Well… Hello There, Family!
I have some good news to tell you! Robert, or Luo Jun as he’s known in China, was baptized this Saturday, and confirmed at church yesterday! It has been amazing to watch him progress. Just as the great dragon warrior, Po the Panda, started out at level zero of kung fu, so did Robert with knowledge of God! But his enthusiasm and love of learning is the same! I especially love hearing him pray at the end of each of our meetings with him. Though his English is very spotty, he kneels down each time and fervently thanks the Lord for the things we’ve taught him and tells Him that he feels it is true. Simple, but so powerful to me! Robert is a testimony to me that this is truly the Lord’s work, not mine. It was a small baptismal service, as not many were able to attend, (frustrating), but when Sister Foster gave her talk, she told him that the room was truly filled with people who loved and cared about him including his many ancestors who were excited and waiting for him!
Hahaha, I am especially pleased to hear that Lord of the Rings has not lost it’s place in the Packer home with my absence! If you’re having a hard time finding the precious gospel truths embodied in this tale of tales, I’ll give you a few that I like that might help:
– The parallel between Aragorn and us. Throughout the three LotR movies, Aragorn struggles with his identity as the true heir of the throne of Gondor, and at last finds that they cannot defeat the vast armies of Sauron without him taking his rightful place as King and rallying the mystical army of the dead in the mountains. If we do not accept our true identity as children of God, and therefore heirs of His kingdom, we cannot triumph over the concourses of evil that lay seige on our lives everyday.
– Just a hint for this one. Liken the hastening of the work to the charge of the cavalry in the Battle of Helm’s Deep in LotR Two Towers, or alternatively, the charge of the Riders of Rohan at Minas Tirith in Return of the King.
Alright, I’m done being a geek. For now. And now I will share a few funny mistakes that I have made in the past week or so.
We were walking back from the supermarket where we had just purchased Elder Hou a new pillow. I was holding it for some reason, and was dared to somehow incorporate it into “finding” along the way. I resolved to stop the approaching girl with a question relating to pillows and somehow tie it into the gospel. As we drew closer, I frantically tried to think of a good question that had to do with a pillow. I thought of none. I bravely thrust my pillow out for her to see and out stumbled, “My friend and I just got a new pillow! Where’s the best place to buy new sheets!?” Confused, she answered that she had no idea. I can’t remember what else I asked her,
but it eventually led to me not-so-casually ending the conversation with, “thanks anyways, I’m gonna head this way now, have a good day.” Elder Hou was no flipping help at all throughout the whole awkward conversation. He seemed to be coughing or choking on something the whole time, though it sounded suspiciously like laughter. Not one of my finer moments.
It sounds like things are starting to get pretty busy and hectic with the end of the school year closing in! Jessica,don’t stress with school. Yes, make sure you get all you’re assignments done, and yes, studying must be done, but if it comes to exam time and your brain is running on overdrive, you absolutely won’t perform your best. And that’s all I have to say about that.
Lastly, as per request, one thing that made me laugh out loud this week. The sisters asked us to come along with them to teach a guy who’d randomly been calling them and asked to meet with them. We went to the address, which was a mental facility at the hospital! We sat down and met with him. He actually seemed pretty normal. We asked why he was there, and he told us he just needed a place to stay that was off the street. The police were kind enough to take him here one night and arrange something for him. “It’s not a bad place,” he said, “free housing, free food. But they don’t let you leave or anything, which is a bit annoying.” As he kept talking… Yeah, he was crazy. He showed us all the Catholic prayer cards he’d collected, saying things like, “Look at this one, this is my best mate, Jesus!” or “I stole this one from the library when I was in prison.” It was like a baseball collection. The sisters’ faces were so funny when he said that!
I loves y’all and I look forward to writing you every week!
P.S. I want to see some pics of Sam playing lacrosse! Good job scoring that point, buddy! and also pictures of Mia playing volleyball! One thing I really miss from home is going to my brother’s and sister’s games.