Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Letter before Christmas, sorry I forgot to post

This week has been a very busy week.  We had a our branch Christmas party and it went awesome 4 of our investigators showed up! Our branch trips out when they see me and my companion bringing investigators anywhere because my Korean is still poo,  so they just get so shocked when we bring these people who can't speak any English, it's awesome. Today isn't our pday but libraries are closed tomorrow so we can email today. I got all the packages and cards I think! :) Thank you all so much to everyone! I sent home a couple Christmas cards but our mail isn't being sent for some reason so it will probably get there after Christmas haha.
Today we are meeting with someone we met on Facebook.  I'm actually pretty skeptical that this is really working haha. Also we have English class and we are meeting my favorite investigator Sister Kim then we are going to "heart attack" a members house (Cut out hearts and tape them all over there door with cookies and nice notes ) Sorry I don't have much time today I'll see you Wednesday I love you!
Love Elder Meza


Happy New Year to all,
Transfer day! I've been transfered back to my home town of the Irvine. My last companion Elder Ham is  in the english program for now haha. Oh and by the way I'm a trainer! :) My son comes on the 14th. He is straight from Boosan so I'm pretty excited since he can't speak english haha! I was pretty upset that they transfered me to the south and put my companion in the english program because they totally white washed our area! But I'm glad we took good care of our area book to help out the missionaries in that area now. The day before transfers we told our investigator that is our most progressing (the one from the Grand Canyon) that either me or Elder Ham would be leaving the area and she got up and left bawling her eyes out. It was so sad I almost cried seeing her cry. She has really become someone I care about and we have a very good realtionship built on trust. By the way she has a baptismal date so I'im super stoked and happy for her. It's so crazy how Elder Kim found her on a tour bus and reffered her to us. But anyways the night of transfers she called us and asked which one of us is staying and we told her that we were both going and she broke down so hard, I felt so bad so we got permission from the the north team to pick her up in the south!
After skyping on Christmas I went to Corona with that same investigator and met her daughter for the first time who is 8 and we ate and played tennis. I used the stocking you sent and filled up with some candy and we bought her a bionacal (she loves bionacals) and we gave her it.
It made me think of the christmas when I went to my dads and how you weren't sure if pops would give me presents so you went all out haha. I kept thinking that whole day, even though I'm tired and can't stop thinking about the family and seeing Marcus and Tayla, I want this christmas to be the best christmas this little girl has ever had. Because shes only 8,  she doesn't really understand whats going on so I just did everything I could to help her have fun. And it was a great day that little girl called me a couple days later and asked when I could play again ,haha it made me smile.
Take care! Sorry since its transfer day i don't have much time.
Happy birthday mom and grandma!!
Love Elder Meza

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Short and sweet

Dear Mom
Yeah I loved the package! I think if you wouldn't have sent tuna I would have gone 2 years without it because it's one of those little things I just don't think about. Me and my comp were gratefull because we both love tuna!
I liked the jacket but it was to big and i'm going to just get a sweater. I need a sweater so I don't have to wear my suit jacket. :)
Tell Aunt carrie I also loved her package and with all that garland me and Elder Ham are going to go decorate our investigators house the one I told you about last week. She's having a rough time and will be alone these holidays and she will get to be with her daughter and she wants us to spend the afternoon with her and her daughter so I'm stoked! :) I'm not sure when I will be skyping yet. It's not really hard me to get access to skype so just you tell me the time and I'll be there haha
I love you
사랑으로 김 인수 장로
엄마님 사랑해요!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Investigator from the Grand Canyon

