Monday, June 20, 2016

Week 102 - Final Thoughts, Last Words and Remarks and the End of Two Great Years

Halo untuk terakhir kali, 

Two years of missionary service in the beautiful islands of Indonesia quickly comes to a close. Many life long lessons and memories were made and have prepared me for the beginning of a new future. I thank all who followed along on the journey whether in the field or reading the letters. It all truly means a lot to me. The mission has taught me that "when you are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are truly in the service of your God." Heavenly Father has a unique plan for all of us. For me, part of that plan was to serve his children in Indonesia to bring them the sweet Gospel. His plan is perfect and when we are obedient to His commandments we will receive the blessings that we want. I am a first witness to this eternal principle.

As I reflect on what has taken place over the course of the time, lots of fond and precious memories come to mind; the food, the people, the heat, the hardships, the lessons learned, the floods, the fixing of bikes, the ridiculous traffic, the studying, the stress, the joy, and much more. Not in a second would I replace what went on these past 2 years for anything in this world!

Over the past two years, I have developed life-long relationships with others and caught a glimpse of what is really out in the world. The world is a place that can be scary and tough. When we follow the council of a Book of Mormon prophet, we don't need to worry. "And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty stormshall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."

This whole journey started several years ago with the decision to serve and commenced officially on July 2nd, 2014 where I met one of the greatest groups of missionaries in the Provo Missionary Training Center. We struggled with the language together and prepared ourselves but with full faith, left to help others. Upon arrival in Indonesia until the date we came home we served with not even looking back one second, in other words, "full heart. might, mind, and strength." All of us saw many miracles that became very personal to each of us. 

Occasionally, the miracle of the day was the fact that it rained or that Golden person that asks, "when is my baptism, Elder? Or maybe that saving McD's meal that was delivered." Whatever the miracle may be, they are tender mercies from the Lord and we learn form Elder David A. Bednar that the tender mercies of the Lord are never late and never too early. We have been the tender mercies to so many people.

I will indeed miss my time as a missionary especially in Indonesia which now holds a big place in my heart. However, these 2 years have prepared me for what is up next. I know that this Gospel has been restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith in these the latter days. We have a living Prophet this day in age to lead and guide us pointing us in the direction of Heavenly Father. Jesus Christ performed his infinite Atonement so that every person in the entire world could have the opportunity to become washed clean of their sins. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live and love us. I love this work and all of you! 

Terima kasih semuanya! Sampai Jumpa!

Elder Hayes

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Week 101 - Couldn't have asked for a better week!!

Couldn't have asked for a better week!! 

I have felt the love of the Lord and his guidance as we have gone out and preached the Gospel! Elder Tuttle and I set some pretty high goals this week and just went out and achieved them. No discouragement, just pure hard Elder Tuttle is dead and not feeling well.

Last Monday, the leaders came in for the MLC meeting which was held on Tuesday. We found a new MLC tradition and that is sock wrestling!!! It was such a blast! I am still sore but for sure needed a work out like that. It was also nice to spend some time with the other leaders around the mission. 

Tuesday we had the MLC which went great! We talked about making ourselves busy. In other words effective planning. It was great and the ZL's did a great job of re-teaching it in ZTM which happened on friday. 

Many miracles happened this past week. On friday night, we hold our english class. As usual, we invited many people in anticipation for a lot to show up. We got a call from somebody who is interested in learning about the Gospel but wanted to come to english class. He said, "Elder is it okay if I bring friends like 2 or 3 or 5 or 9?!" We replied with a yes........30 mintues later about 9 people showed up! They stayed until the end of englush class and for the spiritual thought. We offered a church tour and all of them were super excited!! The spirit was so strong as we walked with them through the church and taught them about the restored church. It was a busy night.

Other miracles that a district we had a "cuci motor graits" (free motor wash) We put the sign out on the street and within 5 minutes, TONS of people came in. We had the opportunity to talk to them and found lots of interested people. There were some that asked to see inside of the church so we gave them church tours and it was just an awesome experience.

Alexander, our new member, brought a friend to church yesterday and he is GOLDEN!! We met with him after church and just talked about the Book of Mormon. He wants to come back next week and really was touched at church! There are so many people ready to receive the Gospel, we just have to find the right ones!

