Hey family, friends, devoted stalkers, and fan club members (ordering doesn't imply importance, fan club members). I've got one doozy of an announcement:
So, last Thursday, we had a combined district meeting, which came with one fairly major rule change. Mom, dad, Alisa, Nathan, Terry, and Whitney, unfortunately, this won't be super exciting for you. But for everyone else (particularly the friends and fanclub people), this will be exciting.
Writing me fanmail is now even easier! President announced that missionaries can receive emails from anybody AND write emails to anyone... on the conditions that emailing everyone doesn't take more than an hour each week. That being said, I realize this may change a few things:
First, emails back home may be more personalized... I'll be sending something a little more generic in a general email, but it's going to be much shorter than before... just for the sake of keeping a blog up (thanks mom, you're the best ^^). It'll probably include some important going ons (like announcements, noteworthy progress with investigators, or a general overview of the week), a funny story (at least one happens every week), something I learned (via studies and application), a spiritual experience, and a goal/some accounting on said goal. And then leftover time will be spent on fan mail. Exciting, no? I think the decrease in quantity will more than be made up in the increase of quality. So, expect gold-stamped, seal of approval emails back home.
Second, well, I can't think of a good second change just yet, which means the "First" was highly unneccesary. So, we'll leave it at IT'S SUPER COOL TO HEAR THAT DAVID, SHAUN, SHANE, TYSON, and STEVEN ARE GOING AIRFORCE!!!! AND THAT DAVID IS ENGAGED!!!! Alright, time to focus on more missionary related matters.
This week was super hard. My sickness from last week evovled into a cold and then into a sinus infection. The infection is gone, but I've still got a stuffy nose and slightly sore throat (again, good vocab is coming out of this... I can now explain my symptoms in Korean... silver lining of the week). In combination with Elder Kim's back (it's been killing him as of late... actually, for the last few transfers), there wasn't much of a shot of doing a ton of missionary
work on the streets (with President's approval). To be fair, we gave it our best shot, but I was bedridden for the first half of the week, and Elder Kim wasn't able to do much after Thursday. That being said, we did have one day when we could go out... it just wasn't planned super well. and our tracting time wound up being less than effective. Combine all of that together, it's a bit of a downer of a week... but it wasn't a total loss. I did learn a lot (for instance, not knowing the language and trying to be proactive with ward members will leave you either being the funniest, albeit oddest, missionary ever), and despite all of last week's hardship, I'm doing relatively fine right now.
On Saturday, we had a servive project... picking up trash along the river bike path near the church. Before hand, a few members were taking a heavy bag out of a car, and anxious to use my becoming less-an-less limited Korean skills, I asked if I could help. The members, grateful, handed me the bag and jokingly said, "It's heavy, right?" I agreed.... but then what ensued was probably the single most epic game of charades played in South Korea. All I heard was 찹기, which I had no idea what it meant, but the members where pinching their index finger and thumb together. Thinking I understood, I put the bag on the ground and picked it up in the same manner (in hindsight, it was a really odd request... I couldn't, for the life of me, figure out why they wanted me to carry the bag in such a manner, especially if it was heavy). Smiling and carrying the bag in this manner, I walked away. When I got to the door, I realized that the bag contained giant tongs for picking up trash. It wasn't until I got into the chapel that I realized just what happened (I should mention, I left the bag by the front door of the church). Turns out that 찹기 means tongs in Korean. And, I lack some charades skills. It made me laugh, though.
Our members in 신풍 are super great. There's one, Brother 김이천 (my spelling may be off... a lot of consonants still sound similar) who we visit every sunday in the hospital (or more accurately, we visit his mom with him), and we just talk. He's super good at English and wants to go to law school in the states, so we just talk about law, gospel, and other things (it's almost for certain, I want to go to law school after undergrad). Talking with him has helped me sort out a few things (along with reading the Ensign from last march's general conference). Among which is that I just always need to try, and as long as I'm working towards keeping the commandment of loving God and loving my neighbors as best as I can, Jesus Christ will understand... it doesn't matter if I don't say things exactly perfectly, it just matters that I try. It doesn't matter if my circumstances are less than ideal for tracting, it just matters that I open my mouth. It doesn't matter if I'm not just perfectly obedient just yet, it just matters that I am as obedient as I know how to be... to put it best, it matters if I'm as true and faithful as I possibly can be with what talents God has given me.
Anyways, I love you all! My hour is up, but until next week!