Thursday, January 30, 2014


It's in! Took my visa picture and now it's in the mail. Turns out the mission president will just cut the 2x2 passport photo for me. I wish we could have figured that out much sooner, but doesn't matter now. I got my visa in on time. Now to just hope the picture still works and it gets approved by the consulate.

Here's a video of a funny couple who lives in South Korea and does vlogs. I'm curious to see what habits I'll pick up or lose while I'm away. The not talking loudly would be a good one hahaha!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

VISA Smeesha!

Why is it that every single place I've gone to doesn't have the right measurements for the visa that I need? My mom and I went to a couple places and everywhere that has passport pictures they only offer 2x2 inches. No wonder some missionaries are waiting for the visa so long! It takes forever just to find a place that you can get it taken. I have to send them to the MTC Travel office  by my dad's birthday Feb. 7th. I'm hoping and praying that we figure out something soon. I don't want my mission being delayed. Cross your fingers for me!

Also, we went shopping today for all my necessities like medcine, shampoo, etc. Spent about $300! Crazy!! Just know that it was so expensive because I'll be in Korea for 18 months. I need to buy everything in bulk (deoderant for example) that I won't find as easily while there. I can't believe I have 29 days left!!

I will be speaking twice for my farewell. One a week before in the singles branch and then in my homeward the week I leave. To be honest I wish I was only speaking only in my homeward. It seems a lot more special to me that way, but it's okay. I'm just thinking of the singles branch farewell as a practice for the real thing the following week. My mom keeps telling me about all my old teachers that she's invited to the open house we're gonna have. My response is well that's great I'm happy, but what really matters more to me is that my family and close friends are there. I know not all my aunts, uncles, and cousins can make it. They all don't live around here, but it would be great to have them there if they could.
Gosh! 29 days!! Soon to be 28! I'm anxious and excited, but at the same time very very nervous. I don't feel prepared one bit. I'm sure a lot of missionaries start off that way though.
Oh well! I'll keep you all updated about the visa!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Photo Shoot Time!

I am a pinterest addict, so while pinning lots of mission type pins I would see a lot of missionary photography especially of sister missionaries. So naturally, I decided to take some too. Except luckily for me I have an awesome sister-in-law who took the pictures of me for free. I love them!! Next up is to go take my visa photo. Stupid Sam's Club photo center said they were closed when I went yesterday. Even though their sign said they were still open. So annoying, but this week that's the plan! One month today!!! EEK!

Monday, January 20, 2014

A Day in the Life of a Mormon Missionary at the MTC

I came across this video on youtube and it's title is self explanitory. This is what I'll be doing when i enter the Missionary Training Center. I can't wait! Definitely watch this if you want to see what life as a missionary is like at the MTC.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Lord makes the call

