Monday, December 29, 2014

Hello, me lovelies. (28 December 2014)


I hope everyone had a great Christmas. It was crazy here. So many people on the streets just running around. Huge crowds. Crazy! I have a picture somewhere. I will have to send it. 

Other than that... Just a normal week. We had breakfast at a member's house and another member gave us a referral on Christmas. So that was great. And. We went caroling and handed out Book of Mormons wrapped as presents. Hahaha. We explained what the present was. We weren't just throwing them around. Hahaha. I think we gave out about 80. 

I don't have a lot of time today! I gotta go. My companion only has 2 P-days left. 

I have been reading the Korean Book of Mormon a lot lately and it has been really great. 
In English Helaman 3:29 it says "behold we can see..." and throughout the previous verses it talks about things of God's characteristics that we can see from some sort of evidence. "Thus we can see..." That God is merciful... or other things like that. But in Korean is says "Thus we can know..." "Behold we can know..." It just seems more definite. That by observing the works of the Lord, we can learn, and know, even cherish His attributes and character. It isn't just a passive observation. But it is an active attainment of knowledge. Which is the basis of Faith. Faith changes us because it is Faith in Him, in His character. Therefore, we must know who He is. And we can. As it is stated clearly in the Korean.

Anyways! I love you all! 

Elder Renfroe

Monday, December 22, 2014

Helloer (21 December 2014)

Merry Christmas! 
I have been really busy doing a lot of stuff this week that wasn't proselyting... But I guess it was ok. We had a big Christmas Zone Conference that we had to plan and prepare everything for. At the conference, we had a training from our president and his wife and the assistants. It was really good. After that we had a really good meal. And then went caroling and handed out Book of Mormons wrapped as presents. Hahah. It was great. Then we had hot coco and krispy kreme donuts. Ha. It was great. 
Then, we had a ward Christmas party that we had to prepare for and get some music ready for as well to sing as a musical number. It went really well. We sang Silent Night and Carol of the Bells. Haha. I was proud of the missionaries and their performance. 
Also, we have to prepare a musical number for a talent show next week. I feel like I have just been leading choirs all week. Musical Mission. Ha. 
We also got back in touch with one of our investigators who has a lot of potential but started ignoring us because he felt a lot of pressure from some ward members. It was a miracle. But he still has a lot of potential. So, I am really glad we can meet with him again now. 
Tomorrow we go to the temple, and don't really have any special plans for Christmas. Just a normal work day. It will be great!! 
Listen to both these songs. They are great. I used to hate the little drummer boy. Because it usually is the most annoying song on the radio. But this version is really good. And it has allowed me to actually think about the true meaning of the song. We have such meager gifts to give to Him. We are so poor. But we give them and He accepts them with love. He is so kind to us. And loves us more than we can currently know. But we can feel it. 
Anyways. I love you all! Keep me in your prayers! 
Don't worry, I didn't break rules to link those videos. Hahaha. 
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Hello! (14 December 2014)

Hi, People. 

It is freezing! My bones hurt. Not really I am fine. Don't worry. I have a really fluffy coat. Ha. 

I don't have nearly as funny stories as last week. But I was walking next to an old man, and was about to start talking to him. But he started to flatulate quite loudly about three times. I curled over in laughter. It was kinda sad though because the laughter kept me from being able to talk to him. Hahaha. 

What else? I ate a turkey dinner again. The Americans in our ward made 2 big turkeys for the Christmas devotional. The first time I ever had turkey and kimchi together. It was great! We will have kimchi at all Thanksgivings for the rest of my life. 

We had an investigator and a less active that hasn't been at church in 4 years there. We had a really good meeting with the less active member afterwards. He was one of our miracles last week. 

I forgot to tell a different funny story last week. Our investigator that randomly called us last week... When we were teaching him to pray, he kept asking how to say it in English. Which was weird because he hadn't mentioned anything about English up to that point. And he kept saying it out loud and practicing. So I asked him why. He said that He didn't feel like Jesus could speak Korean so he had to pray in English because He wasn't Korean. So I told him by that logic He doesn't speak English either. Hahaha. He just prayed in Korean. 

My companion bought a sweater that makes him look like he is from Star Trek. He goes home to the mothership in 25 days. 

We went caroling this week. It was really interesting. To stand in front of a bunch of people, as 6 missionaries. 5 of which are foreigners. And sing about Christ. These aren't just Christmas songs. These are songs that literally testify explicitly of the birth of our Savior. I don't think I would ever scream on a street about the Savior. But I will certainly sing of Him. It was interesting how bold we are able to be with song. And how it can act as a conduit of the spirit. I certainly felt the spirit as we were singing. I felt closer to my Savior. 

But I love you all. Keep me in your prayers!

Elder Renfroe
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Week of Miracles (7 December 2014)

Helllo, my lovelies. 

This week was really great. It is as cold as a baboon butt in Antarctica. You have to say that sentence in a Texas accent. But it is freezing cold. I am grateful for thermal underwear, to say the least. 

Also, some embarrassing things happened this week.

We work out at the temple in the morning and there is a treadmill that I run on because it is freezing outside. And my companion is a bum and doesn't want to run. Haha. Anyways. The treadmill wouldn't work, and I was quite sad. The converter was blown out or something. So I brought another converter to see if it would work. The second I plugged it in there was a really loud noise and sparks and smoke started coming out of the treadmill. I exploded the Lord's treadmill. I was so sad. But some other missionary fixed the converter and it works now. It withstood the explosion. All things are possible with the grace of the Lord. 

Then this... I think this is the funniest thing that has happened to me on my mission. Maybe my whole life. But here it is....

