Monday, February 23, 2015

Serving in Bulk!! Great Week!

Week #37... Dream Week, Chinese New Year!!

One of the craziest weeks of my mission.

-made 100 three's in 25 min no rebounder..shout out to my brothers going into playoffs this week at MIT..let's get it..repeat of last year..

-Chinese New Year was this week which is bigger than any holiday in America by far. People prepare for months for this thing and I can't even describe how insane New Year's Eve was. But I'll try.

-We could not sleep all night because the fireworks were too loud and I can pretty much sleep through anything. We went to the 23rd floor of our building and watched them at midnight when they were crazy. We could see miles in every direction and it looked like the city was exploding..literally. huge fireworks were going off everywhere and the horizon in all 360 degrees was filled with them. July 4th doesn't even compare sorry. Grandpa and Grandma Hanson you would have loved it considering how much you love fireworks

-The city was like Ghost town after new years it was crazy..eveyone went back to their hometowns and so literally no one was here it was weird..

-on Saturday we walking on the street and this guy came on a moto and yelled at us and before I knew what happened his half eaten apple had hit me square in the chest. He had chucked it at me. I always here of stuff getting thrown at missionaries but never thought it would happen. I actually thought it was pretty cool haha.

-We also met this guy from Nepal (there are a lot of people from Nepal here) and then he said we could teach him later that night. We show up and there were like 13 of his other friends and so we taught all 14 of them in a gutter on the side of the road. It felt like preaching like they did in the olden days because we usually don't teach that many people at once. We were teaching half in Malay half in english and then they would translate into Nepalese so that the other people who didn't speak english could understand. It was sick. One of the coolest experiences on my mission. 

-We have been trying to do service more for the members here and so we went this week and cleaned a members Chinese members hair cutting shop's windows. Then they took us to Pizza hut after which is a real treat. They don't have pizza in Kuching like that and it is really expensive. Don't get it very often..

-Also we are teaching a few kids still and so we were feeling like we needed to work out more and still teach these kids so we made up a lesson on repentance that combined the two..We would do pushups representing Jesus Christ's suffering and then when the kids did something bad they would have to put bricks on our backs (or something else they had that was heavy) and then we would have to do pushups until they "repented" and then they could take them off. One time we got to 6 bricks on my back. It got pretty tough but it worked :) They got the concept and we got a good workout in :) 

-Also been praying out loud lately. If you don't do it. Try it. It really helps. 

-The traffic has been insane here because of Chinese New Year. 

-We were on the freeway yesterday and cars were going backwards on the freeway (like driving in reverse) because they were trying to get back to last exit on the freeway to get off. I have never seen anything like it. 

-Also since I am district leader I do the Baptismal interviews for our district. So last night I did my first baptismal interview and it was in Chinese. Went well though! He passed! 

I will end with a thought that I have been having a lot this week: 

"We who lived in concentration campscan remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number but they are sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms -- to choose one's attitude; in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's way." -Viktor Frankl

Choose your attitude. Choose your reaction. Choose your way. No matter the circumstance. You have the power to. I promise. 

love you all,

Off to Singapore!!!!

Elder Pierce 


Monday, February 16, 2015

Makin it Happen in JB!

Week #36...Saturday Sacrament Meetings, and the Chinese NBA! Johor Bahru here we come!

-Talking to people in Chinese about the NBA is weird because they tell me all these things that I didn't know was happening in the NBA plus it is in Chinese so it is harder to understand so I feel like I know nothing about basketball.

-But on a high note basketball every morning with Elder Lu has been great. getting in shape, and getting the shot right. 

-Shout out to my brothers at MIT who finish the season this week. Then playoffs! Let's get it! It kills me to have to wait all week to look at the scores..then I get to know what happened in a matter of kills me. 

-I actually met someone this week who knew what MIT was. Miracle. People here usually have no clue. Not quite like the states. People here can't even dream of getting to the states. Visas are just too hard..

-We also visted a Chinese old folk home this week. Way funny talking to old chinese people. They all love white people that can speak chinese though. They are always so surprised. it is great. 

-We taught the plan of salvation to this indian family in our area and we acted it out on the front lawn. Pretty great actually walking through our eternal lives..walking through where we came from and where we came made it a lot more real. 

-Here they have sacrament meeting on Saturday's as well as sunday's. It is weird but it is for the kids here because they have school on Sunday's here. Weekends are Friday and Saturday's. It is because of the Muslim government. 

-It is saturday nights and the sacrament meeting lasts about 20 min tops. They do sacrament and then two little kids go up and give two talks which is just two testimonies that last about 15 seconds each and then the meeting is over! Crazy! It is a kids version of sacrament meeting and it is sweet. 

-Had a cool experience this week. We called this guy and cussed us out on the phone and so usually that means someone doesnt want to learn right? But I had this strong prompting to call him back a few days later. We did and now we have an appointment with him. The spirit is real. I am not sure what happened the other night we called him but all I know is he is about to become a new investigator because I went against the regular due to a spiritual promting. Don't be afraid to go against the crowd or what normal people would do to follow a prompting. Just follow it. I promise you won't regret it.! 

