And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn, when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God. Mosiah 2:17

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Sorry everyone, no post this week from Elder Matua. Kelli and I were both involved in the 2nd Ward Conference and by the time we got home, he was already done with emailing for the week. But he did wish his old DADDY a Happy Birthday!!!! :) He promised to send pictures and an e-mail next week. He sends his love to everyone!!!

Update: Here are some pictures of a service project that the Elders did for the Schwalger Family.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Hello again from Aotearoa! Good News!

Hello! This was a great week, we had much going on and well it's quite apparent that the time is beginning to dwindle. But the good news is that Elder Burns and I are still in the same area, but with a new addition: Elder Masoe from Wellington. Yes, we are in a trio now for the time being. Elder Masoe is supposed to serve in the Suva Fiji Mission. He is here on a temporary assignment while he waits for his visa. We were kind of surprised by this transfer. On Transfer Day (Thursday) we received a call from one the Assistants, Elder Tibbits, asking us if we'd like to train. We said YES!!! And so we had to get to Transfer meeting quick. Elder Larson picked us up. When we were introduce during the meeting we had to stand up, Elder Masoe first, then us. We had formulated a plan that we would have him sit in the middle so we could squeeze him between us! It worked and got a laugh out of everyone!  He's the man! But he is a little shy. Won't be long before we get that out of him! Elder Burns and I both are training him until he goes. With training it really packs our morning with even more studies. Personal study, companionship study, training program (exercise), and language study; which equates to 5 hours of study. Phew is that a lot of study time! It's good for him but on our side it's a struggle to get used to. Being out of the flat by ten on a normal schedule then jumping into more study is a humbling experience.
              We want Elder Masoe to progress quickly so we've given him daily challenges to work on during the day. The two goals this week. 1. Ideas on finding new contacts 2. Invite investigators to baptism. The first goal was accomplished in finding a few appointments. On one occasion, Elder Masoe was given the chance to talk with someone. At one house, Park Ave # 52 we saw a sign on the fence indicating there was a dog. We hesitated but decided we wanted to find someone new to teach, so we opened the fence. Elders Masoe and Burns went to the door and knocked. The woman who answered was pretty fired up. She was not happy to see us. But Elder Masoe handled it well for as long as he could. Then Elder Burns was able to get her to lower her voice. He asked questions wanting to get to know her but she wouldn't have any of it. "Did you not read my sign? I've got a dog in here. You are lucky it was in my backyard. Then she continued her rant. "Go talk to the people at the Pub (Bar), they need you to talk to them more than me." They asked her if there was anything we could do for her. She said No and we were off. Elder Masoe's first conversation as a missionary and he gets an angry woman yelling at him.
     We are having a hard time getting around our area (because we only have two bikes). The three of us walked to meet with Shontelle our investigator. Sad thing, she wasn't home so we talked to her Indian neighbor. (Who was drunk, watering his flowers) He asked us if we'd like him to spray us with the hose to cool down. Ha Ha! We said No and talked for a while. He used some very foul language to express his life and " How bad his life was." He questioned us on what we were doing and his advice to us was "Don't go to anyone on this street they won't answer." We shook his hand, and we continued on our way. I think Elder Masoe has learned heaps thus far into his mission and we have every intention to make sure he gets the best training he can!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Hey just filling you in on this week! I hope yours was great!

This week was a blast...even though it was HOT! But we had plenty of great experiences. I'm so grateful to be a Missionary to be able to! While going throughout this week I've had the focused on how can I better embrace Christ this year." So far I think I've done really well. With not only the focus on trying my best to study out of the best books (Scriptures) I've seen the great love that Heavenly Father truly has for us. Being able to see these things occurring in the lives of those that have been faithful in keeping the commandments. And to see that God wants us to be obedient but will not force us. The Lord loves all of us no matter what. It's so comforting to know that God will never change his ways. 
Back to the scene of the New Year's Day plunge...grass still matted down
"Believe in God, believe that He is, believe that He created all things both in Heaven and in Earth. Believe that he has all wisdom and all power both in Heaven and in Earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can Comprehend." (Mosiah 4:9)
This week Elder Burns and I worked hard to do our best in helping others see the potential they do have.
Monday Was a normal Prep-day for the Week. We had a Family Home Evening with the Busby's on goal setting with it being New Years. I didn't eat anything so I got a really bad headache so we got a ride home.
Tuesday- Just like usual we had a very wacky District Meeting. Sister Kata never stops laughing and it makes everyone else crack-up. Following the meeting we were asked to do service for Brother Schwalger, packing stuff to get him moved. Elder Vave and Kapeteni worked on getting stuff into boxes. I vacuumed the house. After getting all that done, their neighbor was in need of moving a piano. Wow was that thing heavy!  A lot of hit and miss visits today. We only had one with Becky (Shirley's Daughter). We learned heaps about her and her beliefs.  We visited a less-active member named Kaputai, and met his friend, Anaru, a member from Hamilton. We invited him to church but weren't too sure if he was keen on coming. We had a really good talk with the Yee's family, they fed us dinner and gave us coconuts to drink. Last Visit was with Tai Iorangi to help out with some investigators. 