We were in a really big business type building. It was really fancy. So fancy. Like metal trees on the inside and really tall and in a really rich part of town. Business executives everywhere going in and out in their suits. We went in to go to the bathroom. My companion was taking forever. Korean Mexican food. Like literally forever. So I was getting tired of standing there right next to the bathroom. I looked like a creeper to all the men going in an out anyways. So I look and there is a little metal bench thing like 10 meters away. It is pure shiny metal and is in a weird V-shape. It fits, we are in a big executive building. Even the benches are fancy. I just wanna sit anyways. So, when I get closer I notice the bench is really short. Uncomfortably short. But I don't care. I just wanna sit. So I take the far plunge to sit on the weird fancy bench. The thing just falls over. And these two little plastic props fall out from the side. It makes a really loud noise that echoes through the marble halls. And the lady at the front desk starts waving at me like, "Nooooooo!" 

It wasn't a bench. It was a piece of art. I laughed for a really long time. And so did the lady at the desk. I didn't break it. I was the weird American that sat on someone's art. She said it was the first time anyone has done that. Hahahahaha. 

I also went a visited a beautiful little girl and her dad in the hospital. They are from Mongolia, but are here because the daughter has some sort of condition they can't treat there in Mongolia. The father is a member and has been coming to our sacrament meetings for the last 2 weeks. He has 3 other kids, so the whole family isn't here. He just asked us to come help him, so we went and visited. The girl is so cute. It was really great being there and seeing her spirit. 

But the miracles. We contacted an old random less active member who is the same age as me and was baptized about 3 years ago. He went to Korean military and then fell off the face of the earth. But he answered and apparently moved to Australia after military and hadn't been in contact with anyone in Korea yet that he knew before because he just kind of wanted to get away, I guess? But anyways, we met him and it was really great. We started to reteach him, and he said he will start coming back to church. It was a miracle! So great. 

And recently, we have dropped all of our investigators. Because they weren't going anywhere. We had a lot of them, but it just wasn't really going anywhere. It was hard, but we decided to stop meeting with them because they were wasting our time, even though we love them. But a guy randomly called us. Called us. US! That is a first. Hahaha. And said he wants to learn about our church and meet with us. We met with him and it was so great! He is so great. 26, having a hard time and needs more purpose in life, never had a religion. He was referred to us by his friend who used to be an investigator way out in the countryside. He told him to just contact us and we are the best. It was awesome. It was incredible to see the Lord's hand to specifically give a prepared person to us. We also had another guy become a new investigator this week. It was pretty good. Lots of miracles. 

There is a new video produced by the Church. Our mission is focusing on it. 

I love the end where it says to discover the gift. To embrace it. No matter where any of us are, we can discover Him more. We can love Him more. We can discover His goodness and character more. We can discover why He is the Christ. It is an open invitation. To everyone. 

Anyways. I love you. I pray that we can all think about the real reason for Christmas. 

Keep me in your prayers. 

Elder Renfroe
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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Thanksgiving! (30 November 2014)

That is how you say hello in a New Zealand accent. Hahaha. I have learned so many language skills here in Korea. 
This week, I ate more American food than Korean. My bowels had a hard time. Tree frogs. We ate together at an American family's house and it was wonderful. My first Thanksgiving in 2 years. I had Korean food last year, remember? haha. But It was great. I also had lasagna this week for the first time in 2 years. And they gave us the leftovers. It was amazing! Hahaha. 
This week was really hard. Basically, we have to start our area over. We have had to stop meeting with most of the people we were meeting with because they weren't going anywhere, or dropped us. We had a lot going on, but I think it will be good to start with a cleaner slate. It was hard on my heart. But has to be done. 
I am starting a new study. Faith is the first principle of the gospel. Yet it is so misunderstood. The most important thing is Faith in Jesus Christ. He is the reason for our hope. And basically everything. It is faith in Him that changes life and outlook on life. But it isn't just faith in a name. The reason faith in Him is important is because of His character. It is because of who He is. Many people understand this basically, but the changing process of faith is just that - a process. The more we understand of the character of Jesus Christ, the more we are changed. So I will be studying that more. It is understanding that principle that causes faith to change our life. That is the essence of faith.
Anyways. I love you! Keep me in your prayers. 
Renfroe Elder. :P

Hello, My Loves! (23 November 2014)


This week was hard. And cold. But then not cold. But still very Korean. 

I had to translate all of church on Sunday. It is so hard. And sometimes people talk about nothing. So that is the hardest part. Haha. 

We have actually a good amount of people that we are meeting with, but they are all kind of going no where. And it is annoying. But I love them. But we may have to stop teaching all of them and just start over soon. 

There is a new Mormon Message. I really like it. It has sparked some new interest for me in terms of how I want to study, and the things I need to learn. 

The part I like the most is right at the end. When she says that the Savior really is just so sweet. If that lady can say that, can't we all? Or shouldn't we all be able to? It is a really interesting take on it, I think. To feel the sweetness of the Savior. If only we could feel that, life would be so much more enjoyable, right? I feel it some times. I have felt it this week at times, but certainly have much to learn. If only we could feel more tenderness towards our Savior. And not hate the very things which are helping us become who He wants and needs us to be. 

But I love you all. Keep me in your prayers!

Elder Renf

Hi, America (16 November 2014)

Hello, America. 

This is Elder Renfroe. I made kimchi today. Lots and lots of kimchi. We had a huge service project that we participated in. Basically all I did was lift stuff and give people more cabbages to pepper stuff in. It was actually pretty simple. But tiring at the same time. And I kept getting fed kimchi by the ladies. Hahaha. And you get pepper paste stuff all over you. Fresh kimchi is actually completely different in taste than the usual kimchi. It is sweet and spicy and just tastes really fresh. It isn't sour at all. Then after it is aged for a while it becomes real kimchi. Hahaha. 

