Monday, August 26, 2013

When we are happy

Aug 26, 2013
Another wonderful week. It's so nice to work with another Elder who has been out longer than me. Elder Ford will be going back to Colorado at the end of this transfer. He's such a good guy. After training two missionaries back to back, I love how smoothly everything goes with an experienced missionary. Our Zone did really well with their goals this month, and we're sure that with added faith, obedience, and a focus on Christlike attributes, this coming month our Zone will continue to see miracles. The filipena sisters in International had 3 baptisms this week! 

September is looking good for our companionship. We have several baptismal dates scheduled. We also managed to get five pull-backs this week. We frequently go to a place called World-Wide that is two stops away from the church in Wan Chai. A lot of filipena and indonesian domestic workers gather there from all over Hong Kong, and we go there and invite people to come back to the church with us. Several of the pull-backs became new, really solid investigators this week. I love talking to these people, they are always so humble and their faith in Christ seems deeply rooted. With the abuse and unfair treatment that many of them suffer, it's always profound to see how much faith and trust they put in God. It's interesting that sometimes the happiest people we meet have some of the saddest and most trying backgrounds. I think that should be instructive to all of us. 

We're always busy and the members are keeping us on our toes with referrals and pull-backs they bring back themselves. 

Today is short, because we don't have a lot of time. I've realized that the times where I've been happiest on my mission have not necessarily been when numbers are high and we are teaching a lot of people, but when I feel that I'm bearing sincere testimony of the Savior and His Atonement. It's been when I've felt the Spirit confirming the truth of my words in the heart of the hearer. I think it's easy for a missionary to think a lot about how much they are changing other people, and little about how much they are being changed themselves. I don't think we can ever expect to invite someone to follow Jesus Christ, and invitation which ultimately implies becoming like Him, without understanding ourselves the implications that invitation has for us. I have felt immense changes in myself during my service. I hope that I'm changing every day. I feel that I've got more pitfalls than the average layman, and whatever wind of goodness that got me out here has been a tremendous blessing. I cannot explain in an adequate way how much my faith in Christ, especially the enabling and lifting power of His Atonement, has increased in my labor, which at many times seemed fruitless. It's more real and peaceful and happy and content than any other thing that I've put my trust in, and if it were fake, then it could not produce such feelings. The circumstances of our lives will always fluctuate, but our faith shouldn't. Every challenge and every blessing should be a new opportunity for our faith to enhance. I can testify that this work is true, and it has the power to make us selfless, influential, peaceful, righteous, and more like our Heavenly Father. 

Elder Hazen

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