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Elder Burr
California Los Angeles Mission
1591 East Temple Way
Los Angeles, CA 90024



Sunday, January 5, 2014

po jing chong yuan (4 4 2 2) translations: a reunion of husband and wife

-Presents? For Me?
-Happy Christmas Harry!
-Happy Christmas Ron!!
-Happy Christmas Everyone!!!

So, I got to go on my first exchange out of PV!! I was so excited to see the world outside of suburbia and the millionaires, but after a 15 minute drive on the freeway I was pretty much in the same place. No worries!! It was still a blast. I learned “po jing chong yuan” which I will scream every time I return from an exchange!! 

On the exchange, we mostly got stuck at the mission home making copies like a bucket (catch that Amanda??) and then we contacted a Cantonese guy at the park. It was my first time in my entire mission street contacting, like as an activity, super weird. But the canto guy gave us a bogus number to follow up with so I will hunt him down!!!

Then we went to go check out another park, and it turned out to be a dog park without any Asians, but it was cool I got to pet some huskies. I tried to contact this lady and we had a break in the conversation and I felt it was too weird to start talking again so I just left, and when I was back at the car I said, "WE GOTTA GO BACK AND LEAVE A COMMITMENT!!!" So we went back and she was gone, I felt so bad the rest of the night. That made me think of something, that I needed to decided right then and there to change. That, sure I was inside a mission but the mission wasn’t automatically going to change me or who I am or what my natural actions are. It made me think that throughout my whole life I had just expected to as the years went on I would become more responsible, more reliant and a better person. NO NO NO, it’s action, it’s conscious decision making every second of the day. It’s so cheesy but I realized if I want change, if I want to be a better person, I have to act and do and not wait for someone else (my trainer) or some other thing (the mission) to do it. It’s through my own attitude and me relying on the Gospel of Jesus Christ (faith, repentance, the sacrament, being a vessel the Holy Ghost can dwell in, enduring to the end REPEAT) that we improve and become more perfect, just like Heavenly Father and our big brother. 

 I want to be a show-tell missionary not a say-how missionary so here is me saying, I will go out and do!! 

Also!! Samson and Tiffany will be baptized this Sunday!! whhooooooo lolly pops and pass along cards for everyone!! It was super iffy because yesterday they told us they were married, and that night they told us they weren’t married but they were living in two different places, but I know they are amazing people and it was probably lost in translation and culture differences. So we truly believe they will pass the interviews and enter the waters of baptism!! Last time we went over I noticed some red wine in the bathroom so I went and I was like "What is this!!" And tiffany was like, for wine baths, for the skin. I guess that’s fine....can you become intoxicated through osmosis?? 

On Christmas day! Elder Bowman received a ton of stuff ( mostly because he accidentally swindled our Mission President into giving him extra gifts) so we both felt really guilty for receiving nice things on our mission, so we spent that night making spiritually uplifting cards and driving around giving presents to our investigators and English class students!! Thank you everyone for making that possible!! Greg and Emily, some really cute little Asian kids got the awesome toys you have me, thank you!! Mom Dad, thank you for the t-shirt and pajamas, I wore those to bed the night before Christmas eve so I couldn’t give them away.   : .(…. 

It was funny, as we were trying to find new investigators on Christmas and Christmas Eve, I felt different, I felt like I could talk much more easily with everyone because it was Christmas and it wouldn’t be too weird or awkward to talk about Christ with them. I felt a lot more confident, a lot more than I usually do. Then, a couple days after, I realized, it’s as good as any day to talk about Christ!! It does not need to be the Christmas season for someone to find out that they have a Savior!! Because it is true, I know it is. That is why I am out here. 

Thank you so much everyone!! Thank you Suzy and Saran and Grandma and Grandpa for the letters, thank you Greg and Emily for the package!! Thanks family for skyping with me!!

Love you all,
Elder Burr
Merry Christmas

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