Date: Tue, 3 Jul 2012 11:45:31
How are you all doing?
Well, yesterday it was a little weird for us to hear our mission president use the words, "Donde Esta." But President Senior is here. It was really impressive to meet with him yesterday. He met with our zone down in Chiang Mai. He seems really on top of things-- just on it.
His Thai is already very good. I wonder if Japanese and Thai have similar grammar structures. His Japanese fluency seems to have really helped him. He already speaks with a good accent. He hit on two verses in the Bible (which made me really happy since I have come to LOVE the Bible).
The first was in Isaiah 64:4:
"For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hatch the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him."
Then he talked about what the Apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 2:9
"But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."
He then explained to us how most cameras now have at least 1 megapixels, but the human eye can see with over 500. He talked about how Beethoven composed his 9th symphony with Ode to Joy when he was deaf. Then he talked about Mosiah 18:21 where it talks about having our hearts knit together with unity and love. He talked about the great things that are in store for us. (That eye hath not seen, nor ear heard.)
He also talked to us saying that we can't keep the commandments always. For example it is impossible for us to keep the Sabbath day holy on Tuesday. He was making the point that we need to be obedient during the time set apart for certain commandments. He talked about the privilege it is to live according to the standards in the missionary handbook. This is the only time when we get to, so make sure we do! He had a lot of great things to say.
This last week was a good learning week for me. I experienced a really good lesson on Sunday. We were teaching a new investigator named Frame. We were teaching the restoration. I was using scriptures and trying to explain the doctrine and she wasn't getting it. She was confused. Then, that night, I was reading a talk entitled, "The Challenging and Testifying Missionary." It talked about how new these concepts are for investigators, and how we really can't just blast them with doctrine. What we need to do is really make sure we are teaching by the spirit. We need to make sure that we are letting them feel the spirit so that they can know for themselves that these things are true. I realized I've been hearing about the restoration for 20 years. I took a college class on it. But I can't just use all of that knowledge to teach investigators. I have to teach so they can feel the spirit. Bottom line.
Well, last night we were teaching another investigator named Nim. We had planned to teach her about the restoration. But as we got going, she started expressing some concerns about prayer. That's when we took a step back and looked at the situation. We shifted gears and we just talked to her about prayer. We tried to help her understand the why of it and how prayer will help her.
The first thing that needs to happen, as Elder Pearson told Nate two years ago, is that investigators need to understand that they have a Father in Heaven who loves them. SO, that's what we're focusing on. Talking to Elder Haughton about it afterwards we both said that if we ever have doubts, we don't pray about the restoration, we pray to ask God if He is there and if He loves us. That is what we all need to understand. We cannot receive guidance without understanding where it comes from. We must deepen our understanding of deity always.
Also one other thing I've learned from recently is the talk, "The Fourth Missionary." It took me a while to get through it, but it made an impact on me. It talks about how there are four types of missionaries: 1. Disobedient, goes home. 2. Disobedient, but sticks it out. 3. Obedient, but withholds his heart. and 4. Obedient and consecrates himself. He talks about the difference between missionary 3 and 4 is one slight thing. But it makes all the difference. It's giving our heart. It's 1 Corinthians 13. He says that the 3rd missionary sacrifices his will to do what the Lord wants. But in his heart, does what he wants. He withholds his heart, and in the end, is changed very little by his mission. But the 4th missionary consecrates himself. He knows that the only intelligent way to serve is by giving the only thing that is truly ours, our heart, and yielding it to the Lord. The difference between consecration and sacrifice is that sacrifices implies giving up things that we want, while still, in our hearts desiring them. But consecrating them means that no matter what it is, we know that the Lord's way is best. And we give our hearts to him. I hope that we can all give our hearts to the Lord more. In everything.
I love you all.
Be safe. Be faithful. To the end.