Email home #9, sent March 24; new photos on Facebook
We found 2 new investigators this week! *cue shouts of rejoice* and not only that, but one of our investigators came to church AND a less active member did too! *cue roars of exclamation*
If it's one thing I've learned since being in Denver, it's that it's basically only the people from outside the country that are accepting of our message. Of all the investigators we have, TWO of them are from the states. For instance, we have a family from India, a woman from Soviet Russia, a man from Africa, a couple from Nigeria and Jamaica...etc. Even though I'm not serving a foreign mission, I'm getting all the countries here all at once!
With that in mind, we came by a house that was clearly Asian. We're talking pictures of cartoon Asian girls in traditional red clothing stuck on the door with the Chinese character for "luck" sticking upside down. Not to mention the shoes lined outside the door. So we knocked on their door just hoping their hearts would be softened to see another Asian. Lo, and behold, they were softened! They're Vietnamese BUT they know a little bit of CANTONESE! Woohoo! So she told me to return later that night when her daughter who knows English is home.
We returned that night and offered a prayer for the daughter, C, and her family. We asked her to invite her family to join but I heard the TV on in the background. It was the Hong Kong channel! I guess their Cantonese is pretty good!
But after we said a prayer with C, we asked her how she felt. She said, "Relaxed." That's probably the most amazing thing about prayers. No matter how horribly un-eloquent I am, the prayer always invite the Holy Spirit in and provides us all comfort and calmness. There's actually something we recite every morning called The Standard of Truth. The beginning says, "The Standard of Truth has been erected. No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing." And that is so true. And also so very relieving because even if I don't explain everything clearly, the Holy Ghost will always come to testify to the individuals that what we are saying is true.
That night we visited a members' home. They'd just gotten their piano tuned so they let me play it and sight-read some songs. It made my heart melt because I didn't realize how much I missed playing the piano. So advice to those piano players who want to serve a mission: bring some pieces to play on P-day!
Regarding the new investigator from Soviet Russia. She goes to crossfit at the church building with us every week. We got to sit down with her and she flat out asked, "What do Mormons believe that make them so friendly?" Well, there are quite a lot of things in the LDS faith that make us so friendly to others but it all comes down to the core center of our faith, that is, our faith in Jesus Christ. As long as we sincerely apply His teachings in our lives, we not only are friendly, but have a happiness that can last forever. And this isn't just the happiness that ice cream and nutella brings to us. It's the happiness that provides you with feelings of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance" (Galatians 5:22-23)
I told her that but I'm not sure how much she liked the answer....Let's just say she's Jewish. But Jews and Mormons have incredibly similar values and principles. The only difference is faith in Jesus Christ, which makes up our entire religion/life.
I say "religion/life" because the other new investigator is from Africa, but more recently Belize. His cousin's son is currently serving an LDS mission in Uganda (ooooh, aaaaah). He said that the thing he likes most about our religion is that it's not just something you do once a week or once a year. It's a way of life. It's a constant progression and it won't stop until Jesus Christ comes again. Oh, boy, I look forward to that day!
Hope you all have a fantastic week!