So that is just crazy about the snow. Of course it would dump a ton right before you hand over the responsibility. And of course it happens when your most trusted and faithful elder is half way around the world.
Darn! That is too bad about Real not winning, but it sounded like one intense game and really fun to watch. I wish so bad that I could watch or enjoy a game once in a while.
As for A Christmas Story I had no idea that it is Leonard on the Big Bang Theory. That's crazy! Funny when you find out the little things like this.
But yeah I emailed Elder Devey, or now Jaren Devey, on his last P-day he would email me and he emailed back (since we are basically in the same time zone). He is such a great man and I will always be grateful for his friendship and love.
So for calling Kevin, I believe it will be possible. I am going to call President Blickenstaff tonight and talk with him about it. But I mentioned it to Elder Chen and he said it should be ok. So I will call tonight and by next P-day I will have a response about calling Kevin. I really want to call Kevin. I think it would be really good for him.
So yes as for Christmas call I was meaning to ask today about Skype info (yes I can use Skype to call and talk. I believe I will be using my Ward Mission Leader's computer). I still don't know exactly when.
I love the letters that you send, especially when they have cartoons with them (I really like the Star Wars one about the health care insurance). I got your letter this past week about expectations, and it really helped me. I really spent this past week pondering a lot about expectations. I feel that I am step by step coming to terms more and more with really being impervious and clueless to all but my calling, my companion, myself, and those I serve. I really try and remember and live doing my best and enjoying and having fun.
For your comfort scripture, I think I have mentioned and shared before how I tied this Isaiah scripture with Mosiah 4:27. Truly these are I feel my powerhouse scriptures that build, support, and establish a foundation for me on patience and trust.
So first a few more down to earth things. First off is Steve Nash now playing for the Lakers?! How old is he now? He has to be hitting a mark where he is too old to keep up with the younger guys, right? But yeah I saw a magazine that had him on the front and he was wearing a Lakers jersey.
Second is I wish so bad sometimes that my eyes or something had a camera built in, because there are just sometimes things I see that are priceless and wish I could take a picture. This one is that last Tuesday (every Tuesday we do this) we went to English Proselyting which involves us going to and intersection often and handing out English flyers as well as yelling and waving a banner so people know about the free English class we teach. But so right before we start we are in a circle and going to say prayer and such (and I am facing towards the street so I can see across the street) I look across the street and I see a scooter. Do you know what this scooter had??????? This guy had a yellow scooter with Pikachus all over it, and to put a cherry on top you should have seen his helmet. It was a Pikachu helmet as if it was a head. So the helmet had ears as well that came off it and everything. I said this a little out loud and Elder Watson turned around and just about screamed like a little girl and Elder Barson was laughing so hard.
As well as this past week when we were at a Family Mart sitting inside doing some language study as well as making calls, I was studying my flashcards when all of a sudden a Jack Johnson song came on. I was in heaven. It was really mellow and sweet and nice to listen to (yeah I know I am a missionary, but I love my music). As well as this will make you laugh. You remember in Happy Gilmore when Happy goes ice skating with the girl and then there ends being that chinky romantic song playing all of a sudden (I think it is called Endless Love), that as well came on while we were sitting in the Family Mart. That just made me laugh a lot that that would play.
So over this past week I have learned a few things. First is that even after we repent and such we have to still deal with the consequences. So this is why I right now strongly implore, plead, and beg all parents everywhere to protect your children and grandchildren from any form of pornography. Because as destructive as it is in the moment, as Elder Holland stated (and of course altered a bit to my use) it blasts a crater in your mind. Even though I have worked hard as ever to climb out of the pit I put myself in for the past 5 years, I am still having to deal with the consequences that come from my actions and working continuously to repair the crater I blasted in there. This became apparent to me throughout this past week as I received your letter about expectations and I really sat down to ponder and somethings bothering and troubling me as I really looked inward to tell myself and figure out that this is my mission, and how I want to serve and do my best as well as enjoy my time. That is when then Satan struck hard as ever in thrusting temptations at me and recalling many bad memories to mind (or because for many years I poisoned my mind that I feel it has corrupted my thinking sometimes that a normal person wouldn't have as much impure thoughts immediately come to mind). Saturday and Sunday became very difficult days as I continually kept doing that which I have been taught and understand and know to strengthen me and protect me. But I felt as Satan had come with his storms and whirlwinds that I was simply not moving anywhere but just clinging and hoping to not fall backwards. I had continued to study, to pray, to serve, to teach and everything but I felt like my mind was a mess still so much as I was battling every minute sometimes in thrusting out impure thoughts and putting good thoughts in (the thing I hate most which I think comes as a consequence of many years being addicted to pornography is that how the stupidest or littlest or even sometimes pure things my mind can take and immediately produce out an impure and disgusting thought). I ceaselessly have been dropping to my knees, pleading for help and truly going out and trying to do my best and thinking of others. But so this carried on today when this morning Elder Chen and I came to companion study. He was humming a song and asked which hymn it was (Christmas of course). It was "O Holy Night" and so I told him what it was but I didn't remember if it was a hymn or not. So we were looking in the back and he was looking under the section that is first lines to hymns and came across the first line for Joseph Smith's First Prayer. He didn't know it was that and said the number out. So I turned to it and told him what it was. He was like "oh, ha ha, I didn't know it was that". But I said we could sing it. We sang it and it just was a blessing to me from us singing that hymn. After we sang I pulled out my scriptures and read through Joseph Smith's account again from when he prayed. As missionaries we never teach about that Satan came during that experience. But as the second verse says of the hymn Joseph trusted in the Lord. And as his account states when he went to do what was right and what he had learned to do Satan immediately came and seized upon him to silence him and strangle him. But Joseph recounts as he exerted all effort to call upon God and as he felt his life was gone and would be swallowed up by this unseen figure, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ came. Right when he felt that all was lost and he would die, the Lord came. This renewed hope within me and vigor to push onward trusting and knowing that no matter what the Lord will come and he will triumph. I still have so much to learn, grow, and develop and definitely my patience. I just pray fervently and wish intently that sooner than later my mind can be almost fully mended (I say almost because I know throughout my whole life I will have temptations of immorality, but I wish that I can not have to fret, worry, or work so unceasingly hard to just handle combating my mind who so readily and easily creates impure thoughts or recalls impure memories). I realize as well and remember that it comes to a matter as well to just not give the impure thoughts heed or to think oh no an impure thought and freak out. But to simply and calmly thrust the rascal out and replace it. It just sometimes becomes extremely difficult when feeling that I have been doing it all day and working hard as ever but they just seem to keep coming back with ferocity and not easing up. Today though gave me renewed hope and I wish to build off this and not slide back or weaken.
So as for the bigger of the news, I will be in Fengshan another move call (this will be my 4th move call and at the end of it will have been a 1/4th of my time on the island of Taiwan). And as well I will be with Elder Chen for another move call (so we get to spend Christmas and New Years together, but I don't know where I will be for Chinese New Years which is just going to be crazy!)
I love you so much and miss you always!