Sunday, March 25, 2012
Hello, everybody! I hear school's ending for you soon. I'm praying that you all can do your best! This week was just wonderful. We had a fair share of lessons every day, and we kept having a lot of opportunities to teach new people. On Tuesday we had 10 setups, but only 1 of them came. But we're still really glad with the success that we've had this week. We've met some very interesting people this week, and have had many interesting situations. We've been doing a lot of church tours recently -- just inviting people to come in and look at our church. We've been surprised at how many people are willing to just come in from whatever they were doing and join us. It's been a great finding tool. We've had a lot of people start contacting us, for some reason. Mostly Elder Bowler. A few moms came up to us and asked about our english class, or asked if their kids could learn the gospel. (當然阿!!!) It's been cool to see those miracles. One of them brought her daughter and husband, and we got to teach her husband. Turns out he found a way to make a perpetual motion machine using gravitational and magnetic pulls. I'm not really getting how it works yet, but he said he's almost done with it. So if any of you see a Eugence Xu (might as well be Eugene) you can know that Elder Bowler and I took him on a church tour. Oh yeah. I feel our member work has been getting better. We've been trying to reach out to our branch more, and I think it's making a good impact. However, yesterday our MM Leader, Jerry, got really upset because we told him after church there might be a baptism for Benjamin Lin2 the following Saturday, so there was no really good way to get our members there. It's a long, complicated situation, but it's all resolved now. We're pushing back Lin2 dx's baptism three weeks from now because of conference in two weeks. Hopefully we can take this opportunity to strengthen and fully incorporate Lin2 dx in our branch before he gets baptized. Elder Bowler's doing great. His Chinese is improving a lot as well as his teaching and finding skills. It's great to learn a lot from each other. From him I've learned the importance of being more fun and friendly with our investigators -- it helps them feel more comfortable and welcome as they come into a new environment. I think my struggle lately has been patience, which is something I don't like struggling with. I guess there have just been a lot of people lately who need more patience and time, and it's cracking down on me. But I know through prayer and by knowing we are all God's children has helped me a lot. I'm going to try to work on improving my patience this week as a Christlike Attribute. 057 - Li3 Chang1 Xian4 dx. With a very good looking tie, might I add :P 053 - Eugene Xu! He's a genius. 056 - Li3 dx's baptism. It went pretty well. We had Song4 dx baptize him. Sister Winters and I played violin/viola for the musical number.
Sunday, March 18, 2012
We've been seeing miracle after miracle this transfer. But I think this week was a little different. I think we did a lot better this week at being more rounded. Of course we're extremely grateful that we have been given success in our efforts. The Lord really has blessed us a lot this transfer. I think the biggest thing we ned to work on this transfer are our personal goals. We have a tendancy to forget or to get lazy in what our personal goals are, and so although our area work is improving, we're not becoming who we need to be. Li3dx will be baptized this friday! We are all super excited for him. His faith has grown so much over these few months. We've been doing all we can to help him overcome his trials and to get him to come to church. He really does have a special spirit and a aura of faith. Lin2 dx has more problems in his life than I thought! But these trials are really helping him develop the faith he needs to have a more complete conversion. He's been having a really hard time with his family and friend relationships. They're very not supportive of his wanting to change, in fact, quite degrading. They say he will never change. And so a lot of our lessons have been about encouragement. Because he has amazing faith. He really does. But because he's surrounded with a negative environment, he starts to doubt himself. He's really an amazing person. We should be eating the gargantuous shaved ice with him for preparation day, and the learning how to make kimchi with him. Elder Bowler's doing great. He does a great job at getting us both fired up and ready to work. He gets lazy on SYL sometimes, but I try to do my best to keep him practicing. I've been using the Book of Mormon a lot more this week, and I've seen some great things because of it. I contacted a kid at the college nearby. He had met another elder just a week ago, but I said I wanted to share a scripture with him. He said they didn't talk about the Book of Mormon, and he had a little curiousity. I explained what it was, and then I shared a scripture. I had a small impression to share Alma 37:37, because he was having a struggle knowing what he should do after he graduates. So I shared it, and he surprised me by saying, "Wow, that's amazing. I've been having troubles sleeping at night. I really like this scripture." In which I had to look at the scripture again. I realized he had read "And when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep." I know the Spirit led me to that scripture, and not for the reasons that I had thought. I have gained a firmer testimony that we alone may not be able to solve our investigator's needs, but with the Book of Mormon combined with the Spirit, we definitely can.
