Friday, October 12, 2012

Confrence Time

Oct 8, 2012

Hey there! 

Sorry, I have hardly any time to email this week. We had temple day today and my time to email right now is on an iPad while riding back home in a van. I probably won't be able to read your whole email but I will forward you the email I sent to president Howes. 

"My core experience with God this week was the excitement I got to see in the members of the Bankstown first ward becoming great missionaries! We haven't gotten very many referrals lately but this week as we have been visiting more members to teach more lessons, I have noticed that they have become more missionary focused and are looking for people that we can teach. We have even been helping them develope skills and things necessary to reach out to their friends and not be afraid.  At church, there were heaps of nonmembers who came with their member friends.  It makes me so happy to see the work develope, nothing can stop it! 

One thing I admire about my bishop is how humble he is.  He used to be  less active and is a convert to the church.  That being so, he knows that he is not perfect and doesn't ever raise himself up.  Also, he is really young, looks like a young single adult, but is one of the most dignified and polite people ever. What a great guy."

Hope to be able to write more next week! Sorry!!!! 

Love, Elder Thompson
Note from Elder Thompsons mom:  I have been wondering about Elder Thompsons choice of words in saying "My core experience with God  this week..."  after reading this email I realized that he is also sending us what he emails to his mission president.  His new mission president must encourage them to write a core experience with God and also to look for qualities in others that they admire and/or want to emulate, and Christlike attributes that they want to emulate and improve on.  I got to thinking that if I would think about and/or write down weekly, monthly etc... my core experiences with God and Christlike attributes to emulate and look for people whom I admire that I would be very busy thinking good thoughts and be more aware of positive things in my life.  I bet I would feel a lot more gratitude and love.  We are all  promoters of something each day, I need to rethink what I am promoting.  I can better help my fellow man by being a "civilian" missionary and promote love, kindness, help, understanding, a listening ear etc... Those who know me, know I love to talk so the listening ear may be the hardest, that's where duck tape comes in handy:)   This is just an aha moment from the momma.  I sure do love this missionary!!!!!!!!

It's a zoo out there

Sept 30, 2012


HAHAHAHAH I laughed really hard when I read the part about the Gorilla! That's super hilarious! Sounds like you guys had a lot of fun at the zoo.  The Hogle zoo is actually a really good zoo, even though it's small. I was brushing my teeth the other night and was thinking about and replaying in my mind when I would sneak up behind mom and scare her when she was vacuuming or something. I couldn't help but start laughing and the Elders in the other room asked why I was laughing hahaha

This week has been really awesome also, as usual.

My core experience with God this week was another one of those perfect timing, perfect placing type of things! The Lord strikes again! It was after district meeting, going to get lunch as a district all together. Had to walk to an ATM that was quite out of the way but did it anyway. When we were walking back, a middle eastern looking man approached us above the train station and started asking us about Jesus. He had been given a pass along card about 6 months ago and still had it.  Long story short. He needed us. He needed God. He needed the gospel.  We invited him to church and set up a lesson to teach him the next day. We taught him and he accepted a baptismal invitation but we did not set a date yet because it will be a long time and a lot of work for him. Apparently he is being medicated for schizophrenia and has problems with drugs, alcohol and other things.  He came to church though the next day but left halfway through sacrament. Not sure why. We still need to get a hold of him and find out why but I'm just glad to be a part of his life.  I pray that the changing effects of the Gospel and the attonement will help him change, because nothing else can.

If I had to talk about which Christlike attribute best describes Elder Honeycutt, it would probably have to be knowledge. I'm really glad to have him as a companion to help me learn things about simple principles that are easily questioned. Especially in this area where a lot of objections are raised, I would have no answer, but I have learned a lot about the truthfulness of the gospel since being with him here.  It's really good.  I hope to stay with him for longer. Things are going really well right now.

Today we are going into the city to some shops, it's a public holiday though so if the shops are closed, we might pop over the the opera house and snap some pics! :)

I can't wait for general conference!!! There's only one rule though, you guys can't tell me about anything that happens in general conference! Because I don't get to watch it until the week after!! Don't spoil it for me!!! :) hahahah this is one of the most exciting things for a missionary. Haven't been to the mission home yet, I go there tonight for zone leader council so hopefully it's there!

Anyway, my time is up. It's been great to hear from you again. Look forward to next week!

Love, Elder Thompson

Keep on Keeping on

Sept. 23, 2012
Hello again!

Sounds like another fun week! It doesn't seem like that much fun stuff went on back when I was home but maybe I just didn't appreciate it enough or was too much of a party pooper to get involved! hahah either way, the things you guys all get to do sound really awesome! :) I'm missing out but at the same time I wouldn't trade what I am doing!

Yeah letting virture garnish thy thoughts unceasingly. Thats part of D&C 121:33-46. Since President Howes has been here the whole mission has memorized that section!  Cool stuff.

