Monday, July 27, 2015

Blessings, Fruit and Worms

So far I’ve given a lot of blessings out here, including one to an investigator who is dying of a kidney disease. my patriarchal blessing says everyone I lay my hands on to be healed, will in fact be healed, and I have faith in God that He can really do that, so I’m really excited to see how that all happens.

God’s been showing me that there are a ton of spiritual gifts, like recently He’s given me the gift to mourn with those that mourn. It’s awesome, I feel like I can feel what people are going through, but instead of making me sad, it just makes me have hope for them and then I can help them because I know where they’re coming from. It’s cool.

Let me tell you Dad, I love families. Out here it is almost impossible to find a functioning family. No one gets married, everyone lives with everyone and no one knows whose kid is whose. It hurts me so bad because all I can feel is the pain that comes from it. The people we find out here with families are usually always the most prepared to accept the gospel of Jesus Christ into their lives. It just made me so grateful that I was raised in such a strong family, and I’ve learned that I have to do everything I can to raise a strong family too.

So the guy with kidney disease is still alive, he’s not doing so good though. We’ve been trying to help him understand the nature of Christ. He doesn’t even really understand the virgin birth. But in the blessing I gave him I told him he would, in fact, be healed, but the speed in which he would be healed would be dependent on his obedience and faith in God and His commandments. It definitely wasn’t me giving the blessing.

It’s not rude to take pictures of people(I asked why he hasn’t sent any photos home of Jamaicans). I just try not to pull out my camera when there’s a lot of people around (which is almost all the time), cause if people know you have nice things welllll they rob you. I’ll try to take some pics with a few of my investigators -there’s a few I can trust:)

I guess what I do with my time is this, I’m in the house with Elder Packer till 10:00 am, then we leave and walk or bike probably like a 5 mile radius around our house, sometimes farther. We just teach people we’ve made previous appointments with or we find new people to teach by talking to people on the street (everyone just walks up and down the street if they have nothing to do-- which is a lot). Right now me and Elder Packer have got the next 5 days full of appointments with investigators. The only thing is that almost everyone will make an appointment with you and then not be there or tell you they’re busy when you come at the time they set up, hahaha. It’s just kind of the chill mentality of Jamaica, so mostly we just teach whoever is home, right on the spot:) We get more lessons in that way anyway:)

We figured out that Thunder man actually is crazy, whether he’s high or not, he just makes up his own gospel every time:) He calls me Elder Thunder though, which is pretty sick! It’s kinda become my yard name (everyone here has a yard name) plus like 6 other names! It’s so hard to find people sometimes! We’ll ask people, "Hey do you know where Horace lives?" and they say, "Who?"
" You know the Rasta with the dreads?"
"OH Robot!" and then we’re like "... yeah Robot!" It’s funny everyone kinda has their own code language.

They have these crazy trees out here called bread fruit, and it’s basically a green potato tree and you roast them right on the stove top, and then fry them and they’re so good! Look up bread fruit trees online, they look like it’s where Dr.Seuss got his inspiration, in fact I think he got all his illustrations from here.

This is one of the Elders who lives with us in our house, his name his Elder Ostrowskei. In this picture he’s holding a jack fruit. They grow right out of the trunk of trees and get bigger than watermelons! He really likes it, so he’s pretty happy about it:)

This other picture is some guinep fruit, I climbed a guinep tree to get it! It’s so good!!!!! You crack off the shell and then you pop the yellow part in your mouth and kinda suck and chew all the meat off the cherry-like size pit, and WOW! They are soooooooo good --favorite fruit by far!!!!! BoM in the back ground just cause.

This is me and my companion at the church field, we are about to play soccer, and the missionaries actually beat the Jamaican members, but probably only cause of Elder Gordan who’s a Jamaican:) It was a fun night on the way home I got some jerk chicken from a street vendor who was selling it out of a 50 gallon drum/make shift barbecue. It was so good, but I asked for hot sauce and this guys homemade hot sauce was killer! It was so freaking hot, I thought I was going to die! They easily have peppers out here hotter than ghost peppers!

This is a pic of me making chocolate pancakes ( healthy right?;) made from pancake mix cocoa powder and chocolate lasco ( chocolate milk powder).

This is Elder Packer and I. There’s a lady in our ward who’s extremely crafty and he had her make matching planner covers for us- they are so cool! Mine has 51 stars on the American flag haha! She only charged him the equivalent of like $10. She also makes scripture cases! I’m going to get one that is an American flag with 1/4 of the corner a Japanese flag, it’s going to be sick!

A view over the orange fields of Linsted, Jamaica. White people own these orange fields and they live in this huge mansion.

Everyone here calls us white man or white boy. so when I see a white person here I want to say "Hah! white man!" in a Jamaican accent haha!  E. Packer goes home in two weeks! Then I’ll be done with training and I might end up being a trainer myself! That would be crazy though. I doubt they’ll do that:) It’s to bad I’m killing all my trainers- I’m back to only knowing like two missionaries again:) (killing means you’re with them for their last transfer)
My Patois sucks, I can still barely understand it even. Oh, I almost forgot, I got worms!!! I had to take a pill to get rid of them but I was eating so much for a couple of weeks!:) They’re gone now, no side effects from them or the medication, just have to wash the mangos better.

Don’t miss me Dad. Love you both, love the family, Luke

Monday, July 13, 2015

Wild goats

We've got like over ten different investigators right now, some are really doing well. We have one family who we teach ( it's crazy hard to find a family) and the mother has seen angels and both parents believe in love and Christ and devoting their lives to God. I've felt very strongly to teach them baptism, and so far they've agreed to be baptized and our lessons have really been powerful.

This week we taught an older lady named Pam and we invited her to church and she said she didn't have money for a taxi but she'd come anyway because she knew God would provide a way for her, and she came! It really is special to find someone with true faith in God, even to action, and coming to church.

Some of our area is waaaaaay out in the middle of nowhere! hahaha-- it's my favorite place:)

The thunder and lightning out here are insane!!! This is a picture of lightning so far away you couldn't even hear it.

Everyone thinks we're crazy for walking in the rain out here ( they believe that the rain makes you sick). People will just yell out to us, "White man!! Get out of the rain!!" There's one guy in our area, every time he sees us he just yells, "WHITE!" and then leaves! hahaha he's so funny:)

Goats!!!! Lots of goats out here, I can't tell if they're wild or domestic.

Me and my companion. He's really cool.

Jamaica Kingston Missionaries