Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Hardest week so far.....

Hey mum!!!! Yeah I got the bag and I'm wearing it now actually. Its real sweet everyone seems to like it. The hard drive I can’t use as well because the computers are restricted and you can't do much with them.. but in the field they will be really useful :)
This Week was probably the hardest week by far. It was a massive roller coaster and it finally resolved beautifully because through all the lows and hard times, I came out a better man, rededicating myself to the Lord through sincere prayer, and, because it was truly sincere, it really helped. So If any of our family are struggling at home, I encourage you to pray sincerely about things because it really does help! When we do this we take a bigger perspective at life and we filter through whats important and whats not, honing down our priorities. This is what it has done for me.

We have a new branch president and he’s cracking down on the rules. My companion and I have made exact obedience a real focus, so its helped us alot. I felt like I have been trying but I really haven’t been able to access the gift of tongues yet, so this week through exact obedience, this will be my goal.

Im going to do it mum and dad :) I do it for all of us, its blessing all of us. 
My companion Elder Simons and I with our Mission President and his wife
The food here is driving me insane! Its so different, some is nice, but I really just want a solid boil up or something. Give me a hangi!!!! haha. We found a rugby ball the other day and everyones like 'do you play rugby'? I tell them I play league haha they are like errrrr what? They have no idea! Its hilarious. They seem mesmerized from the ball. Its hilarious. 

I have made some super good friends here, our district is working on our unity and when things are calm and loving, the spirit is with us with such strength that it COMPELS us to be better, to think about each other FIRST before you think about yourself. This is key to revelation. It has helped me so much!


Mum and Dad Thank you for the dear elders :) I really appreciate it and because of your comments I received some pretty sweet revelation that I took to the temple, did I tell you that I did sealings last week? Well I did initiatories this week and I took my pounamu through on both occasions. You are always with me my whanau. I love you so much it is hard to explain. Being away from you makes me realize how much I want you, how much I need you. I am so happy we have been sealed, thanks to the temple session I have been able to more fully understand what this means. And it is beautiful. I want this for the people I teach. My patriarchal blessing says that my mission will help me realize that this should be the goal of all the people I teach the reality of Christ to, to receive their temple ordinances. I am beginning to understand this :)

I want to write to all my family at least once. I’ve managed to send two letters so far, which should be received in about 12 days :) Your one is still to be written haha. But you already know how much I love you so thats all good. 

My surfer friend from Cali - He's a handsome dude huh!
If you end up sending a package (I love packages) could you please include my boardshorts and surf wax, I have been eating salt just to remind me of the ocean back home. I miss it so much haha! Raya sent me some sweet photos of the surf so I was stoked this morning to see it :) ALSO some colour photos of our family if you could! Cause I can't print colour haha. 
Most importantly, If you cant don’t worry about it.... Its not a biggie my family :) And if its too much of a hassle in any form then I beg you, forget about it. Completely. 

I love you my family, my return date is 30 December 2015 :) I cant wait to see you! 

të dua githë shumë
(I love you all alot) 

Elder Waters

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Valentines Day Package

Thank you for the photos mum :) 

I saw the blog! I suppose its time to sensor my emails hahaha. Also, Montenegro has been given to the Adriatic North mission so its no longer a part of mine :( Might want to remove that from the blog...

Look who I found!
This past week was hectic!  And beautiful. I have learnt so much in the past week. Prayer is so crucial to spiritual progress, in fact - Preach my Gospel states that no one can know of spiritual truths without it. 

Could you please tell Bishop Higgins that I’m already speaking fluent albanian, and that I’m already teaching my class how to speak it. Hahaha JK, its SO HARD!  It will come, yes I know, but It’s just so different to English, but still the same characters, plus 10ish more. Theres 36-38 letters in the alphabet (cant remember) and the structure, grammer and concepts are just so different!
For example when someone sneezes, they say shend^t ( ' ^ ' stands for a character that I cant insert, thanks to this computer) . to say please is t^ lut^m, which literally means I pray thee . To say dear heavenly father they say 'ati dashur Quiellor' which literally means father in loving heaven. Want is dua which also means love. the word for good is mir^ which when translated back to english has heeeaps of different meanings. Eager and impatient mean the same thing, so the phrase 'God is eager to bless us' also means 'God is impatient to bless us' - It’s so weird, but so cool. It’s a really old language. And this is the simple stuff. It’s ridiculous! But I’ll get it. 

