Saturday, January 24, 2015

January 19, 2015

Happy 19th ... oh man this week again has flown by like none other- there is a lot we are trying to change and do and working to be the most effective in this area-- making sure that all 4 of us serving here are on the same page and working pushing forward in the same goals! Super fun week!!!! 

Tuesday we had our great service project at the senior center folding there clothes and such and most of the time we fold for about an hour and then help clean the bathrooms or something and then get to go talk to the Seniors. Really a great fun activity! however this week we folded laundry for 2 straight hours!! so walking into the room there was a pile that was almost up to my waist and big enough that I could have done a full body slam without even pushing it down all the way- and when it came to the ending time there was still a large pile- shout out to mom and dad for teaching us how to fold laundry right?! ^^ hah but we came back to have a great lesson. because of the opposition we had to change the date of the investigator's baptism ... however he is basically living like a member attending almost all activities and all sunday meetings- reading the Book of Mormon daily praying asking questions and seeking to find the truth! really a great kid and has a lot of help from his older brother and his friend! 

On wednesday we headed out to the furthest district in our zone for district meeting and to start exchanges!! The meetings and chances we have had to do exchanges are such a blessing!! its really so interesting how much you learn from different district with the different styles of teaching and the testimonies of each missionary! This week I again had the opportunity to go on an exchange with a new missionary in now his 6 week- His name is Elder Itri- These new missionaries are extremely amazing and progressing so fast! super sweet to see!! Well that exchange went to thursday and after we ended came back to our area for interviews with President Barrow! Love that time to talk and feel the Spirit have questions answered and better understand what I need to do to fulfill my purpose as a servant of the Lord! 

The rest of thursday and friday we headed out to visit some less active members and also on the goal of visiting as many members as we can to help the ward start on some of the new goals set for this year! Friday we had 3 appointments set within 4 hours and including travel time it was a full night -- not just for time. Each home that we visited had a full dinner prepared to eat with us. Having to keep our schedule we were at each house for 40-45 minutes and after sharing the message and on our way out the door we were also given more food that they had prepared for us to take home... that night we had quite the time trying to settle our stomachs before bed but it was all really delicious!!! The worst part is at one house they had me eat more because they said it looked like I had lost weight-- if I did it is all back now! haha

Saturday again a great day at our soccer activity which is becoming more and more effective as members are bringing their friends! a fun english class our numbers are rising and we have had 3 or 4 people call us from the advertisements we have placed around the area! Everything is going really really well!! of course on the week of transfers things are all going just about right-- thursday we have our call night and so we will see how that turns out!

Recently we have been studying a lot about how to receive answers to our hard questions- that has been a concern for some investigators and also for less actives -- as we studied the Spirit and the ways that He communicates with us we came across a few talks from decembers Liahona- one called helping others find faith in Christ and the other - finding answers to Hard questions. After reading these talks there are some great points that we can apply to not only help us help others but also help us understand our Heavenly Father and the plan that He has created for us! I am so thankful for the time I have to serve Him and His children and not only help answer their questions and concerns but also receive a stronger witness of the Nature of our Heavenly Father!!!
Love you all so much!!
thanks for your prayers and love and support and everything!!!
Clothes are all holding up ^^ haha LOVE YOU!!
Elder Jackson

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

January 11, 2015

This week sounds like it was as always full of lots of great activities and the thing that I have found is the busier you sound at home the busier we seem to be here too-- in other words a great week lots of fun and lots to do!! We had a great time planning not only for a zone meeting this week but also for our SPM meeting collecting the information of all progressing investigators in the Zone and also reporting on recent converts and their status! When we first had to prepare for that meeting it was pretty stressful and I didnt like it too much, but it is such a blessing to be able to hear the reports and hear first hands from the other missionaries how things are going! in doing so we also learn and get ideas that we can apply to our investigators- although they are all different hearing how others have taught really brings a new perspective!

