Tuesday, October 28, 2014

So I had my 3 month mark on my mission last week. That means 1/6 th of my mission is gone by. 

I’m not counting down; I just like to know where I stand.  Waste not, want not!

The Zone Leaders wanted us to email at the library, but of course you need a library card (don't have that). Or an address (should have that). Or a Seattle Mission card (don’t have that either). Or a ministry card (nope). They didn't realize that my ministry card was all in Chinese and I said, "Elders, what do you want me to do- hand them all my certification in Chinese documents and say, "Hey I know you can't read that or validate that, but I swear it's legit. So go ahead give me legal validation to use your city's property?  lol.  I get to email in the family history center today :)

It's been a good week. Two big events first: 
  1. Our mission president (whose also a general authority) came to our ward yesterday and spoke.  Saturday he walked along the beach with Elder Christofferson and he told us what he said:  "get married.”  He said that's what he wanted him to tell us and all the single adults.  The Lord wants you to get married.  "The Lord is not seeing enough marriages.  That is why he lowered the mission age." So there you go. 
  2. We have a new investigator who is Chinese.  She was baptized awhile ago because she knew she should be, but not into any church.  We were teaching her about the apostasy and she kept going, "Oh this makes so much sense. I've been so confused about the different churches. " And then we taught her about preisthood and she was like, "Oh... I don't think my host dad who baptized me had that... so I think.. I need to be baptized in this church.  Can I do that?  What do I have to do?  Can I convert?  " Ha! Why yes, yes you may. "

Our area is going well. Recently we've had a lot of success meeting with inactives and working with them.  Some are becoming very active quickly. We also have two very solid progressing investigators moving towards baptism and very actively reading the Book of Mormon.  It's all very exciting to see people coming closer to Christ.  We've been really trying to focus on using our members to help us find, and they've actually found the most solid investigators we've have.  Our ward/ congregation is very active with missionary work, and its great to have a ward whose so excited and dedicated. 

Lately, I've been trying out a few different tactics with street contacting. Btw- Opening the pamphlets with pictures of Christ, prophets, etc, and asking people "what do you see?" is super helpful.  You learn so much about them so fast and they can feel the spirit if they're ready.  But sometimes, it's raining hard and it's not pamphlet-safe weather (unless you're going for gospel paper-mache), so we have to be creative. Basically, I try to make small-talk to lead to important things and then gospel things.  But you know- sometimes you just got to do a 180 and bring up the gospel. So...

5 Ways I Forced People into Gospel Discussions This Week:
  1. "Ya funeral potatoes are good, even at funerals. And speaking of twice-baked potatoes-- Have you heard of the resurrection?" 
  2. "Frank and beans huh? Sounds like Frankincense. You know, wise men brought that to the Savior. And since you brought up Jesus, why do you think he's so important to so many people?" 
  3. "Oh we're all destroying our earth?  And you're studying ecology?  Cool. What do you think is God's greatest creation?" 
  4. "And speaking of the whole nude San Francisco bike festival-- Missionaries actually ride bikes a lot in full suits!  Have you seen us?  Ya?  Why do you think modesty is important to them?" 
  5. "Sweet. You know who else had a beard?" .... *Pulls out a picture of Christ*  "I know why you're smiling.  The resemblance is uncanny.  Let's talk about how you can actually be more like him.  Wow this is so exciting that I met you today to bless you with this!"  

Ya that last guy isn't getting baptized, but I figure if they laugh then it worked. :) 

Also- Everyone knows I'm from Texas. People on the street, people on the bus, my ward, etc.  I told my district leader that the only way I would feel more secure in downtown Seattle was if I had a concealed weapons permit... permission denied. 

Every time my Japanese companion see's a beautiful Asian woman she says, "Oh, I think she's Japanese." "Oh she looks Japanese". Haha. You know where her opinion is. 

At a fireside I was singing higher and higher and I noticed someone was signing with me, just as high! and it was SO GOOD!  So I'm looking and neither of my companions are singing that high.  So I turn to my left.  It was Elder Ford with a big smile on his face.  I was like, "It's on!" so he sang in falsetto higher and higher harmonies and we competed who could sing higher... he won. 
Best two out of three? 

And lets talk about the weather: 

Because that's always interesting. It rains. And it rains. And now it's freezing rainy with big healthy gusts of wind to oh so gently wake us up in the morning. Also, our apartment has no heater. Haha missionary life. Haha but mostly rain. I thought God promised no more floods after Noah. 
Friday we had a ward party, and though there were many investigators all of them were technically the Elders so.. we thought "okay maybe we'll go out in the rain.”  It was a storm.  There was no one outside.  I mean no one. No one but us.  So Sister Imai walks back in, all of our hair soaking wet, tears running down her face, and asks the District Leaders, "So.. maybe it would be more productive to... be here?  And talk to invesigators and do member lessons and just.. not .. and teach people here.." And our district leader was like, "Yes you can come in!  I can't figure out why you thought you should leave in the first place!"  I thought she was gunna cry lol.

Also it's freezing here. But I'll live. If I stay another transfer though I'm finding boots. 

Btw- my companion just asked our district leader, "hey what happened to our district t-shirts?" and he said. "uhhhhhhhhhh you know? It's a surprise. That's why I havent been bringing it up the last few week..." And then he turned around to google t-shirt shops in the area lol

Our district is pretty funny.  For example, Elder Ford, Elder Carpenter and I have hashtags.  #Fordination  #Carpentence  #WawroWisdom :)


Yes we see miracles every day. We met the best people on the street every day. The Elder's investigators named WenJie is getting baptized Saturday! Yay! She went to ask her uncle for family permission (She's Chinese) and her uncle forbade her.  But she told us the more upset he got, the more conviction she had that this was the right choice and told him she would get baptized without family permission (big deal).  It was so cool.  I talked to her Friday and she said, "Do you see how I'm smiling? I can't stop smiling.  It's because I'm getting baptized!  Please come."

Also their investigator Shark (ya that's his name) is getting baptized!  Sharks getting in the water!

My friend Naomi put this in her letter home recently and I thought she had a great message: "I have been studying the atonement and one thing I learned recently is that when we think our weaknesses are part of our identity is against the plan of salvation and everything god has given us. Christ atoned for us so that we could have the strength to overcome the powers of satan. So that we could over come our weakness so we can CHANGE.  Isn't it beautifu!" I often find myself saying oh that will never change.  But guess what the power of the atonement can change anything."

I think what she said is true. I'm so blessed to be here, and I learn so much every day.  This week I was really wondering why we pray for things or other people if we won't change God's mind.   And can we change "God's mind?" And I know we have to ask for certain blessings, but do our prayers matter for other people.  And I came to a soft conclusion- someone has to ask for the blessings God is willing to give us. Maybe, someone else has to ask for them for you, but someone has to ask.  So in conclusion, our prayers do make a difference.  At the very least the bless us, but, I think that's why we can "feel other's prayers".  Because we can feel more blessings than we ourselves have asked for. 

Anyways, thank you all. I love you and thank you for writing me. Have a good week! 

Remember: Attitude is half the battle. 

Yay Japenese food with member Michael! He's a sushi chef

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