What exactly are you going to do on your mission?
I have accepted the calling to be a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints so that I may share the gospel to those who are yearning to know of the truth of the gospel. I have answers to questions that people don't even know to ask. I am going to tell people where we came from, why we are here, and where we are going. I will explain to everyone that will listen why Christ is the center of the Plan of Happiness and why the Atonement that Jesus Christ has provided for us is necessary for our salvation.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Companion and Investigators

First of all, I wanted to comment on Joshua's email... That kind of lesson is actually normal for us, the only difference being that I don't sing in lessons and the investigators usually don't laugh. In fact the last lesson we taught (yesterday) was with a Jehovah's Witness pastor. Our area I live in now is the suburbs of Augusta and a large percentage of the pastors for an 1.5 hour radius live in this area. I've got speculations why, but I shall not say... but I did want to make the note that Joshua's lesson he had is quite normal here. I've got another story for you along the same lines: On Saturday we had another lesson like this one, this particular person was anti-mormon yet is nice at the same time. They were saying some bad things about the beliefs we have and my companion (Elder Sato) bore a powerful testimony, immediately following I ended the lesson and we left. Not ten minutes later they texted us and invited us back for dinner... unfortunately we declined because of other appointments we had, but instead they invited us over next Saturday for dinner. I did not expect them to do that... There is a "sweet spot" in lessons when you hit them with the Spirit really hard then leave them hungry for more. I love to do that. It works better than defending our doctrine or going into unnecessary depth of doctrine every time.

Elder Sato is from Japan. He didn't speak English before he came to the America's. He is a wonderful companion! I really love him lots. Turns out we have 8 different families that can speak Japanese in our ward. How often does that happen? It's probably due to it being a military ward and having had a lot of members go on missions. It is so much fun to help him learn English too. It reminds me a lot of my desire to learn Spanish when I get back home. (He's a year out on his mission, but still gets to have an hour of language study a day. Fluent, not eloquent, and regular grammar problems in speech.) We had dinner with a Japanese family yesterday in our ward. Elder Sato had so much fun, this may have been the only time his whole mission that he'll have an experience like that. Something else interesting, he has his Japanese Bible and Triple Combination and he always looks up the references in Japanese first, then in English. It's funny to watch and it makes for great conversation starters when meeting new people. (I think that's an awesome talent to have.)

Just so I don't forget in the future, our next door neighbor, in the Stevens Creek Ward (we live outside of our ward boundaries with the Steven Creek elders) is an amazing person too, I'll be sure to tell you about him another time.

I think the member G. Jensen in our ward is the uncle of Bro Hanson. We will be eating dinner with Bro Hanson and Bro and Sis Jensen on Friday. That's going to be fun. I bet that doesn't happen very often on missions.

I love the plans you've made with the new house! I think it's brilliant. I've already thought of ways I'm going to request of you that I use it too.

Oh, I've got a really funny story that I've got to tell you:
So, the only Japanese speaking members that I new before Elder Sato got here is the Jenkins family. Bro Jenkins is the 1st counselor in the bishopric and served a mission in Japan, and his wife is from Japan and went to school at BYU-Provo and they have 4 kids all of which speak Japanese. They speak Japanese in their home (same family that fed us yesterday). So, right when I got here, 4.5 months ago, we bluetoothed all of the contact information from the sister missionaries phone and deleted everybody that wasn't included on the roster so we had the ward members numbers on our phone without having to put them in ourselves. One of the numbers was under the name of "Bro Jenkins" not on the roster. We called the two numbers for the Jenkins family on the roster, neither answered. We were going to have Elder Sato just speak Japanese to them. We thought it be fun for Elder Sato and Bro or Sis Jenkins. We then proceeded to call the third phone number under the name of Bro Jenkins, The conversation went as follows according to my memory (Elder Sato helped me with the Japanese =-))
Elder Sato: (I have to be on the right computer in order to get Japanese characters, unfortunately, this one doesn't have it)
"Bro Jenkins": Hello?
Elder Sato: 
"Bro Jenkins": Hello?
Elder Sato: 
"Bro Jenkins": Hello?
Elder Sato: Is this Sister Jenkins?
"Bro Jenkins": Hello?
Elder Walker: Hello, is this the Jenkins family?
"Bro Jenkins": No, this isn't
Elder Walker: Oh, if you're not brother Jenkins we don't know who you are
"Bro Jenkins": Hey are you the people that texted me about the bible study?
Elder Walker:   ... yes, I think that was us
(Recollection of us texting this number the week before... this is the text verbatim we sent this number which we never got a response for: Hey Bro Jenkins there is going to be a baptism next week on September 7th  at 10:30. Would it be good for it to be announced at church for opening announcements?)
"Bro Jenkins": Oh ok, I'm <name>, I wanted to come to that. May I bring my daughter, <name>, too?
Elder Walker: Of course, that'd be great, May I text you the time and address?
"Bro Jenkins": Ya that'd be great!
Elder Walker: I'm Elder Walker. We'll see you there!
(I then proceeded to give her the address of the church building and time of service and also for the baptism.)

What makes this whole thing funnier is that Elder Heyland wanted to video Elder Sato speaking in Japanese, so he got the whole thing on video, I'll try to get the video and email it home!

Love you all!
Thanks for the spiritual thought mother!
Love you lots!

I taught the lesson yesterday. It was on the Word of Wisdom and I gave a great analogy using Alma 47 (I think) with Amalickiah.