Elder Seth Barrus

Elder Seth Barrus
Jakarta Indonesia Mission May2013-2015

Monday, November 25, 2013

I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas

All of my short sleeve white shirts were dirty, so this is me wearing my long sleeved one trying to act cold. Brrrr!
We got ready for church yesterday and walked out the door to a thin layer of this fluffy white stuff. My first reaction was that the Second Coming is nigh and upon us as we speak. At church, President Rxxxx explained that there was no need to get so excited. It was just volcanic ash from Mt Sinabung erupting or something. Nonetheless, the song never specifies how to have a White Christmas; whether it's snow or volcanic ash, it's all the same right? Haha! Just as a precaution, we get to wear these sweet dental masks whenever we go out on our bikes. 

(This is a picture of Mount Sinabung. Eight more eruptions occurred on Sunday, closing the Medan airport. Don't worry though, the volcano is about 55 miles away from Medan where Seth is serving.)

We'll be going to Elder and Sister Tucker's apartment for Thanksgiving and cooking dinner. President Donald gave us permission to switch our P-Day from today to Thursday but still email today. 

As far as the actual missionary work goes, it was a pretty mysterious week. Mysterious because from Monday to Thursday, we had pretty close to zero success. It was awesome. Appointments fell through, we couldn't teach Toyo and Roni the whole week because their mom was out of town and didn't want us over when she wasn't there, and our bikes kept breaking causing us to have to cancel appointments. Humbled me pretty hardcore. And frustrated me. Elder Sxxxxxx and I started flipping through the Area Book just calling up every one that had a number and name. 

But, we ended up having a really great day Saturday that culminated in us meeting Bang Axxx and Bang Exxxx. Do you remember Bang Pxxxxx? He used to live in a kos with about 15 other people and we happened to have one of their numbers. We called him up and met last Saturday and weren't quite ready for what ended up happening. We talked about the Restoration and invited them to church to witness a baptism. Bang Axxx was the only one that came, but after the service, I asked how he felt and he said "senang". (happy) I was kinda joking when I asked if he wanted to be baptized himself. He laughed and nodded and I didn't think about it again. Later that night, we met up again to follow up with him. Bang Axxxx brought up the baptism and out of the blue said "I know that many churches follow Christ and try to do what's right, but I felt that baptism in your church is the best way." Man, that's why being a missionary is so awesome. You can have an absolutely depressing couple days, still work hard, and then have one thing happen that makes everything better. They both are from Nias and are going home to see their family during the month of December. But they want to meet starting in January and be baptized then. 

I'm humbled again and again in realizing this is the Lord's work and as I work through His ways he's given me, I will find success. It's like the account in Luke 5:5-6 where the fishermen, soon to be apostles, were trying so hard to catch fish and couldn't for whatever reason. As soon as they tried the Lord's way, they had so many fish it sank their boat. We had 66 people come to church yesterday. President Rico said that's the most that's ever come since May of 2012. The Church is true!! 

Youth from the branch after a futsal activity. This is why I love Medan so much. There are SO MANY YOUTH! 

President Rxxxxxxx, the Medan branch president. He and his wife Exxxxx are so great and are a big part of why the church in Medan is growing so fast. 

I wish I could write about everything that's been happening. Or describe how the last 3 months have been in Medan without using any missionary cliches. But anytime I try to do so, I can't come up with the words to describe how great it is. That's why the last 3 months have been quite literally the best 3 months. I like being a missionary. It's fun!
Elder Seth Michael Barrus

Look out! The outside of the durian fruit is quite sharp--making it bad for you both inside and out. Stinky!!!!

We gave some white shirts and ties to Rxxxxxx and Txxxxxxxxxx. You should have seen their faces--they lit up like a Christmas Tree! They were so excited! I know you can't tell by looking at them. I promise, they really do smile and laugh. It's just an Indonesian thing when they get their pictures taken. They don't smile.  

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