We met tons of great people this week and just witnessed the Lord guiding and blessing us! The Lord will guide and lead those that are obedient in this life. We have so much potential to achieve!

Love you all!

Elder Hayes

Happy Member!!! and a little bit of a height difference :)

Bro. A. and his friend who is GOLDEN!!!!!!

 a member and some investigators that we have been working with!!!
nobody to talk to on the bus  :(

how is this thing still running!!!

i killed my companion! ;)
Last MLC

Last MLC

Last MLC

Last MLC

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Week 100 - The Start of Ramadan, Miracles, and Splits in Bogor

ﺍﻟﺴﻠﺎﻡ ﻋﻠﻴﻜﻢ ﻭﺭﺣﻤﺔ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﻭﺑﺮﻛﺎ ﺗﻪ

 (assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh)

I figured that the Arabic greeting would be appropriate as today officially starts the first day of Ramadan! Food might be a little scarce for the next little while! :)

So many awesome and things happen in a week that it is hard to fit it all into words. A was confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints yesterday and received the gift of the Holy Ghost! He was stressing himself out because he ended up being a little late after waiting for the bus for around 45 minutes, but all went smoothly! 

One of the spiritual miracles and highlights happened on Saturday night! Elder Tuttle and I have a strong desire to find a family so that is what we fasted for. In our prayer, we were very specific on what this family would be like. We prayed that there would be 4 members in the family, there would be a dad, a mom, a son, and a daughter. On Saturday we sent out to start finding them. We went to a place that is buzzing with families on Saturday night! We sat down and Elder Tuttle says, "That is them Elder." I was super confused. As we looked across the walk way path, there was an awesome family of 4 that was all matching. How did we know they were the right ones??? It was their shirts that gave it away. The shirts said, " Dad," "Mom," Son," and "Daughter." HAHA We stood up and went over and talked to them about families. They are Buddhist but were open to us coming to visit them and share more about our message! Just in case that doesn't work out, we will keep searching! This is the same spot where we found that awesome family from Canada about a month ago if you remember!

There were 10 baptisms across the mission this past weekend!! 3 of them were in the 3rd ward here in Jakarta which is the English branch! One of the guys baptized was from Africa and the other two were from the Middle East. The spirit was so strong and it was such a wonderful experience for all who attended and witnessed. There are a lot of refugees here in Indonesia and so many of them are willing to listen to the Gospel! We cannot baptize them however if they do not have a permanent residence. It was cool to see that ward grow a little more!!  the church is growing little by little here in Indonesia!

Another thing that happened this past week was finding a less active in a very interesting way. We were walking into a busy mall and lots of people were sitting just outside as we passed a few men that were from England, one says, "How are you doing today, Elders?" We did not expect those words to come from his mouth as they were smoking a drinking. We stopped and spent some time there and got to know these guys. They are from Manchester here for work. One of them used to be an active member of the church. Since, he has gone off the right path. His friend had a lot of questions and he answered them all. We spent about 10 minutes there just sharing things that were coming to our heads. It was an interesting experience. How blessed we are to have the Gospel in our lives.

One of our investigators right now is Buddhist and has known about the church for 20 years! He invited us over and we entered a Yugoslavic styled apartment complex. He had lots of questions and we answered them and almost all of them were answered by the message of the restoration or in the Book of Mormon. He is really interested and is interested in coming to church. His name is Chao Ming (晁麋嗯, taken from google translate).

The rest of the week we were on splits in Bogor where we just worked and worked and worked to see miracles. We split with all 3 companionships that are there and had a blast!! Also, Bogor is such a beautiful city!

Lots of great things that have happened and many more bound to come. We will be holding the MLC meeting tomorrow so all the Zone leaders and 2 district leaders are flying in for that. Love you all and wish that best!

Elder Hayes

The line to get into the bus!!!!!

 Last line reads, "Pray, before you are prayed for!" HAHA

down by the banks of the river!

working in the depths!


working with Elder Martineau 
 just the classic Indonesia bathroom if you have forgotten :)

Massive map of an area!! 

Just a little bit of Jakarta! 

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Week 99 - Speaking in Sacrament Meeting, Baptism after Church, and Splits in Bekasi


Things in Indonesia are going amazing!

