Monday, March 14, 2016

Sweet Reunion

Ran into my boys Tol and Vween when Elder Khiev and I went to the church building to teach a new investigator. They were there at a hugeeeeee YSA activity they were doing! I was so pumped when I saw them, I ran up and almost tackled them! 

The weeks are blurring together at a horrifying speed. I can't believe it's already p-day again. This last week was a crazy blur. During the day when we don't have any else we have to do, like English class or zone training, we are mostly just out on the streets contacting motodopes. There's a lot of houses in Tuol Kouk, but they are mostly palaces with enormous gates around them (and usually nobody living in them, because they are mostly owned by foreigners, and if they're owned by Cambodians those people have like four houses, so...) The people we contact are mostly motodopes and tuk-tuk drivers and guards. They mostly don't live in Tuol Kouk too, haha. But we're happy to find investigators for other people! We give out a lot of referrals. We've found a couple new investigators too! Unfortunately one is going to move to Kampong Cham this week, but that's ok. There are more prepared people in this area whom we have yet to find!

One of the villas of Tuol Kouk. This is out of our bedroom window. It's a big one, but some of the other villas in our area make this one look like a fish-tank accessory

Being out on the street for most of the day is very hot, but I love it. When it's blazing hot, it makes missionary work that much more fulfilling. You just feel good. And it makes for some good deep sleep come 9:30pm. "The sleep of a laboring man is sweet" as that Bible verse goes.

With Lee as well, a recent convert of Elder Kim and Elder Allred's that I knew really well in Steung Mean Chey!

Tuesday they had an enormous Young Single Adult (YSA) activity at the North stake center. YSA from all of Cambodia were invited. They had hundreds of people there. Apparently they're doing it again in May, and are going to do it even bigger. I have no idea how they're going to manage that, but I'm sure they'll find a way. When Elder Khiev and I pulled up at 6 to meet a new investigator from English class, whose name is Sopheak, I ran into Tol, Vween, and Ponlok, three of my RC's from Steung Mean Chey! 

Me and Ponlok

Ponlok was an investigator that Elder Osborne and I found and started teaching in Stung Mean Chey. But I had to leave after just a few weeks of teaching him. He got baptized a few weeks after I left. Now he is engaged to the member that he was dating back then! And he is doing so well!! Before he was kind of shy, but as I was talking with Vween and Tol he runs up and he was like "Elder Berger!". Now he's way good friends with Vween and Tol. I got to talk with them for about 10 minutes after our lesson with an investigator. Ahhh man, it was one of the happiest moments of my mission, just talking with them and seeing how much they love the gospel and how much they have embraced it. I was on cloud nine for a few days after seeing them. There's nothing that can match the joy of being an instrument in the hands of God to help assist in bringing some of His children to repentance. Ahhhh!!! So happy. I love the mission.

I can't even describe the feeling of joy that comes as you watch people become converted to the true, restored gospel of Jesus Christ. The words of Ammon always ring so strong as I think about the miracles I have seen the Lord do in these two years. Here he quotes the words of the Lord:

5 Behold, the field was ripe, and blessed are ye, for ye did thrust in the sickle, and did reap with your might, yea, all the day long did ye labor; and behold the number of your sheaves! And they shall be gathered into the garners, that they are not wasted.

6 Yea, they shall not be beaten down by the storm at the last day; yea, neither shall they be harrowed up by the whirlwinds; but when the storm cometh they shall be gathered together in their place, that the storm cannot penetrate to them; yea, neither shall they be driven with fierce winds whithersoever the enemy listeth to carry them.
7 But behold, they are in the hands of the Lord of the harvest, and they are his; and he will raise them up at the last day.

8 Blessed be the name of our God; let us sing to his praise, yea, let us give thanks to his holy name, for he doth work righteousness forever."
It is so comforting to know that the people who I have been privileged to meet with and invite to come unto Christ are not "my" recent converts, as the terminology we so commonly use puts it. Really, they are the Lord's, and He loves them infinitely more than I do, even though I love them with all my heart. He will take care of them. That knowledge has soothed my heart so many times as I have stressed over those people. I know that the Lord will always tend to his children.  Alma 26:5-8

Friday we had zone training. It was awesome. Elder Khiev and I had been studying and praying since we got to North zone, asking God what we should share to the zone. It was cool as we came together to discuss zone training with each other and we had each independently felt prompted that chapter one and chapter 6 in Preach My Gospel should be the topics that we train on. I felt the Spirit so strongly as the missionaries in our zone discussed with each other about these chapters. We have such a wonderful zone, full of spiritual giants. It was Elder Kim's last zone training meeting too (how weird is that?) so we had him bear his testimony at the end. Ahh man, that almost sent me over the edge. I'm convinced that Elder Khiev and Elder Kim both will be stake presidents here in a few years. Elder Kim's testimony was so awesome. He testified how the mission is a preparatory experience for Khmaes, to come out and be tempered and be made instruments in the hands of the Lord, so that all the returned missionaries in Cambodia could become the foundation on which the Church in Cambodia rests. It was awesome. It was also the first zone training I've ever been to where it was all done in Khmae, no English at all. Our zone is like 60% Khmae, so it just made it a lot easier to do it that way instead of having someone translate.

Sunday was ward conference. The stake presidency taught for second and third hour. Oh my word, I never wanted it to end. President Eng, President Boot, and President Meng are foreordained. No doubt about it. They are insanely good. Like I can't even describe it. The meeting was so good. Just what the members needed. They trained about keeping the Sabbath day holy (which is a lot more than just going to church) and what the difference between a saint and a member is and the difference between a testimony and conversion.

This week was full of spiritual highs. I'm loving serving with Elder Khiev. We just moved into our own apartment this week, so we don't have to crash on the floor of the other elder's apartment. We're still in the same building, but now we have an apartment all to ourselves. It's pretty sweet. We each have our own bathroom. Elder Khiev makes us 3 square meals a day. Life is good. Can't complain about anything.

Love y’all!

Elder Burger

Watch out for the hand cleaning solution at Burger King. Satan will use any means he can to get us...

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