Bagaimana kabar semuanya?
First off I wish a very happy Hari Ulang Tahun to Micah! I hope you have a great day and that this year is a good one. I wish I could buy you some pisang keju (cheese bananas) or some es kolapa muda (coconut ice), but it would get all nasty through the mail. I hope this will do. :) I sent a letter in the mail, so hopefully you don't get it too late.
Elder Hendro is feeling a lot better and it shows. He is much more enthusiastic about going out now. Before, he just looked dead, so that's a blessing.
It turns out, Lidya was able to be confirmed this last week! We received permission because the last two weeks she was attending 2 of her Muslim cousins' weddings. She didn't want to create any problems or contention in her family, so she decided to go there instead of to Sacrament Meeting.
This last week was business as usual. Except for that I went on an exchange in Surabaya Barat with Elder Kyle the first day, and Elder Mendrofa the second day. Elder Kyle and I taught one of his investigators, name is Sister Lia, who's been taught for the last 2 years or so from so many missionaries! We taught about forgiveness, shared scriptures, and helped her understand that for a family to truly be united, forgiveness is an attribute that is essential. The lesson went well, but she ended up asking questions. Questions in and of themselves aren't bad, in fact they're great! But the types of questions she asked kinda missed the point. She asked questions like "Do we wear clothes in the Spirit World?" or "Are we ever hungry and can we eat in the Kingdoms of Glory?". We learn from Moroni 10:3-5 that the "Holy Ghost will manifest the truth of all things." And the questions she asked really, if they could be answered, are truth. But they aren't necessary for us.
I found a scripture in D&Cthat says "The Holy Ghost will manifest all things which are expedient." Everything that we need to know to progress in this life can be made manifest to us through the Holy Ghost. But I feel like her small, detracting questions shake her faith in what she already does know to be true, instead of the other way around like Elder Holland explained. "Everything that we DO know will always trump what we DO NOT know." It's really been an answer to prayer for me because sometimes an investigator who's a ton smarter than I am, like Pak Sugiamto for example, asks a question from the Bible about some small, irrevelant thing that he wants to know the answer to before he can progress. When in actuality, they miss the bigger picture. I'm grateful for my own testimony of the Restoration, Jesus Christ, and the Plan of Salvation. Yah, there are some things we don't know. But what we do know is what builds our faith.
One other thing that happened last week: There was a funeral for Sister Endang's father, who wasn't a member, but Sister Endang is. We went to the funeral and because she comes from a mixed family, it was a Christian-Chinese-Muslim funeral. Kinda different. But apparently at every funeral in Indonesia, peanuts are a staple. No idea why. It was interesting to see the contrast though. Sister Endang herself was obviously sad, but she seemed different than the rest of her family, because I think she has a testimony about the Plan of Salvation. Her other siblings were quite distraught and visibly depressed. Anytime I think about why I'm here as a missionary or why others need the Gospel, I'm gonna think about this experience. Because the joy, peace of mind, and knowledge that come from the Principles of the Gospel bring the greatest joy a person can find in this life.
Thank you all for your example and prayers. Terus Maju dan jangan mundur! (Continue forward and not backward!)
|Elder Kyle and Elder Barrus at the weekly motorcycle wash.|
(Photo courtesy Sister Anderson)