Don't feel alone Kaitlyn, I too had to give a talk in sacrament meeting. My topic was, "Have you received His countenance in your image?" The main sources were chapters Alma 5 - 7. Verse 14 reads,
 " And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?"

Yesterday, we witnessed Alexander fulfill this verse by being baptized! It was such a wonderful experience. The baptism was held right after church and many members stayed and supported him. One of the members baptized him and next week he will receive the Holy Ghost. He has truly received the image of God in his countenance. The Atonement changes lives and gives us hope that is needed in a world that seems to be going the other way. In Alma 7, not only is there one of my favorite scriptures about the atonement, I shared this in my talk and also with a new investigator that came to us this past week. She has two little boys that are around 5 and 3 and has since been separated from her husband and has faced many challenges. It reads, 
"11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
 12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.
 13 Now the Spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the Son of God suffereth according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance; and now behold, this is the testimony which is in me."
He has performed such an act so that he could help us in this world. For that, I am eternally grateful. No longer should we feel alone. We take on the hardships of life with a better attitude and with more faith in the Savior. 
Yesterday after church, we had an interesting experience. Our whole day fell through after church which allowed us to go out and find more people. We hopped on the bus knowing where we were going but not knowing for how long and where we should go after that. When we got to the final stop we were held up by other crowds trying to get on the bus. Suddenly, an older lady came over and  said, "I have been given the Book of Mormon and I really feel peace and joy when I read it, do you have time to come to my house right now?" We of course had the time. She said that she needed to run to the ATM and for us to just stay right there and that she would return. So we waited, and while we waited we started talking to people. We were there for about 2 hours and 30 mintues waiting for this lady to return. It did not feel like 2 hours and 30 mintues because just by sitting there, we taught 2 lessons and talked to SO many people and had a ton of success! It was a miracle even though the lady never returned, we felt we had to be there for something. We have now given this lady the title of the mysterious lady.
We spent a good portion of our week on splits in one of the neighboring cities, Bekasi. We had a blast and just went out and worked with the missionaries there. Lots and lots of good things are happening in the mission and things are getting super exciting! We are having lots of fun and just working our tails off to find those people that are ready out of the 10 million that live in this city! 
We have been planning with President and others for the things that are upcoming. President and Sister Donald head home at the end of June and then there is a new mission president and his wife coming in. It will be a crazy time for the mission!
Alma continues in chapter 5, 
 "And now behold, I say unto you, my brethren, if ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now?"
Hopefully we all still feel so now! I know I do! I love you all and know this church is true!
Elder Hayes
This picture makes me happy!

A beautiful picture
It was a great day!
I'm just a giant!!

no comment... I just don't fit


Elder W

Hello from the other side  #"WHITE SHADOW".....also the ones that will find you, and will teach you haha

Check this out.....the basketball crew. We are now teaching a few of them

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Week 98 - Flying Plates (Piring Terbang), and Be An Example Unto the Belivers Like Captain Moroni!

Another week of hard work and getting dirty! 

If any of you know anything about the Indonesian language, you would know that "piring terbang" translates into "flying plate." That is the description Indonesians have given to the great and wonderful Frisbee! Elder Tuttle and I put the frisbee to work this week and it catches the people. On P-day we went to the beach and threw it around. Within minutes we had a huge circle of people learning how to throw the frisbee. They really enjoyed it and thought it was a plate! We were able to share the Gospel with a good portion of them and the plan is to use the "piring terbang" more often. The "flying plate" has powers! 

This past week we picked up some great new investigators of all backgrounds. Some are Muslim, we talked to some Buddhists, talked to some Hindus, and found some Christians. It is such an awesome experience to learn a little about those religions too! There is so much in common between religions that it makes it that more interesting! 

A is still on track for the 29th. HE IS SO AWESOME! He will be interviewed for baptism tomorrow and is just soaking the Gospel in. Every time we review his reading in the Book of Mormon he is always farther and farther and can't stop. He always studies the lessons we will teach before we meet and then when we meet, we just explain in further detail what he has learned and answer his questions. He is somebody that has truly been prepared by the Lord!!

