That is Horrific!!!

Last P-day was awesome! We finally had a full p-day to ourselves. The zone got together to practice for the turkey bowl! We are pretty serious about the turkey bowl so we even practiced in the rain… then it really started to pour….and the wind started to blow….and we realized that we weren’t THAT serious about it! Haha! It was fun though. Except we went shopping (soaking wet) afterwards, and we were miserable. Good times.

We had a street sweep with Elder Young and Elder Beazer. I love those guys. We picked up trash on some public streets in the community. It was disgusting, but hey! Thats New York!
I was able to go to Midwood on exchanges! We had a great time. It was weird being back in the same apartment again. We went to Gyro King though! I love halal food. I miss it. If you don’t know what that is.. you should google “Lamb over rice halal food” and look at the pictures that come up. Yum.
We planned to go on the trains to do a flash mob! We practiced a few songs, and then we were off! We would all get in the same car, and start singing. It was funny to hear people’s reactions. One lady was nice and commented on how it was good to hear “Christian music” every once in a while. Everyone else ignored us or got really mad. There was this russian guy that was not happy… at all. I think we woke him up. He started shaking his head and cursing us under his breath. He finally turned and looked me in the eyes and yelled, “THAT IS HORRIFIC!”. I just smiled and kept singing. I chuckled, because some people get bent out of shape for the strangest things. Oh well! OH and I tried to fearless these two ladies on the train and got totally shut down… in front of the whole zone. I was like… uhhh… and just sat down. Hahahaha I tried!
Anyways. I was pondering about why bad things happen to good people. Elder Holland makes a great point. He talks about how Jesus Christ was the best this world has ever seen. Did He not go through hard times? Was He not tortured beyond what He deserved? Of course. He kept His scars to show that although bad things may happen to good people, that doesn’t mean that God doesn’t love them.

photo-6

photo-7

Elder Lee
Come what may, and Love it!

All Around The World

We had an incredible week. It all started with a new transfer!! The new missionaries that came in were so cool. They were from all over the world. Spain, Paraguay, South Korea, etc. Oh and Provo, Utah of course. 🙂 It was cool to see so many people from around the world united in the same cause. They are going to be stellar missionaries.

The transfer meeting was great as usual. It is always a treat to be with the majority of the mission and to hear President Calderwood speak.

Well I have a new companion! We are still in a trio, but Elder Baker had to move on with his life 😦 Elder Lavelle is the new addition! Wow, I am so excited. I have always looked up to him throughout my whole mission. It is pretty cool to be his companion. I have learned something cool. Do you want to know the true measurement of a leader? It isn’t about the work that he gets done. That stuff doesn’t really matter as much. The true measurement is how the people around that person do. If the people around you are growing and blossoming, that means you are a good leader. Even if you are conquering the world, but everyone around you is being destroyed in the process.. what good does it do? A true leader inspires and lifts the people around them. Elder Lavelle is great at that.

Well we had a meeting this week! I made a little video for it. It was cool. The concept was on whether you are “Insane or Inspired?”. If you change your expectations in life, do you change your actions to match them? Einstein’s definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results. You have to do more than change your expectations in order to be inspired. You have to change your actions to match it. Pretty cool concept!

We hardly ever sleep. Sleep is overrated anyways! I fall asleep anytime I stop moving. That usually only happens in sacrament meeting. So you can count on me passing out in church. Haha… yep. OH a lifelong dream was fulfilled the other day! We got a selfie with President Calderwood. It was great. Highlight of the week for sure.

The biggest highlight happened on Saturday though! Elder Hallstrom of the Presidency of the seventy made a surprise visit! He basically had a layover in New York on his way to Bermuda with President Calderwood, so he set up a conference for the mission! It was incredible. He talked about a lot of things, but one thing stuck out. He said that we are responsible for how much we get out of meetings. Sacrament, District, etc. Whatever it is! We decide how much we are going to learn from every meeting. It is up to us to seek knowledge, but not only to just learn. The most important part is turning that knowledge into action! We should always have a resolve to change after every meeting we have. That is how we continually improve. I loved that. I mean.. We have a billion meetings anyways, right? Might as well get something out of it!

Elder Lee
Come what may, and Love it!

The Family: A Proclamation to the World

Another week has flown by. Wow.

