Monday, July 1, 2013

Bekasi Week 7

One of the new elders, Elder Heiner, who spent some
time with us before their first area.
Hey Everyone,

I hope you all had a great week. Mine was pretty normal, but my companion and I still had a good time. Because we did not really do too many unique things, this email will be a little shorter than usual. But hopefully I will still be able to give all of you a small taste of what we are doing here in Indonesia! 

Heading into Jakarta with Elder McClearly,
another of the new elders that just arrived and is headed to Solo.

One thing that has changed the work here is that gas prices have been raised for all of Indonesia. So all public transportation had to adjust the prices. We take various forms of public transportation almost every day here in Bekasi, so our day-to-day expenses have become quite pricy! To save money, we have walked to many places, or walk part way, and then take an Angkot for the rest. It has also been very hot, so this can be very exhausting! But next month, the Mission should adjust our allowance, so it will not be that bad. It has been great exercise!

Elder Mongan and I enjoying coconut drinks
We have a few investigators here, but both of them have been learning for a long time, and they have not really been progressing. One really wants to be baptized, but he does not believe that Joseph Smith restored the church. The lessons are harder and harder to prepare for, because we don't know what will convince them. But the members have been really helpful, and we are going to teach the investigators with members present, and hopefully that helps. 

We have been in contact with a lady who met the Missionaries a long time ago, but never wanted to meet. She has a Book of Mormon, and reads it frequently. The only contact we had with her was through SMS messages, where she would ask us gospel-related questions. After answering many, I finally said that we could help her understand much more if we met at the church. She agreed, and so we met. The lesson went really well, and she had a list of great questions for us. When the lesson was over, she still did not think the Book of Mormon was the word of God. We committed her to continue reading and pray, but she did not seem too receptive. But just a few days ago, she texted us, and said that after reading a few verses and praying, she knew the Book of Mormon was the word of God. It was great! She came to church yesterday, but was reluctant to leave her church. Hopefully she will continue to gain a testimony!

We have continued to help with many English classes, and they have all been fun. At our regular one on Fridays, there are a few Christians that come, and they have started to ask questions about our church. They seem very curious, and we are trying to help them develop a desire to learn. There are so many ways to find new investigators! Just yesterday, we were asked to help with a lesson at church about finding people. Two of the ways we focused on were being an example and talking about families. I think both of these are connected in the way that our families can be a great example to others in how the gospel blesses us. I encourage all of you to continue being an example to others by living the gospel and serving others. There will surely be others around that will be curious as to why you are so happy. You then can explain that it is through the gospel of Jesus Christ and his true church. We are all part of this great work! 

My companion took this picture of me studying

Thank you all for everything you do. I love and respect all of you, and I can feel your support every day. Happy birthday to my Aunt, Leslie! I sent you a letter, and I hope you get it. I will talk to you all next week! 

-Elder James

Waiting on public transportation to Jakarta

Near our house in Bekasi

My dinner

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