Monday, April 26, 2010

Kia Ora!!

Hey Everyone!

So this week was a very interesting week.....

So to start it off we went to the temple! Got up at 3:30 to catch the bus and drive down to Hamilton where we had our Zone Conference. Then off to the temple! And it was a beautiful day to be at the temple!!! Sunshine and eveything! We had the Temple President tell us about the temple. And go figure, the Hamilton Temple is the 11th temple built!!!!!! Haha how perfect! I guess we should've just looked at which temple was lucky #11 to see where I would serve my mission!.. Just another reason to why I should be serving in NZ!.. When the temple president said it was #11, I just started laughing to myself! haha!!! And we were there on the Temple's 52nd anniversary!! It was a really special day!

So I went into the Temple with 2 questions. I really wanted to feel Heavenly Father's Love for me, and I asked him what I could do that would take me to the next level of being a missionary. And I got my answer, crystal clear! As soon as I walked into the Celestrial Room, Pres. Porter was right there to give me a hug! It was just awesome! And then I felt the Lord's Love soo strong! I just started to cry! It was an incredible experience. And then the answer to my other question was clear. The Lord told me specifically to LOVE. Love my mission, the people, my companions, and as I do that, the Lord promised me that, that would take me to the next level of being a missionary! So I'm going to work on that!!!

The day was GREAT! Super exhausting though! I hit the bed as soon as we got home!!! Thank goodness for sleep lol!
I had a crazy experience on Saturday. I actually got into an accident and I broke my nose. It's not really that bad. It's doesn't even hurt. And I'm fine. So no worries.... We were biking along, and we crossed the road and we went to jump the curb and I jumped it and the weight of my bag shifted a bit on my back, which in turn I moved the handle bars just slightly so when I landed I flipped and went right over the handle bars head first to the sidewalk. It sucked, I'm not going to lie. I heard it pop and everything. I was a little dazed. But I was wearing my helmet so it didn't hurt that bad. We were actually on our way to dinner and we weren't too far from the house. So we walked over and Komene called the Zone Leaders. They picked us up and I went to the hospital. And they x-rayed my nose, and sure enough, it's fractured through. But I lucked out. Because it's just fractured through they didn't have to reset my nose or anything. It's still straight. THANK GOODNESS! That's the first thing I asked Komene, "Is it still straight?!" He said, "Surprisingly, yes!" I was like, "Sweet!" But to be honest I was in a lot of pain. I tore up my hand pretty good too. There was rocks and gravel and dirt all up in my hand. And while we were waiting for the Zone Leaders to come, I was in lots of pain. And I had Komene give me a blessing. And as soon as he said Amen I was calm, and I could easily tolerate the pain. So I was very grateful for that! And now they just got me on tons of pills. lol! 2 are for the pain and swelling, and the other is an antiboitic, because they couldn't get all the dirt out, so they gave me that to prevent any infection. But to be honest I'm not really taking too much of the pain medicine, just enough to suffice me. Because it doesn't really hurt too much. So that's a good thing. And then Sunday I slept till like 11:30, went to church, then came home and slept again. But today I'm fine! So things are good! No worries. Sis. Porter called and talked to me. Just to check up on me, and all is well..... It'll take like 3-6 weeks to heal. So it's just a waiting game now......

I got a mean Tongan Box hair cut! I took pics, I'll send them over..

Oh yeah, so we went to a member's home, and a family member had died. So we went to see how they were, and no joke, there was the dead body on the floor!!!! I'm not kidding! On the floor! It's part of Maori tradition! It's just weird to see the body in the casket on the floor like that...
Right now our area is going through the finding phase. We are trying to find new investigators, because our other investigators just aren't as keen as we would like so we are working on finding new ones to teach and baptize. It was somewhat of a slow week. But we are just going through those growing pains. Trial before the miracle!

Hope all is well back home and everyone is finishing school STRONG!!!!!!

Elder Belnap

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Stevie's Baptism!!

Kia Ora!

