Is Joe going to be all right? I'm glad your book is coming along. Also I think it's cool you want to run a half marathon, DO IT. I'll pray for you. You most definitely can. I can't believe how fast time flies. I'm mad at the MTC because it eats 1/8th of my mission. I need you to send me more pictures--pictures of the family, Vern's prom, etc. My companion wants to marry Veronica or Savannah.
Another Week gone by in Xin An. This next week is going to be CRAZY!! Why? 2 Words. Duan Chuan. Or in other words we have a young man coming to join our companionship for the next 7 days. It's going to be SWEET!! Living it up with a couple Taiwanese Elders. We have no idea who he is, but we go pick him up in an hour.
This week had some definite high points. Where to start. I think my favorite part was interviews with the Mission President. I love being able to sit down and have ten minutes of one-on-one time with him. It's an opportunity to learn so much, and I always walk out of there feeling so excited to do this work. Before this transfer I wasn't too excited about serving right by the mission home, but it's been amazing how convenient everything is and it's really great to see President so often.
Another highlight is my new best friend. Guo Di Xiong. We went to visit him this week and he is AMAZING. He lives in a house on the roof of a 6 floor apartment building out in the far east corner of our area. He has amazing mountain views, and his house is amazing. He's loaded. Coolest part is that there is no elevator. This 82 year old man walks those stairs every day. He took us out to dinner where we met up with the temple sisters. He is awesome. He has had the Book of Mormon for 8 days and he's finishing up Ether. He's almost done. Yesterday he came to church, loved it, and we taught him after church at about 1 o' clock. We taught him the Word of Wisdom. He loves to speak English. In his prayer he was speaking in Chinese and then in English he said "and... No Coffee, No Smoking, No Tea, No Drinking, No Druggies." I loved every minute of it. He hasn't smoke or drank his entire life, and his health is amazing. Yesterday he also told me his own word of wisdom health tip. After I had 3 fish meatballs during lunch yesterday, he told me how bad and unhealthy they were. I told him I was ignorant to the fact, and he committed me to avoid them the rest of my life. In English he said, "promise me, you must never eat." I'm totally ok with keeping that commitment. They're not even that good tasting.
We moved his baptismal date to 7/30, and he got so excited. He said he's excited to get baptized so he can go to the temple, and help his wife get baptized so that they can live in heaven together. He's an absolute miracle and such an awesome guy. We returned to the church at 6:30 that night and he was still there. He had been reading and making friends with members from all over Taibei. It's amazing this guy has been out there for so long!!! THERE ARE SO MANY PREPARED PEOPLE, WE JUST HAVE TO FIND THEM, AND THEN HELP THEM UNDERSTAND THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD. It's so amazing this work. So simple. Anyone who is willing to open their heart a little bit, and try out our invitations will get an answer. In the Chinese translation of Moroni's promise there is a character that means DEFINITELY, WITHOUT doubt the Holy Ghost will answer. I love emphasizing that with investigators. I love the fact that I've been privileged to teach an absolutely amazing family, and now an old guy. Both are pretty rare, and both are things I wanted so badly before my mission. Guo Bing Jun is amazing!
This week I also had an absolutely amazing, miracle filled exchange with my zone leader. His name is Elder Binkinuan. He is a Taiwanese aborigine and super smart. He's 26, and has a law degree from NTU, the equivalent of an Ivy league school in Taiwan. We started our exchange out with our nightly planning session in which he requested to sing the Star Spangled Banner. He sang it with more soul than the most patriotic of Americans. He loves R and B and his Star Spangled Banner was top notch. The exchange was a ton of fun, literally a perfect 24 hours in missionary work, and we saw amazing miracles.
I'm excited for the week ahead, I'm expecting some sweet miracles in the near future. I'm super excited for Guo Di Xiong's baptism. I love this work, really loving this area, really excited for what the future holds. For some reason I get the feeling I'll be here to stay awhile. We'll see. Love you all.
Read scriptures, read correct translations of the Bible, read the Book of Mormon. Those books have POWER. I believed them to be true before coming on my mission, but only out here have I realized their power.
I was in a restaurant this week and heard "Blower's Daughter" by Damien Rice. Last song I would expect to hear in Taiwan. Very trunky moment.
Love you all, Going to go pick up my new companion
"No Coffee, No smoking, No Tea, No Drinking, No Druggies"