Elder Braden Roberts

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Monday, August 25, 2014

One year down, One year to go.

Wow one year has come and gone and I am still doing the same thing... but I have gotten better at it and helped a lot more people than when I started!!  This week has been pretty amazing with lots of miracles and finding and teaching FAMILIES!!! We found 3 families this last week and they are awesome and super interested in learning more about this gospel!!! One family we met one on Monday.  They told us how they had been to our church before and loved the feeling they had while they were there but haven’t been for a long time and so they want to feel that again! Then they invited us to eat dinner with them tonight!! haha ya they are Golden! ;) Then we met with a second family. We only met with the mom because the dad was at work but she was super excited to learn and had so many questions about why there are so many Christian churches and stuff like that that we didn’t even get to teach the lesson but hopefully we can go back over when her husband is there and teach them both together! Then the third family was set up by a missionary in our district and it was only supposed to be a dad then he showed up and had his wife and son!!! So many miracles this week! We were constantly getting referrals from other missionaries and then it ended up being a family!

On Monday my companion also was trying to make himself get sick and decided to drink an old, kind of like Gatorade, but it is Taiwan’s sports drink. He left the bottle in our room for a couple days and Monday night we got home and he was really thirsty and grabbed that bottle, he got a huge mouth full of the drink when he realized it was full of mold..... haha all I heard was "uh oh I am going to be sick...." then he started to dry heave!!! haha he was in the bathroom for about ten minutes throwing up and so I think he got all of it out of his body! haha pretty funny.  The next day his throat was really sore from throwing up! haha We checked all of our bottles before we drink them now.

Wednesday during English proselyting we started talking to this guy that was going into an ice cream shop and when he came out he had three extra ice creams, one for each of us elders!! Things like this happened multiple times this week and it was awesome!!!  We should be getting a baptism this Saturday!!  She has an interview today at 2:30 and if she passes hopefully we can talk president into letting her get baptized this Saturday! Pray for her, she is awesome!!!

 Last night we had an awesome chance to go see Kuha'o, the blind kid from Hawaii that plays the piano, he has a Mormon message and it was super cool! It was at our church, he has been here in Taiwan for about a week just touring around doing shows and he just happened to come to our church building, it was cool watching him live! There were also a lot of people there from my old areas and they all came up to me and said hi and they said they missed me.... ha I didn’t think anyone would really remember me because I could barely talk to them and so I just sat there quiet most of the times when I saw them but there was one kid from Zuo Ying, my second area, that came up and talked to me before the show and told me thank you because when I met him he was super less active and then something I did while I was serving there in those two weeks helped him change and now he is getting ready for a mission!! It was so amazing to see the change in him and felt so good knowing that I helped him! I didn’t know it at the time but it helped him go from not wanting anything to do with the church to wanting to go on a mission and I thought I didn’t even do anything there! Just goes to show how you always need to be watching what you are doing and always be worthy of the spirit, I am pretty sure it wasn’t anything I said because I couldn’t really say much at that time but something I did really helped him and made him come back! Watch what you do this week because you never know who is watching and always be doing what is right, it will affect people that you didn’t even know were watching!!

I love you all and hope you have a great week!!! :) JUST ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE! :)

Love Elder Roberts

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

July 13, 2014

Wow this week has been pretty fun!! haha so much has happened! We are hopefully going to have a baptism this Saturday! It is an 11 year old boy. On Sunday we called his mom to see what time they wanted to do the baptism and she said she didn’t want to let him get baptized anymore because at church somebody said something to her and it made her mad and she felt like the ward wasn’t going to welcome him in.... but after talking to her for about 30 minutes she decided to ask the boy and then let us know. Well he said yes and is super excited for it so hopefully everything goes well and we will be able to baptize this stud!  Then our other baptism pushed it off one more week because he doesn’t feel quite ready and we weren’t able to finish teaching him all the lessons before the interview so next Saturday we will hopefully be able to get him into the water as well! He is super cool and we have taught him the commandments and he was willing to change, he is a stud!

This week we sat down with an investigator, he is the one that has been smoking 1 or 2 cigarettes a day and just won’t quit... so this week we let him have it ha we shared Mormon 5: 22-24. He just keeps making up excuses and won’t change! It is so hard because he knows A LOT about the gospel and knows that it is true but doesn't have the faith to quit and rely on God! He says he knows God can do anything but when it comes to him quitting smoking he says there is no way! So we told him that he is mocking god and he wouldn’t accept that but we just testified and told him that god can help him but he needs to believe and until then he is mocking god. Then he told us he doesn’t care about his salvation he just wants to have peace and happiness now and the telestial kingdom is good enough for him..... ha so frustrating. Oh well he will get what he deserves and only god can judge him.

