We've had a pretty busy week, but busy is good, because it normally implies that we are being effective, and are accomplishing a decent amount of things.
Elder Kunioka, Elder Crofts, and Elder Walters headed home last week, which was sad, as always, but they are on to more things now! The Kunioka's came to pick their son up, and, when Sister Kunioka saw Elder Kunioka, she grabbed hold of him and just cried, which teared everyone up. It really gave me a deeper understanding of the sacrifice that missionaries make as they leave home for two years. It is an amazing to see how the gospel of Jesus Christ allows people to make those leaps of faith into the unknown. How grateful I am to be able to serve as a missionary.
One of my good friends sent a cassette tape last week, which absolutely brightened up my entire week! We went on exchanges, which ended up being really messy, because we had an appointment late Thursday night, then we had to rush to the Stake Center to meet up with the other Elders. Anyhow, Elder Herbst and I made it home in time. Had a normal day at the office… wow... this week's letter seems really boring right now. It just doesn't seem to be flowing at all! Anyhow, we got to meet up with Seoko and Velmurugan Friday night. We're still working with Seoko to help him make his own decision about baptism. If he doesn't make a decision soon, we're going to have to drop him, as sad as that may be. Velmurugan did great as per normal. It was good to have Brother Kumar there again, because it is so much easier for Velmurugan to explain what we are trying to teach him.
Saturday was pretty busy. We had our weekly planning session, with an appointment midway through. When we got back, we had just enough time to finish planning, then we had to head over to a business school for an appointment with a referral that the sisters had given us. It was an amazing appointment because the investigator himself was amazing! Ajay is a man from India studying for his MBA, and is working for HP at the same time. But, the reason why he wanted to meet was because he wanted to find how he can get closer to God. He had a sincere desire and asked such great questions. He understood what we were teaching, and absorbed it well. He's meeting with someone from another Church too, which is great, because it's just good for him to be able to see the differences, and then to choose for himself what he knows is best. He is just one of those people that we search for during our missions, someone who has a sincere desire to learn about truth.
Sunday was ward conference. It was good, had some good speakers, and a ward lunch after Church. We had three appointments scheduled within a couple of hours so we had to go on splits. Had dinner with a member, then Elder Perrett and I headed to Bukit Gombak to go on splits with our Ward Mission Leader and his home teaching companion to visit some families. Elder Stone and Elder Taiamoni went with Han, a member, to teach a golden investigator that Elder Stone had contacted named Steven. Apparently, the appointment was wonderful. We're going to meet with him again tonight so I'm excited! They met up with Velmurugan after that for his baptismal interview, and he passed, so Velmurugan is getting baptized this Saturday, so we're way excited!
We headed to NUS after the office on Monday evening to look for Joe since his phone was off, and he was headed back to Shanghai on Tuesday. When we got to his doem, we found out that we needed a key to get to the right floor. We obviously didn't have that, so we climbed twelve floors to where his room was supposed to be, and found the door locked. When we got back down, we tried to ask the people in the management office if they would take us up, but they wouldn't. So, we said a prayer, then had dinner. Heading back to the elevator lobby, we weren't too hopeful with our chances of meeting someone who actually lived on the twelfth floor itself. So, we stood there for about five minutes asking some people going up to their rooms if they lived on that floor, with no success. Meanwhile, we randomly talked to a German man who seemed to be there both times we had been in the lobby. Anyhow, just as we were about to give up, I asked an approaching guy if he lived on the twelfth floor, which surprised him, because he did! We mentioned that we were looking for Joe, whom he knew, and he kindly took us up, and we found Joe! He had his line canceled, and he had gotten back Sunday afternoon from a trip to Malaysia, so he had not been able to come to Church. It was nice to be able to just talk with him for awhile. It was pretty funny at the same time, because he was sitting in his boxers, and, when Elder Stone asked if he wanted to put his clothes on, he said that it was ok. It was funny! Anyhow, we had a quick meal with him, then did some less-active member finding. Unfortunately, no one was home.
Had a good Zone training by the Zone leaders about being "equally yoked," being able to be diligent at finding, but working with the members also, not just working with them, but working with them equally too. It was good to be able to be reminded about how important members are, how essential members are to missionary work. Had to go on splits again, because we had two appointments at the same time. Ended up taking Elder Carpenter, one half of the office couple with me to go finding, and then an appointment with Seoko. Elder Carpenter didn't do too bad, considering the fact that he served in Scotland awhile back and only door-knocked there. Pheonix, our member, was already there when we arrived, so we dived right into the lesson about King Lamoni's in the Book of Mosiah. What I learned from the story as we read it right there and then was amazing. What I came to realize was, the reason why King Lamoni's father softened was because of the love that he saw that Ammon had for his son, and that is the same way we need to be with our investigators, members, and their non-member family members: that we must truly love the people, and thereby be able to help them change by example, pure example.
"And when he saw that Ammon had no desire to destroy him, and when he also saw the great love he had for his son Lamoni, he was astonished exceedingly, and said: Because this is all that thou hast desired, that I would release thy brethren, and suffer that my son Lamoni should retain his kingdom, behold, I will grant unto you that my son may retain his kingdom from this time and forever; and I will govern him no more-" Alma 20:26