Monday, November 30, 2015

Week 73 November 30, 2015 "A great Thanksgiving week, Turkey, Temple, Pie and Football"

Well we already have transfer calls again on Saturday so I guess we will see if I transfer, stay, or whatever happens. I could leave but I could also stay I am not really sure it is kind of up in the air. Whatever happens though is what the Lord's wants to happen so I will accept whatever with a smile on my face. Hopefully just not Zone Leader because that would be stress for days haha. Hopefully before the end of my mission I can get at least one Korean companion (knock on wood). We just don't have too many Koreans which is a bummer. Well I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. Mine was surprisingly better than I thought it would be and I even got to eat turkey! Our zone were some of the few missionaries that got to eat turkey because finding turkey in Korea is tough. My P-Day was Thanksgiving so that was sweet and we even played a turkey bowl which was a blast. I still got a bit of my QB skills which is good. 

       My message this week is from The Infinite Atonement by Tad R. Callister. He quoted C.S. Lewis and his insight was amazing so I wanted to share it! "No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good. A silly idea is current that good people do not know what temptation means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is. After all, you find out the strength of the German army by fighting it, not by giving in. You find out the strength of a wind by trying to walk against it, not by lying down. A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later. That is why bad people, in one sense, know very little about badness. They have lived a sheltered life by always giving in. We never find out the strength of the evil impulse inside us until we try to fight it: and Christ, because He was the only man who never yielded to temptation, is also the only man who knows to the full what temptation means- the only complete realist." This really struck me when I read it so I wanted to share it with all of you. I have never thought about this the way C.S. Lewis did before so it made me come to the realization of a lot. One being the depth of how much Christ really did suffer for all of our sins and the other being that we learn and truly suffer by resisting temptation not by giving in. I know Christ lives. I know He will always be there to comfort us in all of our times of suffering, trial, and hardship. I know He has suffered below all things and way more than we could ever even try to fathom. Trust in Him and everything little thing will be alright. Hey I mean even Bob Marley knows this haha he has a song about it.  

Elder Daniel Jackson Picard

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Week 72 November 22, 2015 "Romans 1: 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ"

Happy Birthday to my beautiful sister Sara!
     The funny thing of the week is that an English Class member said I look like Obama... I dont know how in the world I look like Obama but I guess I do haha. That makes two look a likes on my mission. I have been told I looked like Eminem with my hair cut short and Obama with my hair longer and combed over? I dont understand but hey I had a good laugh about it!! 
      It is crazy how much you learn as a missionary, it's awesome! I am learning every second of every day so it makes it really hard when I have to narrow down all that I learned. I wish I could tell you guys every cool thing that happened, all that I learned, etc. but that would take way too long to type. My message ironically enough this week is on missionary work. I finished Romans this week and the two scriptures I want to share are from there. To my surprise Romans was actually pretty good. The first one I found is Romans 1: 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. When I first read I was like wow that is a great scripture. Then I read it again and then a few mores times. Then it hit me that we as members of the Church of Jesus Christ and especially me as a missionary always have to remember just this and only this. The gospel shouldn't be something we hide or are ashamed about but instead something we treasure and share to our friends and neighbors who have yet to hear such a beautiful message of truth. Reading this makes me want to be more courageous and tell every person I possibly can in South Korea how much I love the gospel of Jesus Christ and how much I know God loves all His children and wants them to come unto this glorious gospel. 
      The last scripture kinda backs that last one I shared in my opinion. It is Romans 10:  15 ...How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! Reading this a few chapters later just reassured me that God is grateful when we share the gospel and sees us as BEAUTIFUL! What more of a blessing could you ask for? I dont know about you but I like being called beautiful? haha. That being said lets all just be courageous disciples of Christ, love others, and share the blessing of this gospel with all!! I love you all so much and thank everyone for all the prayers and love you have given me throughout my mission in South Korea!!

Elder Picard 
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Monday, November 16, 2015

Week 71 November 16, 2015 "We should let Christ lift us up!"

 Well this past week was full of some hard times but also happy times as well. Both of our convert are still doing great and we are trying to help them get to the temple. Hopefully they can both go before I leave South Korea that would be sweet! I can't believe November is already half way over. I can't wait till Christmas it will be sweet being able to Skype with my amazing family!! The weather over here is kinda getting chilly but some days it doesn't even feel like November because it gets kind of warm. We have had a really strange Fall season over here in Seoul that's for sure. 

       What I want to share is a few things. First off this life is hard obviously. That is why we are taught we must doubt not and fear not. When we doubt ourselves we can't progress and also Christ can't help us progress if we have negative thoughts about ourselves. This has been a big test for me because I think I may be too hard on myself. There is a point where you can be too hard on yourself. It is good to evaluate yourself but not to beat yourself up in my opinion. I kinda feel that beating ourselves up is something the adversary wants us to do. The way we can doubt not/fear not is by working instead of worrying. I worry about a lot of things as a missionary but I need to change that. If I work, worry about whatever will go away and Christ will be able to help me through the Holy Ghost. Like it says in PMG a missionary who works, works, and works some more gets the spirit. 

         Lastly I came across this cool scripture during personal study. It is Moroni 9:25 
25 My son, be faithful in Christ; and may not the things which I have written grieve thee, to weigh thee down unto death; but may Christ
lift  thee up, and may his sufferings and death, and the showing his body unto  our fathers, and his mercy and long-suffering, and the hope of his glory and of eternal life, rest in your mind forever.

We can't be weighed down in worry or other things but instead we should let Christ lift us up! This gospel is such a blessing and I know it can make all who study it happy. Through studying the gospel, we come unto Christ. The Lord our Savior will recognize this and then lift up those individuals who abide to His gospel and precepts. I love you all so much!! I know Jesus Christ loves you all too!! Thanks for all the prayers, love, and support.

