Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Unforgettable Experiences!

Ger bvlth min ee!

I really don't have tons to talk about this week, but I am sure I can bust out a pretty good email!

So, Sister Naraa is doing great!  This week we finished the discussion on the Plan of Salvation, and we had an incredible experience with her.  We teach that the Plan of Salvation answers life's three most important questions:  1)  Where did we come from?  2) What is our purpose on Earth?  and 3) Where are we going after we die?  We had taught her about the first two questions in depth, and she understood flawlessly.  We were teaching her about our purpose here on Earth, and I was kind of leading into the scripture, Alma 34:32, "For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God,"  but I had said nothing about the scripture or that doctrine yet.  I asked her, "Naraa, what do you think your purpose is here on Earth?  (Previously all I had talked about was how on this earth we can be happy or sad because of the choices we make due to our Agency, which is God's gift to us.)  Naraa quickly and confidently answered,  "Well I think it is to learn to follow God's path, follow the principles   Jesus taught, and to be baptized."  Well that literally shocked me, because she pretty much took the scripture and put it into her own words before I even presented the doctrine or shared the scripture.  Then we read the scripture and talked about how she can "Prepare to meet God."  It was golden.

The next lesson was to teach about the Spirit World and nothing else.  That is kind of a small thing to talk about for an entire lesson, but we knew it was the most important thing for Naraa to understand because her oldest son died many years ago.  She needed to have assurance and know where he is.  I had been praying many days prior to this lesson, even when we were teaching other lessons, about this lesson in particular.  I knew that through this lesson she could find her answer and that she will know that she will be with her son again someday.  So the day before and the morning of this lesson my companion and I prayed hard to be able to teach this lesson the way the Lord would teach it if He was teaching Naraa.  We had a good plan set up.  First we watched "The Lamb of God."  We wanted to share that because we wanted her to understand the Atonement better and make it more real instead of just us telling her what Jesus did for us.  After the video ended, she was just speechless and said she was scared because she never knew or understood that Jesus did that for us.   We testified to her that she need not be scared but be grateful because now we can receive eternal life.  Next it was time to start talking about The Spirit World.  All our prayers and pleadings were weighing on this moment.  We told her that her son was in The Spirit World.  But because your son never had the opportunity to hear and receive the Gospel while he was on earth, he is receiving the same lessons that you are receiving here on earth right now from missionaries just like us.   We testified that God loves all his children at that because he loves us all so much he gave spirits in The Spirit World the same opportunity that we have to accept or deny this Gospel.  We then talked about temples, and how in the temple we can do ordinances for our family members who have passed away so they can receive eternal life.  We showed her a picture of a temple baptismal font, and explained that you and Ganbayar will have the opportunity to go to the temple and be baptized for your older son.  We then talked about how God wants us all to return to him, but not alone, with our families.   The Spirit was so strong in that room, mom and dad.  It was just so peaceful.  I looked at Naraa and Ganbayar and I saw true love was just radiating from them.  We then sang, "Families Can be Together Forever."   I asked Naraa to pray, and she said that she couldn't.  I was just thinking to myself, "Nooo!  You have been praying so well!  Why are you saying you can't now?"  But then she just told us that she was just so full of emotion from this lesson that she really couldn't gather herself. (Well okay I guess that I'm okay then... :) Obviously the Holy Ghost was was doing His job!)   So Ganbayar prayed, and while he was praying I just kept on getting the prompting to ask her how she was feeling right now.  I kind of pushed it away and I was just trying to focus on what Ganbayar was praying for, but the feeling just kept on coming back!  So after the prayer I asked her and she just said that she was feeling this good, burning feeling, and how good she felt.  I testified to the best of my ability that she was feeling the Holy Ghost right now. I honestly have never been in a lesson like that before. Something I will never forget.

Since Ganbayar is back from UB now, he is now our witness for all the lessons we teach to his mom!  He received the Priesthood this past Sunday and blessed the Sacrament like a boss!  I was so proud of him!  I can't tell you how happy I am for that kid and his mom.   Naraa loves her son so much, and was so happy to sit in and see her son receive the Priesthood. (She even supplied us with bread for sacrament!)   But on top of all that, our Heavenly Father loves that family more than we can imagine. This is His work, not ours. I am just so grateful for the answered prayers we received and are still receiving in regards to Naraa.  The Lord knows her, and is helping her so much.  She will be coming to FHE again tonight and we are going to actually re-teach The Restoration to her... just following promptings from the Spirit.  I am so excited for her, and so blessed to be here right now!

Exciting things are coming up here in September.  President Benson is flying out to Choibalsan on September 5th!   Everyone is so excited to see him, especially Elder Baldandorj and I!  We are in the process of naming every member who has been endowed and is still worthy, but has an expired temple recommend or no recommend, so when President comes he will have tons of interviews to do! There are roughly about 15 people that will have the opportunity to get a new Temple Recommend.  I am just really happy for this because Mongolia is getting that much closer to receiving a Temple!   Then on September 15-17, Elder Baldandorj and I are flying to Ulaanbaatar for meetings and such.  We are so excited for the trip and excited to be all together with all the other missionaries.    I am loving the opportunity I have of being a leader in this branch, and I am learning so much about how the Gospel is run.  My Church Handbook has become very marked up!  It is hard sometimes because my companions have all been such relatively new converts themselves and so have no long-time experience in seeing how a ward (or branch) should be run.  I've never ran a ward or branch before, but I have seen it done all my life.  It is not their fault at all, it's just because the church is so new here and they are so new to the church.  This leaves me the responsibility of learning all the specifics about this and that and then teaching Mongolian, so that is always fun!   The WORK HERE IS GREAT!   I love being here in Choibalsan!

Love you all!

Elder Xappuc

This is Naraa!  Here we are at Naraa's home having dinner before we ever started teaching her the lessons.  This is a picture from over a month ago when the other elders where here with us.

Just here at Purew Emee's house for some delicious Huushuur!

Choibalsan is in the Dornod Province, and this is the exact center point of Dornod! Kinda cool, I guess!

This is one of our member's dirt bikes......The first one I have seen in Mongolia so I thought I would have some fun.  I'm not riding it, only sitting on it. 

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