Monday, November 20, 2017

prayer is wayyyyy powerful

Hey!! THanks for the email!!! yeah you can buy a truck that will go
pick everyone up for parties or church. You literally just buy it, get
on, and lead the drive around, and tell him when to come back. And
it's wayyyy cheap. Did I tell you how this one guy worked for 60 hours
a week and got paid 45 dollars for the entire week? Hahahahaha, there
aren't workers rights yet here in Kiribati.
All the news is wayyyyy good!!!!!! Congratulations to Nate and
Rachel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1!!!!! That's amazing!!!!!! Wow, march, how
exciting!!!!!!
That's good to hear the gospel scholar thing was able to help you
out!!!! He actually talked in conference that past as well!!!!!
Well, this week has been good, sorry I'm way short on time. But some
highlights: it rained yesterday, we were literally walking through
swamps it seemed at certain parts of the day. Fortunately, we prayed
it wouldn't rain as the truck drove with everyone in it, and that;s
exactly what happened. I've learned time after time on this mission
that prayer is wayyyyy powerful. A recent converts husband came back
to her because of prayer this week as well, right at the time that she
needed him to. I know that it's all about moving forward with faith.
Heavenly Father won't forget us if we really pray from our heart!
Well, love you all!!!! TI a bo!!!!! - Eder SEffker

Monday, November 13, 2017

we are required to swim against the current at times

Well, here's this week: We've had a good week. Lots of good work. Our
additional two Elders are gonna be moving out today. THe mission tour
is over. We found lots of good new investigators and less actives.
This last Sunday went amazingly. We woke up, did studies and stuff and
went out to remind all of our investigators about church. When the
truck went around, lots of new people that hadn't come in a while
came. It has a lot also to do with school just getting out for the
kids here. Yeah summer break for kiribati kids just started. We had
tons of people come to YSA. Lots of boys and girls, which is contrary
to the usual just girls. I taught the lesson. Our YSA lessons are
somewhat of a Mission prep cause most people are preparing to serve
missions any way. We went over teaching skills, and then did a role
play. Literally there were like 10 people there as opposed to the
usual 5! Haha, we also had a 'confirmation' this week. Some
misunderstanding happened with one of our old investigators. We'd been
teaching him, he moved to a different area, missionaries there get him
ready for baptism, they baptize him, and for some reason he comes to
church in our ward the next day haha, so we called AP's and they said
go ahead and just confirm him. So yeah.
Mission conference was way fun turns out we all just studied in the
chapel till president Ardern came. He asked that we all be "studying
our scriptures" when he comes. He was pretty cool. Really
knowledgeable in the scriptures. Any time you said anything about any
principle, he would be able to add to your idea with his own
scripture. He really emphasized refining our own personal missionary
skills. Becoming a PMG misssionary. And really taking every advantage
you can to become a 'gospel scholar'. I've had some really good
personal studies since. It's really good to plan out your studies and
organize the things you learn so that you're able to recall it in the
future. I've personally learned that finding answers to your questions
during studies is a sure way to have a productive study. The main
things President Ardern went over was preparing spiritually, becoming
more Christ like, and improving our teaching skills. One of the best
things he touched upon that I remember the most was that we need to
act. There's no reason to throw a mission training conference if we
don't act upon the things we learn. It's hard at times, like someone
in a recent general conference said something like: in living the
gospel of Jesus Christ we can't just float along and expect the
current to take us where we want to go (President Utchdorf) we are
required to swim against the current at times. I really love that
quote. We really do need to act. If we learn something  in the
scriptures during our study, we need to ask ourselves how we can
change and improve from the lesson we learned. It's important to set
goals, especially prayerfully. And then when we have goals we need to
swim against the current at times to achieve them. I love how we get
credit even for trying. Even though really working toward goals seems
often daunting at first, especially staying strong with them till the
end. But we get credit even for trying, just so long as we really do
try. That's one of the main things I learned from the conference and
that I want to really try to do better at. One of the things I've
learned on my mission is that as long as this two years is, it's
composed of individual days. A good mission is composed of good days.
Same with life. There's no reason we shouldn't give each day our best.
Not that I'm perfect at this, but those were some things I'd felt I'd
learned. Well, Have a good week! Love ya!!!! We also taught a good
lessons yesterday btw to a guy who recently who's been a little
reluctant to take lessons with Elders in the past. THis was our second
lessons with him. He's awesome, he's the kind of investigator that
turns the lesson into a discussion for you, which is a problem
especially here as what with the culture everyone is way too polite to
want to express their questions and doubts at first. Well, we answered
his question about D&C 130:15-16 first, and then taught about the
restoration. It went really well I feel. His name is Nakiata. If we
can get him excited on the lessons I imagine he'll let his family
who's taking lessons with us as well to be baptized . WEll, ti a
bo!!!! Love you!!!!- ELder seffker