One of our investigators took us out to dinner. We had ribs that were on a bed of melted cheese. And then you eat it together. It was quite tasty. I will have to make it for you all when I get back. It seems like it would be a hit in America. It was also pretty spicy. Like nearly hiccup spicy. I have had a few hiccup fits in Korea from spiciness. But it didn't happen that time. 

This week. 

I learned some powerful lessons of the power of the Book of Mormon. We have an investigator that we have been having a kind of rough time with because of his unusual thoughts. Ha. And we have been talking a lot about certain things like the law being fulfilled by Jesus. And whether or not we need to keep the commandments or need to be baptized. Just kinda unusual things like that. But this week I stumbled across things in the Book of Mormon. They were just so clear. And so perfect for this investigator. Like it was written expressly to solve his concern. And it just went so smooth as we shared it. It just fixed that concern way quicker and better than anything we had ever tried to say to him. God knows us. He knows our problems. And He has provided a way to solve them. To heal our souls, our hearts, and even our thoughts. His influence is deeper than we think. 

Anyways. I love you all. Keep me in your prayers. 

Renfroe Elder. 

Hello!!! (10 November 2014)

Today is my birthday. And I have eaten a lot of chips. Ha. I got all 10 bags of chips! They are delicious. Korea just doesn't make good chips. :( 

This week was really crazy and it was my companion's turn to get sick, I guess. Haha. This weekend we were in the house a lot. And we had trainings and stuff that we had to do and prepare, so that took a lot of time. But it was really good. I think our training went really well. 

My favorite thing that we talked about was daily repentance for the Holy Ghost to remain in our lives. We have to be changing and yielding to the Holy Ghost to be able to continually feel it. We can't just ignore it and expect it to help us. We must be changed into who God wants us to be. I did a cool little chemistry trick at our zone meeting because we were talking about conversion. I filled a big bottle with ethanol and then shook it around and lit it on fire right after opening it. It just makes a flame for a little while. But it is alcohol, so it burns at a really low temperature. Anyways. Because we were talking about conversion. It is interesting that conversion is a real change. From one thing to another. Alcohol to water. It has certain ingredients. It takes time and energy and certain pushes and pulls. 

But the Spirit works the same way for us. It is changing us. Everyday there are things to do and ways to become. We just have to listen and act and rely on Him. 

I love you all! I am going to a zoo today. I have already been there before. But whatevs. It is Korea!

Keep me in your prayers!

Elder Renfroe
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Hello! (3 November 2014)

I wasn't able to write a big email yesterday because of a big meeting we have every month with all of the Zone Leaders. It was a really good meeting, but our P-day gets moved to Tuesday!
Anyways. Things are going well. I didn't lick any chicken this week, so no food poisoning anymore. But it is starting to get pretty chilly! At nights. Daytime is fine. Ha. 
Koreans are still Korean and they still speak Korean. I am really comfortable with Korean now. I don't worry about it really ever. But I still learn lots and have plenty to learn, of course. 
We have really hard investigators! They have a lot of potential, they just are people that will probably take a lot of time or people with complicated problems. But they really aren't that complicated, they are just missing a really basic principle or something. 
I don't know what else to write about... I am sure there was something interesting... It just all is the same to me at this point. Ha. 
I learn Chinese for an hour a day. I said that last week right? It is fun. Hahaha. 
This month we are focusing on the role of the Spirit in conversion. That is what we learned about at the meeting yesterday. It was really good. Something that stood out to me as I was thinking about our investigators is how concrete the promise is from Heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost. Through the Holy Ghost we may know the truth of all things. It is not that we can have an idea about the truth or be 50% on it or think we know something. But it is a concrete knowledge. God can impress truths upon the soul in such a way that we know. It isn't based on a word in a scripture or the reasoning of a certain preacher or idea, but it is a knowledge only God can give and no one can take away. It takes faith and trust, but He teaches us so that we know. Not so that we think. It isn't guesswork. 
I love you all! Keep me in your prayers!!
Elder Renfroe

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Hello! (26 October 2014)

Howdy, Me Fellers.

Sorry I got on so late today. We had a lunch with some Japanese people. Hahaha. I ate many things. Ha. But I also am recovering from food poisoning. I had the worst 6 hours of my life 2 days ago in the middle of the night. Don't worry. I am fine now, but I will tell you about it. 

It started around 10PM with some abdominal pain. It felt like a strong pressure and it would just pass. But it never did. And then I just threw up 8 times and laid coiled over in the bathroom for 6 hours. It was the worst pain I have ever felt. But I guess it makes a good story. I thought I was going to die. But don't worry. I was in contact with my mission president who is a general surgeon the whole time. So I wasn't actually going to die. But I was out for a while after that. That was my near death experience for the mission. I hope it is the last. I think it was my own fault. I think I got infected while cooking. I should stop licking the chicken before I cook it.

Also. I just reapplied to college. It made me so trunky! I just love college so much. And they have a new degree at UT that I am 77% done with. But it is actually more than that. I could be done in like 18 credit hours, I think. What the heck! But it will take longer depending on the minor I take. Anyways. I can deal with that later. 

What else happened this week? Our investigators are kinda butts lately. Hahaha. But they are fine at the same time. I just have to be patient. Also, I started learning Chinese because we have lots of Chinese people we are teaching and meet lots of Chinese people all the time. It is so hard. But Korean is still harder! Hahaha.

Lately I have been thinking about reality. And how written records and things in the past can seem less real sometimes. But they are just as real as the things happening in this current exact moment. The prophets lived and Christ lived. His suffering was real no matter how much we don't feel it in the current moment. But we can feel it. And that is the job of the Holy Ghost and our experiences. 

