Monday, August 29, 2016

Week 8.5 Leaving Modesto CA: A Transfer Across the Ocean 8/29/2016

Flying Out: A Transfer Across the Pacific Ocean
Leaving the Modesto California Mission and Going to the China Hong Kong Mission

Once a month, missionaries receive a mission "transfer call." This is when they learn if they are staying or moving to a new city, and if they will keep or change their missionary companion.
The day after the transfer call, missionaries have their p-day (preparation day) to pack and prepare to move the next day.
Sunday night, 8/28/2016, Elder Joseph Chou received his transfer call. His visa had arrived. The next day, Monday morning, he would be leaving the Modesto California Mission and flying to the China Hong Kong Mission.
He has a 16-hour direct flight to Hong Kong by himself (no traveling companion). He is excited to go to the China Hong Kong Mission, meet his new mission president, and find out who will be his new missionary companion and new area in Hong Kong.
A transfer across the Pacific Ocean, from the US to Hong Kong

Elder Chou & President Palmer at the airport. Leaving US and flying to Hong Kong, China

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Week 7.5 Modesto CA: Spiritual Blessings 8/23/2016

Where to Start?......
3 big things happened that were great spiritual experiences
zone conference
We had 3 zones together and it was super fun! I learned a lot! :) the main point I learned was Charity. You never truly and fully love someone like Christ does until you are willing to sacrifice whatever you've got so that the other person is happier, more comfortable, and become a better person. You also sometimes have to withhold comfort for their growth which is always hard when you have developed a strong relationship with them. I asked the question this week, what do I need to sacrifice, what am I holding on to that I need to let go of, so that I can have a better relationship with my Heavenly Father, and with my Savior. That is why I love zone conference, because he makes our life easier.
Personal Studies!!!!!
The best part of the day is personal study!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is so fun to learn spiritually. I learned this week that faith in Jesus Christ is like trusting a doctor. He says I will do this and this, you don't completely understand, but you get the gist of it. You know he knows whats best for you. You just squeeze your eyes and say ok, do what you have to. He then says ok this is what I need you to do, do you trust me?
He is the Chinese person that I talked about a few weeks ago. He went back to China. We asked him about the Book of Mormon in Chinese we gave him and the pamphlets and what he thought. He said in a little broken English "I love that they illuminate. . . I have to say the message is like a torch, lightening up the darkness." I know that God is preparing his children, even if we cannot see it. I doubted that the people of China were ready for the gospel, but now I see that they are just as ready as any other population in the world.
Other information :)
We, this week, have been trying to get new investigators and have been trying different things. We were rewarded by the members helping us out by saying "hey I got this friend" and stuff. There are people here that are ready for this message and they just don't know it now.

I know that the LORD is hastening his work. He is the had of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He lives. He rewards us for our efforts. He loves us. He is my savior. He is your savior. He will never abandon you. He will always be there for you. He knows you. He knows what you want to change. I know that if you, use his atonement, and try as hard as you can, nothing short of miracles will happen.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Week 6.5 Modesto CA: Biking Day and Night 8/15/2016

This week has been fast...

The thing I want to talk about is sacrifice.
Why is sacrifice so important?
For those in my philosophy class this will kind of make sense. Sacrifice is an eternal principal because we are taking those things we root our happiness in and cant control and giving them up (money, our will, food, time) and by giving them up, we look to the reason we give them up and that is the Savior. Through the Savior we can have internal happiness and by not worrying about the things that we root our happiness in that can change and that gives us peace, and "sacrifice brings for the blessings of heaven"

Also another thing is. not everything we do we will see the results of our work. But we have to have an eternal perspective. Jesus is my Savior. He lives and I though him will make it back. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Elder Chou and Elder Spencer - biking day and night
Missionaries of the LDS Church bike many miles a day as they go from home to home to teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Week 5.5 Modesto CA: Teaching in Chinese 8/8/16

Teaching in Chinese 8/8/2016

Hey everyone! so many things happened this week that I can't remember all of them! ...things are fun in Stockton, [and] people are nice...

The best experience was that I was able to teach a person from China! it was a super [miracle]... for that to happen...
My companion [got me to do my language study more effectively, so] I was able to be more Chinese minded when I taught this person...
I went on my first exchange and found a Chinese Book of Mormon...
Because of these things I was able to teach this person in Chinese [and give him a Chinese Book of Mormon]... and he was super accepting...

We also cleaned a person's house [for service]... There was a trailer full of trash in her house.

I know this email is a little shorter but that doesn't matter. I KNOW that God is the author of our lives, and the things he does for me or anyone else is so that I can be prepared for later, in the name of Jesus christ amen.

Psalms 119:105 is my favorite scripture this week because it talks about reading the scriptures and how that effects your life.

Missionaries from Elder Chou's district in Stockton CA

Monday, August 1, 2016

Week 4.5 Modesto CA: First Baptisms, Trinity & Scarlett 8/1/2016

First Baptisms: Trinity & Scarlett on 7/30/2016

Frid Service day!
Sat Baptism of Trinity and Scarlett!

We were able to teach and serve as witnesses for Trinity and Scarlet as they were baptized by their uncle this last Saturday. Elder Spencer and I got there two hours early to fill the font and Elder Spencer "baptized" his planner. Asian people also like to have food at baptisms... [and] we got cake so I'm not complaining.

So this week has been great. In zone training I had the impression to find scriptures to respond to people's comments... [which] I would subsequently ponder throughout the week! :) the scriptures are Doctrine and Covenants 6:36 and Proverbs 3:5 those scriptures talk about trusting God and it was great to know that the LORD provides a way to help us along the way. 
In zone training we talked a lot about the mission vision which is "we are one with the Savior in doing the will of the Father." and how it coincides with our missionary purpose in "Preach My Gospel." ...His purpose is to "bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man."...

The hymn that has been in my mind this week has been all creatures of our God and king.
"All creatures of our God and king
lift up your voice and let us sing
alleluia alleluia
thou burning sun with golden beam
thou silver moon with softer gleam
alleluia alleluia
alleluia oh praise him

I love this hymn because we are all creatures of God, and we should praise Him. It reminds me of the scripture that says that all things testify of Christ and this hymn truly testifies of that. Also Jean Sibelius wrote the music for "be still, my soul," so I think that is cool 'cause symphony no.2 2 (mov. 3-4) was the one piece of music that changed my life. That and butterfly lover mov. 1

We had a sacrament meeting where people shared their favorite song and how it had strengthened their testimony, and it was really spiritual, yes I have been able to use the gift of playing the piano many times while I have been here and I am great full the Lord has given it to me.

I know that my experiences from this week have been from God, and they are to help me understand more fully what He has done for me. I know He loves me. I know the Book of Mormon is true, without a doubt I can say that. And I know that if we align our will with His, we will be blessed with miracles that are personal, and spiritual. I know God knows that I have received these things, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

As I close I want you all to ponder these things
     How did I accomplish my purpose today that God has given me?
     Did I act like the savior today and how did I do so?
     How did I do the will of the Father today?
     Was I blessed because of the things above?