Sunday, August 31, 2014

Week 12: The Work Progresses and the Korean Adventure Continues Strong

Hello Family and friends! (as well as acquaintances, or..whoever else this goes to...the internet is a big place)

Wow, what a wonderful world we live in! I really love Korea. I love being a missionary. And I love my God who is so good to me and to us all. This week has been good and I'd love to share with you some of my comings and goings as well as some of the things I've been privileged to learn and to relearn. 

First, some Korean observations that I failed to communicate thus far:

Rice. Those little white thingies--I never realized how much I loved it or how much our meals revolve around it until we ran out early in the week. It was crazy, I forgot that I eat it three times a day and even Ramen (which is way more delicious in Korean (where it came from) than anywhere else, I've come to learn) wasn't the same without a little rice to eat the ramen dregs with. Sad, but then we got 20 kilos from some members so now we're sitting pretty. 

Ok, the hardest thing about Korea (besides the whole talking to people in Korean) has to be sitting cross legged. I never thought of myself as a flexible person, but I didn't think I was that bad. . . I was that bad. We eat all of our meals cross legged and my knees are either way up in the air or I'm fighting them down and then I walk away from the table all cramped and jello-legged. Note to self (or anyone heading to Asia): stretch. But I figure if that's the hardest part then I'm doing ai'ight. 

The food really is delicious here. Sometimes it's a different kind of delicious--the kind I don't appreciate--but it all is good. Spicy is a big thing here. I went on an exchange on Tuesday to the neighboring city and while there my "new" companion had me try "fire" ramen. I can't ever remember the Korean name but it nearly did me in. I was crying and my nose was running off my face and I was crying some more and I drank two cups of milk. Surprisingly, what cooled the fire after about ten minutes of purgatory--I mean pain, was a potato salad sandwich. It was good. I think I'll eat the fire ramen again this week. It kills, but it actually has a delicious flavor that makes up for the pain and suffering---it's like hard core crossfit of ramen! Pain and suffering--so much so that you cry, but a sense of satisfaction and the insanity you just put yourself through. Yeah, kinda is. 

New look alike this week. The most common comparison recently has been between me and Arnold the Terminator Schwartz...I'm not even going to try spelling that. 

I also had Korean tacos! The best of tacos plus kim chi and sweet chili sauce. They were so good! And everyone always feeds us fruit when we visit. The fruit here is so tasty. It comes in seasons so I've eaten a lot of watermelon and grapes. They're great and grown super close to 천 안 (Cheonan) too. 

This week God answered my prayers. We have a pool of eight or nine regular investigators now. I love all of them and hope for the best. We have two set baptismal dates (one this week!) and the rest we usually see throughout the week. But Thursday and Friday and Saturday were hard. Everyone was canceling on us or going out of town. We did a lot of finding activities, there was lots of street contacting and good practice for me, but I want to be teaching the gospel and be helping people really come closer to Christ, so we need more people to teach. I got down on my knees and pleaded for those we are teaching and prayed for God to place his prepared children in our path. I would do all I could to follow the Spirit and would open my mouth to talk to everyone and be 100% obedient. I promised God my all and knew that he'd follow through. Helaman 3:27 says "thus we see that the Lord is merciful unto all who will, in the sincerity of their hearts, call upon his holy name." I did this and He followed through. The next day, Sunday, one of our investigators came to church, and we received a referral from a member and one from the Elders in the city over. Then a person we met in the store a few days before responded to our text and we met with him that night. I think he is totally prepared and ready for the gospel! The Lord is so good. Have faith. Pray and do everything to help your prayer happen, and He will provide a way.  


A quick thought because time is short. A thought from Moroni 9:25-26.  To all of those whose hands may hang helplessly down. Look Up! Look to Christ! if ye do, "may Christ lift thee up, and may his suffering and death, and the showing of his body unto our fathers (so...that he suffered, bled, and died, but more importantly that he LIVES! He is living now. And he loves us infinitely.), and may his mercy and long suffering (which He shows to us because sometimes it takes a few times--or several--for us to learn a lesson) and the hope of His glory and eternal life, rest in your mind forever." Let this thought, the joy of Jesus our Savior, the good news of the gospel, the happiness in His Hope, sweep away the cobwebs of depression, discouragement, or doubt. "May Christ lift thee up" and may His grace, or the enabling power of the atonement - as Elder Bednar would say - carry you through. Carry you onward and upward until we are with him, with God, again!

I love this gospel. I testify that it is true!

Elder Tucker

Look at this huge Korean cereral!  It is just as delicious in Korea!

This is our kid getting baptized!

and....another selfie.  Korea is the best!