We had Stevie's Baptism! It was wonderful! She is sooo AWESOME!!! We get along great! Her favorite song is "There is Sunshine in My Soul"! And it fits her perfectly! She is always happy and giggly! She is full of the Spirit and is inviting ALL of her friends to learn more of the gospel! It's awesome!! I spoke on the Holy Ghost! And yesterday she received the Holy Ghost! She is just wonderful! She's 19!

Last night was awesome! We had a fireside that was put on by President Porter! And our ticket is, is we had to ride with an investigator! So we hitched a ride with Stevie and Sam (getting baptized on the 30) and Kenneth (recent convert) and Rachael (his wife, investigator). And it was a great fireside! Everyone loved it! And guess what!? President Porter and his wife are coming to Sam's baptism! And come to find out, Sam sat with the Porters for a month while she was investigating the church up in North Shore. Pretty crazy! Sam is Stevie's really good friend. She is 19. Ken is 19 and Rachael is 20. And last ngiht at the Devo. I saw Elder Magleby, Elder Subramanian, Elder Finau, ha I saw all of my really good buddies! It was wonderful! And very spiritual!

This upcoming Sunday Elder Callistar is coming to our ward to speak. And he wants to come out with us and go see an investigator before church! So we are STOKED! A General Authority is coming out with us! And we are trying to get Pres. Porter to come out too! And we'll go on tradeoffs! That would be something else! It's great to be up in the city. There's soo much stuff going on!

Winter has hit!!!! And it sucks!!!! Excuse my french lol! But it's noo fun! It's not too bad, if the sun is out! And it's not as bad as Utah. But you know how I am with the cold! I hate it! So I'm always bundled up lol! And it rains like 2-10 times a day! No joke! Whether it's sprinkling or not, it seems to always be raining and the sun is down at 6-6:30! So it's hard to talk to people and everyone goes to bed earlier now, so we have to be really wise with our evening appointments!

So my area is 100% biking! Ha I don't know if I like it all that much lol! At least its all flat!!!

So I'm pretty much the only white guy in our ward. No joke! There is like one or two other Kiwi people in our ward and that's it lol! Lots of Tongans, Samoans and Maoris! So it's a little different, but it's cool!
It's like being in Atlanta again, and being the only white guy on the bus lol! Haha at least Polynesians are friendly!

We are going to the temple tomorrow! I can't wait!!!!!!!!

Life is good here in NZ up in Henderson!!
There are heaps of good potential people up here, we just need to work it and we'll be good! The Lord has definitely blessed us!
There is this really cool investigator named Chris. He's awesome! And we get along soo good, we are tight! He's just one of those people that you click right away and you know that you are here for them! So I'm super excited about him.


Elder Belnap

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Transferred to Aukland!!

Hello Everyone!!!

So I got transferred on Thursday to Auckland! I'm in West Auckland! And I'm now in Henderson! My new companion is Elder Komene. He's from Aussie, He goes home in 5 weeks, and he's district leader, and he's also Maori. So I'm excited to learn from him. One thing about Aussie's though, they are BLUNT! So I'll have to get use to that lol. But he's a cool guy. I obviously have lots to learn from him. I think President is telling me that I need to learn, because my last companion, Checketts, goes home in 5 weeks too lol!
My new area is definitely city!! Legit City! There are heaps of people! And it's a great area. There is TONS of potential here! This is one of the highest baptizing places in the Mission. So I'm stoked to be here. I didn't really want to leave Tauranga, but it was definitely time for me to move on.

I hit my 5 month Mark!! Crazy! It's going by fast!

General Conference was AMAZING!!!! I loved it all! So good! They really hit on families and how much love God and Christ has for all of us! I hope you all took in what and how we can make our family closer together. Both as parents and children. The Lord wants our families to draw closer to one another through him. By reading our scriptures as a FAMILY and as INDIVIDUALS! As well as having family prayer. And going to CHURCH! These things are essential.... When we are talking about preparing for the Second Coming, this is how the Lord wants us to prepare. By keeping our families close and putting all of our faith and trust in the Good Lord! I know this is TRUE!!! The whole time I was thinking about my family, and my future family. And it hit me like none other on how much the Lord loves us and how he wants us MORE THAN ANYTHING to live together. There is a reason they didn't talk about whats happening in the world. They hit it right at home! So take what the Prophet and his wonderful counslers have said, and apply it in our lives TODAY!

