Wednesday, 24 February 2016

The Lord's Promises

What makes us, as Latter-day Saints, so different? I have often pondered from the perspective of others the reasons for our peculiar nature. Is it the way we speak? Is it the things we teach? Is it the way we act? Or is it the things we believe?

The Lord has said that he'd raise Himself a peculiar people (1 Peter 2:9, Titus 2:14, Deuteronomy 14:2). There will always be differences in the way we do things, and the world will not always agree.

On Sunday morning we received a phone call from a man we'd spoken with only once. "I'd like to come to Church," he said. At first, it was hard to believe - not only had he called us, but he desired to come to Church. And since we were driving down to Phuthaditjhaba (in QwaQwa), we called a member to fetch him at the army base and take him down with them. There he listened, and afterwards shared with us how we were different and how he felt as a result."
"You don't preach," he said. "You share."
"In everything that was said, you were united. There were quite a few people speaking, but I felt the same Spirit from each of them. I felt like the message they shared was for me."
As he shared, he expressed that he'd found answers to questions he could never express in a single sitting, and felt that he needed to continue coming back for more.

As he spoke, I recalled my first encounters coming to Church. And it's true. It's different, and sometimes strange, but when we listen we find that the things being said are meant for us.

During the week we received a referral from the mission office, of a man in town that'd found a pass along card in his mailbox. We'd tracted his street, and as a matter of habit I never leave a house without leaving something behind.

He wanted to know about the Book of Mormon and read for himself to find out more. "Our churches are not the same," he said. And he had rightfully concluded that for him to know the real differences he needed to read and find out for himself.Unfortunately, there are too many people who find out about the Church from another source. Most of the time they come back with things that are, simply, not true. The only way for us to truly know is to find out from the source - that is, to read and ask from God. He promises that He'll always answer us, if we are willing to follow through with His answer.

The Lord keeps His promises. Even now, I received a further witness to my testimony as I read the dedicatory prayer for the South Africa Johannesburg Temple.
Let me explain. I have long felt that South Africa is long overdue a civil war. You see, South Africa has had an intense history, and the backlash that's been happening in the economy, politics, education, etc... has had many afraid for the future. I even recall churches I'd been to predicting a civil war (though they'd promised that faithful believers would be protected). It's been more than twenty years, and as bad as things are getting a civil war has not started.

Why? Not that I want one to start, but humans are predictable and backlash usually results in a war.

In 1985, President Gordon B. Hinckley, dedicated the South Africa Johannesburg Temple, and in that dedicatory prayer the Lord promised that so long as people attend the temple there will be NO civil war. See for that prayer.

The Lord has always spared a nation for the righteousness of one. As the ground is about to be broken for the South Africa Durban temple on the 9th of April this year, let us continue to be faithful and trust in the Lord, doing as He asks. He will always keep His promises, let us keep ours.

I am happy to say that I am a part of a peculiar people. Just look at the picture of me, Elder Santagane, and Elder Varner - though, I look most peculiar of the three.

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