Monday, October 27, 2014

We have definitely continued to see a lot of miracles. We were able to meet with Tam SS twice this week along with him attending a ward party. He is doing well, but hasn't come to church yet. He drives a van for a living and so people will call him and hire him and I guess a group of people have been calling him most Sundays so that is why he hasn't been able to come to church. We were planning to teach him about the Sabbath Day this past Friday after English, but we felt we needed to change the lesson plan last minute! From the beginning we have been talking with Tam SS about bringing his family as well. This past week he did it! He brought his wife to English Class and then to the lesson with us! We didn't know he brought her until they walked in at English Class. We decided that it would be much better if we shared about families. His wife, Lisa, at this point doesn't really believe in God but she said that she is willing to learn more about the Church. Families are so important in this work and I'm praying that the Lord will soften her heart so that she will be receptive to the message of the Restoration!

Sam is doing great! We met last week with him. We are actually teaching several Sams but this is the one that came to church last week and also went to the baptism. He is 30 years old and has a belief in God, but isn't quite sure how that should direct his life. We met with him last week and shared about the Restoration. The Spirit definitely played a critical role in that, prompting us to ask certain questions that lead him to a testimony of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. After we explained how the Holy Ghost worked, then asked about church and the baptismal service. He said he had a really good experience and could feel a special feeling there. We asked him what he thought it was and he said that at first he thought it was just the good feelings of the people but that now he thought it was the Holy Ghost. He was right! We then asked if he believed that Joseph Smith saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, he did. We then asked if he believed the Book of Mormon was the word of God, again, he did. It was an awesome lesson and he came to church again yesterday as well as attending Jason's baptism! At church he also learned a little bit about commandments and I think that as he continues to learn about how we act on our faith, he will continue to progress at a very rapid pace. I love to see the differences in people's background and learn how the Lord has individually prepared them.

As we were walking towards the ward party we passed some Europeans sitting down at a table. As we passed, we heard one of them mutter "mormons." When we passed again they were both staring at us so we decided we would see what they knew about us and share about our church. When they saw us walking towards them, they pulled out two seats for us. One is from Ireland, the other is from England. They are both over here teaching English for a year. We talked about some of our basic beliefs and how our church is organized, but couldn't stay too long as we were on our way to the ward party. Before we left, we asked if we could meet them again and they both agreed. We grabbed two english copies of the Book of Mormon while in Kowloon Tong today to give to them this week.

I feel like we have really been seeing the Lord's hand in the field. We have been seeing countless blessings, including running into some less-active members on the street and being able to reshedule them, meeting very prepared people, and being able to share our testimonies to all that are willing to hear! I know this is cliche to say, but Hong Kong really is the best mission!!

Til Next Week,
 Love, Elder Cederlof

Monday, October 20, 2014

I'd say this week we've had a lot of miracles. We are able to get two more baptismal dates this week. One of them was from a person we met 2 weeks ago and rescheduled for this past week, taught and invited to be baptized then a baptismal date. The second one was from someone we met on the street this past week, rescheduled, and then met again. The first person's name is A-Sam. It was a very powerful lesson. We shared about the Restoration. Elder Black was losing his voice so he couldn't talk too much but we very much personalized the Restoration. I think that has been one of the most powerful times during the Message of the Restoration on my mission. The Spirit was so strong and led the entire thing, especially the Apostasy and the Restoration. I feel like that lesson strengthened my own testimony of the need of the Apostasy. Near the end of the lesson, I wasn't sure if she was ready for a baptismal invite, but of course, the Lord knows better and I had the feeling to invite her. At first I was a little bit hesitant but knew that I had to do it, so I invited her. After she accepted I was pretty happy and about to wrap up the lesson when another prompting came to invite her to a specific date. Recognizing that feeling even better the second time I invited her to a specific date. She accepted as well. I can promise that the Lord's ways are higher than our ways, and like 2 Nephi 9 teaches that if we hearken unto the counsels of God everything will be okay. I know that that promise is true.  Definitely a special experience.
Tam SS is still doing really good but due to work things coming up he couldn't come to church. He really likes our church and everything we teach but I'm a little worried he believes it just because it all makes sense and he saw a lot of people at the General Conference. I know he definitely believes in Jesus Christ but as far as getting his answer from the Spirit in order to know if the Book of Mormon is true, I'm not 100% sure. Fortunately he does have that willing heart and believes it with his mind, so next time we will help him know his answer comes from the Holy Ghost.

It's very sad to me to see all of the people in the world that believe that not being virtuous is ok. If only everyone understood their true identity they would never do those things. EVERYONE needs the knowledge of their true identity. People are not just an object to be acted on, but someone to act, and not only that, but a Child of God.  Along with that I have been praying a lot for charity. Charity to help truly see who these people can become. I need to strengthen my vision of them before I can help them. The Hong Kong people definitely are special, and I'm so grateful I have the opportunity to offer up my all in their behalf. The Atonement of Jesus Christ is also the only way I can be able to feel the love He feels for His children. It definitely is an amazing type of love. I'm thankful for the ability to repent and strive to come better everyday. Somedays I get down on myself and think I'm not good enough because of my weaknesses and mistakes, but then I remember that God has invited me, to come unto Him first, and THEN be perfected. If I'm doing all I can, He will make up for the rest. That's our message to the world!! I love this Gospel and the opportunity to serve our Lord and Master.
Til Next Week,
Love, Elder Cederlof

