The Converting Power of the Scriptures

Dear Family and Friends,

What a wonderful week we had! I know I say that all the time but , it’s true! How can it not be we are working in the Lords vineyard to bring souls unto him! The world is a crazy place with lots of negativity, loneliness, anger, pride, and suffering; its also a place that we can find peace, joy, happiness, love, comfort, and support. God is there to help us find the things that makes us happy. So as I get to watch people come and find Christ and find the happiness in all the darkness and chaos, it brings such a joy to my life. So ya I know that I say “what a wonderful week” all the time but that is because it is true!

This week did end a little different then last. Last week we had a lot of people at church and it fired us up to have it happen again. Sadly it didn’t, BUT…. We did have Jennifer accept a date to be baptized we will be helping her prepare to be baptized on July 18th. She is excited to come to know the truth that is here and she felt the spirit during that church tour.
I am gaining more and more a testimony of the strength and power that comes when we use the church buildings. These building that are everywhere have been built and dedicated to the Lord for his purposes and they carry a powerful spirit with them. Every time that we have a lesson in them and I fell of the spirit that is present it brings a peace to my heart that this is his work. We are using the church for tours with as many as will accept and we are using it for lessons, separate from a church tour, on occasion as well.

We have been working forward with an eye of faith know that as we desire to teach the Lord will help us find. We are focusing our efforts on helping those that we teach gain a witness of the Book of Mormon. We had investigators that weren’t daily reading, they have a very difficult time reading, and we have also noticed that it is hard for them to but themselves into the stories of the Book. So we have been reading it with them one chapter at a time, we have been picking the chapters that talking about the principles that we have been guided to for them, and helping them put themselves into the scriptures.

I love the scriptures and the power that comes into my life because of them, and the testimony that I get to gain by seeing that same strength come into other peoples lives as they start to study and learn from the scriptures, are the small things that I get to have every day that strengthen my testimony and conversion to the gospel.

I am so grateful that I am able to come out on my mission and not only help others find their faith and hope, but help find my own as well. I am so grateful to all of you for the things that you have helped me with in my life and for the examples that you have been for me to look to.

Love you all so very much!!

Elder S Cordon

Thanks For Giving

Dear Family and Friends,

Well what a week! I think the Highlight of the week is truly Thanksgiving. We had a fun zone thanksgiving activity. I have many things to be very very grateful for. Like I had previously said I have not had that much success getting people I meet on the street to stick, probably because The Lord wants me to stay humble and remember its him that makes this work happen. Because I know that the weeks I am working the hardest he still rewards us for our efforts like this week we picked up two families that we saw twice they had both went to church in another ward because a member invited them, I guess they met through the boy scout program. But they live in our area we met them gave them a tour of the church and then they came to english class. We also have another girl we met because she is a turnover from the sisters she has already been taught a few lessons and came to church.

So the low down on who we are working with (which are all in the time since i got here). Simon:turnover from the Senior missionaries; Ray: referral from a less active member; Johnny: walked into the church while we were studying; Julie, Peter, & Dora: turnover from the sisters; Mrs Tang and her family: turnover from Chaiwan member; Mrs Wong and her family: also turnover from Chaiwan member. We got some other potential but these are the big ones right now. SO I HAVE A LOT TO BE GRATEFUL FOR!

The lord blesses us for the efforts we make in planting seeds in one field by allowing us to reap harvest in another. I think therein lies a wonderful lesson for life: it teaches us that by doing all things the Lord asks us, although they may have no direct impact on our desires or challenges we hope to receive or overcome, the lord through his ways unknown will change all factors of our lives. So while you may not understand while the lord or his servants ask us to do certain things, do them anyway and you will receive a rich supply of blessing to that I can promise in the name of our Savior Jesus Christ. For this is truly his words and his blessings.

