Waaa, such a good week. Haha, what a rollercoaster of emotions this whole experience is.
First of all, YES I did get the package like 2 and a half weeks ago, sorry for not confirming. Mom, the beef jerky fell from Heaven. Rather, delivered from Heaven through you. Kind of like a missionary. Way to empathize. You can rest assured that I ate 2 entire packages within a couple hours.
And that new oil vial that Elder Sorenson made from Nauvoo? It's incredible! I love the symbolism of the Godhead. Seriously, touch of the master's hand. I hope he gets these emails too! I miss that guy, and miss his glute checks. Speaking of Nauvoo, several things reminded me of Nauvoo this week and how that summer really paved the way for the manner in which I serve my mission here in Hong Kong. I also received a wonderful letter from a friend in Nauvoo currently, and I felt the Spirit very strong when I read it. I miss that place.
False alarm, Elder Ng is still my companion and we're keepin the faith in Aberdeen. Mouh cho.
The reason I say it was such a good week is because just like I'd hoped, the work picked up a ton. Now that testing is over (yes Mom, to answer your question, it is government run and all the kids in Hong Kong are required to go through the public school system here) we've been able to meet with all of our previous investigators again and meet a ton of new kids. Something we like to do lately is go play basketball with the Young Men in our ward and because the basketball courts always have chinese kids wishing they were Yao Ming you can rest assured we get numbers every time. They especially love it when I use Chinese slang with them. If you tells someone that you will "wat" them "gei", it means you'll bend their machine, which is the Chinese equivalent of "I'm going to own you." You'd never believe it, but it does wonders. We've gotten so many numbers this week simply by playing basketball.
One of our investigators from before met with us again. He told us before that he thought our church was an evil church (it's is preached in all the Christian-owned schools here) and he'd never have met with us if it wasn't for his member friend. We teach him English one on one and then share with him our message. He loves to read, and before we could assign him a chapter he was like, "Yeah this is way important. I'll read the whole Book of Mormon."
The lawyer I told you all about a month ago, in brief we got in contact with him again. He said he wasn't ready for our message, but our Mission President told us we should keep meeting with him. I was able to schedule him again after some time without contact, and we shared a really powerful message again, and you could see tears forming in his eyes many times. He says he feels like he is happy and doesn't need more, but we told him that life is about progression. What's the next goal? Is he just going to stay there or does he want something even better? What is this life about? Happiness and then stagnancy? Of course not! Spur of the moment I assigned him to read Alma 32 and he said a great prayer to close. 3 hours later I received the following text message:
(He likes using our first names and refuses any other way) "Hi Garrett, great to have met u again. I can feel that u cared for how u brought the message across today. I feel your sincerity in connecting me with God. I enjoyed the opportunity in getting to know u better and hope u know me bit better. The vibes are right. For all of that, I thank you and God who's sent you and went ahead to read Alma 32 that u suggested. It echoes with me a lot when it talks about the good seed and the patience for the furit. Did u pick that verse for me? It speaks to me spot on. I am feeling much better in this journey and trust it will bring me to somewhere I am meant to be. Keep well and see ya."
You can imagine how I felt after reading this. Trouble is now we'll have to figure out how to help him recognize other missionaries as servants of the Lord so we can turn him over; he isn't in our area and it's tough to travel to him.
I just want to make it very clear that regardless of the trial, the affliction, or the trouble, success always comes if you press forward. I know this is the eternal work of our Father who is in Heaven. I wish I could stand on the peak of a mountain and have the ends of the earth hear my voice. But I am no angel, and am so imperfect. To my family, I miss you all so much and am so thankful to hear from you each week. To my friends, be strong always and never forget that God Himself is the source of truth. Nothing I say can persuade a man to believe, but only through the power of the Spirit which is in me. I am worthy, and I have the authority of God. And with it I proclaim that this is His truth, the Book of Mormon is true, Christ is our Savior, and we will always ascend if we do what is right. The Spirit will always tell you what to do.