Monday, October 13, 2014

Conference weekend was awesome as ever! The only part I didn't like was how fast it flew by! I remember when I was little I thought that only watching 4 hours on Sunday was long, but now, I feel like the entire 10 hours is too short! It is interesting to me to look at what the overall message was for each individual session, day, and as a whole. Sunday morning with the first 3 or 4 talks on Prophets/revelation. All of those speakers were definitely inspired. I love hearing each speaker develop the concept or idea of their talk. All of the different teaching skills used by each individual person are awesome! My favorite theme of conference was the exhortation to act. Give the Gospel priority and don't let ANYTHING get in your way. Some examples listed were that of personal scripture study, family study, family home evening, and so on. It definitely helps give me that motivation to stick to my future goals of always having family home evening and other things in my life. It also strengthened my testimony towards those individual principles, which at first may seem like not a big deal, but truly make the difference in the long run. It's been promised again and again by church leaders that if we give the gospel priority, the rest will work out. Definitely an important lesson. I think that is a very important concept that investigators learn to understand and gain faith in. If they are truly willing to do whatever God asks, either through scriptures, modern prophets, or invitations through the missionaries, they won't have to worry about anything else. The principle also of course applies to me as well. If I am exactly obedient and do everything the Lord asks of me, I literally won't have to worry about anything else, the Lord will provide.

Tam SS also had the opportunity to come out to General Conference for the Saturday morning session. He really liked it! Tam SS is progressing very well and I'm very grateful for the opportunity to be learning with him. He has a strong desire to come unto the Savior even more in his life. He has already seen how much the Savior has blessed him and I truly think that he has the hope necessary in order to more fully come unto Him through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. When we meet with him he is always so happy to learn more about the Gospel and it just seems to make sense to him. He is definitely developing a closer relationship with Him as he is learning to recognize the promptings of the Spirit.

With one of our Zone actions being to pass out 65 Book of Mormon's in each District, the Tuen Muen Elders and us decided to go on a Book of Mormon Give Out time. We set up the Book of Mormon banner and brought a box of Book of Mormons. As we were walking over holding a box with 21 Book of Mormons I was curious to see how long it would take to pass them all out. God works wonders and we handed them all out in no time and the other elders ran to their apartment to grab more. As we were there, there were people walking over to us and asking for a Book of Mormon! That experience taught me how many people there really are that want to read the Book of Mormon, but haven't had the opportunity to get a copy into their hands.

This week during finding I turned a full day over to Elder Black. I want to push him in order for him to grow. He is an awesome missionary and was more than willing that day to take the lead in finding! His confidence towards himself was higher at the end of that day and I will continue to give him more opportunities to speak more and step more and more out of his comfort zone in the language. He also gave out a Book of Mormon to a lady that later when we called her, accepted the invitation to come to church and bring her daughter as well!!

In preparation for this conference I have been reading through the last session's Liahona with all of the talks. I love being able to read and re-read all of those precious talks! The magazine form of conference is such a useful tool in not only reviewing, but learning new things! I am super excited to get next month's issue so that I can study from it and really get as much as I can out of the talks.

 Til next week!
 Love, Elder Cederlof

Monday, October 6, 2014

This week we have seen some great miracles happen! The biggest one would definitely have to have been on while on exchanges with my M.T.C. companion Elder Cordon!  As we were going to go to a drinking fountain we ran into a man named Kalok. He is mid 30's and said he has been really sad recently. He hasn't seen his mom for several months. We talked about prayer and how much God truly does want to bless us. He listened intently and at the end of the lesson he was willing to say a prayer and ask to see his mom again. We scheduled him for the next day. The next day came around and he was soo happy. We asked how his day had been and he said that his mom, out of nowhere, decided to come find him! They went to lunch together and he invited her to meet us as well and so we waited for her and talked with her as well. She is pretty into Buddhism and she doesn't have a lot of interest but I believe that as she sees the change the gospel brings to her son's life she will have interest. We were able to meet with Kaluk several times this week. His faith in Christ has been growing a lot! He has already started to pick up how the Holy Ghost feels. He said that when we talked with him, and when he came to church he could just feel a really warm feeling, he said he couldn't really describe it. I'm so grateful that we were able to run into him and help him progress and come unto Christ!

Another miracle was with Tam SS. We met him last week as we were walking by the park (where the drinking fountain is) We just started a friendly conversation and went from there. He has been a Christian for about 3 years. He is 65 and was going to do some exercise. As we talked about our message to the world he responded very well. We could definitely tell that he had more interest. After our discussion we scheduled him for this week. When we met with him the second time he started out by saying "Elder Cederlof, I talked to my preacher. I need to reject you." He continued to say things like that and apologize. I said don't worry about it but can we still sit down and talk. As we talked, we discussed the things that he believed. As we know, the things he said highlighted gospel principles of which we could then bear testimony and teach. We shared the Message of the Restoration and the Book of Mormon. At the beginning of lesson he was saying he had to reject us, at the end of the lesson he was holding a Book of Mormon and asked us when we would meet again. It never ceases to amaze me how much the Spirit will work on people. All we have to do is to make sure we are worthy vessels of that Spirit.

I love seeing "The Work" move forward. It has, and will continue to change and bless so many people's lives. Throughout the week we also had opportunities to learn how to keep the work progressing forward. Through exchanges and Zone training I was able to learn and grow. The Gospel is true and as people follow that invitation to read the Book of Mormon, ponder upon its teachings and Come unto Christ, they too can know of its truthfulness.

Til Next Week,
Love, Elder Cederlof

Our Destination
Overlooking Tuen Muen