Monday, June 28, 2010

God Hears and Answers Prayers (posted by mom)

A cool experience happened while I was reading Elder Eyring's talk in the conference ensign. My mind kept returning to someone I had never met. A youth in our ward (the son of President Li of the stake presidency). I really felt for this guy. I had never met him, but another Elder told me about him. I found myself barely able to read the talk though the tears. I felt God's love for this guy and I felt a great need to help him re-discover his testimony. I said a few prayers for him that day.

Sunday came around, and low and behold, he came to church. After 4+ months he came to church! The moment he walked in the door, I knew who he was. (He came in with his mom, so it's not that special, but when I saw him, I felt I knew him.) He had brought with him two friends.

I don't know the end of this story, but I feel as though God hears and answers prayers. I feel as though God truly prompts us. I'm going to do my best to help this guy re-discover his testimony.

Right now our progressing investigators are three families. It's exciting to be working with these three families, but it is a lot more complicated to facilitate a family's spiritual progression.

This is President Hoer's last week. Although our time in Taiwan doesn't overlap very long, I feel, because of his influence, I have set some habits that will last a lifetime. I feel as though a (you ban fa) seed has been planted in my soul--and I will never be the same again. I feel eternity is mine if I will but use the time God has given me. I feel ready for life's challenges, because work, faith, prayer, and a vision will carry me through. I wish him the best and am grateful for the positive influence he has been in my life.

I love you all very much. Elder Spencer Harris

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Baptism (posted by mom)

Dear family,

This past week, Zhang Jie Xin got baptized. He is 20 years old and is currently homeless. He loves the Book of Mormon. The ward is really willing to help him out. They want to help him get a job. The mission gave him and old missionary bike. He has a lot of future a head of him!

I'm really excited about some investigators right now. We have a Liu family, a Li family, and a Chen family. They each have their strengths and their weaknesses. We are doing our best to help them toward baptism and salvation, but ultimately it's their decision. It's sad when people make the wrong choices, but at the same time it's comforting to know God's eye is watching over them. He loves them. He wants them to return to Him and will give them every opportunity to make it home.

It's strange to have President Hoer leaving. He is so good. He makes a missionary feel like if they wanted to fly they could. There is no roof on this mission. He has given us a vision that is like nothing else. He expects nothing but the best.

I'm sure President Bishop will be the same way.

We are also having a mission conference this next month, and President Uchtdorf is coming. (He will pick up his two grandsons - one is in Taibei and the other is in Taichung.)

I love each of you. The work is going great. --Elder Spencer Harris

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Rain (posted by mom)

I can't even explain the rain. It comes down so hard! Missionaries pray so hard that it won't rain Sunday mornings. On Sunday, I called all our investigators who agreed to come to church each 3 times. 2 made it. I'm really starting to learn the use of testifying and promising blessings, because people really need a reason to change their lives--especially if it means coming to church in a down-pour.

Zhang Jie Xin passed his baptismal interview. He has been brought to church 3 times by a member. He currently has no mode of transportation. We are pretty sure we can get him a bike from a previous missionary. He will be baptized this Saturday or the next.

I have to tell you of a crazy dream that wasn't a dream, but felt like it. We got a referral through our mission referral system, we called it up, and set up an appointment for the evening. This guy is sounding really golden right.

So we go over there in the pouring rain. There is a big fence around the building. A man walks up to the gate, and yells for someone to open the door for him. A lady comes out and opens the door, invites us in, then shuts the door. I look at the gate and there is a lock on the INSIDE!! OH NO WHERE ARE WE?!!!!

We go in, and it ends up being a sanitorium! I can't even describe my feeling. She calls up, and tells us to go to level 5. In my head I'm thinking, "What's level five?!!!" We go to the evevator and press the up button. A resident comes over to the elevator and starts compulsively pressing the up button and looking around like, "It's broken!" Any way, we get in the elevator and the lady keeps pressing level 2 and she still has a confused look like, "It's broken."

We get to level 2, she gets off. On Level two, there are about 3 people standing there with blank looks on their faces. The thought again comes to mind, "What's level 5?!"

We arrive. We are trying to find a Mr. Lin. I start asking around what people's names are. Many of their names are Mr. Lin...

We finally find the right person. He loves to read and his room is full of books. We start teaching, He is very smart. There are about 5 residents in there listening to the lesson... A lady comes in and starts talking really loud. She must be a church member. She is shouting things like, "I'm a mormon." "There was a sister that was so good go me." "I gave so much money to the church to help them build temples and church buildings." "Hosana!" Needless to say it was a very interesting teaching situation.

The work is going good. I love each of you. --Elder Spencer Harris

Sunday, June 6, 2010

New Companion (posted by mom)

Today is move-call day. My companion, Elder Hofhiens, is going to be a Zone Leader in Jiayi. I'm staying here in Dakeng. My new companion is Elder Zheng. He will be the district leader. I'm excited, and a little worried because I'm the one who knows the area and so a lot of things that need to be done and remembered are now my responsibilty.

This last week we had a power week. That means we were out the door at 9:30am and back in the door at 9:30 to 10:00pm. We really wanted to set this area up for success this next move call. We also had a tripanionship for 3 days. It was a fun, powerful week!

One of our investigators is named Zhang. He his homeless and stays under a bridge. He has committed to find a job. He is living the word of wisdom. He loves reading the Book of Mormon. He loves the gospel. One of our new members is taking him to church every week.

My testimony of prayer is being strengthened. There is so little we can do without the help of our Heavenly Father. We are all mortal, and our ability to do good is limited. However through prayer and effort, He can help us become more humble, patient, and loving, etc.

I love you all, Elder Spencer Harris