Friday, November 10, 2017

We were wayyyyyyyy happy

Hey!!! Yeah sorry about not getting an email to you last week. We
tried, but due to a few complications, it didn't come to pass.
Wow, nice creativity with Becca's costume! It's top class!!! All of
them look awesome!
Well, things have been pretty good here as well. We've got the mission
tour coming up in this Thursday. We've got all the Elder's in from
Christmas Island and the outer islands. They split em up between our
houses here in Tarawa. Ah it's so fun having two more elders in our
house. It's really morale boosting as well. We're getting tons of work
done having more hands to make the work light. Lessons, tracting, etc.
We are even having every elder work here in temwaiku thursday morning,
90+ elder here in this little area haha. Because the mission tour is
gonna be here in our chapel in Temwaiku. It's like a super blitz. My
comp, the district leader, has to come up with something for them to
all do here for a few hours. Haha, it's awesome to think of the things
we could do with so many elders. Like flood into one house at a time
until they agree to take lessons, or just march down the street
singing or something like that, totally joking haha.
Work has been good this week. My eyes have been opened a lot this week
to the heartache that sin brings. We've had a few investigators where
the husband goes off drinking and the wife doesn't know where he is
and just ends up super anxious and stress walking around with her kids
looking for him. We had an amazing lesson this week. That was
literally the concern the wife brought up. "Have you guys gotten a
chance to pray about the book of mormon?" we asked. The wife "I
haven't because because my husband went off drinking and I was so
worried I wasn't able to read the book of mormon." It was pretty
obvious and we felt the Spirit as well that we ought to teach on Word
of Wisdom. It was a great lesson. The husband was totally receptive
and willingly. When we came back two days later, they were all happy.
It was miraculous, the husband hadn't used alcohol since!!!! He went
from like daily, to not drinking at all. We were wayyyyyyyy happy. We
asked the wife if she was happy, she was. We asked the husband if he
was happier, he was. They've got an awesome family, 3 children I
think, a baby, a ten year old, and a 6 year old. It's such a blessing
to be able to teach them. I was reflecting in the bus today the
happiness that the gospel brings us. It's a lasting, real happiness.
Like you said, a "peculiar happiness". Lots more happened this week,
but I don't have much time left to write. I'm so grateful for my
opportunity to teach people about Jesus Christ's beautiful restored
gospel. We can't take it for granted. Well, love you all!!! Ti a
bo!!!!! Thanks again for all you do mom and the fam!! Good luck with
all your guys responsibilities and things going on!!! - Elder SEffker