Hi Mom,
(I told Nikko that in church sacrament prayer had to be repeated and was reminding him when that happened to him) I remember doing the sacrament prayer and messing up. It's okay though we learn from our mistakes and the prayer really does need to be perfect it's such an important thing that I had to realize on my mission and it is such a blessing. Yeah President Thomson is a great guy, I feel really blessed to have had him as my stake president he is the reason I was able to get out here when I did and it's all because he had faith in me and saw something in me I didnt and still don't see, but he is someone I'm really grateful for.
Yeah Elder Kim told me how cold it was! (His first mission companion came to meet before going home to Korea) It's starting to get "California Cold" here haha. Which is nothing compared to Utah cold. But never the less it's pretty stinkin chilly! I hate wearing my suits because I don't want to pay to get them dry cleaned and it's been raining a ton lately! So I'm super excited to get the package you sent with my sweater :) Anyways Elder Kim is awesome huh? I know you showed him some baby pictures I hear...haha i knew it would happen. He did tell me that he was so very happy to meet you and really appreciated that you took the time to be able to talk with him. He's someone I'm very glad I got the chance to get really close with,  Elder Kim  is someone who will be a friend for life And I feel very grateful for his example and constant patience with me learning Korean and adjusting to mission life. I really hope to go to Korean someday and spend time with him and his family and hopefully I'll be able to actually talk and have a sincere conversation with his parents by then because they don't know a lick of English haha.
So when Elder Kim was with his parents he went on this tour around California and to the grand canyon and such and there was this Korean Lady, Tina Kim who I guess heard Elder Kim speak English at one of the spots to a white person and saw his area code somehow and was really impressed with his english and asked if he could pay him to teach her english. And he told her he was going to Korea but he there's other people like him who can do that for free and he gave us her contact info. We contacted her and met her the next day (This all happened this week) and found out she has never even heard of our church and was shocked when she looked us up and saw how many church buildings we have. And she found out she lives next to one of the local wards in Hacendia, but didnt realize it was church since there was no cross haha. But we met her Thursday at a costco and taught her some basic english (She knows barely any english) and shared a scripture in 2nd Nephi about how God has an everlasting love for her. And she told us how shes has had all these trials all of the sudden and has been praying for help and she believes we are the answer and she said that meeting us was so weird how it happened but a dream come true. She calls us her Angels from heaven. We continued to meet her Friday, Saturday and she came to church this Sunday! MY companion let me lead the lessons and I've been getting really frustrated lately with Korean and getting really down on myself about how I felt I wasn't progressing anymore, like it felt I just hit this brick wall that came out of nowhere. But when we teach her English she really knows like NO english haha She can say Coorlrlr and Dank You. haha. And it forced me to define English words in Korean and I realized how much more Iknow than I thought and when we teach lessons its normally in english haha but her we have to use Korean which is SO awesome and it forces us to make our lessons really simple. She came to church and we met after and shared the video The light of Christ mormon message ( watch it! compares how the light of Christ is always there so there is never darkness but is sometimes dim so that we only have enough light to be guided by faith and makes us search for anwers so that we can cherish those answers and they become our testimony that we hold dear to our hearts)  because she has a really hard time feeling god's love so praying is difficult for her. We shared the scriptures 1kings 19:11-12 and then shared 3rd Nephi11:10-12 and She asked me how I came to recognize the light of Christ (This is at carls JR. btw.) Myself nor my companion really knew exactly what to say to be able so she could understand and we kinda rambled for a second and I said a quick prayer in my heart to know what to say so that I could help her recognize and feel his love her like he's done with me. And right there I had a prompting to share 1 Nephi 1:20 and it talks about how God gives his tender mercies to his blessed people because they strengthen us. Me and my companion testified of the truth of this and then she kinda shocked me by asking me to tell her a real personal experience of how I know this is true and not just the traditional I know this is true because of the Holy Ghost she wanted a life experience. Immediately I thought of you and my dad. I began to tell her my parents got divorced when I was at a young age and that we moved from Texas to Utah to be with the family on my moms side. I told her that when a was little I didnt understand what divorce really was and that when I was little due to ignorance, I was mad and frustrated  that my dad wasn't around and I would be mad at my mom because at first I thought it was my mom's fault for why I didn't see my dad. As a boy growing up I was always angry. I didn't have a dad to do guy things with. I further said how not having a father in my life I started to rebel at a young age and thought I could do what I wanted. I told her how as I got older I became more rebellious and started to get in a lot of trouble and just did bad things and became a lot more disrespectful towards my family and mother, and that my mom used to stay up crying due to my actions and then I still somehow always blame her. I told her about how there was from the age 15-18ish where I thought there was no God. I truly didn't believe because why would he do this to me or even to my mom? Why would my dad leave