Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Feeling the spirit

Me and Elder Stewart trying
to be models
Do remember Sister Lin I told you about last week? Well They asked her to speak in sacrament yesterday. She bore a great testimony. A couple of days earlier she was telling us, "There is no way that God loves me. I have no Faith in Him". Yesterday, she stood and humbly proclaimed, "I know Heavenly Father loves me". I've never seen such a change of heart. She looked so happy.

I am so blessed to be here in this wonderful land of Taiwan, seeing the miracle of God's love take root in people's hearts. I've felt it in my own heart, and it is the greatest feeling ever. When was the last time you had a spiritual uplifting experience? Gotta love it.

The Zone
We've met some pretty solid people this past week. We're hoping, praying, and working hard with them to help them develop their relationships with Heavenly Father. What a great journey. Our Stake President  has asked Elder Stewart and I to go up to the further parts of our area to "plow the fields". He's planning on re-opening a branch in Luye. We're planning on working closely with our awesome members that live up there to rekindle the fire in some old friends as well as find some new friends! I'm getting nervous President Jergensen might move me up next week, pray that that doesn't happen. I love TAIDONG.

Dad, Your email just spoke to my spirit. Thank you for your words of wisdom. I've been trying to
Another day in the office
strengthen my prayers with Heavenly Father. As a matter of fact, prayers have tended to be one of the weakest points since I can remember. "Commune with the Father" was one of the invites extended to us during district meeting. Dad, when did you first learn the true power of prayer? How can i better apply this aspect to the details of my life?

Taiwan is the greatest place on Earth, right after our home. The ONLY thing that could ever get me off this island is the fact that I'd be returning to my home and my family. I love it here. Specifically here in Taidong. I will NEVER forget this place. My companion is awesome. I've learned a lot from him. He's an easy going guy and does the Lord's work in a humble way. I look up to him, it'll be sad to see him go. I try to smile as much as possible. It's good stuff.

I love you mom. There's seriously not much else I can say. One of my favorite things that has happened to me since being on a mission, is being able to take a step out of things and consider what matters most. I think of my loving family every single time. With two amazing parents at the head. Keep praying for me please.

I love being a missionary. The work is great. I'm trying to lose weight (unsuccessfully so far). And the Church is true!

I love you and have a blessed week
Elder Chase Matua

This is why everyone wants to be in this area - Beautiful
Miles and miles of rice fields

Cloudy, but always pretty
Train ride home

Monday, October 19, 2015

More miracles

With my little homie Sheng Jie

Another one for the books! Time continues to fly!

One of the greatest challenges I have is trying to remember things that happened during the week to share with you guys. What's worse is it's hard to get time to write in my journal. Oh well, I'm just banking on a miraculous remembrance of everything that happens once I get home.

We saw more miracles! I'd say the coolest one was with a less active member. Sister Wu set us up for dinner on Tuesday night.

Our favorite intersection - we ride
from corner to corner until people
stop to talk
When we showed up, she felt like she needed to invite Sister Lin
to eat with us. I guess Sister Lin didn't know we were gonna be over there. When we showed up she jumped. She was baptized last year, but went less active maybe around the end of 2014. On Tuesday night, she was pretty open about the way she feels. She really doesn't feel like Heavenly Father loves her, or if He even exists. She told us how before she got baptized, she had Faith that it would make her really happy, but nothing changed. We bore our testimonies to her, about the nature of God and how true Faith will give us desire to change. She was silent for the rest of the night. Well, she showed up to church on Sunday. The sisters in our ward talked to her, and she let them know that she has DECIDED to change her life, and be happy. She was smiling the entire time at Church. Super cool to see the spirit touch someone pretty hard.

My comp snapped this
pic of me after a 35-mile
bike ride for a visit

Saturday we went up to Guan Shan. Such a beautiful area. We met a LOT of crazy people. Ran into this Yi Guan Dao (the pervasive way?) convention and they were trying to convert us. I had an old lady holding my arm trying to push my towards their little party. She saw Jesus Christ on my name tag and she ran away. Still others were pretty persistent. Good people. Guan Shan is a good place.

Elder Stewart and I are still trying to work super hard, building our area up. We're having trouble trying to help people get to church. It's hard, but the Lord will provide. He always does.

I hope you all have a blessed week!

Much love from Taiwan!
Elder Chase Matua

Our visit to Guan Shan - beautiful area!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Mosiah 4:2

That is my first "Ponderize" scripture! Super excited for that. And SUPER pumped for pretty much everything after listening to General Conference. We have living Prophets and Apostles on the Earth today. They have been called of our Loving Heavenly Father to lead and guide us. How blessed we are.

This past week was a great one! Elder Stewart and I continue to see improvement in all aspects of the work. We have three special children of God preparing for baptismal dates in November. Brother Chen, Brother Li, and Emerita! Please pray for them to receive answers to their prayers. They are all so great and I have Faith
that they are ready to take one of the biggest step of their lives!

Man I love missionary work. Elder Stewart and I are just killing it! It continues to be exhausting, but it's super fun.

I can't think straight right now, so sorry for the short email. Maybe I'll try again next week hahah. Just know that things are going well. The Taiwanese are some funny people. I love them so much.

I hope you all have a blessed week!

Watching General Conference with the Zone
My attempt at capturing the beauty of Taiwan
More storms approaching

Monday, October 5, 2015

52 Weeks

Me and Elder Aiono crossed the
Tectonic Plates
Time goes by WAY fast. This past week was indeed the greatest week of my mission. I really mean it. Transfers were Thursday and not only do I get to stay in Taidong, but I got an awesome new companion, Elder Stewart. This next transfer is going to be great.

Monday we had another "Typhoon". It was TOO crazy. Cloudy skies, and a breeze. Man, I just really want to be in a real typhoon for once.

Last dinner with Elder Stephens
On Wednesday morning at 7:00 to head up to YuLi. Elder Stephens was heading up to Taipei, and Elder Aiono's companion was heading up to Taipei, so Elder Aiono and I got to be comps for two days. There area is the most rural area in the mission. It was the coolest thing ever. Wednesday night they had a baptism. We were putting together the font, told the sisters to watch it while it filled up, and left to go get dinner. The sisters called us and said the Church had water everywhere. So we spent the next 2 hours cleaning up. It was pretty fun.

Burned a shirt to celebrate a year
out on my mission
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were all just days full of WORK. Good work. Met some great people.

Miracle of the week: Saturday night we were making some calls out to investigators and less actives inviting them to church. I called one of our new investigators Brother Chen. He told me his body wasn't feeling too great (He was diagnosed with cancer a couple of years ago, super rough times lately). I asked him if he could try praying to Heavenly Father to help his body feel better. He said he'd try. Sunday morning rolls around, and he shows up. We had a lesson with him after church and he told us he prayed, immediately fell asleep, woke up and his body was feeling fine.
He's preparing to be baptized in November. Great guy.

Fast Sundays are always the greatest! We met with the Zheng family in our ward. Super funny. They live waayy up in the mountains. One of the sons came and picked us up or else it would have taken us like 3 hours to bike there! All of there children served missions, so they told us some pretty cool stories.

Steak dinner!
Life is so good. Being a missionary is the greatest. Our ward is doing awesome. We had ward council on Saturday night and we prayerfully set a goal to get three baptisms by the end of the year. The ward is pumped, Elder Stewart and I are grinding it out. Things are just good.

I hope you all have a blessed week.

I Love and miss you all!
Elder Chase Matua

Another 'tsunami' in the making - lame
Dinner with the Zheng family - great people
My new companion - Elder Stewart