I love you all! Keep me in your prayers! 

Renfroe Jangno
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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Hello, Me Lovebuns. (19 October 2014)

Hello from Hangook. That is Korea in Korean. Ha.

This week was great. I got a new companion. His name is Elder Jared Thompson. He doesn't have a home because he has moved a lot in his life. But his family lives in Florida right now. He is pretty fun. We are having a good time. He is both slightly skinnier and taller than me. Ha. 

Apparently you can't wear green hats in China. It means your wife will have an affair. Ha. We learned that from our Chinese friend. Speaking of China, we had a miracle this week. We found a new investigator who has a baptismal date already. He is really great. He is from China and has always wanted to have a religion, but didn't really know where to start because there are so many. 

We taught lots of lessons this week. And had lots of fun. The weather is great and the leaves are starting to change colors! Yellow ginko leaves everywhere!

We had the primary program at church on Sunday. It was really cute. Little Korean kids. Hahaha. The cutest part was these three American kids in our ward that can speak Korean. When they spoke everyone was just like woooooooooo!!!!! It was adorable. They are so good at Korean. One of them is like 3. Hahaha. 

I have really been thinking about the Gift of the Spirit lately. It is such a gift! We are blessed so much by it. We can have the presence of God with us to confirm truths to our soul on a personal level. It is merely dependent upon our asking and our obedience. He is there. 

Anyways! I love you! Keep Praying for me. I pray for you everyday! 

Elder Renfroe
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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Hello! (12 October 2014)

This week was pretty crazy! But it was pretty good as well. 
Our investigator didn't get baptized yet. But I still think he will. He sent us a text that said "I want to be baptized."  But his back hurts a lot and he is having a really hard time right now, so It didn't work out this weekend. But hopefully sometime soon. 
We watched conference this last weekend and we had a little breakfast beforehand on Saturday morning. It was really good. I made a French toast casseroly thing and biscuits and sausage gravy, and lots of other stuff. An American guy in our ward provided many of the ingredients, but we prepared it all. It felt like America! Hahaha. 
Also, another one of our investigators took us out for dinner. It was really nice and filling. He bought us so much food! He is a really nice guy. His wife has passed away and his only daughter lives in France married to a Frenchman. We found out all of this at dinner. Ha. But he seems to be progressing very well, and has made some really good friends in the ward. 
My companion is being transferred and I am getting someone I already know and actually is already in the same area as me, he is just going to be my companion now. Ha. Anyways. His name is Elder Thompson. He is slightly taller than me, or the same height if I stand up correctly. Not sure which. Ha. And skinnier than me. These are his last two transfers, so if I am with him until he goes home, I will have 2 transfers left at that point. Ha. I have 24 weeks left! 
This morning I studied a few things, but something that stood out to me was a scripture in Matthew 11:28-30. Most people know it. But it gives instruction on how to find rest from our labors. Relief to those that are are heavy laden. I definitely feel that way sometimes. But His invitation is to take His yoke upon us. Take upon us His purposes and work with Him. I don't imagine that we would pull His yoke alone. But that He would be there with us. And we learn of Him. As we step side by side with the Savior and do what He would do. That is how we find rest from our labors and relieve our heavy burdens. We learn of Him. 
But anyways. I love you all! Keep me in your prayers!
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Monday, October 6, 2014

Weeeeeeeeeek a lot. (5 October 2014)

Hello! This week was hectic! I hear that is what the cool kids are saying nowadays. Instead of saying crazy they say hectic. Is this true? Huh? 

We have three people with baptismal dates. One of them will hopefully get baptized this weekend. Maybe on Sunday after Conference. The other one is a funny Chinese man. Hahaha. He is kind of a pain. Ha. Very... Difficult. But who knows. The other one is this man that feels like all churches are fallen, so he is looking around. He is really good, and has been friend-shipped by the members a lot. So, that is great. 

We had a ward picnic that lasted for forever. Hahaha. And I talked to a guy that was from Israel. There is an Israeli Embassy here in Korea. He was super tall. And one of our members brought him to the picnic. It was him and his family. They kept speaking Hebrew to them. It was great! I should learn Hebrew. After I learn more German and Spanish and Japanese and Chinese. Hahaha. 

We had a guy that was meeting with us that was really good, but apparently we had the wrong phone number. So we weren't able to meet with him for like 3 weeks. But he called us randomly the other day. So that was our little miracle this week. I was pretty sad about that. But now we are back in contact. 

That has happened with 2 other people we were meeting with and they were actually really good too. But they just dropped off the face of the world. Sad. 

Anyways. One of the things I am definitely learning is perspective. There is so much more than just what we are doing right now. We are now in the temporary processes that we can't quite see the eternal end for. We are growing and developing under the hands of the Gardener. We can't see it now, but we can have faith in Him and trust Him. The very difficult things we are experiencing right now are the very things which help us to grow into who He wants us to be. 

Anyways. I love you! 

Keep me in your prayers!

Hello! (28 September 2014)

Sorry I didn't get to write anything last week! I didn't have much time and our email times have been really weird lately. Today I had to email really late because of a leadership meeting.
This week was kind of a hard week. But we got through it. We are still meeting with some good people and it has been good. 

