hello family and friends!
haha, i love how i get on to read all the emails, and when i go back to my inbox to read the next one, theres a new one at the top, and then that happens twice. makes my day. :D ok, well i tried to read fast so that i could write in a bit more detail. this week was so good. not in numbers, just in awesomeness. Australia day was on wednesday- something like the 4th of july, except not. we were meant to proselyte that day, which we did... in Tin Can Bay. which is kinda a resort town, but we have a few members that live there, and we did some tracting, and then had a lunch-dinner party thing with some members of the ward- i played cricket for the first time... its harder than it looks, but i thought it was still just as boring as it looks... probably wont play again... unless yous all want to learn... ya. but it was fun anyway cause we just mocked each other the whole time, and it was fun. then on thursday, we had interviews and training. my interview with president was short. i only had a few questions for him, and he got all the information about the area from Elder Itaea. so it was quick, in and out. and i also had a temple recommend interview after all the other interviews were done. so i have another one. but its only good until june or something like that. so dad, book me in for another temple recommend interview soon after i get home! :D anyway, the training was REALLY good. the zone leaders gave a mean training. i had the opportunity to do some real plays with some newer missionaries, and was very entertained both by their greeness and by their amazement at how elder Itaea and I teach... its really nothing special, we just applied what we were taught like 2 minutes before that. i kinda like being an "old" missionary. except for the fact that everyone tends to remind me how close i am to going home... not helpful when i'm trying to focus everything on the work. but hey, whatever, i gave LOTS of old fogie missionaries crap for going home soon, so its about time that i copped it. hmm... oh, we had a lesson with cameron and Naomi this week. it was good... there was a serious lack to question asking though, and therefore a lack of the spirit... it was sad... i left non-plussed. however, they came to church yesterday, and seemed to enjoy it- however, i will NEVER sit in the back of the chapel with an investigator again. so much noise. anyway. we did heaps of tracting this week, and also did some service, helping some recent converts move house. it was good, i havent met them before and they're really cool. um... what else. went to poached baptism yesterday.... lady living in my area, being taught by the zone leaders... grr... oh well, she had really good fellowship down there, and is down there more often than up here... but they asked us to come so that we could introduce ourselves to her, and get her to get confirmed in Gympie ward next week... she straight up said no, but we are going to see her tomorrow. so hopefully we'll be able to convince her. so that was pretty much all the missionary stuff that happened this week. we went out to tin can bay again this morning to feed the dolphins... unfortunately you have to get in the water to do it, so we just ended up taking pictures of other people feeding them, which was still good, i got some good ones.
the best thing, is that we started doing all of our follow-up visits/calls yesterday, and we have like a bajillion lessons set for the coming week. hopefully we'll be able to make some significant numeric progress. i still have 4 baptisms to go with almost exactly 2 months to go. i'll get them. i know i will. got some REALLY good potentials this week. anyway, i am so happy to be here! i have been blessed with the spirit so abundantly this week! Dad, its true what you say- on the mission God had you over the fire, and does all the pounding there, and the sharpening and honing come later. but i love it here. i love everything i have learned. i KNOW the church is true. i KNOW the book of mormon is true. no doubts. the priesthood of God is on the earth, and the members of this church are the sole possesors of it. we have all the keys needed for salvation. no other church can claim that. this is it. and guess how i know it? not because i've been "indoctrinated" from childhood, not because mum and dad have testimonies, not even because i'm a missonary. its because the holy ghost whispered to me that this is true, and I do NOT have to rely on ANY earthly evidences whether it be man's word or text to know, that what i teach is true, and that it brings the only true and lasting joy you can have. i love it. :D
ok, well, i'm out of time. i love you all so much!
Elder Tayler Christensen
ps- ran into some JW's the other day- had a good conversation with them about their "literal" translation of the bible as opposed to our "loose" translation of the bible... then i showed them in their bible the word "marshmallow" (job 6:6- compare it, its funny) and was then very entertained as they tried to explain that one, especially when they concluded that it must be some type of plant. :D ended the conversation as quick as i could after that. anyway. just thought it was funny.