So now what all of you what to hear about, the Hospital! haha so Thursday morning we woke up and did our normal exercise and stuff then came home and I wanted to put my initial on the lid because all the missionaries have the same bottle and I didn't want to lose it so I looked for a marker and I couldn’t find one then I saw my knife on my desk and figured that would do the job... haha well it did but it cut a little more than I was hoping for! Ha it slipped off the lid and in between the hand that was holding the bottle and cut my finger, I hurried and grabbed some tissues and covered it and went and got it taken care of. We wrapped it up and I showered and got ready for the day and we headed off to the hospital. On our way we stopped by some other elder’s apt. to give them some medicine because they were sick and then we went to the Hospital. We got there at about 9:30 and checked in and they sent us to a trauma doctor and we waited for about 20 minutes then called us back and they asked me what happened and I just said I cut my finger.... ha then they grab it and start ripping the band aid off... it hurt pretty bad then they tore the gauze off a little bit and it opened up my finger again and the doctor kind of jumped back in his chair and said " oh my..... That is deep you can’t be here. I can’t fix that! You need to go to the ER and get stitches! You probably cut a tendon or something..." ha well that’s not exactly what I wanted to here and now I am just pissed because they were ripping at my finger and now my mind is like oh great that’s a doctor and he was freaking out!!! haha so we get to the ER and they call me back and look at it then have me wait in the waiting room. then a doctor comes up to me and looks at it and starts poking at it with a Q-tip and then he opens it up and starts digging around in it. Mind you I am still standing in the waiting room and not numb..... haha I started to get a little light headed and sick and had to sit down! It was crazy they kept telling me to move it and it wouldn’t move at all then they would poke and tell me to move it and surprisingly it still wouldn’t move.... haha wow amazing but then they went and got another doctor and...... Same thing haha they would poke and pinch it and tell me to move it. Well I started to get a little frustrated from the pain and multiple doctors telling me to do the same thing that was not possible for me to do and on top of that do you know how frustrating it is to use like every muscle in your body just to move your finger and it still won’t move and then the doctor looks at you like you are stupid and then makes a fist and says " just do this' hmmmmmm haha they ended up telling me I needed surgery and would stay in the hospital for 2 or three days..... Ha ya right it’s my finger I am not staying in the hospital for a couple days because of my finger!!! They had me change my clothes and gave me a bed that was in the hall by the waiting room..... haha and I sat in the bed for about three hours until they came and talked to me and took me to a room. Then we did a lot of waiting and talking and all the nurses would come in and flirt with us.... ha we were by the desk to and so we could hear everything they would say and they kept talking about the shuai guy in the room and the would say but he is only 20.... haha kind of funny I don’t think they knew we could understand as much as we did :) while we were waiting the guy next to me pooped his pants so that was a pretty sweet surprise and air freshener.... haha then at 10 pm they finally came in and told me it was time haha Right before I was going in they started asking me all these questions and a member that came and stayed to help with communication said "well maybe if you are lucky they will circumcise you while they are at it, well you probably are already so never mind" then all of the nurses that are pulling my bed start to laugh.... haha so for the next ten minutes all of them joked about that... then I got taken into the room and ky is right it is cold in there!!! haha but I was in a room full of girls laughing at me and talking about me which was super weird!!! ha then one put some oxygen on my and told me are you ready to go to sleep. ha well the next thing I knew I was looking at my hand with this huge cast thing on it.... ha I came out of the recovery room at 1 in the morning and the first question Frank (the member) asks is how are you feeling down there.... haha at least they thought it was funny! :) we stayed there the night and left the next day at 2pm when I told them I was leaving all of the nurses started talking about who gets to help me change into my clothes.... haha luckily I was able to do it by myself :) such a good memory! Except now I can’t ride a bike for a month.... should be fun

I love all of you guys hope you have a great week! 

Love Elder Roberts

Sexy tan line and a thumbs up all the way from the Taiwan hospital.

July 20, 2014

Our little buddy was able to get baptized this week!! It was super cool and he was super happy, it is such a good feeling being able to help these people start their way to eternal life! Our buddy should be getting baptized this week as well! He passed his interview and is set up for Saturday morning! He will be the first person I have taught from the very beginning until the end so I am pretty excited for him!

Just to let all of you know in case you were wondering, I am still pretty cool..... haha I don’t know if you have noticed in the pictures my sleeves are rolled up a little bit and everyone would always tease me about showing off my guns but it was really because it isn’t as hot!! ha and is a lot more comfortable! But lately I have been noticing and guess what.... everyone is doing it now!! haha even the zone leaders started to do it!! haha so it made me feel pretty cool. Still being an example. haha 

Kind of a downer though I looked at my bike and from sitting outside at the hospital my bike grips melted..... haha it is too hot here!! :) But on the bright side I don’t have to worry about it for another couple weeks because I can’t ride it :) hahahahahahahaha.............. Speaking of that we have been walking a lot!! It is kind of fun but kind of sucks and takes forever to get anywhere! Last night we decided to contact to the church and about 2 hours later we made it.... ha we talked to some pretty awesome people on the way!