We have tried to pick up our focus on less-actives again. We have seen a few come back to church with as little as a phone call from us. We feel really good. As we visit and talk to them excitedly, it makes them excited and you can see them start to remember the feelings they once had. 

As a mission, we finished reading the Book of Mormon this past week and that was such a wonderful blessing to read it again. My testimony of the Book of Mormon has grown so much here! Probably my favorite character would have to be Captain Moroni. He continued to show forth his testimony while others didn't. As he did that people followed him and many miracles were brought to pass. That fits a scripture in the Bible that goes, "Be an example unto the believers." Captain Moroni is for sure an example unto others! 

Yesterday was stake conference!! The stake here was created exactly 5 years ago and continues to grow. The building that they rented out didn't really fit everybody which was really cool to see. The church is growing quickly and more testimonies are being strengthened. The church is still small enough though that at stake conference it was nice to run into old friends and meet them. The talks given were filled with the spirit and it was an awesome stake conference! 

I know the church is true! We are all pioneers in our own way!!

Elder Hayes 

A. after stake conference!!

With the stake patriarch and his wonderful family

everybody left.......I wonder why....

Good ol' tasty Sate!!

Found a friend! In Indonesia, there are stray cats like stray dogs in South America! So many cats!!!
(You can decide for yourself why there are not as many stray dogs)

the "mormon metro mini" :)

all of my companions have knocked out on this couch

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Week 97 - A Sick Companion, Bearing Pure Testimony, Giving Thanks to God

This last week was AMAZING!! It started off with that great skype call with the family; from there it just got better and better!
A is doing awesome!! He is still on date for the 29th of May and is super excited. It is such a wonderful opportunity to teach him and help him get prepared to make covenants with the Lord. He soaks up everything that we teach him! This past week we have focused on the commandments. Every time he heard a commandment you could see him just want to live it, he has truly been prepared by the Lord to receive this glad message. His testimony is growing and he will be a great new member! 
We experienced more and more miracles. We were heading back home from an early morning appointment. As we got off the bus, we were followed and this guy tapped us on the shoulder. He is originally from Surabaya and has seen our church. Something urged him, he said to follow us and just ask what we had to share. We gave him a Book of Mormon and made an appointment a few days later where we explained the Restoration. He has not come to church yet but is still interested in learning more. Most of our miracles have been pretty close to the same. We have been talking with everybody!! Because we are talking with everybody, there are people we just forget who they are. This past week we just had people calling and texting asking if we could meet. Most of them truly wanted to know what message we had to share. Those are just a few examples of the daily miracles that we witness!! 
I have seen the blessings that the Gospel brings to our family! Without it, we might be scattered all over the place. It brings the joy and the happiness that we all experience and unites us. 
I spent half of Saturday working with President as Elder Tuttle suffered. He wasn't felling so well and we had a busy day at the mission home. We had a family of 6 come to the home and we were able to share a little about the plan of salvation. They mentioned how they were Muslim and were not interested. The fact that they took the time as a family to come and listen was just great and now the seed has been planted. Directly after that, a man came and we also taught him the Plan of Salvation. He too is from the Muslim faith and even accepted a Book of Mormon. One thing I have really learned here in Jakarta is just sharing pure testimony is the best thing to do, that is how they really feel the spirit. Elder Tuttle was feeling better in the evening so we were able to go out and meet Alexander at a member's house.
Yesterday in church, a member gave a great talk. He quoted a scripture that really hit me for the rest of the day. Usually when I think of Alma 7, I automatically go to Alma 7:11-13 about the Atonement. This brother read verses 23 and 24 which say, 
23 And now I would that ye should be humble, and be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive.
24 And see that ye have faith, hope, and charity, and then ye will always abound in good works.
I can just feel the Christ-like love that radiates from these verses. It teaches some of the attributes that will make us better people and teaches us how we can "always abound in good works." I also like the teaching on prayer, " asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive."  We can literally ask for ANYTHING in our prayers. We cannot forget to give the thanks back to him! When we give the thanks back to Him that is when we have those attributes of Christ. That is one thing I have really learned from Elder Tuttle and I am personally trying to apply more of the Christ-like attributes! 
The church is true and I love you all!!
Elder Hayes
the magical sword!!!!

My companion has had better days.