Oh yeah, so about 3 weeks into the mission I got an ingrown toenail and 6 months later it was ingrown on both sides and really infected and messed up so I finally went to a doctor and he did  surgery to cut out two HUGE chunks of toe nail. Before that, though, I was soaking my foot in epsom salt and noticed that it said it was good for the soil in gardens.That might help out your garden. Look into it! Oh yeah and this last week I learned how to solve a Rubick's cube! haha yes!

My core experience with God this week came in a lesson. Surprise!  I love teaching lessons, probably one of my favorite aspects of missionary work. Anyway, we taught a lesson to someone named Jackie who we found going through former investigators. She is 22 and from Sudan. Weren't quite sure what to teach her so we applied some of the tactics from preach my gospel in the How to begin teaching section. Long story short. Her language wasn't the best and she talked really quiet but the spirit there was really strong. We taught a lot of principles from the Plan of Salvation and mostly helped her to be comforted because she misses her mom who died a few years ago and her whole family is back in Sudan. By the end she said she would be baptized. Would not commit to a date yet though. It's all good. The miracle is that through the Holy Ghost, we were able to teach her and understand her even though we really couldn't even understand her or hear her. I know she felt the spirit and felt hope enter her life. I love to see the change in people who receive the gospel. It just reminds me of how lucky or rather blessed I am to have this in my life.

We had the opportunity to give some service this week.... to a baptist church! Some rude person dumped two dump truck loads of mulch and dirt into their parking lot. They needed help to move it all because all the people at that church are really old. We ran into the guy in charge of it while tracting and he was very thankful for our help. It felt good to help others.  Now I see why you love doing things for others!  I am thankful for opportunities to help others in need and be a good Samaritan. I love my mission!!

Oh yeah, how come Kolton is working in Texas?! Also, keep me updated on the NFL! haha Thanks! Haven't gotten the package yet, it's probably at the mission office. Should get it next week though. For our temple trip our zone travels together on the train to the Sydney temple in Carlingford. Too bad we can't go to Melbourne or Brisbane or anything.  Look forward to hearing more next week!

Love, Elder Thompson

Season Changing

Sept 16, 2012
Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening or whenever you read this!

Good to hear that Makayla liked her little package :) I'll be thinking of what I want for christmas too! I haven't really thought about it hahah but I will.  I still need to get my ballot thing filled out. When do I need to have it done by?

Winter hasn't been to bad really, I think it rained more during the summer! But I hear it was a lousy summer. I actually have enjoyed the winter and am not excited for it to heat up again. So much easier to just throw on a jacket and adjust layers to get comfortable. When its hot, you are just out of luck. I will get a tan back though I think! Just need to do a lot of tracting. I'll probably get my new card at the beginning of next month, thats when I'll go to the mission office again.

For me it'sbeen another great week. Last transfer, Elder Honeycutt and I were buzzer tracting at a big block of units and while doing so a lady walked up to enter the units with her child in a stroller. Perfect, we got to talk to her and she was going to unit 4 which we had already buzzed unsuccessfully. After talking, we found out she was from the Cook islands and was keen to learn from us. We set up a time to see her the next week. Elder Honeycutt went to see her at that appointment on trade-offs and called her beforehand to confirm it. Her mom was visiting her and she said that she couldn't meet with us because her mom was opposed to it, and our potential investigator, Cecilia, "had her own church". So that was that. It seemed as though she was crossed off the list. A couple weeks ago I suggested that we go try her again. We buzzed her unit and she answered on the intercom. We set up an appointment for a few days in the future. When we went to teach her, our fellowship flaked and we weren't able to go inside to teach her because her partner wasn't home. Luckily she said to come back that weekend when he was home. FINALLY, we got to teach her. She has amazing questions. Probably the most humble, most teachable person I have ever met! She is very very receptive to the spirit. Her gospel knowledge is very low. We had to first teach her that only good things come from God and only bad things come from the devil. That's how little she knows. We didn't teach the whole restoration so we set up to go see her the next day. When we went to see her, she said that she felt like texting us and making up an excuse to not meet with us, but then she said she remembered the things we taught her and recognized that she was being tempted, so she didn't cancel and she said she felt so so good that she didn't cancel. She is learning that through Jesus is the only way to be happy and to be saved. I have never observed the spirit working so quickly and obviously with someone before. I feel so blessed to be a part of this experience.

One area in my life that I have improved on this last week would have to be virtue. Virtue is a tricky thing to have. It is so easy to misuse our mind or thoughts or desires. I feel as though the spirit has taught me a lot about obedience being a burden vs a choice. Doing good things because we have to vs doing good things because we want to. I am truly learning to be "freely obedient" as the days goes by. The feeling of committing to do something and knowing that you will never ever waver from that commitment is a very good feeling. I am so glad that I have the opportunity to learn valuable things each day and also for this chance that I have to serve the children of the Lord. My brothers and sisters.

Look forward to hearing more next week! :)

Love, Elder Thompson

We had a little fun with the mirrors, the videos are even better.

The KillaBurger

Close up

Zone Pday after Killaburger. all the Elders except the Samoan speakers are in this picture.