I'm grateful for all the letters, packages, and love that I've been getting recently! Yay! I'm one happy missionary. ^^ I hope All is Well for all of you. The Lord really has blessed me too much. And I'm grateful for the blessings that keep coming in my life. Recently we've had 2 investigators who are making really great progress. We should have Li3 dx having the baptismal interview next week. He's doing wonderful! We taught him the Word of Wisdom last week and he had some troubles adjusting to the lifestyle, but I think he'll do just fine. We taught him Tithing as well, and he already knew it! He has a sister that was baptized in our church before, so he had already heard about it. That makes things much easier ^^. He has a great desire to be baptized, and we're grateful to see his progress and his faith. The other is Lin2 dx. He came with us to Hualien this week, and he said he liked it. He's been having some troubles with his girlfriend lately. But he's been able to use some of the teachings of the gospel to try to handle it all in a Christlike way. It's great to see his desire become manifest in his actions. When he was in Taipei's XinZhuang, he met with missionaries before, so it's mostly just review for him. Hopefully he will continue to improve quickly. He also has 3 kittens he's giving away. Elder Bowler is doing great -- with as much fire as ever! And we're seeing miracles because of his willingness! At times he becomes a little passive with the work, but I try to keep him on top of things. It's not too often at all. I'm really grateful to have had really great companions so far. I'm working on trying to be more sensitive to the needs of others. That's really hard to do! But I know through prayer and study, I'll be able to learn and to grow. We were filled with lessons this week. As we focused on the Book of Mormon, we could feel greater power in our teaching and a deeper understanding from our investigators. I'm grateful that the Lord has given us a tool that we can center our faith around. By strengthening our faith in the Book of Mormon, we will always be steadfast and immovable in the faith. It is also a perfect teaching tool for everyone, everywhere, at all times. We had transfers with the Zone Leaders as well as the Travelling Assistants. Both went really well - we saw a lot of miracles in our work. I think what I learned with them is that I need to contact even MORE people! People working, riding, and even people passing by on motorcycles! As I do, I'll see even more miracles in the work. Another thing I learned is I need to make my studies more productive so that I improve my scriptural knowledge Christlike Attributes, and leadership skills as fast as I can. Hopefully I can fill the shoes that the Lord has put down for me. 一切好!一切好! I love you, -Elder Liu
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Wow! This week was full of miracles! Although numbers don't matter, we were able to have almost 2 new investigators a day this week. And we've met with most of our investigators last week, if not this week. It has been an amazing opportunity to be able to work with Elder Bowler. The first thing I noticed about him is that his attitude is awesome. I love it. He really does help me to have a better look on work and a way to help me overcome the trials that come with everyday missionary life. He's a wonderful example to me. I'm doing my best to try to serve him and be an example of obedience. Elder Bowler is from Arizona. He has two younger sisters and an older brother. He's a very cool kid. He's probably the first example I've seen of true greeny fire here. And I love it! Just a simple desire to go and work and to find and to teach. It's amazing. He's fresh off high school, and will be going to Dixie when he gets back from his mission. This is his 3rd transfer. Sadly, there seems to be no immediate relation with my old soccer coach. But that's okay. he's a great person anyway. And he also likes volleyball, soccer, skating, and diving. He currently doesn't know what he wants to do with his life when he gets back. But I'm also super sad I only got to be with Elder Braithwaite 1 transfer. There were a lot of people that we wanted to help together. He moved to TaoYuan's Nan2Kan3. We actually switched companions -- that's where Elder Bowler was last transfer. We've had some wonderful success with our progressing investigators. We plan to have one, Li3 Chang1 Xian4 李昌憲, baptized this week. Li3 dx is absolutely amazing. He has a small physical handicap, but his faith makes up for the rest. He has already run into the problems of multiple gods and some family opposition, but he has decided to meet with us and to keep going. Recently we taught him the Word of Wisdom. He said, "no tea....that's really hard!.....okay!" He's keeping the Word of Wisdom, Sabbath, and