Hey everybody, Elder Gilbert coming to you after a much better week/attitude than last week! Not many crazy or cool things happened, but I'm pretty happy right now and excited for what the future brings.
Our one investigator, Wu Jiemei is awesome! She has a really pure heart and actual desire but she's just too dang busy to meet with us more than once a week. She came to church on Sunday and is progressing well. We did have to drop her baptismal goal but hopefully we'll set another one this week.
Everyday our morning starts out with one hour for personal, companion and language study. I also have been trying to do a little language before personal study, at lunch, dinner, and again at night. Chinese is progressing but I have a long way to go! This week we went on exchanges with our zone leaders, Elder Lin and Stevens. Elder Stevens was barely with Elder Cole before, and he's super cool! I think it was my favorite exchange and we had a really good time together!
Something pretty funny this week was the ping pong activity we've started up with the two wards in our area. We have been trying to get this activity going for a little while, and we finally had a super successful night last night! We had probably 15 people come, including an LA that lives super far away. Ping Pong is actually such a good way to get people wanting to come to the church and almost everyone loves it (I guess thats kind of because they're all Asian...). It was fun to see ward members have a chance to mingle and a few investigators come for the other elders. We also taught them "sting pong" where everyone plays around the world and then gets to smack the ping pong ball as hard as they can into the loser's back. I nailed the other Elders bishop twice!
I'm reading in the war chapters in Alma right now. This is usually not the place that I have found the most insight but this time I read a pretty cool talk in the Liahona that changed my perspective a little bit. It talked about how the Book of Mormon was written for our day. Mormon had so many records and under the inspiration of the spirit chose what would be best for us to hear. The article talked about how there are many patterns that can be seen in the war chapters that can help us learn how we are blessed and prosper even in times of trial. That has kind of helped me to focus and draw out more from my scripture study the past few days. What I thought was pretty cool in chapter 50 was where it says "there was never a happier time among the people of Nephi". How interesting that just after a war and amid a lot of tension with the Lamanites, the Nephites could be so happy! I couldn't help but wonder if maybe all of those previous trials actually contributed to the happiness the people had at this point. Maybe the hard times made them appreciate the good times even more. I kind of feel like the opposition in life makes all those happy times even better. It was cool to see an example of that in The Book of Mormon.
Looking forward to the week ahead. President and Sister Blickenstaff are coming to do a fireside for both of our wards this Sunday and we might go do something with them next p-day.
Love you all, hope things keep going well at home! Loving it here :)