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Tuesday, August 19, 2014


Hello everyone,                                                                                  Aug 18, 2014

I hope that everyone's weeks was just fantastic! Thank you to all those friends and family that send so much encouraging mail throughout the week it is very much appreciated!

 So I know that all of you have been asking for a funny language story and the truth is, they happen every single day. So briefly for those who don't know, Chinese is a tonal language. Meaning that the same word can be said with five different meanings depending on the fluctuation of your voice. This is by far the biggest challenge for me individually. So everyday when I talk or teach a lesson, I am always saying things wrong. Luckily Wo de Laoshimen (teachers) care more about us having correct grammar and vocabulary right now than hitting every tone right. So this week when I was teaching a lesson on the plan of Salvation, the message that I was trying to get across was than in order for us to become like our Heavenly Father we needed to acquire a body of flesh and bone. Instead what I said was that we needed "bones" (like we needed to have bones from something in our hands) to be able to get back into heaven. Needless to say I had nothing to really say after that, but I got a pretty good laugh out it. This language really is so fun to learn!
This may be his teacher who is leaving the mtc...not exactly sure

 Later today I am skyping some natives in Taiwan and practicing speaking with them. So I'm a little bit nervous about that but I am also very excited. It will be a neat experience to see how they really talk and how FAST! On a sad note, my Laoshi left us this week! He will be teaching Mandarin at Lehi High School and will be amazing! So that means that I am getting a new Laoshi today! His name is So Laoshi, he is from China and is way kind. Even if he talks too fast for me haha. I love him and am happy that I get to have him for the next few weeks! 
Our District

If anyone know's anything about me they know who my favorite General authority is, Elder Holland! He just speaks to me and has my type of personality so I am always really touched by his talk's. My favorite talk of all time that changed my life is "Lord, I Believe" I printed it out early this week to study. Then I gave it to our district to read, on Sunday we walked it in the morning. And then we went to Priesthood and the Counselor taught a lesson on Faith and used this talk as well. So I don't think it was a coincidence that this talk was brought up over and over and over this week. I needed to remember the key focus in this message. Which is, Lead with your faith and only then recognize your unbelief. I am so thankful for this gospel and the opportunities it gives us to have faith. I would encourage anyone to go look up that talk. I know that it will strengthen a testimony. It will help anyone who wishes to have more faith. 

So I will answer the question now as to the different title of this email. Throughout this week I was thinking a lot of the missionaries around me and what they need to feel loved and wanted here. As problems have arose and concerns have been voiced it caused me to do a lot of thinking. To be completely honest, I probably spent too much time thinking about them than I should of. However, I was thinking about these "problems" that seemed at the time to be a "big deal." Towards the end of this week I was talking with a missionary whom I love so much. He seemed a little down so I asked him if anything was wrong. He opened up about a tragedy that had happened from the town where he is from. As I listened, and tried to give what comfort I knew how. I felt like I was slapped across the face. While these concerns were mostly definitely valid, they were short term. Things that could be handled with love, if I supported my companion, residence, district and myself I knew that God would help resolve the things that were troubling me.
 As I listened I was reminded how closed off I was of the world right now. That just because I am in a place that is so spiritually strong and protected, people still go through very hard things. The Elder is doing just fine, he is very strong and loving and was just concerned about those back home as he had every right to be.
 But I was reminded to keep things in perspective. *Sorry for the Harry Potter quote but I can't help myself. Don't be a Hermione, "We could get killed, or worse expelled!"
 As we try to reach out and help others with theirs struggles and lift them up with the Gospel of Jesus Christ it is then that we can feel most happy. I feel so blessed to be here with these missionaries and to be able to call them my friends. I also can't wait to get to Taiwan and help the people there who are having real life struggles that can be cured with Christ's power. When I see things with a positive outlook, more and more is accomplished each day.

Last night we had Dallin H. Oaks daughter Jenny Oaks Baker talk to us. She is a very accomplished violinist who graduated from Julliard. Something she shared from an experience I found easy to relate to because of this experience. (I know this is out of context, but it will serve my point) she said, "I was happy that, that was a lesson I learned off-stage rather than on-stage." I agree completely. I am happy that I learned to focus on other peoples real struggles rather than my own individual concerns, doubts or problems.  This gospel changes lives. I know that it will change others, because it is changing mine everyday as long as I let it. God has been helping me so much throughout this experience and I know that there is no way I could do any of this without him. 

I hope you all are well, I love each of you. A piece of advice I learned this week. Keep it all in perspective. When you feel you have a problem, try to help someone else out. You will find both of you will grow closer to your Savior. Well until next week!


Luo Zhanglao

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