January 30, 2012

The first thing I will say is that last week was probably the most
stressful week of my mission. And I'll tell you what, I have decided
that that was a very good thing. The reason being all of the
preparation and anticipation for our Zone Trainings but even more so
the Chinese Activity that we had on Saturday. President Preston asked
me near the end of the activity if I was exhausted and I replied,
"very much so." Elder Eggers and I were very pleased with the turn out
and success of the activity and how much fun it was to see so many
Chinese people there, but we were very happy that it was over because
it meant we no longer had to worry or stress about it. We agreed that
the stress for the most part was all Eustress and not Distress. :)
Good news to let you know right now, because of the activity we will
be teaching 4 more chinese students this week! There are more referals
on their way as well which we are excited for.

The activity itself was great!! We had a total of 57 Chinese people
there from all parts of the mission. 24 of them came out of Liverpool.
:) I am very happy with that fact. We started off with an opening song
and prayer and welcome by President Preston then we turned the time
over to Elder Cai for the Icebreaker activity so everyone could get to
know each other better. After which we had lunch, it was ok, the
Chinese were not super excited about it. I guess you don't eat Mexican
rice and egg rolls at a Chinese New Year Party. Haha. In my defense I
was not in charge of the food in any way.

The activities for the next two hours we were and it was amazing, the
chinese loved it. Essentially we did a mini chinese olympics with a
variety of team activities that would help them all bond together and
enjoy themselves. They said it was absolutely different than any other
Chinese New year party they had attended and that was the intention.
We taught them how to have Chinese New Year the American way. :) We
had eight teams of eigth competing against each other in a range of
games. The first one was a relay race with a basketball, my specialty.
During this race they had to pick up a coloured wrist band. It was
then that we split them into the colours they had on their wrist. We
tricked them! They thought they were in their teams and then BAM! New

Then we did something that was taught to me by my father. The puzzle
game.... It was my favourite by far. You should have seen the reaction
of the Chinese when they had almost finished the puzzle of Winnie the
Pooh but their pieces were wrong or missing. They were completely
confused and flipping them all which ways but they wouldn't fit!
Finally one of them yelled out, "Hey, their is something wrong with
our puzzle, we have two of the same piece!!!" At that point I said,
"Oh by the way, I forgot to mention that some of your pieces are in
other teams puzzles." Hahaha. Dad you should have seen it, they went
crazy, it was like an ant hill, everyone jumped up and left their
puzzle to bombard the other team looking for their pieces. It was sooo
funny, you should have been there. Chinese people making a 24 piece
Winnie the Pooh puzzle. Haha.We had taken 6 pieces from every puzzle
and switched them around. Yellow Team won by the way. So thank you
very much Dad for teaching me that.

Then we did the tie a balloon around your ankle and don't let it get
popped. A strategy game with your team, the last team standing with a
full balloon won. Then we did a paper airplane at a target on the
ground. Then we had the skittle game where you have to suck a skittle
to the end of a straw and pass it to your teammates in a line who also
have straws. It was intense. Then we did a paper tower game, and a few
others. All in all it was fantastic. My activities and social
recreation class at BYU definitely paid off.

At the end we had the last activity of Chinese Whispers to helped
demonstrate the Apostasy and the necessity of a restored church
through the prophet. We had that spiritual thought and then walked
around the temple and took a picture there. I will send some pictures
of the activity in the future when I recieve them. I can't describe
how great it felt to see all those Chinese sitting in the Chapel and
then walking around the temple. One of the best most rewarding days of
my mission. I truly love the Chinese people. One Student named Steven
Dai is dated for Baptism this Saturday but has some concerns. so if
you could keep him in your prayers that would be wonderful. Thank you!

I was able to go on exchange with Elder Peterson at the beginning of
last week which was really a blessing. Since Preston the first time
around I have not seen much of Elder Peterson and because he was my
MTC companion and we have been through a lot together, it was
wonderful to be able to sit down and talk with him again about
everything and see how he has progressed. We really enjoyed being
together for two days and especially teaching the Chinese students
together. I remember in the MTC when we had ideas that we were going
to go to England and teach all the Chinese all the time. Then we got
here and it was quite different from what we expected. It has taken
almost until this point in time for me to really only be teaching
Chinese people on my mission and I love it!!! Elder Peterson and I are
very excited for these upcoming months and the chances we will
continue to have to teach the very humble and hungry for truth chinese

Elder Peterson has grown a lot from the start of our missions, he has
always had a very happy and joyful attitude and is easy to smile and
laugh which really helps him get along with people whether they be on
the street or in lessons or members. He is very keen on gaining good
relationships with the members and obtaining their trust. His desires
for serving have changed quite a bit as well which is great to see. It
seems he is enjoying himself a lot more than he did in the beginning.
He is very optomistic and wants to improve the skills he has. Overall
our exchange was a fantastic one and I know that we both enjoyed the
time to catch up while doing the work of the Lord.

There is something that I have been thinking about recently. There are
two missionaries in our Zone named Elder Diaz and Elder Sapaden. They
are both great missionaries and a talent that they have that brings
the spirit so well is their ability to play the piano. You have no
idea how great it is to be able to call on them and ask them to play
prelude music before a meeting starts in order to invite the spirit.
They are both very very talented and when i asked them why they told
me diligent practice of course. It is osmething that I admire in them
both greatly. I know how to play the piano very badly and of course
wish I could play it better. I am grateful I know what all the keys
are and how to play the right hand really well. But if only i had
tried a little harder for longer I could be like Elder Diaz and Elder
Sapaden. They are powerful tools and instruments because they took
time to develop their skills and now they are blessing many peoples
lifes because of it.

President Preston leaned over to me in our past Zone Conference on the
stand and said, "It makes such a difference to have someone that can
play they piano like them, you always know you can rely on them to
bring the spirit." I told him I agreed and wished I could play better.
So my exhortation to you my family is to develop the talents that you
have, especially the talent to play the piano. It was great to hear
from mom that you were learning to play the piano taft. Before long
with a little effort and diligence you could be the next Elder Diaz
who the Mission President is so grateful for. That goes for all the
rest of you as well. You can learn from my bad example ok? :) This is
something that I honestly have been thinking about and wanted to let
you know that you were right again mom, I do regret my lack of desire
to learn to play the piano. By the way, the girls love it when they
see a male who can play the piano well. ;)

No comments:

Post a Comment