Monday, May 20, 2013

Week 2

This keyboard is really awkward. The spacing is off or something! Anyways!
Hello! 안녕하세요!
This week has been great. And crazy. And this is the hardest thing in the world. I still don't speak Korean, but I am working on it. I am getting better. It hurts my brain.
I successfully talked to a man in Korean and gave him a Book of Mormon all by myself. Yay. I'm really not bad at Korean. I just suck at the same time. Ha. I'm really slow, but I am doing really well for only having been here for 2 weeks.
Something that is really fun! My companion is district leader, so he does exchanges every week. That means I get to go to a bunch of different areas and meet all of the missionaries in my district for reals. Once every week, I go with a different missionary for one day. It is fun.
Soooo. This last week we had a holiday: 부처님 오신날 orrrrr Buddha's Birthday! All of the Koreans got off work and so there was a giant stake activity for the entire day. They made it a sports day. And all of the missionaries were required to come, basically. Basically, it was a missionary day off. People were supposed to bring their nonmember friends, but that didn't really happen. So we just played soccer, ate food, and built relationships with all of the members. It was great. And I got really sunburned. But I'm fine. I'm not peeling.
One of the missionaries broke his nose playing soccer. It wan't me! Don't worry. By the way, if a Korean is slightly hurt, they usually fall on the ground and call an ambulance. This might have kinda happened at the sports day because of a leg cramp. There wasn't an ambulance, but lots of commotion. He is fine don't worry. Ha.
I ate lots of food that day. And it was all good. Bibimbap, bulgogi, pajeon, and other delectables. They have this rice dessert cake that has bean dust on the outside. It was pretty good. Expect there was this one thing that I never plan on eating again. It is this sort of jerky stuff make from fish. My bishop said it was made from "sea mice." I don't know what those are and I don't want to. Hahah. It tastes like fish and sugar and nasty. But it was fun.
Last night, we were knocking doors and this random lady invited us in and fed us lots of food for a hour... She had no interest in our church but was still super nice. She wanted to make us a huge meal. Curry and stew, and even wanted to go to the store and buy more food. But we said we didn't have time for that. Haha. And she wants us to come back for a real meal. She's Catholic and has been forever. And has no kids. But she was super nice. Apparently that is what Korean women are like from the older generation. So we had a truly Korean experience right there. That same day some other lady gave us vitamin waters when we knocked on her door. Not the nasty American kind, but delicious Korean kinds. Hahaha. People were really gracious to us that day.
I have been learning a lot here. The work is really slow. We have no investigators and not very many people talk to us or seem interested. But we do meet people and have good conversations occasionally. It seems that if we have one good conversation with someone, It is a successful day.
This has been a trial of my faith. I know this is the Lord's work. I know He is preparing people. We just have to find them. I often think that miracles are possible, but that is just not the way the Lord is going to do things. But that is wrong. Since I am the Lord's missionary I should expect miracles. We can find people to teach. He will put them in our paths as we have the faith. The most powerful being in the whole universe can do His work however He pleases. The only changing factor is the faith of His servants. Miracles should be expected because this is His work.
I am working really hard. I just need to have more faith. Then, I'll work even harder. I love my ward, my bishop loves me and things are going well.
I miss you! I love you! This is the hardest thing ever. Pray for me. I am praying for you. I can't wait to see you all in a while.
Elder Renfroe

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Week One: Done.

