Tuesday, August 14, 2012

From Jacob's 8/14 Email

There is a lot... if I can remember it all? Maybe most importantly (to me, sorry :o) is that P-day is being switched from Wednesday's to Mondays. I am not certain if that is good or not, but I will trust it's inspired. It also means that I get to relax(ish) in 5 days rather than 7.

I was able to taste Durian for the first time on Friday!!! There were 3 of them, and I didn't take any pictures because I was famished, and wanted to eat something. Well, it was not anything like I expected, and I had been praying that I would be able to enjoy it. Well I really liked it! There is part of it which tastes very good (opinionated I know) and another part that tastes almost bitter and was not quite as good. But out of the three Durians that I tried, the 2nd was the best and the 3rd wasn't so good (very bitter).

Elder Harper got here last week!!! In case I forgot to mention him last week...

Foods: I was able to try Routi Telur which is Routi... with an egg inside, and you dip it in curry. It's very tasty actually! I was also able to taste Curry Mee which is Curry and noodles- by the way, there are different kinds of curry- the spicy death inviting ones and the tasty splendid sort. Then a plethora in between. It's also interesting to order the same thing at every place because it all tastes different!

Chinese people continue to be surprised to learn how long I have been learning- 4 months only?! :D It is interesting to see how the gift of tongues work among the different people I have met.

 Let me see... AH! Rain/Weather/Climate: It is moving into the rainy season, I was able to literally pour water out of my shoes 2 weeks ago- I think I have a picture? But I wont be sending pictures for a while.

I am actually becoming a parent in a very strange sense. We have an investigator (I shall call him Alfredo for fun) Alfredo who has moved away from his parents, and is struggling with an assortment of problems. He lives about 25 feet away from us, and it's... interesting sometimes. HOWEVER, I am in the process of watching him completely change his life! This young man, who may never have spoken a kind word to his parents (who may be the nicest people who ever lived-- excluding my own mother (and father I suppose...)) said "Thank you" to his father yesterday!! Music has an extremely strong effect on him --- both ways- Good music has a positive influence, while violent, pornographic or suggestive and hateful music influence him negatively. Well, we have begun holding Family Home Evening with him and his parents, and are returning again tonight. We are trying to help him build a testimony of the Book of Mormon which is frustrating, because he knows that it is true, having prayed and asked God if it is true, but he wishes to receive physical evidence, or scientific evidence, and does not understand why he needs to read it. Well, he has about 6 or 7 major problems and we are working on discerning which doctrinal points will bless him the most.

We were able to contact an "on-hold" investigator yesterday who invited us over for a barbeque. I think that that is what I would call "contacting with style" :D She has a sister and a brother, and her father is very much Buddhist. The mother seems to like us, but then again I might not be a very good judge of people.

I had a list of things to write about written down, but I forgot it somewhere... =D

OH! I went to Zone Conference this week.  We had all been asked to prepare a talk, not knowing who would be speaking.  I was the one asked to speak. That was a good experience, Elder Jensen my trainer told me that he has never been asked to speak and this was his last Zone Conference. I was able to talk with other missionaries including two from the same group (or who were "born" at the same time as I in Singapore) as I, who were able to tell me there stories- Sister Haslett was randomly in KL and Sister Noorda had been through 4 companions! I am glad that I have been in Sitiawan with the same companion for so long! I will hopefully be stationed here for a total of 8 months, and companions usually change about every 4 months or so. They don't change very often due to the nature of the mission- it being large, and costly to travel.

Well, quick insight: if everyone tried to understand each other a lot more would get done in this world.

A great book that I enjoy written by M. Russell Ballard "Our Search for Happiness" describes the LDS religion very simply and doctrinally pure for those trying to understand who Mormons are and why they are the way they are. I think it's a great book :D

Well, love life!!
Elder Black

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