We had a really good meeting today. We are focusing on the gospel of Jesus Christ this month. But specifically on enduring to the end. We talked about seeing the end from the beginning. It is a really interesting concept. And about feeling successful even if we don't see results. The medical advisor missionaries came and visited us from Tokyo. One of the sister's shared her conversion story. She met missionaries when she was 14. Before she met them for the first time, she remembers seeing the missionaries on the street before they entered her neighborhood and everyone hiding and acting like they weren't home. She would hide under the bed and in the closet or whatever. But one time she was home alone. And without even thinking, she went to the door. And she saw it was the missionaries. She paused in fear. Hahaha. They saw her and now she felt like she had to answer the door. Anyways she let them in and they taught her about the restoration of the church. She felt it was true and was excited to learn more. They agreed to meet again. But when her parents got home, she was all excited to tell them about the wonderful things she had learned. Her parents said... I hope you didn't invite them back. She lied and said she didn't. Fearing her parents would get upset. Anyways those missionaries did come back, but they weren't home. She never saw those missionaries again. She only met them for those 15 minutes. Doesn't remember their faces or names. They know nothing about what has happened in her life, that she was baptized 5 years later after asking her parents 5 times. But the point is this. We never know the end from the beginning. And we won't be able to. The important thing is not the results that we see. But simply the good that is done. 

We met a man that believes he is the Emperor of America. He is cray cray. He said he is the blood father of all LDS missionaries. He also wrote an epistle to our church saying that he wants to retranslate the Korean Bible and is planning to establish our church in North Korea. 

I also got spit on this week while I was running in the morning. But it was an accident. Ha. 

I met a Swiss German dude who is pretty sick. A Norwegian guy. A guy from the United Arab Eremites. I meet so many Muslims. They are such good people! And I also meet lots of Koreans. 

Anyways! I love you all! Keep me in your prayers! 

Elder Renfroe

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Random Indian man (14 September 2014)

Hello, me lovelies. 
This week was an interesting one. Hahaha.
Yesterday it ended with a really random errand. Since we live here where the Temple is, sometimes we get called on really random errands. And there is a foreigner hospital here, so lots of people come around here. Missionaries from Russia who don't know where they are going sometimes need our help, or just other random stuff. But there was a man from India this week. He is in Korea for work, but doesn't have a visa yet, so is going back to India this week, but he wanted to see the Temple before he left. Anyways, we had to escort him from the subway station and stuff because he has no idea where he was. And then we waited for him at the Temple and stuff and just helped him around. Because he was literally seeing a Temple for the first time in his life. He was so excited. It was very cute. 
We also had a very random occurrence of a man just coming up to us on the street. He was completely sober and wasn't faking at all. But he said that he was going to have surgery this next week and thinks that he might die. He said it was heart surgery. He was literally about to cry on the street. I saw the tears welling up. We were able to comfort him a little bit, but he was pretty worked up. He just told us his name and asked us to pray for him. He doesn't have a cell phone right now. I don't know. It was kinda weird and it seemed like he could be faking just because of the situation, but I didn't actually sense any of that. He seemed sincere. Maybe we can meet after his surgery. It was honestly very humbling. But we can know that all things will be okay through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Even if it may not turn out the way we want. 
Anyways. I don't have a whole lot of time this week! 
 I love you all! Keep me in your prayers.
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Monday, September 8, 2014

CHOOOOSUCKKK!!! (7 September 2014)

It is currently Choosuck! Hahahaha. 추석. Asian Thanksgiving. The fifteenth day of the eighth month of the Lunar calender. So, no one is in Seoul right now! They all go to their grandmas' houses basically. 

We had a Conference for the holiday a few days ago. Last Saturday. It was really good. Our mission president's wife asked me to put together a musical number for right before she spoke. I put together an a cappella men's octet of "More Holiness Give Me." It was really fun to write and it came together very well. I just changed some of the chords and made it more interesting. I need to copyright it. Hahaha. My original arrangement! I am currently the only one in the world with possession of it. 

I ate some serious Sushi this week. In America there is more rice than raw fish. But this was way more raw fish than rice. Some of it was really good, but some of it was not. One had the fish skin on it and had to be chewed for quite some time before I was able to down it. 

We are focusing on prayer this month as a mission. I think it can really help me. And help the people we are teaching of course. 
The thing that stood out to me the most is gratitude. It is such an important part of our prayers. I would say that it is the real reason that we pray. We of course petition our Heavenly Father for blessings, but prayer is not meant to change His will, but to change ours. Gratitude is the changing element. If we ever wish to feel closer to Him, we simply have to be grateful. His love never changes, and its evidence is always found in our lives, no matter what. Gratitude is the only way that the Gospel will ever change us. Gratitude is the reason faith saves us. Because gratitude is the principle upon which our actions change. Learning of Jesus Christ engenders gratitude, which changes us. And align with His will. 

Anyways! I love you all! 
I am going to try to be more grateful!
Keep me in your prayers!

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Helllllloooo (31 August 2014)

Hello, my love buckets. 

I was attacked by a Korean man. Hahaha. Not really. But. There is a dude who is huge but short little Korean man. And apparently he is a chiropractor... I don't really trust it. But that is what the word on the street was. Anyways. He came to our church, and actually has been coming to our church off and on for about 15 years. He is very nice. He was feeling all the missionaries' backs and telling them how out of place they were. He felt me and was just freaking out about it and said he needed to fix it. So he made me lay down and he did many weird things to me. Ha. I can not explain all of them. I mostly just feel bruised, though. On me bum. But I am fine. Don't worry. Hahahaha. I won't let him do that again. He kept telling me my butt was too big and he couldn't find what he was supposed to find to massage. Everyone was just laughing.... There are pictures somewhere, too....

We have yet another Chinese investigator. He has been in Korea for 5 years, so he speaks really well. He is really great!  

It was a pretty good week. I have been reading and studying as much as I can in my free time. Sometimes, our hearts are just a little tired, or just not feeling the way they should. Or can. But I have been really thinking about how reliance on God is supposed to be the antidote. He promises to heal us. He promises to feed the hungry soul. And it is done through His word. We are not to live on bread alone, but every word which proceedeth out of the mouth of God. He is our manna. We have to rely on Him. Everyday is a new day and requires new sustenance, no different than the physical hungers which we experience everyday. I have seen that I serve with a greater joy and happiness. Because I know. Because things are reinforced in my mind. I understand my relationship with Him on a deeper level. 