Oh my goodness. What a week! 焼戚壱!
Lots to tell all of you.
First day: We got off of the airplane and went straight to our mission president who was waiting for us. He is a great man. I like his style a alot. Hahaha. He says he tries to teach correct principles and allows missionaries to govern themselves. I like this. Anyways. We met him and they took our bags back to our house and then we went with some other missionaries and made our way back to the mission president's house on the Subway and street contacted along the way. I was companioned with a native Korean, so basically, i just stood there and looked pretty. Haha. せせせせ
But! I did talk a little and say a few things. This is darn hard. Hardest thing ever. Korean makes my brain want to blow up. BUT! Then, when we transfer to another subway, I saw some white people. I asked them if they were from America. THEY WERE FROM GERMANY! Haha. So, we talked in German the entire subway ride. It was a man and his wife. They were atheist. But we had a nice chat. It was a tender mercy from the Lord. It was like he was saying, "I know this is really hard, go have some fun for a second." Haha. I enjoyed it.
THEN! We got to the president's house and had pizza! From the Korean Little Caesar's equivalent: Pizza school. And I quickly fell asleep, and had the soundest night's sleep of my entire life. 
Next day we met our companions. Mine is Elder Nicholas Frazier from Atlanta Georgia. I about died when he said he was from Georgia. I love people from Georgia. He is great. 19. Oldest Child. I wish he had a Georgia drawl. But that would be too perfect. Anywho. 
Then we went to our areas. I am in the city of Paju 督爽 in an area called Geomchon 榎談. The city of Geumchon is half in North Korea and half in South Korea. I am about 7 miles from North Korea and I get even closer in other areas. Hahaha. The city is pretty drab and the work is slow. But it is testing my faith and making it grow stronger. I know the Lord is preparing these people to receive His gospel. We just have to find them and work hard, so that the Lord may put them in our path. We have one investigator, really. But he really just wants to meet with us to learn English. We teach him English for 30 minutes and then a gospel message for 30 minutes. He is interested in it. But I don't think he really has real intent yet. But we are working hard!
I'm currently in the boundaries of the Seoul mission. Not the Seoul South mission. So, I'll probably be in that mission when the mission splits. But anything could happen.

Sooooooooooo. Korea.
Old men run this place. Ha. They drive down the street in their motorized wheel chairs even when cars are behind them. Age comes before beauty in this place. Young women get up out of their seats to let middle-aged dudes sit down. 
Old ladies stare at me and call me beautiful as they walk by. It is great. Hahaha. It's cause I'm white. And maybe a little beautiful. せせせせせ
The other day the in park, a horde of children came and kept asking us how to say things in English. One of them climbed on our bench and was biting my nametag. What the heck!? Korean children are the cutest things in the world. They called me Uncle Bear because I'm hairy and I guess because they think I'm middle-aged.
Oh, all the old people here like for you to guess their age. I just say 21. Then they laugh. I guess that might be an insult because they love their age so much. Hahaha. 
Schwasticas are everywhere. I'm sure I spelled that wrong. Except, they are red and I think backwards. It is a 災嘘 thing. Bhuddist thing. 
Guess how you say you have a wedgie in Korean.... You say your pants are being eaten! 郊走 股嬢推! Its great. I'm excited to learn fun things like that. Hahaha. To say you forgot something, you can also say you ate the thought.
We went to a concert as a district. It was Bach's Orchestra Suite #3 and Mass in B Minor. It was beautiful. Mostly just the singing, though. One of the trumpeters apparently got sick, sooooo they got a replacement the day of.. Fail. That trumpeter was playing terribly wrong notes the whole time. So I really enjoyed it when the trumpets weren't playing. Hahaha. For the mass, there was a counter tenor! His voice was sooooooo lovely. For those of you that don't know what that is... It is a man that sings in his falsetto in low women's range. He had some solos. It was gorgeous. I thoroughly enjoyed it. 
But I love you all! Pray for me! and Write me letters! I need the help and encouragement. It is really hard out here! 
Elder Renfroe 
兄覗稽 舌稽

Monday, May 6, 2013

Last MTC Email!!!!

