Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Doing great "Korean Mission Style"

 Elder Chizzy continues to do great in Seoul! Here are some pictures of life in Korea. He says the subways are usually packed and everyone is on their smart phones (usually Samsung, which is huge in Seoul) and that he does most if not all of his contacting on the street or in the subway. He emails us from a little store, maybe similar to the one above. He says some of the most common stores are Paris Baguette stores and coffee shops similar to Starbucks... a little random I think!

 He often talks about how much he loves the Korean elders and enjoys it when he gets to go on splits with them and talk to them. He loves the Korean people and is feeling very good about his language. He says "it's crazy hard, but I'm getting more and more comfortable every day!" He is training for the second time and is still in the same area through two transfers, Gaebong Seoul. He has loved all of his companions so far and really enjoys being a trainer!
 Our boy was never a big soccer fan, but since going there he has come to LOVE it and said he's bought a few soccer jerseys, asked for his soccer cleats and sent home a cool ball for his little brothers to practice with till he gets home and "shows them how to play for real"...apparently soccer is a HUGE deal in Seoul....who knew?
 "One of my favorite things to do is service, we don't get to do it as often as I'd like, but when I do, it is so much fun and so rewarding to work with the other missionaries and members and do something for the community." Here is picking up a local park, he said it's a beautiful park and Seoul has many of them.
Every time I look at my boys pictures with that name tag on his suit I get emotional. Something our Bishop said last week really made me think. These Elders and Sisters bare Christ's name over their heart every day, every hour, every minute for two years. It is obvious who they stand for and who they represent, and it's written on their hearts. I am learning so much from my son, who bears our Savior's name and hope that I can live my life so that it's obvious that His name is written on my heart too.

Here are some small parts of his letters over the past little while.

I had a really cool experience on Thursday that really strengthened my testimony about so many things. We went to this guys house that really has a hard time accepting anything but his own beliefs. He is a really nice guy but just want english help and stuff but the more we started talking, the more interest he seemed to have about the book of mormon. This guy was insanely hard to understand though, he honestly did not speak a lick of english and spoke so fast. But I literally felt my ears just being opened up though and I was just able to understand and even though it may not have been all of what he said, I was able to answer his questions and try to help him understand why we are even here as missionaries. He had a ton of questions but I was able to answer them by the spirit. There was one specific point where he asked if he could ever come to know the things we were teaching him for himself. And I know for a fact that without the spirit, I would not have been able to answer the way that I did. I can't even remember exactly what I said but I just felt that I opened my mouth and Korean came out and I'll tell you what, I haven't felt the spirit as strong as I did for a long time. It was so insanely strong and I just felt so grateful to my Heavenly Father for the help he was giving me. I felt the spirit working through me to touch this mans heart that really had been stubborn in the past when missionaries had taught him. So it was cool to experience that and to feel the spirit so strongly in this mans home

Well, I will first tell you about a lesson that I had with a guy on thursday that was super cool!!  We found him off of a referral and he is a really nice guy that is buddhist. We met him at the church and he walked in and said he wanted to learn about the Book of Mormon so we were like sweet! Haha and then we asked him if we could pray and he asked if he could say it. Well, the problem was that he had no idea how to pray. So we taught him and he prayed an awesome prayer. He finished and said that his heart was burning! Crazy right? The spirit was super strong. So we taught him about the Book of Mormon and he really was accepting everything and I just had a strong impression to extend the baptismal invitation to him. (Later I found out that my comp felt the same way.) So I talked to him about baptism and then extended the commitment. He said he felt like he wasn't ready but that if he felt ready, he would definitely think about it. It was awesome! He said he wants to meet every thursday and stuff like that. It was an amazing experience! I was being led by the spirit the whole time and I was so grateful for that experience. It was like a dream lesson for sure. I never felt so happy after teaching something. I don't know if it will really go anywhere or anything, but it definitely felt amazing. I felt the spirit and it was just a great experience. The Korean is definitely coming faster now. I am starting to understand more and more every day and my mind is just being opened. It is honestly the coolest feeling ever. I can't thank my Father in Heaven enough for what he has done for me the last 2 weeks or so. I feel so blessed. We have had a ton of miracles this past week and some really cool lessons. We were hoping the one sister was going to get baptized