Anyways. I love you all!!!! Keep me in your prayers. You are in mine. 

Elder Renfroe
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Countless number week (24 August 2014)

Hello, my people. 

I don't think anything unusually special happened this last week....

I met a guy who said he was a refugee from Mars and that Mormonism was a big hoax and lots of weird stuff. His sentences literally didn't make sense as a human being, so I took no offense. Hahaha. He was a big American dude. But whatever. 

We saw some other guy for the second time that was really rude when we met him the first time. But I was able to just smile and say hi. I like that. Not harboring bad feelings even though someone was really rude. It is freeing. 
Our investigator is like really ready for baptism. He just doesn't quite know it yet. Hahaha. But. We'll see. Maybe soon!!!!!! 

This week I have been thinking about prayer. A lot. It is something I really need to improve, so I have been focusing on it a lot lately. It is such a basic principle of the gospel. Prayer is a commandment. And a resource. We are literally communicating with our Heavenly Father. Do we really believe He is listening and caring? Those are the fundamental keys to being able to pray effectively. Something I have noticed that has made my prayers more effective lately is just being frank with the Lord with my feelings. There is no need to hide them or beat around the bush. We can tell Him everything and He expects us to share freely with Him the things that are in our heart. The identity of Heavenly Father is the single most important doctrine on the earth. It leads to everything else. Without understanding who He is, His existence really has no meaning to us. 

I made chicken tikka masala the other day. It was darn delicious. Cocaine. Can I compare food to drugs? Is that ok? Anyways. My whole house eats really well because I cook. Ha. We are making dinner for a member next Sunday. It will be so fun! 

We have so many languages going on in our ward. I have to translate all the time. We had Japanese people. And I had to translate for some Russians yesterday in sacrament. 

Anyways. I love you all! Keep me in your prayers. I will keep you in my Korean prayers. :P

Renfroe Elder.
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Monday, August 18, 2014

Hello! (17 August 2014)

I am sending this email really late... You should all be sleeping, unless one of you has decided to move to the Far East or another part of the world. 

Right now as I type, everything is being replayed in my mind in a British accent. We just got done meeting with our English friend. Haha. Our ward mission leader taught us a very interesting term to call someone who is Korean, but grew up in another country, so isn't really Korean. Banana. Hahaha. White on the inside, but yellow on the outside. I can say this because I am simply repeating what he said verbatim. Not my words, but the words of a Korean. Haha.

Anyways. This week. We taught lots of lessons. Lots of them. And we didn't have a whole lot of time to proselyte because of it, but we still managed to meet new people. It is going really well, honestly. 

One of the people we are meeting with might get baptized this week. At least he told a member that he was going to get baptized this week. So that is a really good sign. He really loves the church and everything we have taught him. He definitely feels as though there is nothing wrong with it, but he has been lacking that sort of sureness that it is really God's restored church. So, we have been working with him on that, helping him to feel the spirit more. He is quite spiritually mature and understands things really well. He seemed to have a really good time at church on Sunday, and told me that he really felt something in one of the talks. So, I think he is beginning to gain his own testimony. I am actually glad that he has been careful with the decision and that he continues to be. It shows that he understands its gravity and meaning. That it isn't something that anyone should do just because, but he should be sure. Anyways. He is a really good guy. 

I met someone from Austin in Korea! Haha. He got married to a Korean and now lives in Korea. His name is Noah Pierce. We had lots of delicious food together and it was really fun. His wife is Korean, obviously. And it is funny to see Koreans that speak English like Americans. Haha. It is pretty weird. I just am not used to it. Haha. But it was great, and I was reminded of how the gospel can really solve a lot of normal, everyday, and common problems that go on in people's lives. Just things they need, or want, and really desire in really deep parts of their hearts. That God is willing to grant those things to us and has made them clear to us through the restoration of His gospel and Church. 

The British accent has disappeared. Sometimes a Texan accent comes out. 

Anyways. I love you all. Tomorrow, we are going to the Temple. That is why I am writing so late. Today was not P-day! Ha.

Keep me in your prayers.

Elder Renfroe

Helllo! (10 August 2014)

It rained a lot yesterday. Drenchedness abounded. Hahaha. The other Elders in my house got the umbrella completely destroyed in the wind. It was great!
The weather should be good in a month... But until then... Hahahaha.
I make delicious Korean food. Hahaha. I can still brag about that.
One of our investigators is English. But he is Korean. But he is also English. He is really cool. Basically he has lived in Korea for a collective 5 years of his life and lived in England for 20. So yeah. He is an Englishman with an accent and all but looks like a Korean. Apparently he can't handle spicy things either. I am more Korean than him. But he is great.
I don't have a whole lot of time today! But I love you all. All of you. Hahahaha.
I like studying about fear lately. It is the opposite of faith. So if we have faith, we shouldn't have any fear, right? So if we love Him and trust Him, the fear goes away, right? Haha. I get to practice it all day. Some people are scary. Especially foreigners! I am so bold to Koreans. But I get scared out of my mind talking to foreigners. They are mean here! Hahaha. There are foreigners all over the place here. All over! So I have to talk to them now. I am relearning English because of it. Ha.
I have no time!!!!!!!
Ok bye!!
 Love you all
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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Hello! (3 August 2014)