Love you all,

Elder Pierce 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Johor Bahru!

Week #35..Bigger than Man landing on the Moon and the Super Bowl combined! It is Chinese New Year!

-Really though, for the last month, the hype here continues to build and everyone just talks and talks about Chinese new year..

-The parties here are apparently crazy and people are already getting too busy to meet with us because they have to prepare for Chinese new year which is in two weeks. Ridiculous haha. 

-Cultural moment: Hindu's and muslim's eat with their hands. Apparently it is more sanitary than silverware. That is what they say at least. It is pretty tempting I must admit..

-Here we have been riding buses like crazy. Much less biking..and much more walking as well..but we get to talk to a lot more people while we travel which has seen some miracles. 

-Been working out each morning and night now. Without biking as much I have felt a need to step up my workout game. Running, basketball, weights (x-bar) and lots of burpies.

-Me and Lu Zhang Lao got a bunch of protein this week also and have been going hard with it. 

-Went on a 6 hour trip to a part of our area in the middle of no where and washed a members windows. It was fun but the 6 hour trip was brutal. 

-We are currently trying to start english class here. Most people need it. I am afraid my english is getting worse just talking to them,,

-I have started learning how to read Chinese characters a lot more lately. Simplified Characters. Currently, Reading the Book of Mormon in simplified characters..

-Almost got arrested at a Malay government building this week, we were teaching a lesson outside of it and they got pretty mad. There are a lot more Muslims in West Malaysia and they are way stricter about things so we have to be careful. 

-Went to pizza hut for my birthday this week. Pizza is the best thing ever. I haven't had it in so long. Wow. America is so lucky. 

-Also at the basketball court at our apartment there were some kids who were playing and I asked them if I could play them. Drained 4 straight from about 30+ feet and they forfeited but said they wanted to learn about Jesus Christ so we got their numbers and now we are trying to teach them! Trying to utilize all the talents I got! haha basketball and church do go together you just have to be creative..

-Also I am District leader here in JB so I gave my first training this week. Went well. I love trying to inspire people. Trying to start a fire under some missionaries is quite the task but I love it. 

Quick thought from a talk I read this week from 2001 that was amazing and really hit home: 

"Given the purpose of our existence, if we do not love God and neighbor, whatever else we do will be of little eternal consequence." -Elder Robert F. Orton

Basically it doesn't matter what you do in life if you don't love others. How many championships you won, how businesses you started, how many people you baptized, how much money you earned, whatever school you went to, whether you were the president of the united states or an astronaut. 

In the end if you don't show love to your friends, enemies, and people on the street none of that means anything. 


Elder Pierce 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

20 Years Old In Johor Bahru, and Dynamic Duo Back together Elders Pierce and Lu!

Week #34...Kickin' it, 20 years old in Johor Bahru, West Malaysia! What the life!

First, I am back with my MTC companion, how wild is that. Elder Lundahl-Wolford is by far the most fun companion I have been with and I am stoked to be back with him. 

-Second, the food here is way too good. Honestly, I am gonna have to watch myself. It is an unreal difference from Kuching. 

-Third, they have a basketball court here. Game time. We have been on it everyday. It is the best. We are playing today with some of the elders for P-day too. Time to show them whats up. Most of the people are already scared to play against me in the mission though. I guess word gets around..haha

-I also didn't realize how good my area in terms of missionary work was in Kuching. Our investigators the few that we have are not that great and there isn't much going on here. It's time to change the area just like we did in Kuching. We are gonna get to work this week. 

-Funny chinese thing: There is no such thing as floor 4 here. It goes from 3 to 3A to 5. It is because the chinese number 4 sounds similar to the word for death and so it is an unlucky number. They are deathly scared of the number and so the don't even have floor 4 anywhere... crazy.

-We had the craziest experience of my mission this week. We ran into this tamel man who invited us into his home with the smallest towel i have ever seen around him. He literally was naked basically but super friendly. Almost too friendly so it got kind of creepy but he wanted to learn about Jesus Christ so we tried. He ended up telling us his life story which was almost exactly like Job in the bible in that he lost everything, money family etc. Crazy. Then he started cussing up a storm and yeah. It was interesting time but it ended up ok. We are still debating on going back haha. 

-the people in JB; mostly all malay (muslim) soo we can't teach them but then there is also a ton of tamel (Indian/Hindu) people and Chinese. 

-Saying goodbye to everyone in Kuching was hard but I am excited to get to work in JB. 

-JB is a lot bigger in size than kuching and we take a lot more public transportation. mostly buses.

-oh and I turned 20! crazy. I can't believe it. two decades I have lived and it seems like nothing. Time to go hard!

I will end with a thought. I can't remember if I shared this before but anyways. It is D&C 56:29

It says that someone who is commanded in all things is a slothful or lame servant of God. But that we should do lots of things out of our own free will. So basically telling me to get up and do something. Don't wait for the spirit to prompt. Although it will but sometimes we have to do things without God's prompting. After action comes motivation. So what are you waiting for? 

Love you all,

Elder Pierce