Monday, December 28, 2009

Seventh Week: Learning form the Apostles

This week we had Elder Anderson and Elder Perry of the Twelve come to speak to us. It was AWESOME! Elder Perry is like your next door neighbor, and his family is just like ours. After he spoke, he came down and shook hands. I was like 3 feet away from him. I also almost bumped into him in the cafeteria. I didn't even notice he was there until I almost ran into him--I bumped into his body guard though.

This affected me in a big way. All the apostles are so different. Elder Holland is so on fire and Elder Perry is so patient and longsuffering. I learned that becoming perfect doesn't mean we all become the same. Our personalities are unique, Heavenly Father gave each of us the talents and traits needed to fulfill his purposes/our missions in this life. If we give up that to become something we're not, then we've lost the point. Heavenly Father needs you and he needs me. We've been sent down to this earth to fulfill a mission consistant with our eternal nature and personality. Elder Anderson told us that our premortal existance had arrange events while in this life. Heavenly Father needs the best me to fulfill my purpose and no the best someone else. I think that's why it's important no to compare ourselves with others. Either we will become content at feeling like we are better; or will try to hard to be someone else; or don't try at all because we figure we can't do it. I think comparison is something I'm struggling with right now.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Sixth Week: Sharing the Gospel

Once a week missionaries call on referrals. We chat with people online about the church. We also call to confirm people's orders for a Bible or Book of Mormon, etc. On my second call the lady who answered was so nice! She was actually the daughter of the person I was calling, but she was willing to talk to me so I took the change. I didn't know how to create a gospel discussion out of this, so I just asked her if she knew much about our church and if I could tell her more. I told her about Joseph Smith and the first vision. I asked her if she thought an instance like the first vision was possible, and she said yes. I told her how I had come to know that the church was ture. I told her about my mission call and she was excited to talk to me about that. I offered to send the missionaries to her house and she said that it would be fine. Her mother had just had a heart attack, and I told her that I would pray for her mom. I know that God led me to her at a time when she was ready to hear the gospel. I'm going to try and find the bishop of her ward, call him, and let him know about her just incase the missionaries can't find her.

I feel healthy. I feel more like me than I've ever felt like me in my whole life. Even though my day is planned for me, I've never felt more like an agent unto myself. I feel like I don't have to pretent to be anyone. I'm loving the mission!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Fifth Week: MTC Mission Conference

The MTC is awesome. For our Sunday devotional we watched the 1st Presidency's Christmas Message. I really liked when President Monson said that the Spirit we feel during Christmas is the Spirit of Christ. I want that feeling all the time.

I guess each Fast Sunday the MTC has a Mission Conference. Wow! Powerful Stuff. Sister Clegg gave a talk about Mary (mother of Jesus) and it was awesome! The BYU Men's Chorus gave us a Christmas performance and it was great! Sunday's are amazing here!

Thank you so much for making me work the past few summers - and throughout my life. I know that the time I've spent working has blessed me in so many ways in addition to earning money.

Elder Costa of the 70s talked to us last Tuesday. He has a fire of a testimony! I learned that people who I come in contact with in Taiwan may not accept what I have to say and may not understand what I have to say because they are not ready. But everyone I talk to can know for certain that I know the Church is True! Like Elder Holland said (quoting someone else) "We could warm our hand by the fire of his faith." said by a boy in a rowdy Sunday School class talking about his teacher.

One of the cool things about the gospel is we don't have to be apologetic. We can invite, or even tell someone to repent and be on the Lord's errand - if His Spirit so directs. We can ask people to do hard things - like overcome addiction - and promise them bold blessings. We can put faith in gospel principles and know the end result.

Thank you for your prayers. Love you lots.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Fourth Week: Snow!

Probably the most interesting part (of this week) was the snow and I'm sure you know about that already. It's funny though because my companion is from Sacramento, and I guess it never snows there. He, unknowingly, tells me all the interesting little things he learns about the snow--stuff I never really thought of--It's fun.

I got sick this week and I thought I was going to die. About wednesday I got a really bad sore throat and by friday it was REALLY bad and I started getting a fever and feeling really tired. So we went to the health center and they had just closed. The Elders from my district gave me a blessing. I'm feeling much better now.

Hai you shenme?... (one more thing)

Our companionship had two very awesome teaching experiences again. I feel very blessed. In one of them the missionary we were teaching played the part of a friend he had who was going through some struggles. We talked about how the Atonement could help him and we read Alma 7:11-12 (i'm pretty sure that's what we read.) anyway it talks about how the Savior took upon himself the pains, sins, and afflictions of the world so he could know how to succor us. Then as my companion and I testified and told our investigator of our love, the spirit was SO strong! For the closing prayer, the missionary gave a real prayer for his friend. Every one was crying.

Something I remember from President Eyring's last conference talk is that he said, "Love of God enables us to obey his commandments, love for others increases our capacity to obey." Think of how much love Jesus Christ has for us in order to to obey God's commandment to atone for the sins of the world! I think it was his love for each of us that allowed his mortal body to withstand the pains of the Atonement.

I know this church is God's true Church, and this gospel is the source of true joy.

with love,
elder harris

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Third Week: Gratitude

Ni Hao, (Hello)

The Lord is merciful (Ci Bei de). I'm glad that I can be here at the MTC doing what I'm supposed to be doing. My reason for being here keeps growing and expanding! Right now, I yearn to let people know that Christ's Atonement can heal them. This past week I've seen missionaries (including myself) change their minds and their hearts. I've seen and took part in giving a blessing to a sick Elder who was blessed to have his illness quickly pass and that he would endure cheerfully - both of which he did. Each day the Lord molds me a little bit closer to the missionary he wants me to be. The Atonement can heal us! The Lord's tender mercies are around me every day! I have a great companion! We have been able to teach with the spirit! I get to listen to two General Authorities this week (Tuesday's Devotional and a special Thanksgiving Fireside). I feel the spirit each day! I get to wear Jesus Christ's name (in a language that will allow me to share the restored gospel with 1/4th of this world) right next to my name! I have a family who loves and writes me. Oh how much this church is true. Wo ai Ye Su Ji Du fu xing de fu yin. (I love the gospel of Jesus Christ)

Elder Spencer Harris