Hi peeps.
Korea is rainy and hot. Death. One day it literally rained while the sun was out. Just bright hot and water pouring all over us. It was great.... Hahaha. Just kidding. I have been drinking so much water lately. So much!!!!!!
We found lots of new people this week. And have been teaching a lot, really. It is great. One new investigator has had a really hard life and lost his faith in God because of it. But he seems really good and has a lot of potential.
We have two Chinese investigators. Chinese people love the Plan of Salvation. Haha. And we have a Sister serving here from Taiwan, so we can teach together. The Gospel is a lot more powerful when taught in your native tongue.
I thought a lot about fruits this week. Ha. Specifically the fruit in the first couple chapters of the Book of  Mormon. The fruit of the Tree of  Life. Most desirable above all other fruits. That made me think. There is a fruit, a fruit of the Gospel, a fruit of the truths of this Gospel that guides our actions and leads to happiness. But there are other fruits. If there weren't any other fruits or options, it couldn't have been described as the most desirable, right? The fruit we choose to eat are the decisions we choose to make. There is the fruit of dabbling in immorality, for breaking really any sort of commandment. They can be poisonous or damaging to our soul. But our choices become part of us. They nurture us, they hydrate us, or they effect us in negative ways.
I don't have a lot of time! I have to goooooooo!!!!! I love you all!
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Monday, July 28, 2014

Hello, America! (27 July 2014)

I am in the middle of Seoul. It is a party all the time. Lots of college students and lots of foreigners. 

It is really weird! Completely new world. There are two American families in our ward. We see American adults all the time, but my mind was blown to see all these American blonde-haired kids running around. The first thing that comes to mind when I talk to them is this.... "You are soo good at English!!" Hahaha. It is crazy how well children speak their languages. 

We went to an American family's house and had dinner the other day. I had ranch for the first time in maybe 16 months? Hidden Valley! Hahaha. It was ok. Ha. And pasta for the first time in awhile, too. It was delicious and all in English. It was great. Hahaha. 

We have an investigator with a date to get baptized. He is really great. He is really interested and is progressing well. He had surgery for a slipped disk awhile ago, so his back is hurting a lot, which makes meeting with us pretty hard right now. But he is great. 

We have another investigator from China who is wonderful as well. He is the cutest thing on the planet. He reminds me of one of those monkeys with cymbals. Hahahaha. And the ward is just great. It seems like it will be really great to serve here. I am excited. 

It is really great to have the Temple here. I can just feel its power. We met a 20-year-old kid and walked with him to the Temple and spoke to him there for a while. I could just feel the power of the Restoration of the Gospel and the spirit of our message. It is just beautiful to have its presence. 

I have been studying the Book of Mormon a little more sequentially lately and have been loving it. It is wonderful how deeply personal the Spirit of the Lord can teach through words inspired of God. It is interesting how it is not the words, but the guiding influence of the spirit which takes our limited ability and expands it. Shows us things we couldn't have known otherwise. 

I love you all!! Keep me in your prayers!

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Howdy! (20 July 2014)

This was an interesting week. My goodness the humidity..... For some reason my body has decided to profusely sweat from the sides of my head. And the back. I am not sure what is going on. Haha. But that is how it goes. It really isn't that hot here. Around 30 degrees Celsius. But the air has been so thick and humid lately! Don't worry about me though. I drink lots of water.
I saw a little kid today who had a very interesting way of avoiding the heat with his family. He was probably like 7? I don't know but he was just walking down the side walk with his family without any pants. Or underwear. Just having a grand old time. Walking around like it's normal.
We started a new service activity. It will be really fun in the future. It is helping mentally disabled people who have full time jobs. Helping them do their work. It is really simple. And wonderful to be around them. They LOVE that we are foreigners that speak Korean. It blows their minds.
I also went to my second Korean wedding. It felt like a James Bond movie. It was really weird. Anyways. That's over. Haha
I am being transferred! I am going to Sinchon, where the Temple is. I am becoming a Zone Leader. That will be fun. I'll be sad to leave my current companion and everything, but it will be great to go to Sinchon. Right in the middle of downtown Seoul. It will be very different!
This week. I had a special little experience in Sacrament. I was bearing my testimony because I am leaving the area and going to another one. Sometimes, we can feel like robots as missionaries because we say a lot of the same things a lot. Sort of the Blanket statements that we use to start real conversations. Introducing ourselves. Well something I say all the time is... "We are sharing what we know to be true." Well as I was bearing my testimony, That sentence came out. And I felt a deep confirmation that I really do know these things are true and that is the reason I am here. It isn't because of some complicated truth I am trying to share with people, but because of a real and simple connecting and guiding influence of our Heavenly Father. That morning in Primary with all the little kids, we all sang "I am a Child of God." That simple truth, if understood properly, is the greatest knowledge God can give us, and is the purpose of our work.
Anyways, I love you all! Keep praying for me!
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Howdy from Korea (13 July 2014)