Chastity. He's well on his way towards baptism this week. We still need to teach the importance of coming to church...I don't know how big of a priority it is for him. He didn't come this week because he was tired. We have an investigator Zeng1 dx. His progress is super slow. We've met with him at least 8 times and we're still getting prayer into his life. He says them, but they're always not very meaningful. Mostly because he doesn't know what to say. He hasn't been doing too change in his life. But lately he's been amazing with his faith. Yesterday he called us to ask what he should pray for. As well as he got a rest from his family's work to come to church. He and his dad got in an argument, but he came anyway. I don't even know if he's realizing it, but he's exercising great faith to do what we invite him to do. Yesterday we met a Lin2 dx. He came to church by himself, and he waved to me and asked if he could come to our meeting. I said of course, of course. It turns out he met with XinZhuang elders a long time ago, but then went into a more rebellious stage of his life. He started not to believe in God and had nothing to do with church. But then his life recently has been really hard and painful, and he has a burning desire to change his life from what it is right now. So he came to find us. It's amazing to see how the Lord works. Even though the conversion of Lin dx has taken years, it really has helped him to develop great faith and desire to follow the Lord. You can see a mighty change of heart in him. He setup a baptismal date right off, and will be meeting with us today. It's been great to focus on finding this week, especially different ways to find. We haven't had too much time to think of new ways, but being able to refresh our day with something new and different really does help. And I know the Lord will prepare his children in different ways to help them find their way to us. So we also need to do the same to find them. Thank you for your fantabulous packages, goodies, support, and love- -Elder Liu
Saturday, March 3, 2012
Hey, there was an earthquake here! Yay! It was super small, but noticeable. It came while I was playing the opening hymn, so that was an interesting experience. Now I can say that I've played piano during an earthquake. That's pretty cool, I guess. Wow! I can't believe Elder Braithwaite is leaving for the next transfer! I'll be staying in TaiDong to work with an Elder Bowler. This transfer has gone so quickly. And there is still much I feel I need to know to be able to fully lead an area. Elder Braithwaite did so much for us when he was here. But I'm grateful to be able to get to know Elder Bowler. I have definitely found it true that you can learn much from your those you serve. I learned a lot from Elder Braithwaite every day. I know he'll do wonders in Nan2Kan3. This week we had some good work, and we saw some cool miracles. Most of them are just the Lord's guidance. We went to visit a Less active member about 30 minutes away (but yes, we contacted all along the way!), and then we went tracting in her area. The first door we knocked was someone who grew up in the Mormon church, but just wasn't baptized. She learned english from english class and went to church a lot when she was really little. She had recently been encouraging her son to go to church because of the good impressions she had of it. She also said she would be willing to take the missionary lessons in June when her schooling is over. It was cool to see that miracle so quickly in our efforts. Her son is taking lessons with the other elders right now. And he's doing really good as well. We'll be working hard to get this family to understand and apply the restored gospel. Yesterday we had a really interesting experience. We had an LA come up to us and wanted us to sit with him. He told us that he didn't want to come to church anymore. He's been baptized 6 months and says that he hasn't felt the Spirit yet, and said his patience was worn out. He hopes God is still real, but he's done for now. It was a unique situation to be listening to him. We asked him a few question to be able to understand it fully. But at the end, I didn't know what to say except for our testimony. I testified that the Lord has prepared for us blessings that we can't even imagine. He loves us more than we can understand. And although 6 months is a long time, that keeping on to that hope for even longer to know these things are real is worth it. I could feel the Spirit testify my words were true. I was infinitely grateful for that feeling. Well things are going well here. Hopefully we'll hit the ground running with this new transfer. I'm really excited to see some more miracles as we work diligently and effectively in the Lord's work! Thank you everyone for your prayers! I feel them every day. I love you, -Elder Liu