Elder Swan is serving in the Tonga Nuku'alofa Mission from July 2013 to July 2015

Monday, March 30, 2015

It's been a good week 3/29/2015

My new workout :)
This past week has been good! I have enjoyed working and loved meeting new people.

So we have an investigator that we have been teaching who is 23 and searching for answers. We've been teaching him for 3 weeks now and he has come to church 4 times!! When I say searching for answers I mean he is SEARCHING for answers! I have never taught anyone with so many questions!!! It is crazy. I learn so much from teaching him! He knows the bible really well (almost any Tongan knows the bible more than themselves...) and has so many questions! His biggest question was a difficult one to answer. He didn't believe that Jesus Christ was a God. So that was his question. We answered it the best we could without arguing with him and then just testified. For about another week he didn't believe it. We would just continue to testify and then move on. (We are really stressing learning by faith and if we shared every verse we knew about Christ being a God it would be more proving it to him. It would be us acting upon him and not letting him act for himself. Plus if he learns for himself he is more likely to gain a stronger testimony.) So one day at the end of the lesson he said "What if I still don't believe that Christ is a god when it comes to the day I'll get baptized on?" I explained we would delay the baptism and keep teaching him. He then said "Well, I was reading John 14 and as I read and pondered and prayed I felt that it was true, that what you guys said was true. I'm beginning to believe it!!" Man I was going crazy! I was happier than ever. So we set his date for next Saturday! Other than that we have been visiting a lot of my companions family trying to teach them!! They are really strong in their church's! 

This week we had 3 meetings. 2 leadership training's and one zone meeting.. We are learning the importance of learning by faith and how to help investigators learn by faith! We are inviting investigators to be baptized before we even start the first lesson. It has been fun trusting in the Lord and Holy Ghost to guide us as we ask in faith and invite these souls to come unto Christ. 

That's about it for this week! I love you all tons!!!

Ofa atu!!
Elder Swan

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Getting Better 3/22/2015

I'm doing okay! I still have the rash and I feel tired and my muscles feel weak sometimes but I am doing good. I went to the hospital twice this week and they tested my blood twice. They said I could work because my blood was getting better! My joints hurt at first but they are good now. The sickness I had last year was different from this one. This was an upgrade from that sickness! There are different classes of it. I had a different type last year then got a new one this year, it's different but similar. It is from a mosquito bite and once you get it they say you can not get it again. I was inside all week until Friday and then we got some work done Friday and Saturday! We taught Sampeni and Pala and Tevita this week! They are all progressing investigators. We teach Sampeni every night now and he has TONS of questions, it is difficult sometimes but we just do our best! Pala is preparing for Baptism we just need to talk to his family!

Funny story about the cookie and muffin mixes you sent me.... I had 2 different members make them.. One was Okay but burnt and the other one was totally destroyed hahaha. She was like please don't tell your mom.. she'll hate me haha. It was so funny! She is actually the one feeding us tonight. She said she would go try to find some cookies at the fair and re-do it. The muffins were good and we still have 2 muffin mixes left and 1 small cookie mix.

I am getting better! I have to go though so I love you and miss you!!
Give dad a huge hug for me on his Birthday!

Ofa atu!
Elder Swan

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Dengue Fever strikes again 3/15/2015

Elder Felemi and Elder Swan preparing food

Some of my friends
It was a really great week and me and Elder Felemi get along great! We have 3 or 4 progressing investigators and we are working hard everyday. I am not going to send a big email today because I am sick... I've got Dengue Fever.. It's like what I had last year but a lot worse this time I guess. The nurse just came over to see me and told me about it and what will be happening to me... Hahaha Crazy but I am OK. Right now I have a fever and really bad heart burn so we'll see what happens. I've got a lot to do this week and don't have time to be sick. The nurse told me to just rest and not eat to much and one day this week I will have to go to the hospital to check my blood!
I'm about dead so I think I am going to go to sleep! I'm sorry mom! I love you soooo much! Have an amazing day! Tell the family HI and that I love them!

DO NOT WORRY ABOUT ME!!! HAHAHAHA I'm on the Lord's errand and I will be FINE!!!
Ofa Atu!!!

Note from MOM!!!
I asked Tyler what the nurse told him to expect and he said he didn't think he should tell me so I looked it up. Please keep Tyler in your prayers this week I know he could use them.

  Dengue fever is transmitted by the bite of an Aedes mosquito infected with a dengue virus. The mosquito becomes infected when it bites a person with dengue virus in their blood. It can’t be spread directly from one person to another person.

