Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Week 18: "There Can Be Miracles"

Well the title for this week pretty much speaks for itself. There were a lot miracles this week.

Monday we went to the Mission Home to pick up our suit pants from the dry cleaners. Then we cut P day short to meet up with some young men in the Branch. They said they wanted to prepare for missions and that they wanted us to teach them how to teach better. We shared with them about testimonies and the five points to a really strong and simple testimony. They loved it! We decided to go on splits so they could go with one of us to a Family Home Evening with an investigator, while we went to teach a lesson to another to a boy in the Branch also preparing for a mission. Our lesson went so good. He asked so many questions about missionary life and how to share with the spirit. I gave him some advice on things that have helped me a lot.

Tuesday an investigator called us in the morning telling us to come to get breakfast with him because he had a friend he wanted us to meet. I grabbed our things and ran out the door. His friend is this lady who has a few kids who are studying in Australia. She said she really wanted to learn but wasn't sure about coming to church on Sunday. She was very funny, speaking a lot of English to us. We tried to pay for the meal but she wouldn't let us, and in Vietnamese culture you don't try and force it or they will get really mad. So she paid for us, and we called her a taxi. She asked me how long I would be in the city. I said probably for a long time, she said, "good". She said she was going to go to a few places and might do some shopping and then asked me if I would like to join her for like a date (kidding of course). (haha) I explained to her that we don't date until after our two years are up. She laughed and got in the car. She is hilarious though.

Wednesday all the leaders had to go to a leadership training meeting which lasted for nine hours. I just dropped off my companions and went on an exchange with a Vietnamese elder from the other two Branches. I was senior companion for the first time on my mission. It was kind of scary, right when we got outside the mission home gate, they were looking to me for direction on where to go, so we decided to start out in the Branch 3 area. I have really missed Branch 3 and it was just like old times going back. We taught two investigators that I had helped to find last transfer, which was really cool. In our second lesson, the spirit was really strong. I didn't waste a minute in inviting their investigator to be Baptized. His answer was amazing, "Who's gonna do it?". I was so happy that he was making an effort to change his life for the better. He said he will try to come to church. 

Then I thought I would show one of the Elders (who is still in training) the house of a less active member. We went by his workplace as well and we actually found him there! I asked if we could share a lesson with him. He said he was having a hard time reading the scriptures, but that he is trying to pray. He agreed that he needed to come back to church. I was so happy to hear that from him. After that lesson, we headed back to the mission home.             We had about 15 minutes to spare, so we stopped at this really good ice cream place… because one of the other elders said he was going to die if he didn't get some ice cream. 
It was really good.

Thursday was great! We had our studies, and of course weekly planning. That went really well. I have come to realize that if your weekly planning doesn't go well, then your week doesn't either. We headed straight out and then went to teach a couple lessons. We had one with a new investigator, Co Huong.  She was a little uneasy about meeting with us at first, but this time she told us to come over right away! We sat down and immediately, she pulled out a little booklet. She opened it up… and I couldn't believe it. She had written over 15 questions that she wanted to ask from reading through the pamphlets. We answered a lot of them and then taught her about the Restoration. I pulled out my Book of Mormon and gave it to her and she said she wanted to read it. Later that night we went on a split. I went to go and contact, while my companion went to teach another investigator. It didn't take us long to find some people to talk to. We went down one street and found a huge group just hanging out together. We started talking to them and ended up having five people listening in on our lesson. We taught most of Lesson 1 with them and received a few phone numbers. In the lesson that my companion went to go and teach, our investigator accepted Baptism for the end of this month! We met her last week. I could not believe my ears!

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Friday, we had Zone meeting and it was so good! It was all about the talk by D. Todd Christofferson,  "The Worth of A Soul". I got a better perspective on others as well as of myself. We need to see the potential of others. Having Christ like charity is a spiritual gift that we need to be praying continually for. I really enjoyed that talk, especially 
because he gave the same talk in a devotional at the MTC while I was there. Following that, I went on an exchange with my old Trainer Elder Barker! It was so great to combine forces again. It felt like it had been forever, but right away we got back into the swing of things. We went and taught a lesson to a recent convert. He helps us all the time to teach lessons and stuff. He asked if we could teach him a little more on Repentance. It was an amazing lesson and the spirit was so strong. Right after that, we went out contacting. He took me to this place where he had met a guy who spoke Vietnamese six months ago. He and his wife were home and invited us in. We naturally flowed into talking about the gospel. They were really interested, and they said they wanted to learn more about Christ and His Atonement. I gave them another Book of Mormon. They promised to read and pray about it.

Saturday wasn't too special. We went out to lunch with two investigators. It was actually really good. They are kind of better off than some of our other investigators so they wanted to go to a nicer place than the one that we chose. It was around three dollars each, which here is pretty expensive for a full meal. We taught a few more lessons that afternoon and then exchanged back. We taught a couple more lessons..

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Sunday was great! We almost broke a record with Sacrament attendance! 67 people. Our Branch goal is 75 by the end of the year! I know we can do it. We had a few of the usual investigators and our investigator from lunch the day before came as well! We met her this week! I was asked by the AP's to sit next to the Japanese guy for sacrament and try and translate or something because he didn't get to take the sacrament in the International Branch. I taught him a mini lesson based on the talks that were given. There is a little chubby boy in the Branch here that is always eating and running around. We have given him the title, "The Juggernaut". Yesterday, he was running around during Sunday School with a dry pack of Ramen Noodles in hand. He was running around making fighting noises and whenever he would get tired and stop, he would take a bite of his Ramen and "Power Up". (Hahaha) Everyone got a kick out of that. 

After church, we went to go teach Co Huong, who I had previously given a Book of Mormon to. We went with the Branch President. As we sat down, I looked on her little coffee table and saw that she had all the pamphlets out and that she had been reading from the Book of Mormon. She told us all about Lehi's dream and how interesting and amazing it was. We taught her of the Plan of Happiness and that can share the fruits of the Gospel with her family as well. She always gets so excited when we talk about the Gospel with her. Then we went to teach another lesson, and on the way, a recent convert stopped us in the road. He led us to a guy who sells food from his cart. He told us that this guy was his friend and that he wanted to come to church and learn about the Gospel. Then we taught our lesson and as we were helping clean up their food cart, we bumped into another guy. We asked him if we could meet and if he would be interested in learning. He said yes and that he also had friend that would want to learn as well!

In the mission, they made a standard of Excellence for us missionaries. The goal for the total lessons in a week is 24. We ended up getting 26 total lessons! That is more than most of the Khmer companionships get (from what I hear) and more than anything we have ever gotten before. My testimony that the Heavenly Father's work is being hastened has been strengthened so much this week. I know that if we stay obedient and diligent, Heavenly Father with bless us and that we have to earn His trust. This one was way long sorry, but I am just so grateful for all that is happening here! Love you all and hope you have the greatest week ever.

Elder Morris

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