and the lives of my family. I believe we have found what we have been searching for.” Each person said something similar. Mom, Evelyn, added. “I have prayed for this all my life.”
The Holy Ghost was so strong in this humble room of cinder block and exposed beam ceiling while we sat on borrowed chairs testifying to each other about the truth of the gospel that you could almost reach out and touch Him. Then the girls sang while Syabongna played the beautiful accompaniment. Joy filled my heart as I saw the Savior and the important role he has played in this families lives.
But, before I leave this family, I must add a few details. As I walked into the room for the first time in my life, I was greeted by each person in the traditional African handshake but then Peace hugged me and said, “I love you already for bringing the truth into my life.”
So, ES asked Peace to tell the enlarged story of how we came to be there and what happened the day she approached ES. It seems that she was in the house studying with her sister when this restlessness overcame her. She said to Pearl, “I have to get out of here. Come with me to the shop to buy a soda.”
To get to the Tuck Shop (which is a weird version of NY’s bodegas and a super small 7-11) they had to pass Calisto’s. They first noticed the nice car parked in front of his house and wondered why a car with license plates from the Joburg area would be there but then walked on past toward the tuck shop. (All license plates have the Provence initials on the plates similar to our State designations.) On the way back with their sodas the girls were passing just as the Elders were leaving Calisto and Christine’s and a voice said, “go ask the old man to teach you.” She stopped for a second and notice the “old man” and the young men. She thought they were selling something or arranging for something so she said something to her sister about what she had heard but Pearl was more afraid than Peace was so they kept walking toward home. Peace however, was bothered by her choice to walk by so she stopped and the voice said, “Do not be afraid. Go and ask them to teach you.”
Telling her sister only made Pearl more afraid so she practically ran home but Peace gathered her courage and approached ES.
ES asked her today what she thought of the incident and she said, “God was directing me to find you so we could learn how we are supposed to live so we can live with Him again.”
One more detail. Evelyn told me they were coming to church tomorrow. All of them. They have no car but they have arranged for transport so they can attend church.
And just for ducks, one more miracle to report. Debbie who we have been teaching for some time now and has made no progress at all decided that she wanted to attend her church last Sunday and canceled her appointment with us for a lesson. We figured that would be the last time we would hear from her but while ES was in Spar on Tuesday, Debbie approached him and set an appointment for Thursday at 6. I had been feeling okay that day so it worked out well. It seems, so Debbie told us earlier that day, that when she went to church where she hadn’t been for over a year, she had the worst time ever! The sermon didn’t make any sense to her. She actually fell asleep (now I know that really doesn’t mean a lot but we won’t tell her that) and she came out of there feeling flat or dead as she related. All she could think of was, she should have keep her appointment with us. I have to say, it was the best lesson we have ever had with her and the Holy Ghost was finally with us while we taught.
So, still no monkeys in my kitchen, but with all the miracles we been having I’d even take those if that is what it took.
|The Masinga family plus Bro. Admire, Christine and Elder L|
|Elders with Olga, another Lydenburg investigator|
|Syabonga, who is 15, and plays by ear. I'm giving him a hymnal and hymns made easy books|
|Peace. She is the one who approached ES.|
|Pearl, she's reading a poem about the Savior|
|Christine, another of my newly adopted children and Esther... a new grandchild. Welcome to the family!|