Symptoms of Dengue Fever

Symptoms, which usually begin four to six days after infection and last for up to 10 days, may include
  • Sudden, high fever
  • Severe headaches
  • Pain behind the eyes
  • Severe joint and muscle pain
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Skin rash, which appears three to four days after the onset of fever
  • Mild bleeding (such a nose bleed, bleeding gums, or easy bruising)
Sometimes symptoms are mild and can be mistaken for those of the flu or another viral infection Younger children and people who have never had the infection before tend to have milder cases than older children and adults. However, serious problems can develop. These include dengue hemorrhagic fever, a rare complication characterized by high fever, damage to lymph and blood vessels, bleeding from the nose and gums, enlargement of the liver, and failure of the circulatory system. The symptoms may progress to massive bleeding, shock, and death. This is called dengue shock syndrome (DSS).
People with weakened immune systems as well as those with a second or subsequent dengue infection are believed to be at greater risk for developing dengue hemorrhagic fever.

Treatment for Dengue Fever
There is no specific medicine to treat dengue infection.  You should rest, drink plenty of fluids, and see your doctor. If you start to feel worse in the first 24 hours after your fever goes down, you should get to a hospital immediately to be checked for complications.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Learning by Faith 3/8/2015

I did get my packages. I got one last Monday and one today. 
It sounds like dad has a few big decisions to make and he needs to take it to the Temple. Big decisions always come up and we feel like we must ask man for help. For me I feel like I need to ask the Zones or President, but why in the world should we ask man when we have an all knowing and loving Heavenly Father. I've been studying a lot about Learning by Faith. There are 3 principles here. 
1. We need an assurance, or a problem to resolve.
2. Action. We need to do something about it.. Like go to the Temple, pray, ask, study and seek help.
3. Evidence. If we do step one and two there will be evidence. That is how faith works
In the book of Joshua it talks about these people who were asked to cross the Jordan river on dry ground. So their assurance or their hope would be "we want to cross this river." When they came up to the banks they didn't just stop and wait for the river to part so they could walk, they put their faith with action. They stepped in the water and began crossing it. The evidence was that the water parted and they crossed on dry land. I hope you can understand that. We can also think of Nephi when he was asked to get the brass plates. His hope or assurance was to get the plates, his action was going and doing so trusting in the Lord would provide a way. He went "not knowing before hand the things which I should do" 1 Nephi 4:6. Therefore his action was to go and do. He went! That was his action and the evidence was God put Laban into his hands and he took the plates!!
Do you see the importance of asking God and DOING! BE NOT HEARERS ONLY, BUT BE YE DOERS!

Transfers were yesterday! I'll be with Elder Felemi in Mu'a. I was in the MTC with him and yeah... we will see how it goes. My plan is to work him hard.  Hahaha~
Well I am out of time, we did have a baptism but I will write you about it. We are off to the dentist again for my companion. I love you all so much and will get back to you next week!
Elder Swan  

This is the nasty sucker that bit me!!!


Mormons are awesome 3/1/2015

Hey Mom, I just got on for a second we are going to the Dentist soon for my companion. I will try to get on later when we get back.

I finally saw Meet the Mormons!!!!! Man Mormons are Awesome.

Speaking of raw fish... We call that amazing fish soup Ota ika. It literally just means raw fish. It's raw fish in a bowl with coconut milk with peppers, onions and tomatoes. I love it!!! There is also ota ika that is just fish sliced. It just looks like fish with cuts on it. I don't like that one as much. It just tastes like the ocean! But I love eating any kind of fish so it's Seafood for days when I get home!!

There is a bright side ~ 2/22/2015

Well things just keep getting better and better..... Haha

So this past Tuesday we talked about obedience and the importance of it. It seems like this is something we are always talking about. I am so tired of being hated for being obedient. Who would have thought that missionaries of the LORD would be so disrespectful. I love the talk "Which way do you face?" It brings so much comfort in times like this. I am happy to say that I face my Lord and Savior and Heavenly Father.

On to the bright side of this week! We taught Samisoni again and guess what! He believes everything we taught. He absolutely hated the thought of baptism for the dead, now he believes it and thinks it is important. He is going to be a slow moving investigator but once he converts he will stay put! He has that type of attitude. He is the man! We are looking forward to teaching him and his family. We set up a program where next Wednesday we are sending 3 families to the Temple. He is one of them so I am SUPER excited for that. His son has been participating in baptisms for the dead and I think that is helping a bit!
We set a date for Pala this past Saturday but it wasn't able to happen. He knows it's true and wants to be baptized. So it will happen it is just a matter of time. 
I love the work part of things but the babysitting is getting really old! I love you all and hope you have a good week!

P.S. I got bit by a Molokau this week... One of those huge centipedes. IT HURT...
Love Elder Swan