I would first off like to say that I have the best family ever!! Thanks Dad sooo much for the letters! It was so nice getting a letter with lots of words of encouragement. Dad you sure are one funny dude. All of your jokes were hilarious lol. All is well here in sunny Gangnam but it is supposed to start cooling off soon. After conference we have to wear a suit everyday until spring. To answer your question about the winter coat yeah I could probably buy one here and it would be a lot cheaper than sending me one. My speaker broke so thats a bummer. I will just buy one here, I should be able to find one. Dad was right on the money when he said that I need to be a "light on the hill." I already attract enough attention, but if I do just what you said I will be able to attract more and bring more interest of the gospel to the people. It is easy to get frustrated with myself when I don't understand anything going on around me but like you said I need to just make the effort to forget about me and shine the Light of Christ all over Korea. In all reality the Light of Christ is what missionary work evolves around. We would not be able to touch a person's heart if they did not have the light of Christ in them. Lucky for everyone we all have the light of Christ and we all can know the difference between good and evil. So it is just that much more important that we are always doing what we should be doing to set the example for others. After all my goal in serving here in Korea is to help the people gain their salvation and I can't do that without love in my heart and a desire to serve them.
It has been hard to not dwell on the past and move on at times, receiving the letters from Dad really helped. I just keep to keep moving forward and not look back. It is crazy how respectful and polite most of the people here are. I have noticed just by smiling and saying hello to everyone I can really feel a difference in the way they look at us as missionaries. I really loved what Dad said when he said "be a sponge" and soak it all up. I had never really thought about the fact that I just need to fully submerge myself in the culture and pretty much become a Korean.
I was happy to hear that BYU is playing well and destroyed Texas! That is awesome you got to go to a Vandal's game and had so much fun. I'm glad Elizabeth is having a great time in middle school and is adjusting well. Sounds like she is just going to follow after the Picard trend and be an athlete by wanting to do all those sports. The only advice I could give her on sports is that she just has to keep trying and it will take time to improve and get better at a specific sport. Just work hard but HAVE FUN while doing it. McDs has most of the same stuff but they also have special things like bulgogi burgers and stuff. Korea is just awesome. So keep that in mind towards the end of my mission ;) I hope Ej got that job and that Sara will be able to find one soon. I pray every night for them that they will be able to find jobs and get married. They are awesome and I know they will.
Well my week was pretty good. At the start of the week I went of an exchange with Elder Woltjen. We had a good time and he is a pretty funny kid. I learned a lot during my studies this week as I read the Book of Mormon. I am almost done reading it and plan to set goals and read it a couple times on my mission because I need to have the strongest testimony about it that I possibly can. There is no doubt in my mind that it is true but it is never a bad thing to build on your testimony :) I read a lot about the importance of humbling yourself and trusting in God. Also that good never comes from Satan, good ONLY comes from God! I need to be a tree of good fruit and bare not bad fruit. There is a less active member in our ward that comes and teaches us Korean so thats pretty cool because I definitely need the help. My companion and I are going to try to speak more Korean and have days where we only speak Korean so that I can improve faster.
I love how the Lord gives me miracles and answers as I read His word. I got my first hair cut in Korean and man was that a funny experience. First off, I didn't know what she was saying half the time so I was kinda of just sitting there and I told her to go a little shorter by making motions with my hand. That is the last time I am going to do that! I haven't had my hair this short since I accidentally shaved my head bald junior year. The funniest part was after I got it done. The lady that cut my hair was talking to my companion and said my new hair cut looked "sexy" haha. She asked him how old I was because she thought I was like 28!! Oh Korea how I love you so.
After English class on Wednesday we taught 5 of our class members about the fall and the purpose of it. We explained it pretty good and I would say that the Spirit was definitely in that room guiding us on what to say. They just didn't understand why if God is Almighty that he would make us suffer pain and sorrow. So we explained to them that He does this because He wants us to learn and grow. He only wants the best for us and will be with us every step of the way. They thought that we were just being punished because of Adam so we had to explain that we are punished for our own sins and not for Adam's transgression. After our lesson they invited us to go get chicken with them and you know me I would never turn that down! We went and had a good time. I really feel that we left all those people thinking and that they all felt the Spirit. We are planning on continuing to teach them every week so hopefully it all works out. I showed all of them my family pictures and they all said that my family is so beautiful!
I went to the temple this week!!! It wasn't the biggest temple but it was really cool! I had a very good time and learned that I need to always obey and be doing what I should because if I am disobedient I am giving Satan power. I NEVER want that to happen so I have to be a good boy ALL of the time! Satan tries to get us to think that there is No other way, but through Christ our Savior, there is ALWAYS another way! After the temple I went to my first gogi buffet and it was sooo good!! It pretty much is a buffet with tons of different kinds of meat that you cook up for yourself at your table. I sent some videos and they should be in my dropbox. I had duck, spicy chicken, this bacon on steroids that was super thick, octopus which I did not like at all, beef, steak, lamb which is very tasty, and rice bacon.
The Book of Mormon has wonderful accounts of how to live your life! I want to be just like Ammon and all the other Book of Mormon missionaries that did such amazing things! I'm on my mission right now so lucky me I can strive every day to be just like them. I always have room for improvement and God will bless me with strength if I push on in faith.
I went on an exchange with one of the Zone Leaders so I went to his area for a day. I learned more of the importance of being patient and not getting frustrated. They had a bench and weights at their house so I was pretty stoked about that! I guess I just have to some how get transferred to that house. I have struggled to take council from leaders and humble myself but I have noticed I am doing a lot better with that so that's good!
Yesterday the Stake Presidency came to our ward and we had lunch together. My companion also punked me pretty good yesterday. He set up a prank with a guy in the ward. He told me the guy was less active when he really was a member and told me to go set up an appointment for this week. I didn't know he was a member at the time or that he spoke English. Turns out the guy served in Provo so his English was great and I just talked to a guy who was a RM. He spoke English to me after I talked to him about our church for like 10 mins and just started laughing and said man I am just kidding haha so that was pretty funny.
Today is going to be pretty awesome because guess who is going to the zoo? Yep that's right, this Elder is!! It is going to be awesome and I will definitely take a bunch of pics!!
Being a missionary is tiring but it truly is the best!!! :)
I love you all so much!!!
From Gangnam to Spokane, Captain out.
|My first visit to the Seoul, Korea Temple, INCREDIBLE!|
|Elder Black and I, our parents grew up together in Moscow, Idaho.|
|My first district in Korea.|
|My first gogi buffet. Before I ate octopus my thumb was up, after I ate it definitely thumbs down.|
|Wonderful member who took us to dinner, pizza buffet yummy!|
|Rockin the Korean Gatorade bottle, somethings never change.|
|Had to take my picture with the legend #23.|