Our zone meeting was also a great learning and growing experience for us this week- we received our topic a couple weeks ago and through our planning with lots of prayer were able to set up a meeting centered around the Gospel of Jesus Christ(Faith in Jesus Christ, Repentance, Baptism, the Gift of the Holy Ghost and Enduring to the End) and able to learn a lot more about what is possible Because of Him!!! Really a fun and spiritual meeting where each missionary came prepared to receive revelation of how we can reach a new step in our missionary work and in our lives!! I am extremely thankful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the part it plays not only in the role of "missionary work" but in the Work of Salvation!

This week our progressing investigator came to our appointment and to church with his Book of Mormon studied and marked and ready with questions for us! Really prepared and as we have been meeting with his older brother and friend who are the recent converts we have been able to have some great discussions about the church and help them all take a step closer to Christ which in turn helps us take a step closer to Christ! His date for baptism is set for the 24th of this month and he is well on the road of preparation! 

Anyways just a way super sweet week- to add to it exchanges with Elder Wilsons companion who is a trainee and way hilarious! Elder Newell from Washington and just a super nice guy! and of course the blessing of a zone meeting also comes with the chance to see 3 of my old companions plus other missionaries that have been hopping from zone to zone with me! really awesome to be able to see so many missionaries that have helped me a lot and to just have a great time with them! Also ate some really delicious food this week!! yeah a lunch appointment and the member made so much food it didnt fit on the table all at once!!-- super delicious!!!! 

The work keeps going and I am so glad to be a part of it!!! I love this work and am so glad that I can be a part of it in a time that the Lord is hastening!! Because of His Son, all things are made possible and we are able to create ties that last not just in this lifetime but in the life to come!! I am so thankful for you- my family!! who have taught me so much about serving the Lord and putting Him first! who have taught me right from wrong and raised me in a place where the Spirit of the Lord can be felt!!

Love you all!!
Elder Jackson

Saturday, January 10, 2015

New Year-New age-New Experiences

Hey Ho and What do you know-- another week flying by like nothing----but let me tell ya.. This week was an interesting one!!! Monday we had a fun day bowling and playing board games a really relaxed day followed by a meeting and going to the sister missionaries old house to finish cleaning it out-- the sister team was moved out of the area about 7 months ago but their fridge and some other things were left because they didnt know that no one was replacing them... so we go to clean the fridge-- somehow like 500 fruit flies got stuck in their and died-- so that was a real adventure cleaning everything out and throwing pretty much everything away-- except for the kimchi ... Thank goodness we were almost out in our house hahaha blessing of eating already fermented food. the more fermented it gets the better it tastes!

On tuesday to wednesday another great experience and blessing to go on an exchange with former companion Elder Bingham-- It is his last transfer and he is district leader in my training area so got to go be with him in another place that we both love!! and as a part of the exchange I had the chance to give a baptismal interview!! Those may be some of the most spiritual experiences of my mission- It truly has to be lead by the spirit in order to make sure that these future members of the church have the understanding they need to participate in the ordinace of baptism. and although they are all prepared and it is not a pass or fail interview, It is important to help them understand the promises that they will make with Heavenly Father and it is always great to have that reminder of the covenants that I have made with Him as well!!

Well New Years rolled around and we had a great time with our english classes playing games and talking about the New Years traditions in America and Korea-- again just really cool to learn more about the culture and the meaning of the things that they do and although each person is different the meaning is always one of hope and joy!! On Thursday morning we woke up at 5 and walked out to see the first sunrise of the year-- It was soooooooo cold I had like every layer I own on and my face still froze haha actually way funny because I couldnt smile so when I tried it came out as like a half smile and just looks ridiculous- My nickname for the morning was grandpa jackson...... but it was so fun to be with the members and a few investigators to welcome in the New Year and eat rice cake soup together and all turn one year older- yes 22 in Korean age thank you!! hahah