Elder Picard

Elder Picard with Luke Wardle, the family that was Dan's first exposure to
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Craigmont, Idaho growing up.
Eating with their friend "Chicken Man"
A holiday in Korea last Wednesday that is celebrated with this food. He thought it tasted like pretzels dipped in frosting.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Week 70 November 9, 2015 "If you cannot win yourself, then make the one ahead of you break the record."

     Recently I have been reading a lot during my personal study in the New Testament and the Doctrine and Covenants because I have never read all the way through both of them. I had a goal to read all of the standard works before the end of the year but I am not sure I will get through the Old Testament, it is too long haha. I actually now that I think about it need to look back at the goals I set because it is getting close to the end of the year and I haven't been the best at checking my progress. I will admit I kind of forgot I set those goals last year.... oops. I will for sure find them and take a look Sunday at what more I have to do. I have seen myself progress a lot throughout this last year so I just gotta keep that up and make it easier to progress by always keeping in mind what I need to improve on and what the goals I set. 

       I had a super good week and learned a ton during personal study. What I want to share this week is a scripture in D&C. It is D&C 62:23 which goes a little something like this... 
2 And verily mine eyes are upothose who have not as yet gone up unto the land of Zion; wherefore your mission is not yet full.
Nevertheless, ye are blessedfor the testimony which ye have borne is recorded in heaven for the angels to look upon; and they rejoice over you, and your sins are 
forgiven you.
 Basically  it says our testimonies are recorded in Heaven. When we share our testimonies with others God is happy with us. When we show others the joy the gospel brings by sharing our testimonies with them it is then that we draw closer to Jesus Christ. After studying about this I couldn't help but share my testimony with my ward yesterday. It was nerve racking for sure but I could feel the spirit so strong and I knew that God accepted my testimony and was grateful I had the guts to share it. There is another quote I found in the Missionary's Little Quote Book I want to share. I am going to try and connect the two as best as I can so we will see how it goes. "If you cannot win yourself, then make the one ahead of you break the record." As I read this I kind of connected back to the fact that we can help others "break the record" by sharing our testimonies with them. By doing this we can love helping others come unto Christ. Which seems like the biggest record you could ever set, knowing who your Savior is!! So I would encourage you all to go out there and share your testimony of this Gospel any chance you get and I will do the same over here in Seoul! 
Our recent convert Sister Lee is doing amazing! She is so solid. We had an opportunity to visit Femme and give her a blessing. Her mother was there and luckily we were able to call a member on short notice to come over and he helped us give her mother an amazing lesson. The Spirit was so strong and she had some really good questions. I am so excited to be able to start teaching her the gospel of Jesus Christ. We had so many miracles this week, the work is progressing well in Seocho! Thank you to all my family & friends for all the prayers and continued support through emails and letters, it means so much to me.

Elder Picard

Monday, November 2, 2015

Week 69 November 2, 2015 "Show your love for God by loving and serving others"

   After emailing for pday we went home and Elder Smith got all packed up. We met up with his dad and brothers, I can't believe he is heading home. We have got along really well and I will miss him. It made me a little trunky seeing his family, but I am so glad I have 8 months to get to work in Korea. Missions are the best!
   My new companion is Elder Whitney from Fredricksburg, VA so that is so cool since I lived there as a little guy. We are getting along great and I am excited to serve with him.  His first name is Thomas so you now I love that #TheRinger.
   I was so sad to hear of Caleb Maclachans passing. He was a great friend and I feel bad I didn't stay in better contact with him. Please let his family know I am praying for them. Hopefully Caleb will forgive me for not staying in contact and being a better friend.
   We had an awesome lesson with Femme our convert from when I first got to Seocho! She had a lot of questions we were able to answer.  She is amazing! Learning and growing so much! We talked about prayer, faith and keeping the Sabbath day holy.
    They don't celebrate Halloween in Korea so it was just another day.
    Today was Stake Conference, and it was a great day! So awesome! Micheal went with us. He is an older guy in his 50's. (I think Elder Picard forgot his super young dad is 53). We saw Elder Smith and his family and so that was good to. I also met Elder Knapps family and they are awesome! His dad looks like the men from Duck Dynasty. I also got to meet Elder Knapps trainer, so it was good to meet him since he talked about him all the time. It was sad saying goodbye to Elder Knapp, he was definitely a favorite companion. He is from Provo and so I told him to get in contact with my family. I also promised him my dad would make indian tacos, so hopefully you can do that dad. I also felt pretty famous at Stake Conference because people from Gangnam were there and were so excited to see me.  It made me feel pretty great about myself and very loved. I loved Gangnam and all the members were so good to me.  One of my best buddies is the bishop now. They said I looked skinny and that they would feed me if I came visited. They remembered my last testimony before I left and told me how good it was. Also that I make them happy with my smiling face. So I need to remember to always be happy. They told me my Korean has improved so much also.
   We are going to start showing a movie in the park to find investigators and this is a thought our ward mission leader had. We have been having a hard time finding investigators so hopefully this will be successful.
    Something I want to share is I can personally show my love for the Lord by loving others and by serving them. Sometimes its hard to express our love for other people, but I have noticed when I serve people I feel more love for them and for God. I have been set apart as a missionary and I need to show more faith in myself, focus on the work and doing the best I can.
   We went back to the gym we found last week and the owners are so nice. We set up an appointment to teach them English and hopefully they will find gospel interest also.
   We met someone from Mexico, his name is Chris. We are going to meet up with him soon and hopefully we can start teaching him.
   I love you all. Thank dad for writing me letters every week. I love all the emails but letters are just the best. I feel so blessed to have the family I do.