Elder Sabin

Elder Sabin

Monday, December 7, 2015

Week 20: If God be with us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31

Hello Everyone!!! And merry Christmas!

Seriously, the mission has been going crazy up here.  I'm guessing Toronto must be sick of hearing "Merry Christmas" from the missionaries, because I don't think I've let a single person walk by without saying it.  At red lights, we roll down the windows and stop at nothing to get the person next to us to roll down theirs so we can say it to them.  We've gotten some weird looks, but it's totally worth it.

Anyway, this week was amazing.  Seriously, my testimony has grown so much during this week, and I am learning more and more that God prepares people.  We've been working with some amazing investigators, and I want to mention two in particular who I'm so glad I've been able to meet.

One is named Raymond, and I think I might have mentioned him before, but he definitely deserves an update.  We were a little worried about him last week because he didn't come to church, and on the phone he told us that he still didn't think he'd felt the spirit.  We felt like he was losing interest, but this week he totally turned around!  We had a lesson with him earlier in the week, and we talked about what the spirit meant to us.  It was definitely one of the most spiritual lessons I've had out here.  We brought Frank along (recent convert) and when he bore testimony, oh my gosh, it was awesome!  Then a few days later we called him and he basically said - in Chinese - "Elders!  I think I get it now!" and he started talking about all the times he felt the spirit and how he felt it when he talked to his family and did good things.  It was amazing. Then he came to church, which was fast and testimony meeting, and he said afterwards that his testimony had grown a ton just from listening to the testimonies.  Random sidenote - Church was awesome.  I heard some of the most sincere testimonies I've ever heard, and it definitely helps that my Chinese has improved and I'm usually able to get what they're saying.  Anyways, after church, we met with Raymond again, and it turns out he's finished the whole book of First Nephi! He's powering through this book, and he keeps saying that it's getting easier to understand when he prays to God about it.  Ahhh!  I wish I could express my feelings through a keyboard, but I don't think it's possible.  I'm so happy for him.

The other awesome one is named Candice, and we only started meeting with her last weekend.  She's doing great too, and we've already started talking about baptism with her.  She's totally willing to put in her effort by reading and praying, and she talks about how good prayer makes her feel.  We've met with her 3 times now, and she totally wants to be baptized.  She wasn't able to come to church (super sad) but she is doing great, and I'm so glad we get to work with her.

Those are the two most awesome people from the week, but basically it's been a great week all around.  We started teaching English class at a different place and the new place has a ton more students.  They all speak Mandarin, and basically, I'm in charge of teaching all the people who know almost no English.  They're all great, and I'll never forget the first day we walked into the classroom.  Elder Mak started speaking to them, and they were very courteous, but when the big white man in the room started speaking in Chinese, holy cow, it was hilarious.  Anyway, we're all best friends now, and they're all super awesome.  We have a great time. 

Also, I wish I had a picture of Elder Mak's face when he saw a gingerbread house for sale at Walmart.  Utter joy.  So we totally bought it, and I think Elder Mak's goal in life is to create this God-given gift.

We got to go to the temple again, and several of the people were going for their first time.  It was so spiritual, and I got to confirm a bunch of people using a Chinese prayer.  Missionaries aren't allowed to participate in the baptisms, but we still got to watch them, and it was a super spiritual experience.

We taught several new investigators last week, and we brought along Brother Wang (pronounced Wong) for one of them.  Brother Wang is the second counselor in our ward, and he's so great.  His family fed us dinner as well, and they're awesome.

Also, got a new car!  Nissan Rogue 2016.  Just thought that was worth mentioning.

We dropped by to visit a less active the other day that we had never met, and it turned out she hadn't been to church in 8 years.  She met the missionaries in another country, but then she moved to Canada and her life has been really hectic, and her family doesn't really support religion.  We talked to her for about a half an hour, and she expressed several of her concerns to us, so now we're just hoping we can get her to come back.  We're going back on Tuesday, so I'll let you all know how it goes.

Mom - Basically for Christmas, our plan was to go to a member's house.  Their names are the Li's, and they're amazing.  They invited us to come, because they have a bunch of computers.  We're planning on using Skype if that's okay, but we didn't pin down an exact time.  Do you have a preference on time?  As far as the package goes, I got the boots, but the mission office said they're saving a lot of packages for Zone Council on December 16th.  That way they can get them all out at once, and it's closer to Christmas for all the Christmas presents.  So they have it.  Thanks for sharing the wonderful thought.  I wrote it down in my "small plates," and just so you know, the bar for that is set pretty high :)  Also, scriptural discovery!  In Hebrews 12:1-2, which is a great scripture by the way, they refer to Jesus Christ as the "author and finisher of our faith" which I thought was a really cool title.  Anyway, I've loved that scripture for a long time, and then I was reading in Moroni the other day, and in Chapter 6:4 he refers to him as the same thing!  Hebrews was written after Lehi left Jerusalem, so they couldn't have read each other's book, but they refer to him in the same unusual way.  That stood out to me.  Love you!

Hadley - Puppies!  Can you send one in your next package?  Kidding, that would never make it through, but I'd love to see the face of the Custom's worker who had to investigate the package.  Sounds like the ward party was fun, and it definitely sounds like you haven't changed.  Puppies!

Ellie - Actually it hasn't snowed yet up here.  Puppies!  It's not been warm, but it's not gotten super cold either.  Everyone here is saying that this winter is supposed to be much milder.  They use Celsius up here, so I actually don't know exactly what temperature it is in Farenheit (Puppies!) but it's only gotten negative (32 degrees F) a few times.  No snow on the ground yet.  Elder Mak can't wait :)  Also, puppies!  Also, Miriam's sister went to a much colder mission than mine.  She was much further north.

Hayden - Sounds super cool bro!  I'll make sure to include BYU in my prayers.  Is Taysom Hill still injured?  Puppies!  What's the deal with the quarterback?  Also, read Alma 26.  I love that chapter.

Ashleigh - Why did you write your whole message in a scary bank font?  Anyway, I'm totally White Guy #2 in case you were wondering.  Actually, no.  I'm one of the Asian guys.  Also puppies!  So have you beaten anyone up in your lacrosse games yet?

Dad - For my greeting, I'll use a scripture.  Read Philippians 1:3, and then read the rest of the email :)  Puppies.  Anyway, I'm glad the ward party was great.  You kind of already heard the news on some of the investigators, but yes, things are going well.  The mission president wasn't actually at our last zone conference, but it was still awesome.  #ASaviorIsBorn!  Love you!

Anyway, that's pretty much it.

Elder Sabin

PS Almost forgot, another funny thing that happened.  Maybe this will sum me up as a missionary.  Our district got switched up, so we were doing introductions, and we all had to say something we loved about our companions.  When it got to Elder Mak this is what he said.

"Well, Elder Sabin does a lot of really stupid things, and it's really funny to watch."

It was hilarious.

Us in the emailing center!  We're with two other Elders, and this guy is named Elder Ray.  He's super dope.

 A funny sign I saw earlier this week.  Very detailed description.

Sorry, I need to take more pictures!