Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Families are forever: that's a really long time

Dear family,

For those of you who have been living under a rock or in a country where people don't care that much (America) the past week and the upcoming ones are something we like to call the World Cup. How do I know since I do not own a computer, television, or radio? Because I have eyes and ears in my head. Last Saturday Greece placed Korea and it was amazing. I was coming home after an appointment and was reminded because everyone had glowing red devil headbands and red t-shirts and every parking lot turned into a tailgate party with fireworks and huge trucks with TV screens on them while people gathered around. Then while we were in our apartment preparing for bed we could feel the excitement and every time that Korea made a goal there was a loud thunder-like cheer from every apartment and every parking lot in Korea. It made me want to be a soccer fan.

Today was moving day. Unfortunately the lease was up on our amazing apartment (known through out the mission as the "mansion" and so we had to move to a not as nice place. I know that you probably don't really care about the details of it, but it was interesting-- so I included pictures. We lived on the 17th floor so they took this huge ladder attached to a truck and then shoved everything in a basket and put it on this lift. I love Koreans--- sometimes they are just ingenious. Sometimes it is just funny.

This weeks thought is again from Elder Ballard, but from his most recent talk at General Conference. (Random fact: he once went on a really long car ride with Dad and gave him advice for his computer company.)

" I hope you are listening and see a pattern and hear a steady, consistent message that in these last days it is essential even critical that parents and children listen to and learn from one another. These are not just ethereal concepts about which I have been speaking. They are the essence, the center, of God's plan for our eternal happiness and peace."

I thought about that a lot-- the importance of learning from parents and children. I see this a lot because as a missionary you see a LOT of people (especially when you have to talk to 140 new people every week). I thought of one family who we have been working with lately. The mother is from the Philippines and while there even served a mission, her family was one of the first families that were church members on her island. However, since being in Korea she has become less active because her husband doesn't always let her go to church. I guess the way he does things is that when he is home his entire family has to be home as well so she can't leave the house after about 8pm and on Sundays if he doesn't wake up then he doesn't always let her go to church. Since we have been working with them we have gotten him to be more lenient and so now she comes even if he doesn't. He is also a member and a few weeks ago baptized his daughter.

I thought about how the father has changed because of the love he has for his children and I thought a lot about how Mama and Daddy have had a huge influence on me. My companion and I were talking about this the other day and she said that once she had graduated from college she asked her mom what her biggest concern was when she was going through High School. Her mother replied that her biggest fear was that one of her kids would get pregnant or get someone else pregnant. My companion thought that was weird because the only thing she remembered her mom emphasizing was money, her mother had never really mentioned anything that would have made her not get pregnant. It's interesting how the things we think we are emphasizing and that are important don't always come across that way. So question of the week:
  • What have you learned from your parents?
  • What have you learned from you children (where that applies)?
  • What do you hope they have learned from you?
Sister O'Bryan
Daejeon PO Box 38
Chungcheong bukdo 300-600
South Korea

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