Awkward moment of the week, during English class we were talking about the plan of salvation for our spiritual share and a lady asked where her beautiful sister is, and she asked if she was the moon... ha we just answered and said we will get to that in a second haha then after class she came up to us and asked the same thing.... so we start explaining everything and after we went through everything again she said but what about the beautiful sister with blond hair.... haha so that sister missionary that Kaylee said I should marry when I get back with long blond hair, she was in my area and I guess the lady was asking where she went and said did she MOVE not is she the moon..... haha so that was kind of awkward but it is funny to think about now.

So this week was good! Lots of walking and it seemed to rain every day when we were about to go out so that was sweet :) haha but one day it started pouring rain and we got on the bus and the when we got off about ten minutes later the water was up to the bottom of the car doors parked on the side of the road.... it was crazy! So much rain the rain drops completely covered the road because it was coming down so fast and hard! There is a typhoon coming on Wednesday and Thursday so that should be fun to!! :)

Love you guy’s hope you guys have a great week and enjoy your fingers!!! You don't realize how important they are until you can’t really use one! :) 

Love Elder Roberts

August 4, 2014

Wow another week is already gone! Time is really flying now I feel like I am just waking up and it is time to head home and then I am waking up again it is a never ending cycle that has lots of surprises in-between! 

This week has been a pretty good week! We have seen a lot of miracles and my new companion is awesome! On Tuesday morning we were out walking the streets talking to people and we had been walking for about an hour when some ladies/girls yelled hello to us. haha so we went over and talked to them, they ended up inviting us in to their barber shop place and told us to sit down. We ended up staying there for about an hour and they fed us lunch and asked a lot of questions about the gospel and were super nice! We taught them how to pray and told them why we were here. They told us they were going to come to English class, they were super cool and nice! Then later in the week we met with the little kid we baptized and he has changed so much!! My companion kept telling me how baptism changes little kids and he has had some stinkers that have got baptized and after they are nice and really well behaved! Well I saw this happen with him! We sat down with him for about 45 min. and usually it is only like 10 minutes that we have his attention. For the whole 45 min. he sat reverently and listened to us and at least acted like he was paying attention! haha It was really awesome to see the change in him and I hope he can keep becoming better because he will be getting the priesthood in less than a year!

For some reason this week we have been getting a lot of compliments! haha I think it is because my companion is so shuai because I have never gotten this many compliments! First the girls invite us into their place and feed us food and ask us a billion questions, then we had a bunch of people self-contact us, one we were standing on the corner and this guy and girl pulled up and started off by saying wow you guys are so handsome.... haha kind of weird but Asians are weird so what can you do :) There was also a huge gas explosion right down the road from our apartment on Thursday night!!! The road is completely torn apart and like 26 people were killed! so ya it has been a pretty fun week and I haven't even told you the craziest part! :)

On Friday we had just finished planning and our phone rings and it is president..... uh oh haha no I thought he was just calling to see how my finger was and so I answered it and that is what he asked me but then he asked if elder Shelton was there and I said ya one sec but he told me just to put it on speaker.... then I knew something was going to happen.... he asked him if he was getting used to the area sense he had only been there like 5 days haha and then told me I was going to come up to the mission home for about a week with another elder that is sick and work around the office.... I just started laughing and was in shock! I thought I was staying there for sure because it is hard enough to learn an area in 6 weeks let alone 5 days! Then I asked when I was leaving and he says tomorrow morning..... ha so That night I got to pack all of my stuff and now I am in the mission home and have been here all weekend following the office elders around doing all the things that they don't want to do :) haha it has been pretty fun though and sister Blickenstaff has been making us food so that is pretty awesome! :) I am learning a lot though and it is pretty fun hanging out will all the people here in Taizhong! I also get to see the Legendary Elder Gish like every day because he is a zone leader up here! :) He is awesome and such a stud!

This week has been fun and interesting and I can't wait to see what the next week has in store! Love you guys and hope you have a great week!

~Love Elder Roberts

August 11, 2014

I want to start with a shout out to Karie and Mickie! Happy Birthday!!!! Hope you guys have a great day Love you lots!!!