Amanda gave me an AMAZING letter! I just about cried. I love so so much to see what kind of impact that I have made on someone's life, though it's not me at all. It is the best feeling in the world to see that they have Christ in their lives and will do whatever He asks them to do. And to be a part of their spiritual journey is one of the best feelings you could ever have!!!

LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
KEEP SMILING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Sunday, April 4, 2010

Anna's Baptism!!

Kia Ora!

We had an AWESOME week! It was filled with the Spirit!

We had Anna's Baptism on Good Friday, and it definitely was a Good Friday! We had soo many non members and investigators there! I was blown away! We had so many people there that we had to hold the meeting in the Chapel. I spoke on Baptism. And the Spirit was soo strong. I was feeling it even before we started. When it was time for me to speak, I was just soo overwhelmed by the Spirit. So and I started off my talk not on baptism, but on the feelings of the Spirit. And I tied that into how and why we need to be baptized. I was pretty blunt on what I said concerning the Spirit and being baptized is the only way to enter into the Kingdom of God. Haha I really wanted to commit everyone there for baptism because the Spirit was soo strong. I have NO DOUBT in my mind that EVERYONE there felt the Spirit. All of the baptisms I've been to are wonderful and the Spirit is always there. But Anna's baptism was one that I will never forget. It was quite amazing! I wish you could've experienced that incredible day! Her baptism was great too! She told me after she got baptized that when she went down that her eyes were closed and it was dark, but it seemed like it was soo bright, especially when she came up out of the water!
And yesterday I got the honor to confirm her and give her the gift of the Holy Ghost! Afterward she said, that she never felt like this before. She said it was an incredible feeling.

And she gave me a letter on Saturday. And it was the best letter I could've ever received. As a missionary you love it every time someone makes that change in their life and they get baptized. But as a missionary you wait your whole mission for a person like Anna. In this letter, she said everything and more that hit me like a rock. The things she said in the letter made me realize how important my role is as a missionary. I have to tell you what she said, (this is the part that made me cry)
"Elder Belnap you are such a positive role model to all those around you. Because it is definitely so clear that the Holy Spirit just beams through you. I am so incredibly thankful you shared as much of that pure light with me as you did. Now you might be thinking "How in the world did I do that?" (Yes you are thinking that right now! lol) Well I'm about to tell you. (yay!) It was your extreme passion & love for the church that made me want to desire to know more, because you are seriously the most happy chappy I've ever met & I know it's because you know the church is true. Basically what I am trying to say is, KEEP DOING WHAT YOUR DOING because in my opinion it's "Belnaps Best" (yes, yet another silly nickname) It is so clear that you are blessed with such an amazing gift & I pray that people all over the world get to experience your brilliant teachings, your love towards the Heavenly Father & Jesus Christ, your passion for the gospel & your extreme motivation to helping people!"

After I read that I was filled. You always wonder if your doing what your supposed to be doing, if your doing a good job, am I really doing any good. And she answered all of questions and concerns. She's wonderful. You probably got a chuckle from some of the things she said, she's quite funny. I love her! I am soo happy for her! And I'm glad God gave me Anna and to be a part of her Spiritual Journey!

I bore my testimony in both wards yesterday, it was sort of like a good bye speech. Because transfers is coming up in 2 days, and we find out what's going to happen. And I have this feeling that I might/probably will be moving. So we'll see what happens. Whatever the Lord wants me to do, I'll do.

And I was looking at my old planner when I got here in Tauranga. Seeing how much work has been done since I've got here. Now, none of this is to boast or brag. But when I got here, we had 5 investigators. When Magleby left we had roughly 50 investigators, and we still have heaps of people were teaching. The Lord has definitely blessed this area soo soo much! And I am lucky enough to be a part of this marvleous work and wonder here in Greerton/Tauranga/Otumoeti!