Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Elder Kearon, Having a Good Attitude, and Focusing on the Positive
The Kearons and Matsumoris
How is everyone? I hope the trip is going well, and that you guys are having fun! Things here have been going really well, Elder Salanoa and I are getting along great! It has been an interesting experience for me to be teaching a new missionary how to be a missionary. I guess there is a lot of things that now to me are second nature, and I don't even have to really think about them, so I sometimes overlook the fact that he doesn't know what I am doing. Overall though, so far it has been really good, and I am doing my best to make Elder Salanoa's first few weeks of his mission good ones.
Unfortunately we have had another one of those weeks where our appointments just don't seem to hold. He had an interesting first week of his mission though, because it seemed like every single day other than Monday, we had a meeting of some sort to go to.
On Friday, Elder Kearon from the Seventy came and spoke to our mission, and it was a really neat experience. He and his wife covered a number of different topics, I guess the one that stood out the most to me was when he talked about our attitude. He told us straight up that missionary work is not easy, and that our attitude towards the adversities that we face can have a huge impact on our success or even happiness over the course of our missions. It reminded me of a talk given by Elder Wirthlin called "Come What May, and Love It."
We had a pretty cool experience the other day though. We were out checking on a less-active member, and they weren't home, so we turn around to go get our bikes, and we see this lady so we decide to go talk to her. Well we ended up spending probably about an hour and a half talking to her all about the gospel, we were able to clear up some of her misconceptions of our church, and she invited us to come back on Thursday!
I have noticed an interesting trend with conversations about religion lately, and that is that both participants in the conversation want to prove that they are right. It eventually gets to the point where people don't even remember what the original disagreement was on, and really they don't care, as long as they leave the conversation on top. If you think about it, that doesn't do anyone any good (and if this is the case, then neither of them are following the principles they believe anyways!). So I have decided to try a different approach when we talk to people.
With this lady that we met, we could tell that she had done some research on our church, and she had found some things that she didn't quite agree with (obviously right, or she would have joined :P), so when she talked with us about some of her concerns, we were able to see that they were mostly just misunderstandings, and come to find out her beliefs are pretty much in line with those of our church. Hopefully that made sense to you, basically instead of focusing on the negatives we tried to focus on the positives, and it went over a lot better.
Well, I hope all is well back there in Utah! It is raining here today, and I think that we are going to start seeing more and more of that, and that it will continue to get colder. How is the weather there? Let me know! Love you guys, have a good week!!!
- Elder Schaap