Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Learning to Recognize Revelation

Dear Family,

This week Elder Radman and I had a great week. We taught 9 lessons, and met with many less actives. Along the way, we got many referrals and have made great contacts with some great investigators. I am very excited for his coming week!

In our District Meeting this week, we talked about receiving revelation. Sister Harper mentioned a quote by Elder Bednar where he said that you receive revelation after you have acted and decided on a course of action.  Like Nephi entering Jerusalem not knowing before hand what he would do. I feel like this has been the case many times on my mission. I have not always been one during the planning stages to get revelation that is so prompt and precise on what to do and what to teach. However, I have had experiences my whole mission that I remember vividly where I received revelation in a Ger, at the pulpit, or in mid-lesson. I always thought that because I never had these revelations come during nightly planning, I was doing something wrong.  Well, this past week I finally realized that there was nothing wrong with me.  Hearing that quote and talking about it in District Meeting, I was flooded with thoughts and experiences that I have had where we received exactly what we needed to teach in the very moment we needed it.  

We had this exact experience with Brother U_________ this week.  We went to his house at 7:30 p.m.  He  knew we were coming because we had made an appointment.  We knocked and no one came.  We felt he  knew we were there, but just didn't want to meet.  Seeing that he wasn't coming to the gate, we stopped and took a picture of the sunset.  By the time we finished taking the picture, about 3 minutes had past.  We both thought, well maybe no one is home. Despite that feeling, we had the idea, or prompting, to open the gate and go in and check to see if the Ger was padlocked from the outside.  So we just walked in past the dog barking, and we see the door open on his little shed entrance to the Ger.  So as we turned the corner to go in and knock, he comes out, with his head down reaching for the rope to close the door and make it look like no one was home.  We startled him, and he knew he was caught.  He reluctantly let us in and his wife was not too excited to have us over either. Well let me just say that that lesson turned out to be powerful.  We shared a story from the brown Priesthood manual, and he literally was so touched, he was nearly in tears, bearing testimony on ways he should and will honor his Priesthood.  He started asking questions from his soul, and the Spirit helped us answer them.  WE WERE SO PUMPED!  He took his glasses off and looked us dead in the eye and said he will never forget that lesson and the truths we shared.  We got on the bus home and were still in shock.  We know that that was the the Light of Christ telling us what to do. Go in, and check.  If we would have waited 10 more seconds the door would have been shut, and he would have succeeded in tricking us. We got in and he was blessed, we were blessed, and he knew it. Truly amazing. 

I love you all.  Sorry so short but my time is up.


Elder Harris

One of the many contacts we made this week with a member.

 The members that I told about in my email, with their cat, Papenfuss, named for Elder Papenfuss!

The Ger neighborhood we walk daily.

 Our area….at sunset.

You know I want to taste or at least try everything while here in Mongolia.  You don’t even want to know what this is.  Trust me.

 Elder Huck and I just had to try it!  Pure protein!  

Mission conference with Elder Wong and his wife sitting with President and Sister Benson.  I’m on the right.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Mission Conference this week with Elder Wong from the First Quorum of the Seventy.

Dear Family! 

This week was awesome here in Mongolia for Elder Radman and I.  Starting off, we were fed American meals for every meal this whole week except two. Blessed are we!  So amazing to eat Brownies and Ice Cream and Cafe Rio pulled pork!   I love Sister Hill, one of our Senior couples here! 

We had Mission Conference this week!  Elder Wong, from the First Quorum of the Seventy, came with his wife.  You will recognize him from General Conference.  He recently gave a talk in Cantonese.   I was blessed to personally meet him in Missionary Leadership Council with the Zone Leaders, Sister Training Leaders and the Assistants to President, and then I got to know him even more over the next four days.  He is one funny man!  Mission Conference was so GREAT and I learned a lot about BECOMING!  I love that.  We have the potential to be like God.  I know it.  Too much to write about, so I will talk about it in December! :)  Also, Elder Radman and I were invited to sit up on the stand during District Conference to help translate for the senior couples and the newer missionaries.  Then Elder Wong called on me to come over and translate for him his talk into Mongolian….in front of the entire group!  I have never been more nervous in my life.  He is a GENERAL AUTHORITY!  Anyways, I did well, and felt the gift of tongues coming up clutch for me in that moment.  He really liked Elder Radman and I over the week, so we each "gifted" him one of our Mongolian ties with our names written on the back :)   He loved them!   Needless to say, I feel so blessed to be here at this time and to learn from Elder and Sister Wong, and from President and Sister Benson.  I loved every talk given and all the words that were spoken. I am so happy and so blessed to the Lord's missionary here in Mongolia. 

I want to share what I learned this week while preparing for a talk on the Lord’s Sacrament from John 6:48-50, 53… 

"I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you."