Wednesday- Elder Burns and I while riding our bikes dodged both a dog and a cat. One lady we tried to talk to...pulled the I think someone is calling me card and proceeded to put her phone to her ear. At lunch we cleaned our bathroom, while cleaning Elder Kapeteni blocked our door with the sofa. Silly missionaries.  Later, the Irvines asked us if they could go on a some visits with them. We took them to visit Meli. We explained to the Irvines that she was a less-active and was a dancer. Elder Irvine asked, Is she a night club dancer?" Got a good laugh with that one ha ha
Thursday-  In an effort to help Shirley stop smoking we read Ether 12 with her to show her that it is possible to quit smoking, all she needs to do is put her trust in the Lord. We had trade-off with President Broederlow and had no success until the last visit of the night with Jalaire New (less active). She wants to come back but wants her non-member partner to join her. I shared D&C 58:2 to help her out. She was more or less worried about the memories that come to her about her father. We reassured her that she didn't need to worry about being sad all she needed to know was that he is still there.
Friday- I had a Nutri-bullet smoothie from the Busby's with lettuce, carrots, apples, papaya. and bananas, wow that was good! I was supercharged all day. We helped Brother Schwalger move into his new house.We waited at the new house for a good 30 minutes. It took ages for them to finally get there, and then we were running with boxes up and down a flight of stairs to get it done in a hurry because we had a lesson with Sister Kelly, Kata, and Palu with their investigator about 3 kilometers away at the Great South Road Chapel. We rode so fast to get there but my bike just wouldn't cooperate with me, funny how I've had nothing but problems with bikes on my mission. I stopped to see what the problem brake was rubbing against my tire. I pulled the brakes off and was able catch up to Elder Burns. Lesson went well and we rode back to our area to visit with Meli but she wasn't home so we visited the girls (Viarn and Jyshiah), recent converts. We came home to see Elder Ward all bandaged up...he fell off his bike and almost broke his wrist in the process.
The Nutri-Bullett smoothie
Saturday- We had a flat inspection while Elder Lee and I did service, trimmed hedges. While Elder Burns and Ward had to go to the chapel and send pictures to the Area Medical Advisor. Saturday's are the worst when it comes to work, but we had a mean feed with Uasi and Shirley...We had a lamb that had been roasting on a spit.
Sunday- We had a very spiritual Preach My Gospel class; I taught about the Atonement! I cried about 5 minutes into the lesson. We showed a really powerful video on the Atonement and Missionary Work. Everyone bore their testimonies about the Savior. Gospel Principles lesson was about service. Taught Primary (4-5 year olds) on trust. We had a really good dinner with the Lapu'aho Family and had a discussion on some gospel principles. And lastly someone tried to brake into our flat while some of us were in the flat. Scary stuff, nah not really, we could've taken them.... 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Pic with Heavyweight Title contender, Joseph Parker
I'll share a few experiences of this week and some of the people we are teaching right now:)

Matthew: He doesn't necessarily have a church he goes to. But the way he acts he for sure knows Christ. Before we had met him he was into some bad stuff. Alcohol, drugs, and that stuff. But he decided to make a change in his life for the better. So he stopped doing all that and found Christ. If he were a member he would be a solid one! This week we taught him on a Saturday. The lesson was outside, it kind felt like a picnic without the food. We taught him more about the church but during the lesson he claimed that God told him the right church wasn't ours. So we taught him how Christ is center, this is His church and there needs to be authority from God to be a true church. We sat and talked for quite some time and he was keen on us coming back to talk more about the gospel. To close our lesson we all said a prayer, including Matthew. It was an interesting lesson but the Spirit was so strong while we were there!

Chontelle: She is the best!! She really doesn't have much of an understanding of who God is and really what the gospel is. So we are basically teaching her from scratch. In the meetings we have we can't really ask questions because not everything makes sense to her quite yet. She comes to church and is already saying she is a member but she needs to get married to her less-active husband, Bismark. He wants to change is old ways and is keen also.  

Elder Burns and I had a really good doctrinal talks this week being in a buzz on how to make studies better we had two major questions: Why does God use covenants? And from understanding the doctrine of dispensations, what do we learn about God? Oh my goodness for the life of me I could not answer them. Elder Burns enlightened me on these two questions. Using analogies of sports players and how covenants are like contracts. They are binding agreements that make it apparent to live by what the contract implies. The same with the second question, He has given us the Priesthood and prophets. Prophets not only share the gospel but they have all the same attributes as God (so to speak). We learn that God has given us agency in dispensations. I mean look at the time of Noah. He was proclaiming the truth but wicked men chose not to follow him. There we can see that sin separates us from God. That is the reason why Apostasy happens. Sin separates us from Him. God can't show his love for us when we sin. Does this all make sense? This week a lot of changes have had to be made especially toward studies! More in depth, more soul searching, more everything pertaining to studies! I LOVE IT!  I've done a lot more studying not just during the morning but also during lunch and dinner! My testimony is growing exponentially. I think Heavenly Father is trying to teach me something.....Study is WORK!   
Love you all and have a sweet week :)

