We had two visa-runners over this week, Elders Parrot and Etable. They are both really cool. Elder Etable is a Filipino from Sabah and Elder Parrot is half Caucasian, half Polynesian from New Zealand. Having visa-runners over can be fun. This mission is unique in the sense that most of the Elders and Sisters have to go on a trip every three months so that they can return with a new visa stamp, so they have to leave their area for a few days.
Anyhow, it's been a good week. On Thursday, we were walking to Church when we passed a guy who was looking at us in a weird way, so I stopped and talked to him. It turned out that he was a naval diver stationed in Asia, a former member of the Church who was ex-communicated a year or so ago. My heart went out to him, he seemed to be in his early twenties, and he told us of his struggle of whether or not to return to the Church. I gave him a card with the Church address on it and invited him to return. Meeting him that day has made me all the more thankful for the atonement of the Savior. How wonderful and beautiful the sacrifice of Christ. If not for him, all of us would have no way to return to live with Him and our Father in Heaven. As a missionary, I have felt the love for people around me increase, and I love that increase of feeling and emotion in me, as I strive to be like the Savior. There really is no way that we can keep the gospel to ourselves when we see how much it has changed us, and how we can help others to change for the better and come to understand the great plan of happiness that each of us can come to understand and enjoy.
We had a great 4th of July! We had a couple of great lessons. First, we taught these two Filipinos who were referrals. Rosanna has met withe the missionaries before while Emma hasn't. They were both very receptive and seemed to understand the plan of salvation. After that, we met up with Cajan, a Sri Lankan who I met a couple weeks ago with Elder Grant, and whom Elder Pace and Elder Hatton, our district leader, taught while we were on exchanges. The main focus of our lesson was to show him The Restoration video, which we did. The difference was that we watched it in Tamil, not English. As we watched the video, I marveled at just how just and true and beautiful and unique The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is. We were sitting in a room in Singapore, with a Sri Lankan, an American and a Singaporean watching a video about a young boy who saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. And, we were watching it in Tamil. How wonderful the gospel of Jesus Christ is. It transcends cultures and languages, and reaches out to reach out and touch the children of God, to tell them, to teach them that the Lord has called prophets and apostles once again, to lead and direct His church, and organized the same way as it was when Christ was on this Earth. I felt the Spirit as we sat in that room that day, because it really doesn't matter what language we speak or what our background is. We are all children "of our Heavenly Father who loves us, and we love Him." We ended the day with a wonderful 4th of July celebration by having a barbeque, and fun and games at the mission home. It was very fun and a nice break to have. We watched a LikenIt movie, David and Goliath, that's a musical movie. It was amazingly spiritual and I learnt much from it. In one of the songs, David is singing while he is picking pebbles from the brook to use against Goliath, and he sings about how we are all stones in the Lord's hands. The Lord calls many put few are chosen, and that we need to prepare ourselves, to smoothen and refine ourselves so that we can be used as the Lord would have us to be used, to stand on His side, and follow His command. The movie and the music was wonderful, and I would encourage all to get it! http://www.likenit.com/
Sunday was my birthday! I'm 20 now! Old! But, I did have a great few days. On Thursday, we went over to the Petersens for dinner, and they baked for me my favorite Banana Cream Pie! We had a good time at Church and we had three investigators come! That is the most we've had since I've been on my mission! We went over to the Iths for dinner, where we had great food and a cake! On Monday, we went over to yet another home, the Lims, where I had a light Japanese cheesecake! Ah, how time flies. The mission has been and will continue to be an amazing experience. I know that I will have fun times, but also days that are hard and long. But, I am in the service of Him who has felt all our pains and sorrows, and I know that he will lift me up and help me as I strive to do His work with all my heart, might, mind and strength.
Yesterday, I couldn't breathe properly and felt that I had some heart palpitations so I went to the doctor. Had to do a bunch of tests and I am on a twenty-four hour monitor. I'm sure that all will be well. We had a great district meeting where we talked about how we can overcome our fears to talk to people, about how we can open our mouths and spreqad the word of the gospel. In Psalms 81:10, it reads:
I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thyAs we declare the word of God, we will build our testimonies, and the Lord will fill our mouths with His gospel.
mouth wide, and I will fill it.
I love the Lord for the marvelous blessings He has given me. I was reading the insert in the Ensign about President Hinckley yesterday. How I miss his words of kindness and cousel. I love and respect him. How I hope that as I strive to follow his example, I may draw closer and be more like Christ, increasing "in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man."