Korea is still Korea. I went bowling last week and got a 132. Is that good? I know literally nothing about bowling. Hahaha. I also made tacos. I have been wanting to make tacos forever. Mexican food is probably the thing I miss the most. Luckily I have Costco. I bought Pace salsa. But the only tortillas they have are wheat and taste nasty. I've tried them before. Anyways, so instead of  tortillas, I bought a Naan mix (Indian flat bread) and made Naan to use as the tortillas. They were the greatest tacos I have ever eaten in my life. I don't think I have ever made such weird noises while eating. That is something Koreans do. They are a little more vocal in the expression of how delicious something is. Hahaha. I have contracted the bug.
We had a pingpong tournament at the church and it was lots of fun. I am glad a played a decent amount of pingpong back in college at the Institute Building, so that I can actually hold my own a little bit. Haha. But we lost in the second round! But it was really close the whole time. Then there was a fundraiser for the youth right after. They made lots of food and you had to buy it all separately. We just made the members buy it for us. Hahaha. That is what we were told to do! Haha. I made 3 pans of banana bread for them to sell.
Anyways. This week was a really good week. They were some really good days. But it wasn't because we found some cool person or lots of people accepted us and wanted to learn more. It was simply because we talked to the most people I have yet to talk to as a missionary in a week. It was really great. But there is still a lot of room for improvement. I found strength in faith. I have thought about it a lot. What is the thing that I need to learn that will transform me into who the Lord wants me to be? What understanding do I need to have that will move me and motivate me to be what I really can be. That is the only way behavior changes, it is the acknowledgement of some true information that most effectively changes behavior. That is the power of faith. It is acceptance of real truths and is meant to change our behavior. To change who we are. It is the acknowledgement of the sun, that moves us to put on the sunscreen. The coming of rain that moves us to use an umbrella. Faith works on the same principles. The question is simple. Is He there? Does He care about me? Is He leading me? Does He have a work for me to do? God will answer these questions. He desires to answer these questions for each of us personally.
We have to learn to develop these simple things as missionaries. We have to learn the truths that allow us to talk to every person and give everything to the Lord. To walk on hot streets for 8 hours a day and talk to whoever. But these same principles we are trying to help everyone else learn as well. To come closer to our Savior because He lives and has a way for us to live that gives us the greatest happiness.
Anyways! I love you all! Keep me in your prayers!
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Hellur (6 July 2014)

Happy Fourth of July! Yay America. I went to an American buffet. Except it is really just Korean fusion food. And a little bit of American food. What is American food, anyways? They certainly didn't have any burgers or fries... A Korean lady was at the buffet with her family. She brought her own kimchi! Crazy. Hahaha. I think that is the first time I have seen that. But if you need kimchi, you need kimchi. She had a little tupperware of it and they were all eating it. I guess she just brought it in her purse.
Another middle-aged lady story: There is a department store in our area. A really huge one. I guess some special thing was going on and all the employees were wearing the same shirt. But here's what the shirt was - It has a picture of a 6 pack so that it looks like you have a 6 pack, or the girl one just had a lady stomach... Anyways. Not important. Funny thing. This middle-aged chubby Korean lady employee was wearing the 6 pack one. It was terribly funny. I laughed for a long time.
I love that I can speak Korean for the most part now. I can find things funny and express my thoughts. It is glorious. Ha.
Anyways. Sometimes things are hard. And we really would rather do other things. I think missionaries in Korea think about this a lot. Ha. But something that has helped me is to realize that there is no better way than what God wants for us. And therefore there is no other way. Pain and suffering and hardships lead to the character that God wants us to cultivate. If we trust Him, we won't complain. If we know how much He loves us, we can accept the hardness and see it as the opportunity it really is. We can start over every second. It is as simple as a change of heart.
Anyways! I love you all! Send me your prayers!
Elder Renfroe
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Monday, June 30, 2014

Hellur (29 June 2014)

Hello, World.
I am still in Korea. Ha.
This week was pretty good until I needed a head transplant. Hahaha. I have been sick the past three days. I think when I catch one disease I get 3 together. Ha. But I am getting better. I think. Don't worry about me!
This week.. Oh. I remembered a story I wanted to tell you.
So.. People think that missionaries are all great. But sometimes there are just ones that are a little weird. That just don't have many social skills. They may literally be autistic. Well, we have one in my district. He is very sweet, but not really that functional about certain things. Anyways. He bore his testimony in sacrament one time in really broken Korean. A few weeks before, one of the recent converts got baptized. Well, after this the convert said that one of the crucial moments in her conversion was this testimony. That she felt the spirit very strongly and came to know that these things were true. It really testified to me of how we may feel incapable, other people may even feel incapable, but the Lord can still use us. We can still be His tools. He is the best at using imperfect tools. He has never had anything better to work with.
Anyways! One of our investigators committed to baptism this week. Hahaha. But he hasn't yet come to church. So we have to fix that first!

I'll keep it short this week! Stay tuned for next week! I love you all!
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Rainy week (22 June 2014)

This week was great!

It began with a random guy we met on the street. He said that he gave up going to church because he didn't know what was right. That is was too hard to know for himself which church is true. We told him the story of Joseph Smith and how he too was confused and felt that there was no way to know for himself except to gain the knowledge directly from God. When we told him about Joseph Smith, he said "someone like me!" We then went to the church and have met him twice now. He is really great! Miracle! 

After that... I ate raw beef. It was delicious.  

I think we live in the loudest neighborhood in Seoul. And because it is Korea, we don't have air conditioning. Which means we have to keep the windows open, which means it is even louder! Haha. So. This is how things work in Korea. Outside of convenient stores... Middle aged men tend to congregate as they drink alcohol. There is one of these right outside of our apartment. There is also a preschool right below us filled with 3-year-olds that scream a lot. Especially during singing hour. And there is a method of advertising quite common in Korea that I don't think exists in America. Trucks that sell stuff. Trucks run around neighborhoods with vegetables and stuff in the back. But they have a speaker on top of the truck to advertise what they are selling. They drive really slowly and just repeat the same thing over and over. It is so peaceful. Hahaha. When I go back to America, I am going to live in a forest. 

I had steak and shrimp marinated in coconut milk at a rich member's house. It was glorious. 

It also has rained a lot this week! Thunder and lightning all over the place! 

This week, I have been reminded of some new/old things. The importance and changeability of our hearts. Our hearts are the measure of who we are. That sometimes is a very scary thing. Because they can be so unwilling and hard sometimes. But, ultimately, they can change and we can yield them back unto Heavenly Father. We can choose to lean on Him, we can choose to change. And it begins with and also ends with our hearts. That is what he wants from us. And it is ultimately the only thing we can give Him. Our heart. Our will. 

Anyways! I love you all! Keep me in your prayers! 

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