Well due to a special occasion, I found myself at dinner with President and Sister Calderwood! We were eating, and decided we wanted to “fearless” our waitress. It was pretty easy because she started asking us questions… I love when they do that. 🙂 It was kind of awkward at first, but it smoothed itself out. We were all asking kind of lame questions, until the question got thrown out, “What question do you feel like religion has never been able to answer for you?”. She was taken aback. We gave her a Book of Mormon, and all of the information for church. The ball is in her court now! I hope she goes. That was super cool though.
Have you ever had the blazin’ wings from Buffalo Wild Wings? Well if you answered no to that question, keep it that way. It was a horrible decision. Elder Hussein got some for me one day and I foolishly ate five of them. They didn’t even taste good, and they burned everything that they touched! My fingers, lips, mouth, heart, stomach, etc. I thought they hurt going in, but it was just as bad when they came out. I will leave it at that.
Elder Nugent was praying one night to find out where Heavenly Father wanted us to go. He felt like we should go to this former investigator’s house. It was shocking because they had called us a few weeks ago and yelled at us. After that, they told us to never come back. That was the same day that the other family we were teaching told us that they were moving, so it was pretty tough. But for some reason Elder Nugent felt like going to see them. We wrote them a thank you card, and headed over… we knocked on the door and… they let us in and fed us dinner. Ha!! God is so good. Even though promptings don’t make sense, just follow through with them.
I have just had the strongest impressions about families lately. The world is getting pretty ugly, and they are going to attack the church for what we believe. It is already happening. We had a fireside last night about how marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God. I just felt the Spirit confirm to me that it was true. I can’t ever deny that. President Calderwood read The Family Proclamation, and it is all true. If you don’t know that yet, you should read it and pray about it. You are going to have to know that for the future. The future is frightening to think about, but I will always defend traditional marriage. That is the catch with “additional light”, you have a lot more responsibility. Oh boy.
We have spent most of our proselyting time in Belle Harbor. There are so many families there it is crazy. Almost like Utah. They all know their neighbors (which is refreshing) and actually care about each other. The ones we have met are pretty set in their ways, but they are willing to have us over and feed us 🙂 They love the missionaries after what they did for them during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. We have a lot of hope for some families though. This branch needs some anchor families!!
Anyways, I am not ready to come home yet. I love President and Sister Calderwood too much. I have nothing but respect for both of them. If I end up being half the man that President Calderwood is, I will be doing alright.
Elder Lee
Come what may, and Love it!

The Half-Gallon Challenge

I do a lot of things wrong. One of the things this past week that I wanted to improve was my water intake. Don’t laugh. We wanted to start drinking more water to stay hydrated! We all bought a gallon of water and decided to drink it every day. So we have been carrying around our gallons of water everywhere! I am pretty easily entertained, and I came up with a challenge. I told Elder Baker that if he drank a half-gallon of water in ten minutes, I would give him twenty dollars. Now I was pretty dang positive he couldn’t do it, but it was enticing enough for him to try. The deal is you have to finish all of the water in ten minutes, and not throw up. Well he got really close! Then he threw up. Ha! I challenged another missionary to do it later, and he was determined. He did it in seven minutes!!! I was astonished. I grudgingly took out the twenty dollars and handed it over… only to follow him right to the bathroom and watch him throw up everywhere. He came out and handed me the twenty dollars back. I felt bad, so I told him I would take him to lunch. Moral of the story? Well there really isn’t one. I just wanted to share that story.

Halloween has come and gone! I talked to a guy who I had met over a year ago on Halloween. He is awesome. We actually had a really good conversation about the symbolism of the Book of Hosea. I never thought that would happen in my life! Haha! Anyways, we had to be in by 6pm because of the hoodrats that go out. It is actually a big gang initiation day, so it was good that we were all safe. I went to bed at 8:30pm!! It was the best.
I am still enjoying life! I am so grateful for this chance to serve here at this time. It could not have been better timed. This whole mission has been a miracle for me. I love it.
I was pondering about how people who live around a lot of Mormon’s can still be actively engaged in missionary work. I came across a scripture that answered my question. In James 4:17 it says “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin”. I just thought about all of the good that we can do for people around us, regardless of what church they belong to. If you find yourself surrounded by members of the church, and still want to be a missionary, “go about doing good”. There is much good to be done all around us!
Elder Lee
Come what may, and Love it!
photo1