Indonesia, Jakarta Mission 3/13 - 3/15

Monday, September 9, 2013

Growing Patience

Hey Hey Hey!!!

Well this week has been pretty good...interesting as to why, because there are several things that I feel like I normally shouldn't be happy about, but that for some reason I have found so much joy in.  Missions are weird, and so are the feelings and emotions of missionaries, at least for me and my comp this week.  I will elaborate more later.

So, this week started off amazingly.  Last P-Day was fun and relaxing.  Just some emailing and watching the Work and the Glory and stuff.  That night we had family night scheduled with our bishop and the Sisters.  Our bishop lives about 45 minutes away.  It is a good ride out to his house, but it was a really pleasant evening, so it was a nice ride!  Then we got to the bishop's house.  I have to clear things up a little bit first.  Our bishop is EXCEPTIONALLY wealthy for Indonesian standards, and really wealthy for even Western standards.  He owns several car dealerships here.  His house is huge and really nice.  We got there about 6:00.  It was my comp and me, the Sisters, one of our new members who is 18 years old, another new member family, and the Bishop and his family.  We started out just talking and getting to know each other since I am still pretty new.  Then we had family night.  I used dad's quarter story and we talked a little about having positive attitudes and looking for positives in life.  Then we played a game.  I don't know quite why, but that night was one of, if not the happiest night I have yet had in Indonesia.  The Bishop and his family are awesome!  They are so strong in the gospel, and they are so nice and caring and loving!  And having new members there was a ton of fun and totally awesome too!  I honestly felt like I was part of the family and that they would do anything they could to help me if I needed it, and I felt truly loved and accepted by them.  I have felt that by a lot of people here, but that night was just exceptional, and the whole having fun all together was great too!  Then after the lesson and games part, we had an awesome dinner that was delicious, and I spent some more time talking to the Bishop.  We have a lot in common, which is fun!  He is a mountain biker, a dirt biker, he has a sweet jeep and goes off-roading, and he drives a BMW haha!  He and I hit it off really well talking about all those things and it was fun to have someone to talk to about so many of my hobbies!  He is really cool!  Then I got talking to his wife, who is so nice!  She loved looking at all the family pictures and the photo book!  Oh, I also found out that they have a son that is serving a mission in Salt Lake right now!  So, I got his information because I thought it might be fun for both you and him if you guys contacted him and took him out to dinner some night if you had time, or even invited him to a big family dinner at Grandma's house if he wanted to or could come.  His parents were so excited at the idea, and it might be fun to have a connection.  They could be like my temporary parents and you could be his temporary parents--like son-swap around the world!  
So, his name is Elder _____.  right now he is serving in the Cannon Stake in Liberty, Utah.  I can't remember where that is, but maybe you guys could take him to dinner somewhere in his area if it isn't too far or if you have time.  I know how much we love getting taken out for food, and I'm sure he would love it too, especially with the family connection!  So, to help you find him, his phone number is 801-___-____.  Just text or call him and see what would work out, and let me know how it goes!
So yeah, that was family night, and it was a ton of fun.  Then we went home for the night.

On Tuesday, we went to one appointment but he wasn't home.  So then we rode out to an appointment that was pretty far away, and had to try to find the house.  After about an hour and a half of looking, asking directions, and calling the guy, we finally found his house.  Only, he wasn't home, and he never told us that when we were on the phone with him.  But now we know where his house is, and we made an appointment with his wife to come back next week.  We went and taught our new member, then we had English class which is always fun and chill.  After English Class, all the Solo missionaries, a few members and investigators from English class went to a pizza chain called Papa Ron's (we think it is maybe the international version of Papa Jon's) for buy one get one free night.  It was so good.  Every companionship bought a pizza, so we each had our own full pizza.  It was soooo good, and actually tasted like American pizza, so that was fun, and will probably become a monthly tradition!  2 large pizzas with lots of toppings for $9.  Cheap by American standards, but super expensive on our budgets, but good and worth it every once in a while!

Wednesday was pretty slow.  We had a goal for 5 lessons that day, but after riding to many of their houses, none of them were home, which was a bummer.  It gets frustrating, but at least we are trying and we made a few contacts along the way, which is good.  Oh, and we found out that we would be moving the next day.  Not much forewarning, but that's how things tend to work here.  It keeps us on our toes and is kinda fun because we never really know what is coming!

