I'm a Mormon

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Week 6 in Korea

so much is going on and it sounds like so much has happened back home so i will try and talk as much as i can although i don't have much time.  Grandpa pyrah..i don't know what to say he was truly always my friend in my time and need.  i waited for every time i could see him out walking or walking to church and him just saying 'how are you doing macay'  he loved me so much and i loved him. i hope his family is doing ok.  i hope reva is doing ok he LOVES her so much.  the only scripture that i feel i can provide for that family right now is the only scripture that got me out of the dumps when grandma died.  doctrine and covenants 128:22 courage!  reva and pyrah family i promise he loves you so much! 

next. damian how are you doing buddy? a lot is going on? all my cousins! haven't heard much from you guys but i hope it is going well! how is grandpa doing? glad to hear chemo is done for now..but i sure hope he is maintaining that good positive attitude whenever i get sad here in korea i think what crazy joke or remark would grandpa say right now to make me feel better? keep fighting grandpa!! i thought about grandma pierce a lot this week and how she used to always sing to me! i haven't had much time to write any of my family but know i love you guys! grandma thanks for singing to me when i was little! big derrick has been working hard and look at where he is! CONGRATS!! such a great example to me of hard work! so pumped for you!
fam i heard things are going well dad keep working hard ya and be the best coach you can you can learn a lot from the coaches hahaha sorry but ya keep working!!! heard parker split his head open..i knew that family was hard headed... magen heard you gave a bomb testimony the other day keep working hard i don't have time to write you an email today but keep fighting. mom dad how are you guys doing? the personal study and everything?
i just have a couple stories real fast. first we were out street contacting and talking to a kid when a guy walks up and starts yelling at us in korean (remember i don't know what anyone says) but i knew it wasn't good.  this was my first real experience with opposition and i sure was so so so mad. but somehow i stayed calm and when the guy left i shared a simple testimony about the book of mormon it was so cool to see how the kid could see our message was important and we found it to be very special and that he could see a difference in us. after my simple testimony he gave us his number! so so so neat!
next. a less active man has recently been coming to church regularly which in and of itself is amazing.  but recently he has brought his two kids which are 12 and 13 aka remind me of magen and i.  they are so close. anyway they came last week and again this week and this week their father bought them both copies of the book of mormon they came walking into church so happy!!!! so proud!! and they don't even know what it is yet!  we begin teaching them on wednesday!! its so crazy to see how the lord prepares people and puts them in your path.  this gospel, if you live its simple principles, brings such happiness. 
everyone go read president uchtdorfs talk from last conference 'waiting on the road to damascus'  such a great talk. remember faith is a gift given to us by heavenly father through our hard work, desire, charity, and hope.  also i was reading in mormon 1:15 and mormon 2:1  how old was he? 15-16!  the leader of an army and trusted with the records!!  what can we learn??  the time to prepare to be a leader is now! and, we all can gain spiritual revelation!!  and how much the lord prepares us!  i can see how even 10 years ago the lord has prepared me for days here in korea! 
the work is hard here in korea.  i dont understand this language at all.  i just got my first haircut today, have you ever tried to tell someone how to cut your hair not using words?  try that sometime! made me so thankful for shantel and my mom ahhaha!  this life is difficult!  this mission is difficult!! ahhhh reva!!!! i love you!!! please everyone study everyday, pray out loud!!!!  i love you all!!! be someones miracle today!

Elder Hunter

elder arveseth is second to the right standing up in a suit. 
my 2 zone leaders are on the bottom kneeling down. 
elder westarp and elder madsen are my housemates. 
elder westarp has up peace signs and elder madsen has his arms around him

Monday, March 19, 2012

Week 5 I think?

what up fam!! first a few things, mom dad magen thanks for the package it was much needed!  i got letters from yunwoo and my family so it was great to hear from you. a much needed boosters.  finally my little buddy sam heninger sent me a letter, its about time.  first, dad congrats on the first big win!! 1 down 1000000 to go! mom dad sign me up for as many vacations as you want in 2 years as long as im with all of you, im cool! happy bday to any one who celebrated yesterday wish i could have been there. gpa how you doin?  i hope good.  i go to bed everynight exhausted but i can never forget about praying for my grandpa.  im so thankful for the plan of salvation holy cow!!
this week has been good.  its hard because we have so many investigators that are not progressing. they have so many good questions  that would be solved if they only asked for themselves and had FAITH!! we are teaching a 39 year old guy oh-yoon-gyoo who works for samsung, but he is always working and doesn't understand how only one guy (jesus) can take care of everyones sins and also if he can why didn't he show himself to the korean people and others around the world.  

another investigator kim-me-hee only trusts random pastors and us. but she trusts them more because 'when she asks 1 question they already can answer her other 10'  they went to school to learn the bible!!!  our members and us as missionaries learn by ourself and we can show you how to learn by yourself also! she has read the whole bible and book of mormon but korean is so hard to read in korean that she just read it without thinking or anything kinda like you would read a korean book just look at it and not study! 

