Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Wow! It's already been another week! I know it was just a day shorter,
but that was super fast! :) time goes really fast on the mission, but
you already knew that :).  This week, we got to watch conference! It
was WONDERFUL! I don't even know where to begin with all the different
things around here going on.

I guess I'll start with talking about the pictures.  This is us at a
dinner with one of our members.  She's a really good fellowship and
has helped us a lot with our investigators.  Turns out, she lives in
the same building as one of our investigators.  She's from cairns, but
is studying down here (Like all of our investigators) and is really
good at being friends with our investigators.  Her apartment is in the
casino towers :P, and it overlooks the Brisbane river as well as the
ferris wheel and other side of the river.

Oh yeah, a really wonderful opportunity happened to Elder Monsen and I
this week.  We were out finding when I started talking to this asian
guy sitting at our GQ spot.  Normal so far.  Turns out, he's a
Theology Major!!!! Cool huh? well, he was interested in learning, and
so we met with him. I was kinda skeptical at first with his responses
and took special care in avoiding argumentative comments between
different religions.  I shouldn't have been worried.  When we shared
with him our understanding of God, Prophets, and the restoration, he
completely agreed.  We gave him a book of Mormon and a few pamphlets
to take a look at.  We gave him a call later to confirm our other
appointment with him.  Sadly he was busy so had to cancel on us, but
he told us that he had been reading the book of mormon and felt that
it was different from other books.  I know that he felt the spirit as
he experimented with the Word of God.

Another miracle story happened with a brother from China.  We
contacted him right outside his apartment complex as he was returning
from school.  He was interested, and we set up an appointment with him
at a nearby public area.  When we met with him, we gave him a book of
mormon, then our fellowship asked if he wanted to go to institute with
her.  It was amazing.  When he went to institute, we talked to him
about his reading and prayer.  In two days, he had read all the way up
to Alma 13 and told us that he would be able to finish by the end of
this month because of assignments and school.  His dedication truly
inspired me.  He was a child of God who finally had a chance to learn
about his Heavenly Father.  I'm so glad that he jumped on that
opportunity to learn.  God has definitely blessed us with such
wonderful people to meet and to teach.  I'm so glad that I took this
opportunity to come out and learn.  Thank you so much for supporting
me out here.

Another miracle that happened was with one of the investigators that
we set a baptismal date with.  Last week, she expressed concerns as to
her baptism that is supposed to occur this saturday.  It was the first
time she had ever expressed any hesitation to being baptized.  We
didn't know what to do, but I promised her that if she prayed before
reading the book of mormon that night, read it, and prayed again, she
would receive an answer as to its divine origin.  When we met with her
again, she told us that she had received an answer.  She is still set
for her original baptismal date.  She attended conference with us
yesterday and was wonderfully inspired by the talks given.  She really
enjoyed all of the talks and told us that it reaffirmed her answer to
accept baptism.

Another of our baptismal dates became a little bit less certain last
week as well, but this week, we invited her to attend conference with
us.  she accepted and attended the sunday afternoon session.  In that
session, she took a few notes and loved the talks about the spiritual
GPS as well as the children in Haiti.  These were perfect topics and I
know that the spirit guided her and prompted her during those talks.
We explained the gift of the Holy Ghost again and she accepted it and
really liked it.  We continued to discuss how she felt about Christ,
commandments, the Book of Mormon, and prayer and she told us that she
believed it. President was in the chapel, so we introduced her.  He
brought up the spirit again.  Everything that day worked towards her
progress towards returning to our Heavenly Father.

Something that she brought up as a concern during our lesson that
really spoke to me.  She told us her age (which shall not be disclosed
:P) and told us that she felt like she was in-between the age of
having fun and the age of having a stable job and having a family.  I
felt like I could relate to her in that I was partially beginning that
stage.  I thought about it for a bit and ist arted to worry me.  Then
I remembered my email I sent to you guys.  Proverbs 3:5-6.  I think
I'm finally starting to get it. :) I know I'm a bit slow at catching
things, but in truth, it's starting to make so much sense to me.
Consider the story of all the missionaries in the Book of Mormon.
Alma left his position as Chief Judge to further the work of the Lord.
 He was told not to fear for such things as clothes and food.  Moroni,
Helaman, Lehi, and Teancum all left their homes to go and defend their
freedom and their families.  Alma the Younger left all his friends
(granted, five of his best friends went with him) and family to go out
and preach!  All these stories came to mind during general conference
as they talked about fear, doubt, and negative thoughts, and replacing
them with faith.

I have finally started to work on the process of replacing my fear and
doubts with faith.  Worrying about anything other than the works of
God demonstrates a state of fear.  I'm trying to replace it with
faith.  It'll be a long time in coming, but I've already seen the
blessings of having faith.  Talking to people is so much easier
because I'm not afraid of what they think of me.  My mind is busy
listening to what they have to say, what the spirit has to say, and
what God thinks of me.  "What thinks Christ of me?"

I hope you're all doing well, living healthy and happy.  It sounds
like everybody is doing great these days.  Jeffrey is such an example
to all of us and to his peers as well!  Honors! That sounds quite...
honorable haha.  One of our ward members (really smart) told us that
when he does well in school, his classmates attribute it to him being
a Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  :)  It
reminds me of what our fellowship said once about how smart some of
the members were. "Na shi fuyin de liliang".  The gospel is strong!
and jeff is such an example of that!

Vicky is doing GREAT!  I know she's doing so well.  One of our
referrals (from her) told us how wonderful and kind she was.  :)  I'm
so proud to be called "Chen xiao jie's didi!" (that's what she called
me on the phone... It's Zhanglao!! hahaha, It's really fun when people
ask me for my first name (always chinese first name for some reason).
I always just tell them ZhangLao.  :)  I was reading in Jesus the
Christ on Saturday and it discussed the sacred importance of that
title.  How blessed we are to have A quorum of the Twelve that can all
stand as special witnesses of Christ, and bear the title of Elder.

Love you all! (alofa atu ainga)
See you later!  (Fa soi fua!)


Elder Chen

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