Oh goodness! I leave Monday!!! Ahhhhh!!!!!
I land in South Korea 5:50 PM Korea time on Tuesday! I'm going into the Future! Then I'll meet my trainer and baptize the whole nation. ^^    <----- That is how Koreans do smileys. So get used to it! ^^
So the Elders from Pauline's district live in my residence hall and even on the same floor. This crazy guy with the deep voice... I don't believe him. It's really creepy. Hahaha. Pauline would want to marry him. She would always be protected. No one would cross him. He read a scripture one time at a departing MTC thing... And I did not understand at all. Hahahaha. Anyways..
I went to the temple this morning and had my last delicious American breakfast. Ah! It isn't my last American breakfast, but it is the last delicious one because the temple has delicious food, but the MTC does not.
Did you know that Koreans have a very distinctive smell? Apparently the entire nation of Korea smells the same way. Ha. It isn't a bad smell. It just smells like Korea.
I feel like my emails have gotten worse and worse here at the MTC. It's because everything is the same and blends together. I promise they will be more interesting in the field.
Appparently it doesn't cost that much to mail a letter to America from Korea. Like a dollar or less.
So, this last Sunday, I sang for a devotional. It wan't the big one that everyone goes to, but a departure devotional for all of the leaving missionaries. It was great. My pianist was a Sister going to Brazil. She qualified for the BOSTON MARATHON! That's a pretty big deal, yo. But she decided to go a mission instead. Her call date was just a few weeks before the race, so she didn't run it. Then when she found out that it was bombed, she said she was so grateful to the Lord for not making her go through that, but send her on a mission instead. It's crazy. But the Lord knows us. She was willing to give up all of those years of Training without a second thought, really. I know she sure is glad she did now.
I had to get a shot yesterday. And it was really funny. The girl in front of me was Japanese and didn't speak a lick of English. The nurse said something about how this was going to hurt her and to look away. She flipped out. Hahaha. She kept fidgeting as well. It was funny. But she got through it. She made lots of funny Japanese noises of distress. Haha. I hope they gave her lollipop. She deserved it more than the rest of us.
I'm going to go to the bookstore and make all of my final Korea purchases. It shouldn't cost too much. But who knows, I might buy the whole store. It's the only way I can feel happiness. JUST KIDDING!
KOREA! AHHH! I'm not going to understand anything. But I can talk about Jesus! What else matters?
I've been reading a really awesome talk called "The fourth Missionary." The gist of the talk is he explains 4 different missionaries and then tells you to be the Fourth. It is a really wonderful talk! Everyone should read it! And someone should send it to Pauline. Basically... Charity is the key to everything. We can do all of the good works in the whole world, but if we don't have charity, it profiteth us nothing. This is found all throughout the scriptures. We should desire only to do that which our Heavenly Father wishes us to do. But, the guy says it better than me. So go read it! I'm going to reread it. Haha.
Mother, I promise I will take a picture today. PINKY promise! I will email it to you later today! Then you can be at peace in the world. I got a haircut and everything, So I look like Hugh Jackman. Ha. Kidding! But I will do it.
I love all of you so much! Keep me in your prayers.
Elder Renfroe


Ahhhhh! I'm so excited to see Pauline! I'll be hosting that day and looking for her! I'm so glad nanny and papaw got to be at her setting apart! Elder and Sister Renfroe! Setting the world on fire! Tell nanny and Papaw I love them!
This week was crazy! RICHARD G SCOTT CAME AND SPOKE TO US ON TUESDAY! AHHH! It was crazy! I saw him in person! He spoke about the importance of prayer. It was so beautiful. He is such a charitable man. He pronounced an apostolic blessing upon all those that are learning a language that they may master it as their prayers are to be an instrument in the Lord's hand! It was so wonderful. Some of the sisters in my district saw him driving away and said he rolled down the window and just screamed, "We love you!" The "we" was him and God!
What stood out the most to me is the reality of Heavenly Father's love for us! He wants to hear from us. He wants to bless us. He is anxious to do so. There is no reason to fear anything. Ever! The Lord is always there. It was so beautiful!
THEN! This last Sunday, the President of the MTC came to our sacrament meeting with a member of the 70, Elder Evans, who is in the missionary committee for the church and either is or was over the Asia north area (Korea and Japan). He also spoke to us and gave a lot of hope. It was wonderful! We have been richly fed. He spoke a lot about having faith in the Lord to master this language. Apparently we all need more hope with learning Korean. It is so stinking hard! Seriously... But the Lord can make it happen for us. We were richly fed this week. 
I'm glad nanny saved the day for Pauline's Farewell! Haha. Oh how I wish I could cook right now. I'd make enchilada's and guacamole!!!
I taught a 40 minutes lesson in Korean to Koreans this last Saturday at TRC (the thing where we teach members). We taught a Mother and her daughter in high school, as well as another high school student. All from Korea! I said the opening prayer. I can pray like a boss in Korean. Hahahaha. The mother looked at me after and mouthed the word "wow." Hahaha. Then we got to know them some more (in Korean). Then we talked about our Savior Jesus Christ! The spirit was so strong! I loved it! We challenged them to read Mosiah 14 in the Book of Mormon so that they may come to know their Savior more fully. I can say a lot in Korean in lessons. Right now, listening is really hard, but I can basically say some general things that I want to say. Hahah. Especially in lessons.
I leave in less that two weeks!!!!! Can't wait! So exciting! My Korean will get so much better when I get there.
I love you all! Keep me in your prayers! You are in mine! <333 Keep writing me!
I'm still praying for pictures of friends and family and childhood and everything! :) Maybe a UT hoodie too? :P
I love you all!!
Elder Renfroe