his family like that? Then I told her how for some reason my heart was softened and I truly saw how much my mom did. How she worked TWO jobs to support me and her and to give me everything she could. How she worked two jobs to buy me things I didn't need because she was always sorry for not raising me with brothers or sisters and a dad. Even though it wasn't her fault. I told her how she continually would cry and cry again because of my actions and would do nothing but show me everlasting love when I would give nothing but a headache in return. I told her when I fell away from the church she never got mad at me or never showed less love she gave me my free agency and instead of forcing me to go to church like some parents did, she continued to do what was right. I told Tina it wasn't easy for my mom she had a hard life growing up she had nothing when she moved to Utah she worked countless hours to put a roof over my head in a nice nieghboorhood with food in our fridge. She patiently went through all her trials with just the hope that something better was on the other side. She went through financial struggles trying her hardest to not let me know of them, she went through physical trials as well as her many emotional ones, and how my mom had to have surgeries for reasons I didn't understand. And I expressed how she did this all while raising an ungrateful child. Once I came to realize these things and when it hit me how i felt so bad, and how I could never make up for doing the things I do. But I expressed how you were the light of Christ for me and my life. I was never in the darkness that I thought I was in. I was never abandoned by God like I thought. He just showed me the light through a different source. Although for a few years my life may have been surrounded in darkness it was never the complete darkness I thought it was. I realized God had always given me sufficient light to guide me to my next step but he didn't just make everything bright and didn't revil all these things to me at once because he knew what I needed to get a testimony of him being there and he knew what it was going to take for me to not only obtain that testimony but to hold onto it as well. I think he knew how prideful of a person I was and knew I would have forever been carried away in my own pride if he wouldn't have given me the trials he did at a young age. God knew I could get a testimony of him but I think he knew I would have never cherished it like I do now if he didn't make it so I would see just how bad and how dark life can be without us letting him be apart of everyday life. I concluded by saying at the age 4 and even at 16 and 17ish i would have never guessed that having a loser dad would be a true blessing in disguise. And that God may not take away our trials but instead give us the strength we need to endure them or the patience that we need to get through them. And I told her how I'm living proof that God doesn't take away our trials because he knows what we need to become perfect like him. After all this was said and after she finally stopped crying she said "I want to be able to see life from a different view and feel God's love for me like you have and I want to have the patience and faith your mom has"
After she said this and after my companion translated that for me I couldn't help but begin to cry a little bit (JUST a little bit) And then me and Elder Ham begin to tell her how she can and how it all starts with sincere prayer. And we plan on meeting her again wednesday.
No matter what happens with Tina Kim whether she gets baptized or moves to Vegas and I never hear from her again. I will always be grateful for meeting her because of the testimony I have gotten from sharing those things with her. I think you're a way better example of living proof of how God visits people in their afflictions and helps them get through their trials.  And I know the only reason I cherish it so much is because of the things I have gone through. I know that you are aware of the fact I made a lot of stupid choices but I don't know if you know how many stupid choices I did make and  just how "dark" my life was becoming. I think it was close to the point where if I would have made just a few more dumb things, my life would have been permanently effected. 
It's taken me until my 3rd transfer to really see how awesome the Book Of Mormon is but holy cow this is the coolest book ever! Elder Ham got really bad food poisoning tuesday and we had to cancel all our appointments that day because he couldn't take two steps without throwing up. I originally was just going to sleep all day and maybe watch some of the LDS movies we have from the mission office, instead I decided to read from the Book of Mormon. I was in like Alma 17ish and to be honest I only decided to read because the day before in personal study it was starting to get to the wars and I was super interested and suprised there was wars in the Book of Mormon...in Detail! haha. So I sat down and read all day and read close to 200 pages and in 3rd Nephi 27 and am almost finished! I have gained such a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and have all the sudden just been reading it at such a faster pace and actually understanding it all! Which to me is SO crazy because I hate reading. And if there was one thing I hated more than reading was "fancy talk" old english. I remember before my mission I tried to read it a little bit and it was going through my eyes and out my nose! And the other day I read my patriachal blessing and it says how I'll enjoy reading good books and will be able to read them quickly while understanding them fully. And it was crazy to just see that once I had a stronger faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and sincerely praying for desire to read this book and to be able to understand it, how I went from reading one chapter a day during my 1 hour of personal study time and trying so hard to understand what it meant and make sense of everything, to reading around 10-13 Chapters in an hour and being to be able to fully understand it and better yet Remember it so I can share it with people I meet when I need to.

