Elder Matthew Gummow

Monday, March 10, 2014

First week in Douliu

Family!!!!

Wow this week was crazy!  Lots of ups and downs, and a huge load of new experiences and challenges. There is definitely a long road ahead here in Douliu.

Douliu is amazing, it's everything I could ever ask for.  Even though it's the most rural area I've been in on my mission, it's really convenient and perfect for missionary work.  The chapel is in the middle of our area and our apartment is nearby too.  There are so many awesome leaders here that are super excited and willing to help out and there is a great feel about everything going on in this area.  Oh and also there is a golf course in our area...:)

Douliu is in the Jiayi Zone which is pretty exciting.  Jiayi right now is working to make a new stake and has a goal to be a stake by April.  In order to do that though our ward needs 5 more Melchezideck Priesthood holders by then.  So the ward is super excited and driven in order to hit this new goal and to help find and bring back new and less active members.

My new companion is awesome, Elder D.....  He's half Chinese, so we always about how we have Chinese blood to other people.  He's been out on a mission a year less than me so it's quite a big difference, but his missionary skills are already really good and his Chinese is fantastic.  I guess it helps that his mom is Taiwanese.  He's super good with people and does a great job at loving our investigators and recent converts etc.  He's also really great at getting them to open up and talk about what they really feel with us - something that I hope to be able to learn from him this move call.

This week we spent a lot of time meeting the leaders of the ward here and finding some people that they wanted us to go see.  I was super happy to see that this area has some great leaders and they are all really excited to work and help serve God.  I don't know how long I'll be here but I'm super excited to be here in Douliu at this exciting time.

I think something I learned this week, was when we were teaching Less-actives.  We have a bunch of them in this ward and they all have little problems that keep them coming from Church.  Lot's of them just gave up after trying so many years to serve faithfully and feeling like they didn't do enough or were upset by someone else in Church.  This week I kept thinkingg back again and again to 1 Nephi 3:7 almost every day, several times.  The classic verse and a simple truth, God gives a commandment in hopes that we can be perfect like him.  They're hard to reach sometimes though so we're tempted to just give up and sit back and rest.  But that's why he's give us grace and his Atonement, it's the only way we can overcome challenges and reach perfection - by coming unto him.

Anyways that's about it for this week, we're going to eat with some friends in a sec so I don't have too much time today, but love you family!!!  Pictures will come next week probably!

Elder Gummow

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