Thursday:  We went and did our weekly service picking up trash at a park for 2 hours in the morning, then we came home and began moving.  We were moving literally to the house right next door, so it wasn't too difficult.  It took about 3 hours to get all the stuff out of our old house and into the new house, but then a lot longer to get it all organized and figure out how it is going to work.  The new house is much smaller and is just barely big enough to fit all our stuff and make it work.  So it is cozy, but it works. And we will all get closer together!  So, we spent the rest of that day getting the house organized and put together.  Oh, and we McGyvered (I think I spelled that wrong) a few things to make it work.  Like the counter is too small for our dish drying rack, so we put some nails into the wall and hung it from the wall.  It's kinda sketchy, but it hasn't fallen yet haha!  It was pretty fun and we were proud of ourselves for figuring out the things we could do to make it work!  It was a fun project day, and we kept feeling like "Home Improvement."  I was hearkening back to my 5 year old days of watching whatever show that was haha!  And we were jamming to Disney and Church music the whole time!  

Then that night, we got invited to go to a wedding!  It was really fun!  It was a huge Pakistani style wedding with a lot of good free food--they even had ice cream!  And we got ourselves known and made some good contacts in the Muslim community, all while having a fun time!  A great night!  And because we are white, we got invited to the VIP section and I sat next to the head religious leader who was super nice and cool to talk to!  I got some pictures with him too, that you will have to see!  I will try to send them!

Friday we had District meeting, we spent some time fixing up the house and going to the store with the mission couple to get some things we needed, and that's where the picture I forwarded you came from.  Then we did some planning,  had a lesson, taught English, ate dinner, then it was night time.

Saturday we spent more time in the morning with the mission couple fixing up the house.  Then we went to the church and taught a new investigator for the first time.  She took the lesson really well, and it was good!  I think she could be a really good investigator, and that the gospel could really help and bless her life!  So I am excited to hopefully meet with her again!  But we were bummed because she didn't show up for church on Sunday :(  We spent a few hours trying to find another investigator's house that was far away, but we could never find it or get ahold of the person, so that was a bummer! That night we had futsol scheduled with all the missionaries, several investigators, and members.  My comp and I had an appointment as well, so we were only able to go for about 30 minutes of futsol before we had to come home, shower and change.  As we were about to walk out the door and go to our appointment, he called and said that he was still out of town and would not be able to meet that night.  He is an inactive member.  But, he did promise that he would come to church the next day with his family, and that we could meet with him after church.  This is where those weird feelings I was talking about earlier come in.  I was surprisingly not at all bummed or mad that we left futsol early, got ready to go, and then he cancelled and it was all for nothing that night.  Both my companion and I were so happy that he promised to come to church the next day!  And we felt like leaving futsol for an appointment was a test of our faith that we passed!  So, our night that night was kinda ruined was still a success!  I don't know if that makes any sense, but I know my emotions were much different  than they normally would have been.  I'm growing!

Sunday was good!  The member from yesterday came to church came with his family which was awesome!  Then we went and taught them after church and it was awesome.  He is super cool and seems like he wants to come back to activity!  Sadly, after that, the rest of our appointments cancelled, so we went and tried to contact other inactive members or investigators.  We were only able to contact one, but they weren't super interested.  But we tried, and again made a few new contacts.

This morning we cleaned the house, and are emailing.  I transferred all my pics to a microSD card, so I will get that in the mail the next few days to you!  Later, we are going to try Monster Burger--it is a huge burger that is apparently about the size of your head or bigger, and if you eat it in under 15 minutes it is free!  If not it is 90,000 rupia.  NO missionary has conquered it yet, but we are going to try.  Plus it is just a giant cheeseburger, so it is good either way!  Well, that is about it for this week!
I love hearing from you!  I will try to write some more personal letters later!  But thanks for the pancake recipe, the advice, pictures, everything!  You guys are awesome!  I love you so much!  Oh, and if you could send me Nick Smith's email, that would be great!  Love you!

Love Elder Wood!

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