I love you all

Elder Jared Cordon

Wow that was fast!! – Jared

Hello Family and Friends,

This might have been one of the fastest weeks I have ever had. Probably because it was just so good! A couple of firsts this week, we got our first investigator. We also will be seeing him again tonight. He is 84 and we can comprehend what he is saying! That is a miracle in itself! Also I taught my first street lesson yesterday in all Cantonese! The gift of tongues is real! Normally I just let my trainer do all the talking! I also went to a normal sacrament meeting this week, which was amazing because it has been 4 weeks since I have been able to take the sacrament. It was quite an amazing experience the spirit I felt to be able to feel the gift of the atonement and know that all those mistakes I have made I can be forgiven of!

The ward here is small but they are amazing! They are blessed to be one of the only wards with 6 missionaries! 2 Sisters and 4 Elders, President would love to see this ward grow enough to have to split!

This is the first week we have been able to have street lessons with people we will actually be able to teach! So far it’s been a lot of girls and non-Cantonese speakers. But we have taught 5 to Chinese men. That’s a miracle because this city is so crazy and everyone is so busy! So to get that kind of time from the men was pretty amazing! Our secret is to get over the lack of confidence and stop and asking people for the chance to teach them and just do it. When you’re really assumptive and assertive in a polite and kind way it really works. We were tired of people saying no, truth is they don’t realize what they are saying no to, so don’t give them the option.

I realize how much of missionary work is truly the work! You have to try your best to be the best missionary you can be and that is having the faith to talk to people and the diligence to grow. We have been struggling with boldness so this last week we really focused on it! For these Chinese men you got to be very confident and bold, something I struggle with in Cantonese because I am really insecure about the language. Yesterday though something hit me and we stopped in the middle of evening studies and went out and I was talking to as many people as I could and that’s what lead to the street lesson that I gave. The Lord is amazing. He can even help me speak Cantonese.

I love everyone and hope all is well! Thanks for all the support!

Elder Jared Cordon

Knowing the truth is like walking in sunshine when the whole world is covered in rain clouds.

Dear Family and Friends,

I wish I could say that I came up with that line about the sunshine and all, but it is actually from a song on of my companions CDs. I totally feel that way though!. It seemed even more true when I considered that line as it has been raining these past few days.

To be completely honest this has been a very annoying week. We still have nobody that we consider a progressing investigator (someone we have had a follow-up appointment with). We meet all these great people who look so ready to receive the gospel and enjoy all the wonderful blessings it brings then they just either don’t call us back or are not home for the scheduled appointments. We still are finding many great people we just need to get some progress with some of them and then I will be jumping for joy! A great find happened on Saturday when we were walking through the park. We talked to these two guys and the one I focused on was from South Africa and he was interested and shared how he really wants the strength to quite smoking and drinking. I told him that if would read and pray about the Book of Mormon that he will find that strength that he needs. He said that he would only do it if I really believed that and I replied firmly, “No other book will give you more strength and guidance by bringing you closer to God than any other book.” He promised to read and pray about it. I hope he reads it!!

I was really excited for the World Wide Leadership Broadcast! I love how they emphasized that every member is a missionary. I’m eager to see how it jump starts the ward. Our ward is great about going out with us, but we are struggling to get any member referrals at all. Elder Newbold and I decided this morning that we are changing our entire strategy. Starting tomorrow we are now doing what we call the “Operation Less Active Attack, or Battle LA”. The ward here a has like 300-400 on the roster and only like 80-100 active. If we get some reactivation going or work with part member families I feel like we could really do some good work here. I am exited to see what happens.

I love you all and I know that God loves you even more. He truly blesses those that are faithful to his word. One of my focus topics for studying this past week was faith. Two of the most powerful discussions of faith I found was Alma 32 in the Book of Mormon and Elder Holland’s Talk from the last General Conference. Read them both! It talks about how the size of your faith doesn’t matter. It is all about how true you are to the faith that you already have.

God Be With You Till We Meet Again,

Elder Joshua Cordon