Tuesday President called me in at about 11 and asked how long it takes to get back down to Gao Xiong and I said 3 hours. Then he asked if I could make it before ZTM that is at 1 haha I just looked at the clock and sister Blickenstaff and she was like of course not he still needs to pack!! haha then when we were leaving to ZTM he told me I would be going from ZTM to the train station so to bring my stuff... haha I still hadn’t packed so long story short I packed in 10 minutes and was out of there and now I am back in the area of feng shan. I had a  doctors appointment on Wednesday and got a splint for my finger and he said my finger is doing really good and I have a lot of movement for how I cut it and stuff so now I can ride my bike!!! :)

This week it has rained a lot!! The Last THREE days nonstop!! Almost haha but every time we were inside was when it would stop so it felt like it never stopped!! I didn’t think it was possible for it to rain this much but I guess it is! haha We had planned to go pull weeds at our WML's house and luckily it stopped raining for a little bit so we headed over there and started to pull weeds, about ten minutes into it we were soaked and it was pouring rain again but it was so much fun! We pulled weeds for about an hour in the rain and there was a grandma that sat under her porch cover and was just laughing at us the whole time.... haha it was a pretty sweet experience! :) 

We have some pretty cool investigators right now that should be getting baptized here in the next couple weeks! :) One is an older lady that we have been teaching for a while and she told us she is getting surgery so she needs to get baptized earlier!! So now we are just trying to teach her everything and make sure she understands it.  The other two is a mom and a daughter and the girl is so cute!! She is 9 and reminds me so much of Kaylee and is super smart! Most of the time she will explain stuff to her mom and start teaching her mom it is pretty funny! But It makes me miss Kaylee a lot!!! I love that girl and just want to give her a big hug!! 

I love you guys and hope you all have a great week!! 

Love Elder Roberts!

August 18, 2014

Wow another week has come and gone! I can't believe it has been almost a year! So crazy! This week I went on exchanges with a zone leader Elder Fiso and he is one year ahead of me on his mission, so that means today he left to go home!! It was super weird talking to him and seeing that the time is really going to come and it is super weird to think about!! So for now I am not going to! :) I am so happy to have this opportunity to learn and grow and it is kind of sad to think about it coming to an end and it being over, once this is over it is over haha once in a life time opportunity and it is already half way over, but I still have another half to take on so that is always good!

Today is move call but nothing to exciting happened, me and Elder Shelton are still staying together here in feng shan :) I got all of the packages this last week thank you so much for the candy!!! I think candy is like the best thing us missionaries can get!! haha today we are going to watch one of the movies you sent us! Thanks again! Ky thanks for the shirt that is pretty sweet! I got them on the same day so that worked out pretty sweet! I will write back to your letter today!

A couple days ago a sister thought it would be funny to test our patients.... haha they called us when we were on our way to a lesson and told us they needed their bikes in an hour and they wanted us to go get them from the hospital for them... haha well we tried calling our lesson but realized we didn’t have his number so we went to find where he lived and it was out of our area... so we called the sisters and they said it is ok just get them when we can. We went to the lesson and it went good kind of, ha, but I will talk about it in a second. After the lesson we took our bikes to the church then rode the bus to the Hospital so we could just ride their bikes home.... well we get to the Hospital and walk around for a little bit and can’t find the bikes so we ended up calling them and they laugh then say "ooops we needed our bikes so we called the other elders to go get them and it just slipped our mind to call you back.... sorry" ha then they told us there was still one bike there so if we could walk that one back that would be great.... so we got to walk the bike from the hospital to the church and it took like 20 minutes... super fun :) haha but I am still alive and got to do service for them so overall I guess it wasn’t to bad ;)

Now the lesson was with a blind guy, it was super different but I think he was faking that he was blind.... He would look around and look at stuff then he would make eye contact with us when he would talk to us and his eyes looked normal so I was really confused.... haha he definitely didn't act like a blind guy and he was wearing seeing glasses.... but it was a pretty good lesson he has different views on things and also thinks the commandments are too restrictive but he thinks we are good. We just shared our testimonies and talked with him for a while and I think he felt the spirit and we helped him! That is the best thing about a mission. You get to spend your whole day just trying to help people and bring them a happiness!

This week we got some sweet haircuts!! haha probably the most Taiwanese hair cut I have ever had, but I guess that is what you get when you tell them to just make you shuai haha oh well it is a cool experience! :) I will send pictures :)

I hope you all have a great week and stay happy! Love you

Some things I have learned in Taiwan:
-Don’t underestimate an Asian when it comes to them using their scooter as a pickup truck! :) Or as anything for that matter! They use them to mow fields here... haha
-Don’t worry about things you can’t control!
-The less you focus on time going fast the faster it goes!
-There are A LOT of crazy people in Taiwan!
-and you never fully enjoy what you have until you don't have it any more!

I want everyone to focus on what really matters this week! Love you

Love Elder Roberts

Hair cut Taiwan style
Ice cream