we are teaching 2 people that are married 1 is a major violinist here in korea and her husband works for a business. he is buddhist and she is catholic. she wants him to become christian so we are teaching them both.  they are so great, one of my favorites. a member took us out to a way nice steak dinner last week so we didn't get to really give a lesson to them. i made the dad a sign that says 'do not disturb i am thinking about my daughter'  their daughter is studying violin in germany and he misses her so so so much. so ya, i have been trying to do little crafts and things for our investigators and members. koreans like that stuff i guess and i need to gain a lot of trust from everyone especially because i don't speak korean.  

we have an old grandma ee-young-sook who is 70 years old. the cutest thing ever i promise. she has these little korean eyes that just shine. i love it but she is wiling to do everything and anything we ask her too.  except baptism.  she didn't even have a problem with the word of wisdom. we asked her to stop drinking coffee and she said ok i will try! like ah! but she wont be baptized. elder arveseth thinks she will be the type at wont be baptized here but in the next life which is upsetting but also a bit relieving, i guess. 

as a new missionary i still don't understand it. we went to our part member family like we do every sunday night. (the ones who have tears written on the wall) saturday was their moms birthday, but we didn't know.  we went over on sunday and started talking to them and i asked if they made or got a card for their mom. flat out they said we cant afford it.  cant afford a card!  broke my heart. i was shocked. here this family is giving us all their food, yes it may be leftovers but still giving you all this food, strawberries, cake, rice, etc and they cant afford a birthday card for their mom.  

everyone listen! i know i am no one to talk about gratitude and all that because i am not good at that at all but please look at how blessed you are! if you can afford a birthday card consider yourself lucky!
transfers are coming up but elder arveseth trains me for 12 weeks so we have at least 1 more transfer together.  
we are working hard and are picking up new investigators up a lot! unfortunately not everyone is like they make it seem on the church videos. like they have all this desire to be baptized, but its ok this work is hard.  the holy ghost can and has changed people  and it will continue to do so. 
i love everyone.  elder arveseth asked me how much i look up to my dad and it finally hit me what a great great great example my dad has been to me.  i don't know why but i promise that through prayer we can overcome all!! moroni 733 this work is Jesus Christ's work and we can do all things in Him!!!  ether 12;27 i am being shown weaknesses everyday but its ok!! we can do it! i love you!! don't stop progressing! study and pray everyday! be someones miracle!

Elder Hunter

Monday, March 12, 2012

Week 4

dad and mom thanks for the pictures and news paper stuff i loved them, mom i am doing ok.  this is so hard and everyday i wake up knowing i cant go on but i jut keep trying.  if grandpa can keep a good attitude so can i right? im trying. we have a lot of investigators but not many are really wanting baptism so we have to drop them. baseball was fun but i couldn't do it for long I started envisioning playing with dad and i just missed it so much. our ward is bomb we have a tab at 2 nice restaurants and they are so helpful.  elder arveseth is the dark haired one in that video u found mom. yes, anyone can email me but i can only reply  my family. i would say maybe 70-100 in our ward. church building is about as long as our driveway but it has 3 floors. my area is like right outside seoul so it very big town with lots and lots of rich and poor people, this are is like new york if you have an apartment here you know they are rich. area is just a bunch of buildings and a few hills that people 'hike' weather right now is still cold but it is getting warm a little bit of rain but no snow.  best food is probably just like sam-gip-sar its like just pork or i had korean bbq yesterday. weirdest food i would say is just like straight wet sea weed or some funky noodles.  breakfast and lunch is usually a banana and toast or grilled cheese or some korean noodles with rice cake and rice.  just a lot of starch and veggies.  elder arveseth is a good cook so we eat well in the afternoons.  dinner appointments maybe 1-2 a week it just depends on the person.  food is huge in the culture so we usually go to someones house and they give us snacks every time we meet. my clothes are working out great. shoes are great feet are hanging in there! my whole body is getting very skinny especially my legs but its good i guess. i am in good health.  cold meds i think i am just about over my cold but maybe next winter send me some more ya? i will take pics of my apartment and send them home in my package. you don't talk to your neighbours here. our mission office is about 1 hour away by subway and bus. there are 8 of us in our district and i love my district leader, he is great! he is from slc 2 others are from utah 1 is from korea and the other sister is from orem.  one elder from arizona.  district leader is elder deean.  zone leader is elder reyes who is way cool but i cant remember the other ones name. we have district meeting every wednesday. zone conference every month. pdays so far have just been resting or shopping for elder arveseth. our service is a 2 hour english class every saturday. we have 7 investigators but like i said we will have to drop some.

