December 14, 2010


I am doing good mom! And yes standing out in the cold teaching isn’t ideal but I couldn't see anywhere nearby where we could walk to and go inside so it had to be! Sometimes it just happens! I haven't seen the weinachtsmarkt yet, maybe today. If not today then for sure next Monday. Today p-day will be weird because president is doing our interviews today and since its Elder Moffat's last one his will be long. So I will sit in the church and read or something. Maybe the Ences (senior couple in charge of the outreach here) will be here then I could play ping-pong with them. They're super good though and I'm not. It’s nice having a couple in your area, sister Ence cut my hair the other week too! Free haircuts are very good. Oh and with the phone call thing! We are not allowed to skype. You could use skype still to call me and I think that would be pretty cheap. I just have to give you the number of the phone I will be using and you can just call it. That’s the best idea I have. Saves me from buying a calling card and having to figure that out. So let’s do it that way unless you have a better idea. I can give you the exact when and number and all next Monday. I will write it in my planner so I don't forget; you should also remind me in your email ha.
This week was pretty cool though! We had a real interesting eating appointment last night. That’s what these pictures are of. It was all really good though. There is a Chinese family in our ward and we are teaching 2 of their friends and they had us all over for dinner after church. As you know I'm not the biggest sea food fan so when I saw the table I was a little nervous. But I decided it was a stupid mental thing and that I would eat it all and it would be good. And it was! These pictures don't even show all the food we had! She would grab a bowl or plate of something else from the kitchen and put it on the table every like 10 minutes. So much stuff. And there was this thing of boiling water in the middle and you would just pick something, drop it in the water, wait a bit and get it out and eat it! They were all super good with chop sticks and elder Moffat and I were not. We struggled a little. Chinese was being spoken the whole time so we were just smiling and eating acting like we kind of knew what we were doing. It made me think about what it would be like to serve in China. It would be way crazy!! Crazy food, crazy language, lots and lots of people that have no idea about God. It would be awesome! I would tell you some of the stuff we ate but I don't even know the names. I decided just to eat and not ask what it was that I was eating ha. I also told them I am Chinese and they were all super excited. Then they had lots of questions and I didn't have lots of answers sadly. I know the story of how our family line goes back to china but as far as I know it stops there. So if anyone knows more about that I would really like to hear it!! Also if we know who the first ones were to join the church on both sides of the family that would be really cool. Like when they joined and what the story is and all. I would really like to know that.
This week was cool though! On Friday we had a tausch with the elders serving in Wetzlar. I worked here in Frankfurt with Elder Scheiber, who has been out 4 weeks now! It was tons of fun. The night before though when we were planning we had a big gap of finding time. Since I don't know the city very well I told Elder Moffat I wanted to find a German Family and asked where we should go. He looked at the map and said Bad Vilbel. I felt way good about it when he said that and so that’s what the plan was. So when it got to that point in our day Elder Schneiber and I headed out there. Our 3 hour gap of finding time turned into only 30 minutes because we got lost on our way out there ha. So on the bus we were on there were 4 stops in this stadtteil...part of the town? We didn't know which one to get out at. So I picked a stop in my head then asked Elder Schneiber what he though and he said he felt like we should get out at Kasseler Str. and that’s the one I felt good about too. So we got out there and had 30 minutes until we had to catch the bus back. So we picked a street right by the bus stop and just started doing doors! We did one side without any luck then talked to a couple people walking the road, then went to the other side of the street. We knocked one door and waited and nobody came, then as we turned around there were two girls at the bottom of the stairs and one said 'are you coming to visit us??' I said do you live here? And she said yes. Then I said then yep we wanted to share a Christmas message with you and your family. Then we walked down the stairs to talk to them and the girl leaned in and read our badges then said 'I know your church' so we asked her how she knew our church then she said she did a foreign exchange in Colorado for 10 months and lived with a Mormon family! So we talked to her about that and what she thought about the church and all then asked if we could come back next week to share our Christmas message with her and her parents and she said yes and we made out an appointment! Then we had to run and catch our bus. It was so cool though! The night before we planned to find a German family, then everything worked out for us to be able to do that! I was kind of nervous since we had 3 hours then that dropped down to 30 minutes. But it worked out. It was a huge blessing.
Then when we got back to Frankfurt and were going to our appointment we were kind of blocking the side walk walking side by side and this guy said 'excuse me' and walked by us and I registered it was English and said hey wait! Then he stopped and I said do you know us? He got confused and said no. So we explained who we were and he said he was born again Christian and big bible believer. Then he kind of went into why we were crazy for 'believing mormon' and all that. So we asked if we could meet again and talk about it and he said 'well if it’s God's will we will pass each other again and then we can make out an appointment'' and he started to walk away then all the sudden I started speaking and I said 'that’s just an excuse. This is God's will right now that we met and are talking, this is the chance he's given you, and if you don't take it now he won't trust you with another one later' then I thought wo that was weird. But as I said that the spirit was way strong and the guy closed his eyes and was silent for a bit then he said 'what you said is true.' Then he kept thinking and said 'can we meet tomorrow?' so we made out an appointment and he said he'd call us and let us know for sure. He felt it though and knew it was right. The appointment sadly didn't work out. Yea it’s sad but that was his free agency and he decided against what he felt sadly. It was really cool though how it happened. It’s weird how things like that happen though, how people feel so strongly then decide against it anyway. When we are hard at work so is Satan. We must be persistent and never let down. I've had a ton of experiences like this and I guess those people just needed that first brush with the church. Hopefully something will happen later and move them to want to find out more.
It was interesting reading Eric's letter today then thinking about his experiences and mine. Our work and purpose is the same but our experiences are so different. God uses us in different ways to help and touch different people. I am very grateful for my experiences though and from what I have been able to learn here so far. God’s love for me and that he knows me becomes more and more real each day. He knows us and gives us chances to learn and grow to move closer to that which He has prepared for us. We need to be ready to act and to do. I can relate a little to how Jacob felt when he wrote Jacob 1:19. Even if the people don't make the progress or correct choices, you still must do all you can. We can never slow down, let down, or give up. For our own sakes and for the people's sake who we are serving. It’s like that quote you sent me at the very beginning of my mission mom from Elder Holland. We aren't only here to serve and help build others, but we are building ourselves. We build ourselves and learn the most when we are in the service of others. I love my mission and I love life ha. There’s a lot about life that you realize on your mission. Lots that you first relate to your mission and all but then you realize how it applies to your whole life and not only your mission. How it’s not only for full time missionaries but for everyone else as well. This last week was cool though, I learned lots. This is getting long and I notice sometimes I just start to type and I don't know how much sense it makes to you all. So I will end.
But first here is an awesome quote I got this week!! Think about it:
''No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good. A silly idea is current that good people do not know what temptation means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is. After all, you find out the strength of the German army by fighting against it, not by giving in. You find out the strength of a wind by trying to walk against it, not by lying down. A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later. That is why bad people, in one sense, know very little about badness. They have lived a sheltered life by always giving in. We never find out the strength of the evil impulse inside us until we try to fight it: and Christ, because He was the only man who never yielded to temptation, is the only man who knows to the full what temptations means--the only complete realist. (C.S. Lewis, "Mere Christianity")

I love you all!! Be happy and have a good week!
Elder Puriri

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