Sorry this is so long haha this was just a week of a lot of great personal revelation that I wanted to share with you. The investigator with the Bapt. date that me and Elder Ham fell through on us and we haven't met him a couple weeks so please keep in your prayers. We're supposed to meet him this week so we will see. Also tell Derek I was market contacting and started talking to this guy and found out he is a member and actually he served in Korea (I was orignally confused why this white guy was at a korean market haha) and also he served with Derek! I can't remember his name I wrote it down but left it in the apt. I think his name was like scott hutchinson or maybe Richard something...? He was short and chubby and a little odd never the less he did know Derek. But we're going over to his house to eat this week I'm excited. 
Is Colten getting married? Is she cute? if so is she blind? hahah Jk if Colten is a cutie :)
I love you mom!  You were the best mom and dad that any could ever ask for!
Love Elder Meza.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Working with less actives is great!

I love our mission pres. and his wife they are so awesome! President Bowen is one of the most amazing people I have ever met. We have Korean Vietmanse Tongan Spanish and Samoan Missionaries as well. But someone can always speak english in them so they're ok haha. We have district meetings every thursday and that is the same day that we get our mail. MY zone has the korean and the vietmanese elders in it along with one english speaking district. We are a lot closer with the Viet. Elders.
District meetings are good I always get something new out of it and I always am able to improve my teaching skills that way. I used to have to help set up DM and help run them since I always had a district leader comp. But now that its just me and Elder Ham I finally get to just arrive at a normal time and sit back and do role plays like everyone else haha it's pretty nice.
Last Zone confrence we had Elder Ellis come and speak to us and he is way funny it was really good. The word on the streets is that the next zone confrence we have Elder Bednar will be here....so i'm getting pretty pumped for that. Zone confrence and zone training are my favorite I always learn so much! I have really good zone Leaders that i have been able to get pretty close with they're way funny! One of my zone leaders Elder Rogers feels the same pain as me....(He's also a Dallas Cowboys fan) hahaha. So we connected pretty quick.
Our Pdays aren't like real pdays. Since me and Eldfer Ham pretty much got white washed into the North area we go get our emails done then go do studies and then tract all day. We have no real investigators except for 2. So all our time is spent on finding. But mostly P days we work with less actives. I love working with less actives and I focus a lot of my attention on them. Our branch has so many less actives it's crazy. Also those people once had a testimony so I just do what it takes to get the fire lit again...Me and Elder Ham last week went through our area book and called every single less acctive in our area (Over 30+) people! We have found out a lot of them were either just offended or have moved. That's one of the perks of being a missionary is that most of the less actives won't meet with members only missionaries because they already know our intentions since they were once active. Elder Kim is the reason i work so much with less active because he was the only one that found them to be important so he passed down that conection to me.  I' ve seen so many families slowly but surely change. So in our branch our branch pres. comes to us for less active info because he knows we'll care about them. I have  a strong testimony for less active work because shoot I was pretty much inactive for a few years and wanted nothing to do with church and I've seen how just a simple friend who is strong in the church can change one's whole lifestyle. So thats what i'm trying to do and I really love working with them because theyre so kind and normally were just offeneded at one point.
Anyways we gave one of my investigators Yoo Gene a baptism date and he's progressing super fast! He used to be a "Eternal Investigator" But he's finally changing and there's a lot more to his story but i'll let you know more about him when we meet up with him again.
Love you
Love Elder Meza