The snows almost all gone...
P day is awesome. I love just relaxing because the days here are full on. I went to the Provo temple this morning, through my first Sealing session. It was amazing. When I get back I’m gonna take a way bigger focus on my family history because I’m starting to realize how important and relevant it is to everything. We need to start focusing on our family that came before us. I received so much personal revelation in that session :)

I LOVE. Absolutely LOVE the package. Thank you so much for sending it! It came on the perfect day too - Valentines. Where all the americans were going crazy with the mail and I had this boss as package full of NZ goodness. I miss the food so much! So when everyone was getting romantic (as romantic as missionaries get... 2 handshakes haha) I was stuffing my face. It was so good, thank you so much :')  I almost cried watching the Haka again. My brothers, the americans in my district were freaked out by some of you hahaha I love it! Thank you so much for the photos.

The gospel will flood the earth...
I would die for a top up of NZ goodness every week, I miss it so much. Dad the chocolate here just isn’t the same! I miss NZ stuff.  Oh and if you can.. I would give my two front teeth away for a bar of surf wax goodness, I miss the smell! t^ lut^m, I pray thee, send some ! :D 
Me, Sister Ora Keung (from Auckland) 
and Sister Smith
who is in Auckland right now 

serving in a mandarin speaking mission
I miss surfing so much! Please the next time you see Jaydine give her the biggest hug for me! I love my surfboard taonga and its just like my name badge and pounamu. I don't go anywhere without it. Also, It pleases me so much (another albanian phrase for 'i like') that the YSA gather around at our house. I love that. I love how you are so passionate about your calling mum and dad. Isn't that just the perfect calling for you?

Tell Sister Holtz I love my scripture case:)
Tell Paora no worries about the Visa thing. Isn’t it ironic how the Lord made Tahei, me and now Paora wait to serve our missions? I can truly testify in Gods timing. Don’t get discouraged my bro, I’m mindful of you :) but more importantly so is the Lord. You will be sweet my brother :)

Personal Unsupervised Study time

My health is good. I’m super tired all the time but I’m following pretty sharply my time frames and I’m in a solid routine atm so everything is good. I don’t take my meds all the time but I pray about my health all the time so.... I win. Thats pretty much what I’m saying - I do when I can but yeah.. 

Elder Holland came to the MTC the other tuesday! It was real cool, such a spiritual experience. Im sure you can relate because I hear you were visited by was it Elder Nelson? Touching stuff! Thats so cool. I always brag about my family back home (in a humble bragging way), Im so proud of all of you. Getting all spiritual.. get you..

The elders here seem to like everything NZ. The food ( I shared with them) they fell in love with, they are really hard out into their lord of the rings its so funny haha. The sisters seem to like it too.. The Accent.. everyone seems to like the accent... what accent, haha.

Elders Turketo & I with the sisters

The spirit is so beautiful here. People get really stressed out, even to the point where they stop feeling it and enjoying it but I’m pretty chill about things ( I like to think anyways), if only they knew how much a good attitude could change their whole persona!  Thanks Mum and Dad for teaching me this...

Arohanui my whanau xxx
Elder Waters

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Pérshéndetjé!!! (Hello in Albanian)

I Love it here mum! The first week was a bit dragged out but when I look back it went so fast! I love my district, my companion, Elder Simons, is 18, from America and he has such a strong spirit. I love him so much! I get along really well with my district and they are all wanting to do really well so I know that I will achieve great things because I am working just as hard.
My dream come true!!
Its my first P day today! I'm so glad because I can wear normal clothes haha. Mind you I love wearing a suit, I love looking down at the badge and thinking about my family, about everything back in NZ. I'm so proud of myself for being on a mission (in a non prideful way haha). I have learnt so much already in only a week. Albanian is REALLY hard but its coming! I am confident I'll be able to speak it fluently one day. The stature of my spirit has grown so much and I just cant explain how much I love this gospel. I am so happy here. For the girls I suppose its like a permanent SMYC, but ten times cooler. The missionaries here are really nice and me being me I know how to work my charm on everyone hahaha. I just thought Id say it right now that there are some super cute sister missionaries here ( that's what they say,  'cute' haha). Its really cool to see how much sisters there actually are. there are HEAPS here!! people are going to crazy places. Because I got here on Monday I got to meet alot of international missionaries so I had a head start with the social aspect of everything, I feel sorry for my companion because we always stop and talk to someone because it feels like I know heaps of people here already. I mean I do know heaps haha.
My companion Elder Simons
I love the dear elder letters! I am so grateful for them, please keep sending them as opposed to emailing!! 
But also, keep sending photos! I printed out the ones you sent me, I'll look at them every night before I sleep. I really want to send you photos of me and the snow! And me and my companion, me and all of my friends that I've made here. 
Mum I really appreciate the package. When someone gets a package everyone else knows so its like oooooooooh what did you get!! hahaha! The food was so good in the package thank you so much!  Im running out of NZ food. I miss it hard out! Can you send more? haha oh and if you could maybe a flash drive with my farewell haka on it? I would love to watch it again. Only if you can.

