Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Auburn--August 31, 2015

Dear family,

I'm so excited to tell you my experiences. It is really cool to hear about Elder Jiao's experiences. When he was young, his parents divorced and he lived with his grandparents just until last year. His grandmother died and he misses her a lot. He lives with his mom now. The ward members love Elder Jiao. They love to hear his story and testimony. He struggles a lot with feeling inadequate. He has a really hard time speaking English. But for being out only 3 months, he is doing just fine. It's really hard when I want to explain something, but I don't know how to say it so he'll understand. He cannot understand when I converse with people in English, so I have to take time to explain what we said simply. Every day at language study, he repeats the words on his flashcards, and I work out of the missionary Mandarin book to learn the discussions in Chinese. So far, I can explain that God is our loving Heavenly Father, how He ordained the family, and how he calls prophets to teach us. It's just as hard for me to learn Chinese as it is for Elder Jiao to learn English because of the tones. 

Shen shi wo men de Tian Fu. "God is our loving Heavenly Father."
Wo men shi Ta de hai zi. "We are His children."
Ta pai wo men lai dao zhe ge shi jie xue xi he cheng zhang. "He sent us to this earth to learn and grow."
Ta yao wo men hui dao Ta de shen bian. "He wants us to return to his side."
Ta zhun bei yi ge ji hua bang zhu wo men hui dao Ta de shen bian. "He prepared a plan to help us return to his side."

This week was incredible! We had a lesson with a part-member family, the “W” family. We explained to Brother “W” (the non-member) what D&C was. He had a few questions about church history and Joseph Smith. Their family is incredible. I feel that he and his son are going to join the church. I don't know when, but they will. Brother “W” grew up Southern Baptist in Texas. He said before he married Sister “W”, he never would have considered picking up the Book of Mormon. But now, he believes it is scripture. 

We had a cool experience where we tracted into a less active family. They don't have records in our ward, but they invited us to come back. There are non-linear blessings that come from street contacting and tracting. 

Earlier this week, I felt prompted to call a less active member on our ward list. His name is “A H”. I called him and he told me that his home teachers just came over on Sunday. He told them that he wanted to come back to church. He related this to me over the phone. I set up an appointment with him for Tuesday night. He came to sacrament meeting this week! He hasn't been to church in years.

Here are some pictures from around the apartment. 

Love you,

Elder Herbert