Tuesday, June 22, 2010

June 21, 2010

Well, It's been a good week! Wow, the week went really slowly but also really quickly. First of all, I want to tell some really cool mission stories, just because I've always wanted to have mission stories to tell, and now I actually do!!!
Last night was full of miracles. Shen de anpai (God's organization? I don't really know exact translation).
Riding my bike around last night, something just clicked. I started feeling full of the spirit, and just loving everybody, and talking to everybody, and it was so good. I gave away some copies of the Book of Mormon and got talked to many people at an intersection. It is so funny, Elizabeth and Julia and I used to play this game to see if somebody was in a bad mood if you could make them laugh and the person would try really hard not to laugh. That was good mission prep. Because I'll pull up next to an old guy on a scooter and he'll just pretend like I'm not there. And I'll try and make him laugh. And then after he's laughing I bear my testimony and tell him to go to church.
Also (Mom won't like this part) missionary work reminds me a lot of some video games-zelda. You go talk to people to try and find stuff out, get little assignments from the bishop to find certain people, when you finally find them they tell you to go find somebody else. Or chasing people down on your bike to talk to them, or following them to their house, and you have to keep up with them, not get squished by cars and keep them in sight. It's all good. p.s. reading the scriptures is better preparation for a mission by the way.
Oh, I haven;t even told any stories yet. So, after riding after people on bikes for a long time, we went home to eat some food. After like ten minutes our new member called us and said he was already at the church waiting to help us teach investigators. His name is Wang zhi cheng and he's about ten days older than me, baptized about two months ago, and he loves helping us teach and he's good at it too. So we ate real fast and were riding up to the church. I was still talking to everybody, so I see this one guy riding his bike crossing the intersection. I decided to go talk to him, so I started riding next to him and speaking broken english. For example you go up to them and in english say, Hewwo! you are sooo handsome! Your bike is sooo cool! and they'll usually understand because everybody here likes to study english. Every time I do I think of how hard Julia would laugh if she heard me, and it makes me laugh too. So I say, "Hewwooo! Are you very good?" And he answers back "yeah, I'm doing okay." I say "how is your english sooo good?" And he says "I got my MBA at cornell university." ohh, that's embarassing. So I stop him and say, I'm a missionary, we want to talk to you. and he says, "I have some questions for you." Now, the last person who said that was a russian guy who only wanted to argue about praying to Jesus, so I was hesitant. But I said, okay, when can we talk to you. He said, well, I live in shanghai, so I don't have a lot of time." So turns out, he just rode with us to the church right then, where our new member was already waiting, perfect lesson set up. It was such a miracle. What if wang hadn't called, or what if I had been slower and missed that guy, or whatever. It's just that if I go talk to everyone and do my best, I don't have to have huge inspirations of which door to knock on, the lord will place people in my path! anyways, it gets even better
We take him to the church and say, okay, what's your questions!?
But first, he said this, as if he was opening a meeting, "First off, I want you all to know, that I believe in miracles. I believe you can think something, and then it happens. For example, yesterday, for some reason I don't know why, I thought I wanted to meet someone from a church and talk to them about religion. Today, you came and talked to me. That is a miracle."
It was such a cool experience. I felt like I was reading a cool mission story, but it was me! That's the coolest feeling to be able to see miracles like that work through you.
1. does your church have commandments, chastity? what to eat? we told him all of the commandments including tithing, and he said, that's really good. He was really smart, and we taught basically a whole fourth lesson in three minutes.
2. does your church criticize other churches? Nope, in fact we're probably the most criticized. we want to befriend other faiths. Good!
3. What makes your church different from the other christian churches? Taught him the first lesson really quickly. gave him some good material to read. including the Book of Mormon
4. Does your church allow really really rich people to join? This one made me laugh. He said he worked as an investment banker in China for a long time, and a lot of other financial stuff that he had to say in English, and I still didn't understand what it was. and even though he was humble he was probably really rich. I told him about all the wonderful people in Alpine where I was from who were wealthy and generous and good members. We also told him about tithing and accepted the idea very well.
5. Can I have that book there? Um.... He had noticed the PMG we had given to the new member, and he wanted one. I figured, if there's any book out there that explains the gospel well it's preach my Gospel. So our new member was really nice and gave him his, and we told him which parts were more applicable to him, and that was awesome.
So, then we extended the baptismal commitment. and he said that he was leaving Taiwan to go back to Shanghai this week, and he didn't want to give us his phone number, so... that was an interesting lesson. His commitment was that he would be in Taiwan in a month, and he would find us and talk to us and maybe get baptized.
Then while we were talking to him, another investigator came who had been taught a long time ago and then dropped off, and we talked to him and he was great and said he wanted to be baptized this saturday!!! Baptisms are so awesome! So I'm really excited to see my first baptism that came partly from what I did. And while we were talking to him, One of our other progressing investigators came, and I had to start teaching him by myself. He hadn't come to church because he slept in. I couldn't understand a lot of what he said, but I knew I had to bring up the word of wisdom with him. thankfully our member and my companion came in right after I told him about the word of Wisdom, and he said there was no way he could stop smoking and drinking, because ...then he went on for like five minutes about how hard his work was building buildings and putting in plumbing and drinking with his boss and smoking with his coworkers, and I didn't understand it at all. So I need to work on my chinese a little bit. But it makes me happy that most people are really surprised when they learn I haven't been here three weeks yet. They ask me where I was transferred from, and I say the MTC and they get confused.
Well, my time is almost up. Remember to do missionary work, every day. I think some of the greatest missionary work could be raising kids good. (That was to make Rachel and Hallie and Sarah and Lizabeth and Carrie and all the rest feel good). But it is the most important work there is. I know that's true. I know the Book of Mormon is true!
p.s. I played basketball with Elder Norton this morning. That was fun. He's a great example, all the missionaries talk about how good of a missionary he is. At zone conference he gave his "final remarks" and they were good. I'm glad he's done so well. I think I might even go on exchanges with him in a couple weeks.
p.p.s. Hooooootttty Totty!

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