i talk about 'being someones miracle' ya?  food for thought.  how can you be a lifesaver if you are dressed up like everyone else on the beach? be prepared be ready and be in tune with the spirit aka study and pray. know that i am doing my best to work hard to learn to grow and to help others.  think about how happy we will be in 2 years when WE can say that WE did it.  pray for me and i will pray for you too.  i love you guys!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Week 3

before i forget i haven't head from snacker or sam h in awhile.
the family was baptised!! oh my goodness it was so so so amazing.  we have the #1 ward in korea and they did such an amazing job making them feel so welcomed into the ward. the young adults (who some of them are converts) made a video saying welcome to the ward and talked about the blessings they have received.  then 2 young ins got up and played a song with the clarinet and violin and it was so amazing. then the father baptized them!! it is so amazing i could not stop smiling!  the joy they had was so so so crazy and the feeling was so great! the father makes me so so so happy. 

then!!! before the service started we had 2 investigators we had been teaching show up  who said they wouldn't be able to make it. one is a 70 year old lady who is so so so cute and the other a 39 year old tall korean business man.  they both showed up to see!!!!  i hope they felt the spirit! i sure did!! i think if we work really hard at helping them gain faith we could get them baptised this month or next.  

also! a convert in our ward has been working hard at being a missionary.  she has brought 1 friend to have lessons and brought another friend yesterday to the baptismal service!!  he already wants to be baptized!!  it is so amazing!!  we work with an investigator who has a hard time seeing the joy in this life.  we meet every week and discuss a topic that he assigns us. 2 weeks ago it was 'how do we enrich our lives' and last week it was 'what do you do if you feel you or other people have multiple personalities' it then turned into a discussion of loving other people.  he already has a testimony about our church but because he works until 5 in the morning he has a hard time coming to church thus why he cant be baptized. its great for me to help teach him because it is in all english and i am able to really connect with him.  

as of right now we have 11 progressing investigators so, im hoping we can start setting some more baptismal dates. we teach an english class on saturdays and obviously there are some non members and people that are not interested in our church that come, which is great!!  at the end of class we teach a 30 minutes gospel thought.  i had a different missionary companion with me as i was teaching (elder arveseth was with the family for their baptismal interview)  1 of the guys started saying christianity is 'bs'  and that he knows people who are christians but only have 2 children and it says in genisis to have lots of children.  boy, was i fired up! so so so fired up, but i was suprised when it was my turn to talk i was able to pull our conversation back into topic and share doctorine and covenants 137:9 where it says we will be judged on our works and desires.  i stayed calm surprisingly, (as most of you know i usually have a temper) and was shocked to see how well the other 4 people were still listening to what i had to say. if i would have tried to argue with him i would not have been fulfilling my purpose!! my purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ not to force them or just tell them.  

its so amazing to see how i can have a horrible week (in my mind) yet everyday i can go write in my journal and see how inadequate or small i feel here in the heart of seoul with millions of people, but to look back and read and really see how i am blessed each and everyday through trying my best and turning all my problems towards the atonement. that i see true happiness and see the hand of the Lord in my life.  i am thankful for this opportunity to be here and see how much potential i have along as everyone here in korea and in the world.  

remember blessings come through obedience to his commandments.   i know that happiness comes through only keeping the commandments!! please!!  if you are unhappy first pray. second study. third pray.  fourth serve.  repeat steps 1 and 2.  president uchtdorf said it is often times we find answers to our prayers through serving others.  well, there is your answer serve others.  remember we all have a potential to live up to.  find out each day how you can live up to your potential. 

last night we went to another part member families home. the mom and 1 daughter are members the father and another daughter are not.  the way they talk to us, it seems like they have some contention in their mom.  the mom says she is always nagging her children. 1 daughter is worried about the big end of school test and the other daughter (not a member) is kind of just in the background.  last night while we were at their house i remembered some things president monson, sister stucki,  and bishop baxter said; this is kind of all their words mixed into one thing.  people like to hear 2 things.  1-thank you 2-their own name.  so we sat their and went around giving each other compliments for about 15 minutes.  then i made little papers to put around their home to remind them to give each other compliments. i challenge everyone to give AT LEAST 1 COMPLIMENT to everyone they have close association with. 

lastly this week in my personal study i have been studying in alma.  alma 2:34 i found it interesting. as read alma 2 they are in the battle and they keep praying in order to conquer their 'trials'  but in verse 34 once they are done they don't sit around for another trial or the next thing in life to come. they move the 'trials' out of the way and start to go take on another one.  the rest then in 15:18 after alma and amulek have worked so hard they go to back to get better but their trials didn't stop! alma 17:29  ammon turns what people saw as the end of their lives into an opportunity! trail into opportunity! then after ammon has just done something amazing what does he do?  18:9 he keeps serving!! he didn't stop!!!  the things i learned this week are  turn trails into opportunities.  be patient in all things understand that their is an ETERNAL plan.  serve others!! 

just say thank you or tell someone they did a good job brushing their teeth it doesn't matter just say something nice!! not only will they like it but, like i said last week you will see the good in life and not the bad!!  take your trials head on!! pray! study! 
i love you guys!! i am still very homesick but i am trying each day to work harder and harder!!  pray study serve be a miracle today and keep smiling!
Elder Hunter