Sunday, October 19, 2014

Letter to Dad - 13 October, 2014

Hey Dad!!
Wow, you are on Facebook now? That is big news!! ;) haha You are going to be a powerful influence. It is incredible how the Lord prepares not only people and places but technology for His purposes. Be a force for good. The internet needs more of that, and your bright smile and moving testimony will bless so many lives. I know that it has changed mine for forever. :) The tender way that you talk about the gospel and how much it means to you really strikes my heart, and I love listening to you speak. That is one thing I miss from when you were bishop. Your talks were always so powerful and always touched my heart. Thank you, Dad. I love you. :) Also, we can use Facebook every single day, and are encouraged to. We can teach lessons over chat, and we can post inspirational things as prompted by the Spirit. Richard I. Heaton who is an Administrator for the MTC . . .I think . . .said that we should not think of how to put Facebook into our missionary work, but instead think of the people that we want to serve and how to meet investigator's needs and Facebook will naturally fit into the work that we plan. I like to think of it that way. I testify that as you try to reach out to people you will experience the same thing. Facebook will naturally fit into the way that you communicate with everyone in an uplifting way. :)
Dad, General Conference was so incredible!! I could not have even imagined it being so amazing! :) As a missionary I feel like I got so much out of it because I was actively trying to receive revelation, and record it. I got 18 pages of really good notes haha. Those men are called of God. I know it. I know that what they teach is so vital, and that as we listen to them we will be strengthened. We will be given direction. We will be given power to overcome all of satan's temptations. Not just one or two. Every single one of them. The scriptures, particularly the Book of Mormon, provide a shield that is incredibly strong, and that satan cannot penetrate. I love the analogy of the little boat, that no matter how small it is, all of the water in the world can not sink it unless it lets it in. Similarly, all of the temptations in the world cannot harm us, unless we let them into our boat. "Get in the boat, wear a lifejacket, and hold on with two hands." We will be protected and led by these mighty men of God.
As for the Typhoons, they are a blast! We really don't go out in them that much, and we are instructed to stay inside when it gets really bad, but it just rains, and rains, and rains. It has been raining for a few hours at this point. We have been out a bit, and the front half of my pants are completely soaked. haha It is a blast here. I love it. :) It is so so so green!! Where there aren't buildings or streets (which is most of the area haha) it is green. :) However, one thing that I really do miss is yards. Our yard at home (in AF) is HUGE compared to anything that I have seen here in Japan. Also, I think one of the biggest differences with the houses in Japan and at home is the size and shape. They build up. If you took our garage and built two stories on top of it, that would be a pretty big house in Japan, and about the right shape. They just don't build sideways. By the way, that drain looks awesome!!
Thank you so much for the piano music. It is perfect. The only other song that I thought of was In Dreams, the really pretty gentle song from LOTR that I have. But if you can't find it that is fine. :) I really didn't appreciate playing piano as much until I got out here, and now that I haven't played it as much, and when I do it really really impresses/helps people, I absolutely love it. It is a super good way for people to see my talents, and to be my friend more. I don't know how, but I feel like it really helps to build the relationship of trust that it talks about in How To Begin Teaching in PMG.
Wow, I guess I talk a lot, huh? It is funny when I look at my emails and the emails that other missionaries send. I am really a chatter box when it comes to my family. :) I am doing fantastic, and I will send some more stuff about this week to Mom. :) Also, I will get a picture of my bike for next week! It is back at the apartment and we are at the church right now. :) Thanks for everything, Dad. Your letters are so amazing, and I love seeing your face pop up in the computer screen to show who it was sent from. I love you, Dad. Thanks for your example to me, and for how you have taught me to really live the gospel, and show love for other people. You know how to love like the Savior did, and that is something that I am really trying to gain. Thank you. I love you and miss you!!
Love, Elder Livingston
P.S. Make sure that you take mom on a date. I don't know why I put that there, it just popped into my head, and it sounds like you have been busy, so this weekend at the latest take mom on a date and just relax, okay? And if it looks like you might not have time, schedule the date first. I promise that you will have time to do all that you need. :) Keep up the good work, Dad! Love you!

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