Monday, November 28, 2016

Just Golden

Ia ora!

Well, here's the parau api of Papehue:

Last week we had someone call us and tell us that while we were contacting in a neighborhood, someone had tried to stop us and ask for the lessons, but we were too far away and didn't notice them. So we came back on Tuesday and taught the first lesson. It's a really old chinese guy that can't walk named Julien*. He's never been baptised but he loves religion and he's interested in learning about all religions. He even started it off with How to Beging Teaching points! What?! At the end of the lesson we loaded him with a LdM, brochures, an image book, and some other stuff. He talked about how precious all of that stuff was to him. What a cute old Papy! We'll try to fix a baptismal date tomorrow with him. What a cool experience!

We also started lessons with a guy named Kahoku*. In fact, we first found him a month ago and invited him to our cours d'anglais. He said he would come, but never showed up. Then, last week again, we found him again and set up a time for a lesson this time. We taught him this mahana toru and because we ran out of time, we only taught him until the Great Apostasy. It was good that we left him on a cliff hanger because he was super interested in what else we had to say. At the end, he asked us if he could do a soirée familiale with him. We never even talked about those with him. During the week, we also got this text from him:

Bonjour Lewis, c'est moi Vaiarii, je voulais te demander pour lundi si tu peux venir avec une femme membre de l'eglise.

Hahaha sweet, he's integrating himself! I think we'll just talk about eternal mariage the next lesson.

We had our second lesson with him this morning (yeah, pday, but totally worth it). We finished the Restoration. As we were going over the Priesthood, he told us a story that he had had during the week. He and his brother were sitting and talking when suddenly his brother got a big fever and started going crazy a little. Kahoku couldn't control him, and a thought came into his head to call his friend's dad, who is a priesthood holder. He said that within five minutes after the guy said a little prayer, his brother was back to normal, no fever, no convulsions, nothing. Kahoku then testified to us the importance of the priesthood. Wow. 

At the end of the lesson, we invited him to be baptised. At first, we didn't think that he quite understood the question, because he asked if there was anyone getting baptised the date that we gave him. But it turns out he was just curious if others would get baptised the same date as him or if he was the only one. He didn't even give baptism a second thought, it was just logical for him. He said that he just wanted to repent before he was baptised. Can do! Anyway, the 24th of December Kahoku will be baptised. That's exciting!

Our protestant friend Simon* chose the topic for our lesson this week. The life of Christ between the age 12 and 30. Not really spiritually uplifting, but interesting, I guess.

This week we found out two things about our DMP: That he's a seventy, and that he's being replaced. Yeah, I guess it just never came up that he's a seventy. Because he can't really work with us-he has a lot of trouble walking- we got a new one, an RM. Hopefully we'll get some missionary energy in this ward!

Well, things are doing better here. I hope it continues. Here's a scripture;

1 thessaloniciens 5: 16  Soyez toujours joyeux. 

There are good and bad times, easy and hard times, fun and boring times. No matter what time we're in, we need to keep the commandments of God, including this one. If you're not happy right now, repent, and be happy! 

Elder Lewis

Monday, November 14, 2016

Little Miracles

Hey everyone-
I could say that these past few weeks have bad, we've been having only a few lessons here and there, and I just had my lowest stats for the week on my mission, but it's good that that doesn't determine success. We have seen a few cool things recently. A few little stories that I hope will help you with whatever situation you're in.

A few weeks ago we had a reference for this guy, and set up our first lesson where we found out he was a protestant deacon. He said straight up that he wasn't going to change religions (we'll see about that) but he wanted to talk about God. This week we had the first real discussion with him and we talked about the Plan of Salvation a little bit. He started by asking a lot of questions, trying to stump us a little. He said that he was asking these questions to help us prepare for the things people would throw at us. He didn't think we were that bright, or knew the bible that well, but he was a little surprised when we answered all of his questions, or when we showed him a verse that showed that we lived before this life, even though he didn't believe in that.
When we talked about after this life, we used 1 cor 15 and talked about the Kingdoms of Glory. He was very surprised that there were scriptures to prove what we were talking about, and said that he would reread and study that chapter afterwards. I think that was when he started to realize that we knew what we were talking about. We also talked about mercy and justice and I asked him what his thoughts were on that. He thought for a while, and then said that he thought it was mostly mercy that would let us go to heaven. He then asked my opinion and I shared the story of the farmer who borrows money. He signs a contract that if he didn't repay in time, he would have to go to prison. Well, after the time is up, this farmer hasn't gotten enough money from his crops to repay the man. He must go to prison. But another man comes in and pays off the debt for the farmer. Now the farmer owes this man everything. The man says that it will be hard to repay, but it will be possible. So we talked about how in this story we are like the farmer. We can't enter into God's Kingdom, unless Jesus is there to pay for our sins. Thanks to Him, through hard work and repentance, we can receive mercy and God can have justice.
When we told this story, you could see him being enlightened and gain understanding of Christ's Atonement. That was really cool. At the beginning of the lesson he didn't really want to learn, but by the end he felt the spirit testify that what we said was true, and he accepted it. I'm sharing this story not to talk about how good I am or how much of the bible I know, because that's not true. Je me vanterai de mon Dieu, car avec sa force je peut tout faire. Looking back on this experience, we talked about a lot of different things and I'm surprised at how I answered them.  It's definitely the spirit working through us!
We also have an investigator who is Catholic, but he wants to get baptised. However, he wants to get divorced from his new convert wife before he does. We've tried to talk about eternal marriage, but he wasn't interested, as he wanted to get divorced. Then, yesterday, he came to church. Normally he goes on the other side of Tahiti, but he felt like he should come to our chapelle that day. It was then that we found some good member integrators for him, we talked a lot, and invited him to a Fireside that night. At the fireside, they talked about eternal marriage. He was really interested, and want's to learn more. If he had spent the day on the other side of Tahiti, we wouldn't have been able to invite him to the Fireside, and he wouldn't have learned about eternal marriage. I just love to have those little miracles here and there.
Well,  those are a few cool stories. God is really there to help His children. He loves us so much. I know that there is always a way to get though our difficulties and there are blessings hiding behind each trial. Faaitoito everyone! Bonne semaine!
Elder Lewis