Monday, November 2, 2015


Hello everyone. This was a great week!

Our investigator Sister Zheng4 is improving a lot! She came to church last Sunday and is doing awesome! We shared the Word of Wisdom and Tithing with her and she is willing and ready for it all. I am really excited and feel great about her being able to meet her baptismal date of November 28th. She is so cool. Sister Zheng4 is 24 years old and told us that ever since she starting meeting with us and learning about the Savior her life has just become more and more happy. Keep praying for her.

We had a very successful Mission Leadership Council this last week. The theme/focus for the month in our mission is the Sabbath Day. Elder Huntsman and I went all out in our preparations for our training portions. We skyped with and met with about 10-15 recent converts and had them share with us how they developed a testimony of the Sabbath Day. We also were able to skype former Elder Darger and our former mission mom, Sister Day! I hope that all the information that we gathered and relayed will somehow help the members of the Church here in Taiwan. Hopefully as missionaries we can help move these saints forward. It was really good! We are excited to see some results with getting our investigators and less active members back to Sacrament meeting. So important. As a side note, our mission this past month had a total of around 47 baptisms which is double what is was 2 months ago. So our focus at the last MLC which was focused on baptism, was a huge success for us!

Elder Huntsman and Elder Willes with President and Sister Day

A funny story. Last night we got home and there was a bat in one of the other elder's shoes. A flying bat! We came in and it flew out and was flapping wildly around our apartment. We were all screaming like little girls. Haha it was crazy. We tried to wack it for about 20 minutes but it always dodged us. It finally just flew out of our apartment. I am still alive and well! 

Enjoying p-day at a local doughnut shop

Reflecting...I've been doing it. I don't really know why, but all week I've just had this feeling and prompting I should share a little more about the trials and hard parts of missionary work. My mission has literally meant the world to me and it has been the most rewarding experience ever. I cannot express my gratitude for this amazing 2 years however it is definitely like a roller coaster with many ups and many downs.

There are so many stresses that have been hard on me as a missionary.
First just being so tired all the time. It is hard. Literally every day is so taxing. You work and work and somehow your body finds the reserve to work some more then you may face the stress and heartache such as tons of people who have initial interest in the Gospel but choose not to act and eventually lose interest. Or investigators, or less actives, that for various reasons don't come to church or keep the commandments. And in some cases when your recent converts even leave the path you may feel so sad and hopeless. Sometimes when I get home, after very long days, I feel saddened and sometimes discouraged by people rejecting this message I am here to share. My mission truly has been the hardest thing I've ever done.

The reason I share this with you is we all will have trials in our lives. We all have these times of ups and downs. And unfortunately sometimes when we are experiencing the downs (and even sometimes the ups) we forget about all the things the Lord has blessed us with. Sometimes we forget to acknowledge during the downs that the Lord is still always with us. He never leaves our side. Two years ago, on January 22nd, 2014 when I first went into the MTC, I never in a million years would have thought I could ever read or write Chinese. I seriously doubted I would ever be able to speak Chinese. But through God I have been able to do all those things! Alma 26:12 through the Lord we can do all things! 

Yea, know that am nothingas to my strength am weak; therefore will not boast of myself, but will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all thingsyea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever. Alma 26:12
I have learned on my mission that it is important to see the rainbow and sunshine of every single day. Everything happens for a for a reason and this week I was reminded of something super important when I read D&C 122:7-9. Everything we experience is for our gain. We can't control our situations but we can control our attitude in those situations.
V.8 "The son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than He?" I'm so grateful for Jesus Christ. He understands everything that we experience. There have been countless times on my mission where He has picked me up when I'm down. There have been many times when the Savior has given me a glimmer of hope through the scriptures, prayer, or church. I know He is there for all of us and I hope we all can choose to put Him first in our lives so we can feel and know that He is our best friend and Savior. D&C123:17, D&C 121:7-8

I am a disciple of Jesus Christ and this really is the best two years of my life. I've never been happier and I'm so grateful for every day. I gotta keep making every single day count!

Love you all! Have a great week!
Elder Willes

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