Thursday, October 19, 2017

if it tells us to do something good, it's probably of the Spirit

Here's last weeks letter: Ahhhhh!!!! A had her baby!!!!!!
R!!!!! That's an awesome name! Man, I can't believe you and
dad are finally grandparents!!!! That's awesome!!!!! For real, I can't
wait for pictures to be sent!!!!! That's so good to hear that he's
healthly!!!! Ah man. that's way awesome!! Ahhhh. Good good.
Well, that's good to hear. yeah, please send me tons of pictures. I
totally want to see him. What a nice name. R. Sweet.
Ah I just got some pictures. He's way cute. Everyone looks so happy!
Ah man, you guys are all looking way sharp.
Well, my week was good. Nah the trio only lasted about 2 days, good as
it was. We actually did have a lot of investigators in church this
week. This week was conference for us. There two sessions on saturday,
and 4 on Sunday. We had a few people on Saturday, and 10 on Sunday!!
I'll go over a few of our investigators so you can get a feel for how
the work is going here:
We've got A: a 20ish year old young adult who would have been
baptized this week but the conference happened so we decided to move
it to next week. I think I already told you, but yeah she prayed about
which church to join and got her answer, a powerful happy feeling. She
had her interview this week as well. She's really prepared.
K: who is a's brother. He also had a powerful spiritual
experience as well recently. He was praying and he "remembered the
words we said" and prayed about it. He had a feeling from his toes to
his head, as he described it. He's progressing way nicely as well,
he's got a lot of desire.
It's sad, we've seen a few people and lessons be dropped and fall
through this week. But we've also seen a lot of miracles. We felt like
checking a house and it turns out there were some pretty good
potential investigators, a small family as well, they didn't seem to
have any problem with taking lessons, so we'll be over there sometime
again this week. We also visited a potential investigator, there was
another young adult sister in the house, so we invited her to join us.
Turns out she was way prepared. She hasn't been baptized yet, but
she's taken lessons with elders a little bit before. We lessoned with
her once. Found her a "friend" who brought her to conference saturday
AND Sunday. We found her again on Sunday and she was reading a book of
mormon we hadn't even given her. Huge blessing. I never imagined that
I'd be the kind of missionary who sings songs in lessons, but Elder
M likes to do it once in a while. And I'm pretty prepared after
Butaritari like the one time when me and my comp pretty much sang a
duet for the sacrament hymn because a song was chosen that no one
really knew. And it was actually pretty much a solo cause my comp
didn't sing very loud jk, I guess he sang loud enough. So yeah, it was
a good experience. Serving a mission prepares you to be able to get
out of your comfort zone a bit.
Sorry I suppose I went on a "tangent" so to speak, but we have like
30ish investigators right now, some are further along than others. But
I probably don't need to explain them all. Any way.
We also felt like visiting a less active. Went to his house, he wasn't
there. We visited some people we knew who lived by them. Not much of
it. As we were walking home though, some lady stops me: "Euta Sefka?",
which was a pretty frequent phrase to be heard by me when I first
returned. Cause as you know, I was here when I first came to Kiribati.
Anyway, I didn't recognize her at first but I talked with her a bit.
She led us to her house. Then I remembered! Me and elder C
lessoned with her a little bit before I left. Anyway, it was a nice
reunion. Turns out she had been baptized since. Though they were a bit
less active. She pointed out a lot of houses near her that were less
active who we could visit. So it turned out to be a productive
experience. We've had some bomb fellowshipping recently. Lots of
desire to help from people around us. I know the Spirit definitely
does help us and whisper to us things we need to do. I've seen this a
lot throughout the week. It's way awesome. Although we can obviously
all work on following the Spirit and understanding and recognizing it.
But I love Gordon B. Hinckley's explanation on it, something like: if
it tells us to do something good, it's probably of the Spirit. It's
way true. Sometimes you don't even realize that's it's the Spirit,
cause it's just a good thing to do, but looking back you can see it
was the Spirit bringing it to mind.
Well, here's a few experiences: we "worked out" with one of our
investigators, about 14 years old, a boy. Three mornings this week. It
was way fun. It's just like being back with the brothers again haha.
Hmmmm, apart from that, we heard a pretty cool story about a guy who
lived "i buki" on the outer islands. He could apparently unscrew a nut
from a bicycle without a wrench. He couldn't close his hands
completely cause the "skin was so thick". Apparently it's true. Haha,
not sure though. I've heard some pretty crazy stories.
Well, I know the church is true! I'm so grateful this week especially
for prophets! Their words are definitely true! In the name of Jesus
Christ, amen.

Anyway, THIS week has been good. Some quick interesting things that
we've been up to recently:
A got baptized this week! We made awesome programmes, and no bake
choclate cookies (my comp is good at cooking). The service was really
awesome, we had great speakers, and the baptizees (we had 3 total from
our district being baptized) gave great testimonies.
Well, we're getting closer to one of our investigators by getting
interested in kiika, octopus or octopus fishing. This morning we went
out on the rocks when it was low tide. We only got one octopus, it was
tiny. We gave it to a neighbor to cook and eat, she was way happy. I
also caught a baby eel. It was pretty cool. And we saw tons of star
fish & crabs.
Well, have a great week!!! Thanks for all you do!!! Ti a bo!!! Love
you!! - ELder SEFfker