Monday, January 4, 2016

2016- A new year!

2016! As this is the full year that I will be serving the Lord, my goal is something that President Nelson and President Sonksen both talked about: Having the Gospel of Christ inscribed on my heart. I have a bunch of other goals intended to get there, but this is the vision I have for my mission and what I am working to become.

The language is progressing fast and I feel much better about teaching and talking to people. I've been blessed with a companion that I can speak all Korean with, so constantly speaking in Korean has by far been the greatest help. I also feel my planning ability and the follow-through with our plans has increased, especially with contacts, which we finally got back up after a few rough weeks. We have also been incredibly blessed with our current investigator. I was on exchange during the first lesson, and unfortunately will be on exchange again during the second one this week. I have met him several times, though, and he is incredibly humble. Humility really is the key to feeling the Spirit and getting answers. He also avidly keeps commitments, even marking up the Book of Mormon like crazy when he read it, so he is acting with real intent. It is all we need to do, it seems, to point the way, and he will go the rest of the way running. 

I've learned this past week a lot about casting off the natural man and praying with real intent. I find in myself that same cycle seen in the Nephite nation - wholehearted and avid seeking the Spirit of the Lord and following it gradually gives way to a more idle and complacent attitude, until quickly I see results of that path and repent and return. Avoiding this cycle has everything to do with forsaking the natural man. Like the King Lamoni and the people of Ammon, we must absolutely forsake the things that cause us to relapse. 

 I felt that, in this case, that would mean forsaking idleness and the natural man by praying with real intent whenever and wherever I needed to. At church on Sunday, this is what I focused on. Often it is hard to focus for a long time, especially when it takes a great deal of focus and energy to understand what is being said. This time, however, I said a prayer for help to actually be fully engaged. I remembered that this meant I needed to forsake the easier road of just sitting there - praying with real intent. Even if it was mentally exhausting to repeat Korean in my mind for three hours, the difference was dramatic. Though I didn't understand everything, I almost always knew what the person was talking about and where their direction was. I was even able to participate more readily. I know I was blessed with the gift of tongues just for doing all I could. I will try to remember this to always avoid that Nephite cycle - recognize what the problem is and pray for help, acting with all I can muster to do what I can. The Lord will take care of the rest. 

I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas and New Year! Set some goals and go for them. Keep Mosiah 3:19 in mind if you ever feel discouraged in accomplishing them. If you really want to accomplish something or become something, you must forsake whatever it is that holds you back or makes it difficult. Thanks for your love and messages!
​I love it! Came at just the right time, too. I used it yesterday when it suddenly got really cold.

​Playing Phase 10 with Elder Kim Tae Wan, Elder Huckvale, and Elder Kim She Hyun hiding behind my head.

Christmas Lunch

These are Tyler's companion's (Elder Kim) mashed potatoes.

Tyler was really craving mashed potatoes in Korea.  They don't have potatoes.  So we sent him some instant potatoes, not as good as fresh, but should satisfy the  craving.  These are Tyler's potatoes.

This is a buffet where they just bring the meat out and we cook it ourselves and basically eat it off the grill.

​Christmas English party in Gireum! That's Elder Yetter coming in from the left and me and Elder Littlefield in the background.

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