Monday, August 13, 2012

Whitewash Transfer, District Leader, and Trainer

August 5, 2012
Hello Family,
Transfer calls came in last night. President Moon called me and told me I will be going to Ta Khmau 2. This isn’t too far from where I’m at. It’s kind of like Kian Svay, Its right outside the city, but not city at all. To be quite honest it’s quite possible the hardest call ever. I will be whitewashing the area. It was closed this last transfer because nothing was happening in it. Now I will be moving in there and whitewashing it. I will still remain district leader in that new area. But, for the kicker, I will be whitewashing with a new Elder. Yep, I will be training this transfer. I’m whitewashing with a new Elder from America. The whole thing seems a little overwhelming. I know I will have a lot to do. Even the simple things are hard. For example, when does church start? Haha. When I was told about it, to be quite honest, I didn’t really feel nervous or happy or anything, just felt like it was another step, and another calling. In the end, I feel very honored that the Lord, and President Moon trust me with this calling. I hope that I can get those going there; I also hope I get an Elder that’s excited to work hard. As for this week we saw some real miracles. As for Albert, the man who said I can’t be a member anymore, he came to church on Sunday, late, so he has to wait until next week to receive the Holy Ghost. I felt inspired to, despite all his numerous problems with the Law of Chastity and Word of Wisdom in the past, to focus entirely on his
prayers. When he stopped praying, he fell quickly, then as we kept on him, called him every day, and followed up on him regularly, he showed up to church happy, and excited to receive the Holy Ghost. Chhiang. She is so amazing. She is like my big sister. She told me for the longest time, excuse after excuse for 2 months, how she almost going to be able to go to church, I’m going to church, I got sick. Now, yesterday, she finally came. It was so amazing. She is going to get baptized in 2 weeks. She deserves it so much, she is super happy and excited to be baptized. I’m very sad to be leaving this area so much. I’m going to miss everyone in this branch. I have seen so many members progress and get stronger. I’ve seen so many investigators make sacrifices to follow the Lord Jesus Christ. I’m so excited for this area, it’s about to explode. I can see at least 7 baptisms happen in this area this transfer. Throughout my time here it’s been very trying of my faith, mostly in myself. A lot of feelings of inadequacy as those around me got baptisms, and I sat trying to piece together my area.  Now, 6 months later, I look at where this area has gone, and I know that I did as hard as I could, and this area is so much better than before. I think there are going to be some amazing things happening in 1st branch.
After doing it in first branch, I’m excited and more confident about my new calling in Ta Khmau. I know the Lord has called me to serve there, and I know He will support me and guide me to become the person He wants me to become. I know that this is the work of the Lord. This is the only true church upon the face of the earth that can provide true and lasting happiness into the lives of God’s children.
Love, Elder Rucker


August 12, 2012
Hi Family. Yep that's right, I'm still alive, and so is my kid. Elder Meyers and I are doing just fine out here in Takhmau. He is from Washington, the southern half near Oregon. He has 5 brothers and sisters. Its a lot different than the city. Just to let you know this is the #1 farthest biking area. #2 is kian svay East. I will now have served in both. Its a lot hotter than the city too, so much more sun. I'm pretty used to the sun, so i didn't use sunblock and i get a little red, not sunburned, but definately wearing sunblock everyday now, don't want skin cancer. As for Elder Meyers, he's pretty white, he put on sunblock twice, and he still got sunburned. The biking is kind of killing him too. Plus he's not too used to the Khmer food yet, it makes him nauseous when he eats it. So things aren't going to well for him. But I'm working hard to help him out and he's hanging in there pretty good. He's trying to be obedient and work hard which I really enjoy. He's not perfect at Khmer obviously, but I'm really impressed at how far he has come, he speaks very clear for a greeny which is usually the hardest thing to overcome.
Overall the training is going well. I'm trying to help him learn the language as best I can and most importantly help him adjust. Trying to cook less khmer like food so that he can eat something so he doesn't die. No matter what just making sure he's happy and not getting discouraged. I've started giving him finding projects (like finding lost members) and more in order to keep him busy so he doesn't think about home or problems. Overall we are trying to stay positive, despite the difficulty of the area. As of now we have 0 investigators, and are just trying to find where the members live. We are working hard, and have hope that this area can be great, we are just going to do our best to be faithful, obedient, and prayerful and hope the lord will bless us with some success.
As I look back on the history of my mission, its amazing to see how much the Lord has prepared me, specifically for this area. The unique challenges and problems I faced in both Kian Svay and 1st branch has shaped me and prepared me for Takhmau. Areas where I was forced to grow, weakness that have been strengthened, and knowledge that I have acquired have been, and are going to be key in helping this area progress. I know the Lord cares about this area and these people. I'm excited for the work to be done in this area. By the time I leave I want to see church attendance go from now, 84, to 120. I believe it could happen.
Well that's about it for me. I know that this church is true and this is the work of the lord. I know the Lord cares about me and wants me to be successful. I know when we are obedient, we are blessed. 
The most amazing  thing i did this week was a place that we teach english class and teach it 3 days a week. Its at a little home for handicapped people. All  these 20 handicapped kids come and gather around to listen to us teach  english, they are the most amazing and happy kids ever. Theres a kid  with 1 leg, and i ask him what his favorite thing to do is, and he says  soccer. haha. nothing is impossible for them. Theres a kid who has his  arms cut off to his elbows, i see him come out (he also has his legs cut off up to his knees) with a book and pen. And i'm like what the heck,  what's this kid going to do. Whatever i guess he just likes to listen  that cool. Then i start teaching and he is actually writing! he has the  pen between both of his elbows, writing on the paper, and i'm talking  nice. He writes prettier than me. Smaller too! he's unbelievable, thats  how they all are, unbelievable.

Love Elder Rucker

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