Sorry everyone, this is Elder Matua's email from the week of 12/30. It was crazy around here so I didn't get the blog updated, so here goes:

Monday- Well Monday was so interesting. We didn't get to play sport just had a lot of other things that had to get done. Shipping off E. Burns package, fix his watch, and then emailed for the last three hours of P-day. (Had to catch up on Emails from last week) Family Home Evening was with the Busby's again, and I taught the lesson. Since it was Christmas we decided to teach about the "Christmas in Zarahemla" (3 Nephi 1) It was a great lesson and it put Christmas into a whole different perspective. Telling thesStory of the experiences that had been going on on the other side of the world. My testimony was strengthened of the Book of Mormon and it's truthfulness just because of this one story.    

Tuesday- We "Flea Bombed" our room on MY Birthday!!!! Thanks again for the birthday wishes :) In preparation for Christmas we visited Kylem and Tanisha to teach a short lesson. Then went to President Fititsemanu's house to talk for a few concerning his Projector for Christmas Day. The Zone Leaders asked me if I could talk to him about using it. Ended up being there was one in  the chapel. We checked it out and we were set for Thursday. Had a quick visit with Kaputai Iorangi and headed back to the flat for dinner! The Pasina Family brought a massive feed!  The father said "I know what it's like to have a birthday on the mission." So much food...while eating a cockroach crawled on top of the table....I grabbed a shoe and smacked it! That's was happens when you leave food out. You leave it they find it. Ward Council went by rather quick and we went to Chontelle's, a new investigator. We invited her to be baptized and she said YES!!! Great Birthday! 

Wednesday- Christmas Eve! We made up the sweetest game ever! All you need is a spiky rubber ball...three people and a low hanging roof. The object of the game: Keep the BALL in the air while playing against Justice, a potential investigator. He was super awkward and I think that ball was there for a build some trust! During lunch we received a gift from the Irvines. A Toy Rocket Gun. We played around with it until lunch was ready. We had a really powerful lesson with Shirley and Uasi. We were so concerned for Shirley's smoking problem. So we taught a lesson on how Christ can help her change. Shirley ended the lesson with a prayer. She cried and plead "I really need help with smoking, and I can't do it on my own." So heartfelt! We also taught a lesson to Chontelle again. We taught the Restoration like we had practiced in the morning during companionship study. We talked to Sister Mauigoa ( Relief Society President ) about Chontelle to let her know she'd be attending church this Sunday. We also helped out the Lavakula Family with their garden. Also invited Phoenix and Nastacia to be baptized (more new investigators)

Thursday- Christmas Day- "MERRY CHRISTMAS" We a had quick zone meeting and then we had the whole day to go and visit. Elder Burns and I had breakfast with President Fitisemanu. I had a really good talk with him about everything for a good hour. I could really tell that he missed my Dad, Grandmother Faleupolu and Grandpa Moa. He said they helped him about heaps when he was at the Church College in Pesega. When leaving he let out the words. "I love you Son." I could instantly feel the love that he had for me. Following the Visit We continued with our day by going to the Iorangis. Being full already they insisted on feeding us again...that was not a good idea. I dozed off to sleep and that was it. Finally I woke up twenty minutes later and said our goodbyes. We had two more feeds and I didn't think I could make it. We did some caroling with the Kints Family with Sisters in our District. One more dinner with the Busby's. We told them we were to full so they gave us desert! That night I could not even move.

Friday - I felt like I had a food hangover..It was so hard to get up..I weighed myself and I ended up picking up 2 kgs (5 lbs), should be off my body in no time:) We had a companionship study with the Sisters in our District and then went to the Busby's to call home. SO good to talk to my Mom, Dad, Tai, Garrett, Grandma, Grandpa and the uncles aunts and cousins. We spent most of the day there. And made a quick stop by the Iorangi's to help set up for Josyhiah's Birthday. 

Saturday- Well this was a big fail for the day. I thought it would be nice to give some Jehovah's Witnesses a Christmas gift. Then Elder Burns reminded me...they don't celebrate Christmas...OOOPS!!! I learned another lesson today.With a desire to share what our church is about, we wanted to share a video. We spent like ten minutes trying to set up the video on Eral's computer. Following the video I attempted to get to a different screen and let's just say never look at an old man's computer...It had some rather inappropriate surprises. Shared a lesson with Shirley and Uasi about fasting and rushed back to the flat to eat some dinner.

Sunday- Church was GREAT! We taught PMG class this week and I was leading the lesson on goal setting from Chapter 8. I felt good and I hope everyone that attended learned something new. Following church we did our normal visiting routine. But with fasting everything was intensified. Spiritual promptings were so much stronger. Had dinner with the Manapori's and a pig ran into her yard. We had dinner and a show watching her try and catch it. We had a attempted to teach Chontelle again but her baby girl wasn't too happy. So we rescheduled another visit tomorrow at six.