Monday, January 9, 2017

Week Fifteen

Dear People,

I had sacrament meeting in the the US today for the first time in a while. In Gunsan there is a US Military base with grass, sidewalks, cheese, peanut butter, and a tiny LDS branch on it, so this week we visited for sacrament meeting. There were about eight brothers and one sister with her baby. It was so weird seeing how ridiculously American they all are, and hearing about all the stuff going on in America, and praying in English. I forgot I was in Korea until one of them said "I know I'm supposed to be in Korea right now" And I was all...what are you talking about? This is totally 'merica.

I don't pick favorite investigators, but Tommy is by far my favorite investigator. This week he explained to us his theories of why paid ministry destroys doctrine because their motivation is to get more people to come to their church, and how he doesn't even think some of them believe in God. We just smiled and nodded a lot. He was super impressed with the church's organization and it's early history. He wouldn't believe that people were actually killed and persecuted including Joseph Smith; he kept repeating "In the 20th century!?" If we can somehow get him to see the importance of exercising faith he could be a super awesome member. He is super smart, but kind of just likes philosophizing.

Alma 48 makes it pretty clear who Mormon's Book of Mormon hero was.

7 Now it came to pass that while Amalickiah had thus been obtaining power by fraud and deceit, Moroni, on the other hand, had been preparing the minds of the people to be faithful unto the Lord their God. 
11 And Moroni was a strong and a mighty man; he was a man of a perfect understanding; yea, a man that did not delight in bloodshed; a man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery;
 12 Yea, a man whose heart did swell with thanksgiving to his God, for the many privileges and blessings which he bestowed upon his people; a man who did labor exceedingly for the welfare and safety of his people.
 13 Yea, and he was a man who was firm in the faith of Christ, and he had sworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion, even to the loss of his blood.
16 ...and this was the faith of Moroni, and his heart did glory in it; not in the shedding of blood but in doing good, in preserving his people, yea, in keeping the commandments of God, yea, and resisting iniquity.
 17 Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men.

Mormon even named his son after him. 
The contrast of Moroni and Amalickiah is my favorite Book of Mormon story right now. I cannot emphasize enough how much I love the Book of Mormon, and am constantly stressed that people have shaky testimonies of anything. Read the Book of Mormon every day for ten minutes with a spiritual journal open next to it with cute little marking pencils, sitting down somewhere you can write. Not in bed on your phone. Read all of the General conference talks from this session again. You will start craving it like your body craves water.
This will solve every problem of life.

Two super drunk old guys on a bench called us over to them a couple days ago and we started talking about the Book of Mormon, one of them took my copy and stuggled to turn to first Nephi. He started reading the chapter heading and nodding his head happily. The other guy was jealous and wanted his own book to read, so I got another out of my bag. We gave them a few pamphlets too. They were very grateful for our service and message. We probably could've committed them to baptism. Poor guys. Hopefully they'll accidentally bring the books home and notice them when they're sober. Isn't the Word of Wisdom great?

I feel like I'm progressing so slowly. I have so much to learn, I am still so scared of opening my mouth, Korean is so scary, and I have so little time. I feel like I just barely started, but I'm over an eighth of the way done, but... I know it's going to to work out. I feel the Spirit almost constantly. I know when it leaves. I want to be an instrument in God's hands. I want to be exactly obedient. I want to follow the spirit in lessons and be an effective teacher. I am not comfortable with where I am, and because there is still a force pushing me to do more, I know it will work out. I will get to where He needs me to be.

I love you all and I'll try to have some spiritual experiences to share next week! Pray to find missionary opportunities and to have the courage to open your mouth. You have it harder than I do; I'm talking to strangers I won't see again, you are talking to your friends.

-Elder Brown

 Do a happy laugh for Jesus

 Korean churches are straight corporations.

Drug Sausage

 This whole wall was Little Prince themed (I freaked out a little)

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