 We both like Korean food so we usually eat that. Our favorite is probably soon dae and dokboki which is really good. soon dae is a pig intestine stuffed with noodles and cooked. Haha sounds weird as heck but it is super super good! And then dok boki is this spicy rice cake stuff. In Korea, there is stuff called dok and it is super popular and is really really good. I don't know how to make it our anything or how they make it, but I love it! Haha I also got McDonalds a couple times. Last time I got the MEGAMAC! Haha it is a big mac just supersized. It has four patties instead of two! Haha it is dang good. Anyways, we also eat stuff called donkas sometimes which is a pork cutlet thing which is super good as well. Sometimes we get kimbab which is a seaweed roll with vegetables and rice in it and it is super tasty as well! I really enjoy it:) Hmmm.... So yeah that is some about the food. Any time we eat at members house or out, we always have kimchi which is great! I love kimchi. Haha it is so good. Their meat is also amazing! Haha so so good. Hmm other things.... We almost always just contact on the street! Homes are even harder to get into then in america, and there are tons of people on the street all the time so we spend most of our time out on the street. We talk to at least 20 people a day and last week, we talked to 170 people and set up maybe 10 street lessons for this next week. Out of those 10 lessons, maybe 2 will meet if we are lucky! Haha we have to have faith though right? Anyways, church is pretty much the same besides the fact I can't always understand... (Even though my understanding is skyrocketing right now which is sweet!!) And the church is very small. It is good though for our 70 member ward! Shopping malls are fairly similar to the ones in America! there are just a lot of street vendors here. Imagine Chinatown and that is what Korea is like. Just a million of tiny little stores and they all seem to be the same store

But that night, we met with 이은심  And she is totally awesome. I talk to her on the phone every night about what she has been reading and she is progressing so well! She is 54 and just a really nice lady. Anyways, that night we gave her the baptismal commitment which she actually declined... She said she didn't feel ready... But she came to church again on Sunday which was so good! She is hilarious. There was a talk in sacrament meeting about Mother's and she started clapping after it because she liked it so much. It was so funny. The whole ward laughed and she is just kind of oblivious to all of that:) But she is awesome and I love her. But anyways, then we met with her after church and talked to her about repentance and baptism again. I talked about how when I was 8 years old, I was not in anyway ready for baptism... haha I didn't really know what I was getting into but how because I had the holy ghost, I was able to learn faster and more correctly than if I didn't have the Holy Ghost. She seemed to really like that and the spirit was super strong. Our member gave a great testimony and so did my comp and she finally accepted a date to be baptized!! She will be baptized on April 13th!! I am honestly so pumped. It was amazing to see how all my hard work for 5 months, really paid off in the end. Granted, the work is not over, and I had so much help it was ridiculous, but it was so nice to finally see someone actually willing to progress and work towards a date. I am 90% sure she will be baptized then and I just hope I can stay in my area so I can see it. She is so awesome and I love her tons! 

One of the kids just got back from a mission and is awesome, he has helped us teach twice and is just sarcastic and hilarious and the other kid is leaving today for the MTC! Anyways we ate with them and their family and then our ward mission leaders family and it was just so awesome. We talked and laughed and just messed around and I really felt like I was just part of them I guess. I felt that I had connections with these people, and even though I am far from perfect in Korean, I could communicate with them and joke with them and just have fun. It just made me realize how far I have come in a very short amount of time and how much the Lord has helped me to this point. It also for some reason helped me realize how stinking much I absolutely love Korea! I absolutely love it and it is going to be so hard for me to leave it some day. It will be so hard and I am just trying to soak it all in cuz honestly, I am having the time of my life. Nothing, besides being with my family, has ever brought me so much joy as this work has. I am imperfect and have a lot to work on still, but the Lord is helping me and he will continue to help me. That just meant so much to me and just the fact that a little dinner appointment helped me realize that was awesome. I love being here and I love serving the Lord so much!