Well this week we also saw many miracles-- We often meet with 3 young men two who have been baptized and one( the youger brother of one of the converts) who has not. Since the missionaries have met with them, they have always had a good time outside of lessons (like on pday and such) just being with the missionaries. As this week passed we both felt like there was something more that we could be doing for these boys and as we thought about it a very bold but necessary thought came into our planning- We were both a little hesitant to teach this lesson because we didnt want to break the relationship that we have with them- part of the plan included dropping most of the "fun stuff" we do and focusing alot more on the teachings of the church- well the appointment came and with all worries being washed away we taught a very bold message about missionaries purpose. and the result-- Both converts (who have just recently started coming back to church, recommited to take the lessons with us and strive harder to live in the gospel and the younger brother- committed to being baptized this month! His parents are against it and so we are not sure of what the outcome will be but we do know that by the end of this month he will be ready! Really a testimony builder of following the promptings of the Spirit and fulfilling the call that we have recieved from our Heavenly Father! 

Along with the experiences this week I came to really appreciate Moroni 10:5- The promise that we have been given that by the power of the Holy Ghost the truth of ALL things will be made known unto us is true!! It blesses the live of those who are seeking righteousness and truth always!! I am so thankful for the Gift of the Holy Ghost that we have all received after we were baptized and I know that He is our comforter and our friend!

Love you all! Have a great week!!!
Elder Jackson

Christmas Skype

So yeah Christmas call was a blast!!! Loved getting to see you all and talk and see what has been going on over the last 6 months!!! Such a great way to start the morning leading into an exciting day!!!
We left the house after the phone call and headed straight to the bus stop for an hour bus ride down to the Masan stake center where we then got straight to work setting everything up and preparing the last minute bits for our Christmas English Festival!! Although our goal was not even close to being reached, we had a great show of investigators and members from each ward or branch and had a great time playing our games and making Christmas presents and ornaments for family friends and for ourselves-- and ended the party with a great message including the HeistheGift video!! really a great activity lots learned and lots gained!! we are excited to plan for the next up and coming activities that our stake has planned!!
We ended Christmas night with some Chicken Feet and hot chocolate!! Another fun way to end a great day!
Friday we helped some members move into a new house using some pretty nifty techniques haha a piano 2 fridges a few large bookselves and a washing machine all moved to the 4th floor of an apartment with no elevator and with out using stairs-- the moving trucks in korea also include a ladder with a platform on it that lifts everything up to where it needs to be--used in all cases- the tallest Ive seen is maybe 20 floors- hah but after that headed back down to Masan for a district proselyting activity handing out 500+ pass along cards with the link to the He is the gift video-- with 10 missionaries a big board and a lot of people we were able to over pass our goal in an hour and a half!!! It was quite a miracle which also has brought a new investigator for two of the 5 teams by the next day!!
Saturday played soccer and had our english class and then had the chance to go down to 도계 to see a baptism of a little girl. The father of the family was really less active last year when I first came to Korea and with receiving permission Elder Park and I taught him and he started coming back to church. It has now been a year and so saturday the father was able to baptize his daughter!! such a sweet experience and so lucky to be able to be so close so that we could go down to see it!!!!
With that we ended our week well and had a great last sunday of the year yesterday!!! 
Thanks again for everything and for a great Christmas call!!!
Love you all so much and am so thankful to be part of such a well formed family^^ ㅋㅋㅋ
Love you!!! KICC <3
Elder Jackson

Christmas Prep.

SO this week has been a blast!!! Lots of planning again but also some great meetings with some new investigators and less actives!! Its been a great blessing to be able to serve back in an area where I had already known some of the less active members and many of the recent converts who were baptized last year and really everyday as we meet with them I feel almost like I am back at home!! 

Well next week on Christmas day our stake has planned a large Christmas English Festival for investigators and members and whoever wants to come-- It has been a bit stressful as the planning has been put on us but we are almost done with the things that we need to do in order to have a great Christmas party then!!!

This week on Wednesday as well we have a ward Christmas eve party where we will be performing and singing and having a good time with the members!!!
Sorry we dont have a ton of time today because of the Mission Christmas party tomorrow we only have half p-day today and so I will talk to you on Christmas eve!!!!

Love you!!!
Elder JAckson