Elder Jordan Royal

Elder Jordan Royal
Jordan hugs big sister Kelli

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Another email from your astig son

Since Jordan didn't send a picture this week, we thought we'd include this one from last year from the MTC

            We're in Victoria right now for our Preparation Day, but I really wish we were in Tarlac, because the internet here is reaaaaallllly slow.  Anyway, such is life. . . .  Wait a minute.  Life is too short for slow internet.  I’ll be right back.

            Okay, we just moved to the Cordato’s brand new internet shop with really nice computers and fast internet, so now we’re good.  (And by “good” I mean really good.)  Sorry, however, for not sending any new pictures.  I have not been good about taking pictures lately.  Speaking of, this nice new internet café, it is what Mak-Mak has been working on with his cousins for the past month and it's really nice here.  We came here last night to celebrate the grand by eating dinner.  Guess who gave the spiritual thought?  This guy.  Guess who also had to speak in sacrament meeting on the next day?  This guy.  (I love opportunities to teach and testify.)  I gave a talk about How to Raise a Righteous Generation.”  That is one of the Area Presidency's goals here in the Philippines, and I was given 20 minutes to prepare something before sacrament meeting.  I just said a quick prayer and began flipping through the Book of Mormon for some inspiration.  I began my talk with King Benjamin's counsel provided in Mosiah 2 when he teaches his people to raise their children to serve God and to eliminate contention in the home.  I then related what happened to that rising generation after King Benjamin, told in the later chapters of Mosiah.  It is interesting that Mormon provides a description of wayward children who could not understand or believe the words of King Benjamin.  I wondered why that would be.  Did their parents fail to them?  Did parents teach, but the children were more interested in following the enticings of the world?  We don’t know.  However, I am very glad that I was raised in a gospel centered family that taught those principles in the home, so I would know of Christ, His Atonement and the Father’s great Plan of Salvation for all mankind.  I know the purpose of life, where I came from, why I am here, and where I am going when this mortal life is over.  I am so grateful for that knowledge.  When our children have knowledge and are ever reminded of truth, they will not likely forget.

            Well, this week had the usual ups and downs.  What would you like first, the ups or the downs?  Let’s just start with the downs to get them out of the way.  I admit it.  Sometimes I get discouraged.  My faith and strength is tested when I allow bad decisions made by our investigators to bring me down.  I feel we teach by the Spirit, they understand (mostly), and they feel the Spirit, but they struggle putting the gospel principles into action (like something as simple as going to church).  It is hard at times not to feel like we are wasting our time with some of the people that we are teaching.  I know I can't control how other people exercise their agency.  But, I just don't understand why these people don't come to church when they know everything is true.  Even many of our less actives are like that.  It is just really depressing at times.  Like on Wednesday, we changed our schedule this week and went to one of the recent converts in the ward, Tatay Ben, to teach him and his non-member spouse.  When we got there, Tatay had been drinking and didn't know we were coming on that day.  He quickly got up and apologized to us and his wife told him that he was really tired from working, so that's why he drank.  That was disappointing.  (You know, there's a thing you can do to handle fatigue, it’s called sleep.)  I felt really bad for Tatay, though.  He's an awesome guy.  He's really smart in the gospel, but he doesn't go to church much.  We taught his wife on Saturday and we gave her a baptismal goal date, but she's been visiting with Inglecia ni Cristo members, so she's leaning towards joining that church.  She's felt the Spirit in every lesson we've taught, but (like so many of our investigators) doesn't listen to the Spirit.  I bore my testimony of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and all the priesthood authority.  I was very bold, and felt the spirit as I spoke.  But, sometimes that what we are called upon to do - teach, testify, invite, and then move on.  The moving on part is very difficult.

            On the brighter side, we have two investigators set for baptism: Jomer and Korin Lucas.  There are from part-member familes who a recently returned to church.  They have progressed really well.  They'll be baptized on December 29th.  I don't know if I'll be here for that.  The transfer ends on December 12th, so I could be in a new area for Christmas, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to be here.   Elder Rabino and I are do well.  We are both pretty quiet, but we teach well together.
Wanna see a pretty Filipino rainbow?  There ya go!
             That's funny that Dad sent a note from Elder Brockbank’s father, because he's in my zone.  He's just as shell-shocked as I was back during my first transfer here.  He's a cool guy.  The Filipino members can't pronounce his name correctly, so it was pretty funny watching him trying to teach it to them.  He'll just have to get used to no one being able to pronounce his name correctly here in the Philippines.  Speaking of the Philippines, I've been here for almost a year now (Nov. 30)!  I can't believe how fast that went by.  Thanksgiving already?!?  I could've sworn I was just in the MTC for Thanksgiving.  Didn't one of my brothers break his wrist a year ago a year ago?  (Ha.)  Wow.  Christmas will be here quicker than I realize.  Speaking of Christmas, we've been celebrating Christmas since the first week of September.  The Filipinos really love Christmas here.

            Before I forget, I better answer Mom's question really quick.  No, I haven't received the shoes yet and Christmas Conference is on December 20.  Okay, that's it for me today.  I hope that you guys are doing awesome there.  Happy Thanksgiving!  Mahal Kayo!

            Elder Jordan "Dreaming of a Big, Juicy, Stuffed Turkey” Royal

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