The beautiful Provo Temple
I just wanna let you know mum, and family, how much I love you all! I pray for you in albanian day and night. All the time. I miss you so much but its funny because I'm not homesick. Thinking about home and about my family motivates me to be a better missionary. It helps me. My testimony has grown so strong so fast in one week. This work is beautiful and I know I'm where I am supposed to be. I know you are going to be blessed as a family because of my service. I love you all. 
Which dog did you decide to keep? Say good bye to one of them for me please haha I love them too.

Mum and Dad I'm sorry for the hard times I gave you. I know we had our differences in opinions at times but I want to let you know I love you so much. You have taught me well how to lead my life. I'm grateful for the love you have for each other. This inspires me. I miss you so much mum and dad and I'm so grateful that you encouraged me to go on a mission. and live my life well.
Some of my District outside the temple grounds
To my siblings I love you! So much! Especially you nivs you've always known you are my favourite haha you are my best friend no doubt about it. Go hard in school my nivs and be an example to those around you. You are a natural born leader and everyone around you will respect you if you hold to what you know to be true -  the gospel nivs. I love it so much. I miss you so much nivs and I wish I could hug you one more time. Sorry for not letting you be clingy when I was still in NZ haha I regret that now (same with Ray and Te Aniwa). Thank you for your letter nivs.

Albanian Flag - We learn albanian for 9+ hours a day!

Raya!! Watch out for Nevah at school, don't let anyone pick on him. I love you so much raya thank you for your dear elder letters! I hope you got your restricted because I really do think you and Te Aniwa are GREAT drivers! You both deserve it. And yeah dad likes them Corolla's aye, but your lucky there are people here that don't have a license whatsoever!  Just be thankful to mum and dad for letting you drive. Go super solidly-hard in school ray! Be an example of your faith, find your friends and make them watch your back, and then focus. Tell Leyn he better be taking care of my sisters haha. I know that both of you (Te aniwa and Raya) have so much potential!!!! Be bold with everything you do. You know you can smoke ataahua in a race so do it! (And if she sees this, just tell her I love her haha) I believe in you Raya. I miss you terribly and I love you so much.

First time seeing snowfall
To my dearest Wisey.
I am so proud of you. You are an adult now! You have a car and I bet life is just coming at you so differently than it was last year. I am so proud of you my big little sister, that in a world of changing morals and values you have held to the rod and you have come out just a beautiful faithful daughter of God. I admire your courage. Not many girls are like you, you are special and you have proved it. I know your working now and even tho it may be in the family business (haha), still go hard! Save hard try not to spend too much on food, because that's where it all goes haha. I want to tell you that I really love it here. This feels like EFY at times, only better. You should seriously consider serving a mission, there are so much beautiful daughters of god here and the spirit is so strong with them (IF you know what i mean ;) you belong here. I really want you to be happy sis. Its a big year for you even tho your not at school but just give your best in every thing you do!

 I really miss surfing so if you do end up sending a package, can you send some surf wax? hahaaha i miss the smell. No biggie if you cant.

Look who I found - Elders' Turketo!
I want to bear you my testimony my beautiful family.

I know without doubt this church is true. The gospel is beautiful and I love it. Absolutely love it. I love my saviour and I'm so grateful for what he did for me. I have a strong testimony of prayer, like I said I've been praying for you's every day and I know that heavenly father is aware of this. He is watching over you. I love you guys so much. I cant express it enough. I am so happy  that we are an eternal family. Hold to the rod my whanau, there is safety, power and peace in this gospel! We can do so much in it.

I love you.


Elder Waters

After I received this email - while he was uploading the photos I was able to email chat with Elder Waters and he added this:

Im having the time of my life here mum. 

Can you please tell my extended family that I love them! And im praying for them! Thats aunty nomz, quade, jhan and the boys, Aunty leigh anne uncle lolol and Keoni! Tell him I love him heaps and that I miss him. Tell the boys the mission is the go! I love it here, it is an amazing experience. They will never regret it I can promise them that. 

Please tell all my friends I love them, I could only reply to some but when you see them tell them I love them.

Please tell Tiana Walker congratulations on her call and going through the temple! She is gonna love it in the MTC! I hope she gets to see her brother.

And if you see my boys around tell them to dear elder me! hahaha.

Dear elder is one of the most effective things, because I get the letter that night and I can think about what I'm gonna say back! cause I only normally get 1 hour on the computer.

Also tell the whanau I love them!! Nan pop aunty kara, uncle Q, ezzy & the girls, aunty sharon jaja cinda, rhe-skux ( haha ) tell them I love them all! and I'll get back to aunty as soon as I can. Time is tight here and so full on. time for a nap I think haha -  i gtg! Talk to you later :)

Love much, 
Elder Waters