Manna as defined in the Bible Dictionary: It is impossible to find any natural product that will answer to the requirements of the scriptural narrative in regard to this heaven sent food.  With regard to the name, we are told (Ex. 16:15) that the people, seeing the small scale-like substance, said one to another, “Man-hu,” “For they wist not what it was.”  This also translates “What is it?”   Manna provided for Moses and his people daily substance for 40 years. Without it, they would have died.  It was not a over abundance  but enough to make it day to day, for 40 years as they journeyed in the wilderness. They survived from this heaven sent food.  But Christ said, "Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead." Christ was the one that provided that substance day to day, but says more or less, that it literally has no importance and no more relevance because they are no longer here living among us.  

He is the Bread of Life.  We must go to church and partake of His Sacrament, and live.  I love the Sacrament.  We should never take it for granted.  We need it for weekly change and perfection.  We should use it the way He instated it, in remembrance of our nothingness and dependence on Him.

Well, this is the last 3 months of my mission and I have work to finish.  I love my companion, Elder Radman.  He is a huge example to me of someone who understands his calling. He works hard, and receives revelation for his sheep.  He pushes me to be better.   He has a huge heart, and truly came on his mission with a strong desire to serve his Father in Heaven.  We are doing great together and I am happy.

Well, I love you all.  Got to go!

-Elder Marc Harris

Elder and Sister Wong on the right at Mission Conference.

Me and my Companion, Elder Radman, at Mission Conference

 My group for Mission Conference.
 President Benson and four of his children with me and Naraa, my eternal friend from Choibalsan, who I baptized one year ago.  She’s heading to the Hong Kong temple on September 15th for her endowments!!  I’m so happy for her!

 My comp and I out on our balcony, overlooking UB.

 Elder Hatton, Huckvale, Harris, and Radman.

 Elder Radman and I.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Our talent is God’s gift to us. How we use that talent is our gift to God.

Dear Family,

Well, this week Elder Radman and I only taught four lessons, but the success really isn’t shown in the numbers.  We met with six less active Melchizedek brethren.  We had really good discussions with all of them, and two of them came to church this week. We will continue to be working with them, but we are confident that we can reactivate these six brethren.  They are all just kind of on the fence and with a push from the Branch President and the Elders Quorum, they will be back.

This week I read a lot about talents and light. “Therefore let your light so shine before this people, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven” (3 Nephi 12:16). I really loved this scripture. I have realized the talents I have and the light I can show for the cause of Christ, and it is extraordinary.  This week I read a talk by Chad Lewis, a former NFL player and BYU stud. He quoted a friend of his who was an inductee to the NFL Hall of Fame. He said, "Our talent is God’s gift to us. How we use that talent is our gift to God.  My sincere hope and prayer is that God finds my gift back to him a worthy one." I really just can't wait to let my light shine to the world after the mission and show others that I am truly His disciple. I have been doing it on my mission, but I can't wait to carry His name as an Returned Missionary who glorifies the Father in all he does.


Elder Harris

Elder Radman and I in front of the Bayanzurkh Building in Ulaanbaatar.

The famous, or infamous, camel painting in UB.

 Ulaanbaatar at Sunrise.

Bayanzurkh LDS Church Building in Ulaanbaatar.  This building houses a church, the Mission Headquarters, and the Mission President’s home.

 (Not sure what they are doing, but they look like they’re having fun!  Marc is in the back…with the glasses on?)

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Transferred back to Ulaanbaatar!

Dear Family!

Well, TRANSFERS happened!!    My new companion is Elder Radman from Holliday, Utah.  He's been out for a year now  and we've been joking for like five months about being companions some day.  Tuesday night that joke became reality.  He is such a stud and I couldn't be more blessed to have him as my very first American companion. Truly, he is an answered prayer at the end of my mission, and someone I truly needed at this point.  I know I will be able to learn much from him.

I’ve been transferred back to Ulaanbaatar.  Elder Radman and I are in a Branch/area called American Denj.  We go to the Bayanzurkh Building for church, so that is nice!   I am humbled to have been called again to be a Zone Leader.   Elder Munkhbold and I will work a lot with the District Leaders here in the next coming weeks.  And again, we are WHITE WASHING!  I love whitewashing, though.  We came in on Sunday and were able to bring a different mood to the meetings.   People always seem to like seeing new Elders in the Branch. This will be to our advantage, and it already has!   We have a big week in front of us, and looks like we are full with appointments!  We got together with tons of less actives and have set up many appointments.  More to report on that next week.    We are both so excited, and ready to get to work!

I love you all. I am so grateful for my family, my friends, and the people that have influenced my life in so many ways here in this great land. Elder Radman and I just feel blessed to be in this part of the Lord's Vineyard at this time.  Mongolia will always be a part of me.

Until next week,

Elder Harris

My new companion, Elder Radman!  My very first American companion.

 President Benson spoils his missionaries!

There was no explanation with this picture, but it’s a nice one!

 There was no explanation with this picture either, other than it was taken at a Mongolian Cultural Gallery.