I've been thinking about this a lot lately so I decided to blog about it. This is for anyone who is thinking about going on a mission or anyone who is waiting for their call. Hope I could help..
Probably one of the most exciting and nerve-wracking parts of waiting for my mission call to arrive was wondering where I was going to serve. Was I going to have to learn a new language? Would I have to adapt to eating weird foods every day? Will it be too hot? Will it be too cold? And, of course, was my mother going to be worried about how safe I was the whole time?
I had some kind of preference about places where I would or would not like to go on my mission. I didn't mind having to learn a foreign language, and the thought of serving in the United States sounded really boring compared to the exotic places where I’ve seen other friends or family members serve. However, if I did get called to stay in the U.S. I would be okay with that too. I had this excited nervousness every day I waited for my call. When I opened my call, the shock and fear that had built up took over me completely as I read the words "Korea Seoul South Mission."
It can be hard when we have certain expectations or desires that are not fulfilled the way we would want. After people left my house I went to my room I cried and prayed about my call, and that's totally okay. Do whatever you need to do to figure it out. For me, it took the hymn “I’ll Go Where You Want Me to Go." The Lord already knows where you will serve, so, before receiving your call, focus on what you can do to prepare no matter where you go. Also pray to be able to accept where you're called before you get it and after. That helped me a lot! The more I prayed about it, the more at peace I felt. 
Elder Ronald A. Rasband of the Presidency of the Seventy once shared an experience about the inspired process of issuing mission calls in General Conference. He said:
“I joined Elder Eyring early one morning in a room where several large computer screens had been prepared for the session. There was also a staff member from the Missionary Department who had been assigned to assist us that day.
“First, we knelt together in prayer. I remember Elder Eyring using very sincere words, asking the Lord to bless him to know ‘perfectly’ where the missionaries should be assigned. The word ‘perfectly’ said much about the faith that Elder Eyring exhibited that day.
“As the process began, a picture of the missionary to be assigned would come up on one of the computer screens. As each picture appeared, to me it was as if the missionary were in the room with us. Elder Eyring would then greet the missionary with his kind and endearing voice: ‘Good morning, Elder Reier or Sister Yang. How are you today?’
“He told me that in his own mind he liked to think of where the missionaries would conclude their mission. This would aid him to know where they were to be assigned. Elder Eyring would then study the comments from the bishops and stake presidents, medical notes, and other issues relating to each missionary.
“He then referred to another screen which displayed areas and missions across the world. Finally, as he was prompted by the Spirit, he would assign the missionary to his or her field of labor.[...]
“After assigning a few missionaries, Elder Eyring turned to me as he pondered one particular missionary and said, ‘So, Brother Rasband, where do you think this missionary should go?’ I was startled! I quietly suggested to Elder Eyring that I did not know and that I did not know I could know! He looked at me directly and simply said, ‘Brother Rasband, pay closer attention and you too can know!’ With that, I pulled my chair a little closer to Elder Eyring and the computer screen, and I did pay much closer attention!
“A couple of other times as the process moved along, Elder Eyring would turn to me and say, ‘Well, Brother Rasband, where do you feel this missionary should go?’ I would name a particular mission, and Elder Eyring would look at me thoughtfully and say, ‘No, that’s not it!’ He would then continue to assign the missionaries where he had felt prompted.
“As we were nearing the completion of that assignment meeting, a picture of a certain missionary appeared on the screen. I had the strongest prompting, the strongest of the morning, that the missionary we had before us was to be assigned to Japan. I did not know that Elder Eyring was going to ask me on this one, but amazingly he did. I rather tentatively and humbly said to him, ‘Japan?’ Elder Eyring responded immediately, ‘Yes, let’s go there.’ And up on the computer screen the missions of Japan appeared. I instantly knew that the missionary was to go to the Japan Sapporo Mission.
“Elder Eyring did not ask me the exact name of the mission, but he did assign that missionary to the Japan Sapporo Mission.
“Privately in my heart I was deeply touched and sincerely grateful to the Lord for allowing me to experience the prompting to know where that missionary should go.
“At the end of the meeting Elder Eyring bore his witness to me of the love of the Savior, which He has for each missionary assigned to go out into the world and preach the restored gospel. He said that it is by the great love of the Savior that His servants know where these wonderful young men and women, senior missionaries, and senior couple missionaries are to serve. I had a further witness that morning that every missionary called in this Church, and assigned or reassigned to a particular mission, is called by revelation from the Lord God Almighty through one of these, His servants.” (To read Elder Rasband’s full address, click here)
This story has a great lesson for every preparing missionary, myself included. The Lord is the one who makes the call. He knows what is best for us and what we need for our own personal growth. But even with this knowledge, you could still be initially disappointed or nervous about where you are called to serve after receiving your call. 
A few things that helped me feel more at peace with my mission call were going to teaching appointments with the sister missionaries in my singles branch to get a better idea of how missionary work was done. Studying Preach My Gospel can also be very helpful. I go to mission prep every Sunday. That has helped me learn so much from how to teach to also just being a good obediant missionary. Another thing I found to be extremely beneficial was to learn a lot about the place I would serve by researching it online. Even if you think you have been called to the most boring place on the planet, you will find something interesting or exciting about your mission area if you look it up. If you can, talk to someone who has already served in your mission area. There's a man in my family ward that served in South Korea way back in the day and he was teaching me some Korean for a while before the holidays came. Chances are they will have great experiences they are willing to share that will help you feel more excited about where you are going to serve, just like this man did with me. 
Not every missionary has a preference about where they are called to serve, but many do. I definitely was one of the people that did. I’ve seen experiences where missionaries received an unanticipated call but still loved their mission. Before I got my mission call, the one place I definitely did not want to serve was somewhere in Asia. Naturally, that is where I was called to serve. I have faith that as I serve the Korean people and devote myself to the work, I will grow to love the people, the language, and the food.
If you are called to serve someplace close to home or somewhere far away, remember that the Lord is sending you there for a reason. Through much prayer and faith, the Lord taught me that. There are people in my mission that the Lord has prepared FOR ME (no one else, just me) to share the gospel with. There may be some trial I had, or just something having to do with me that those people need. So it is my duty to go share it with them.
When all is said and done, where you are going to serve is not as important as how you are going to serve. Every missionary who serves with all their heart, might, mind, and strength will have powerful, life-changing experiences no matter where they go. As Elder Rasband related in his story, the Lord and His chosen servants know where each individual missionary should serve. Wherever you are called to go, know that your mission call came from the Lord. (Same goes for church callings as well-those are inspired too!) 
The things I will experience during my mission will forever bless and change my life and the lives of others; I cannot wait!! 
40 days left! 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

What's your testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ? (Korean) (+playlist)

It's just amazing how missionaries are blessed and can learn a language so quickly. I can't wait till the day where I will be like this returned missionary from Seoul Korea Mission and bare my testimony in Korean. I know it'll be hard. I struggled just learning french in high school, but I have faith that the Lord will strengthen me and give me the help I need to understand and learn quickly. It may not be easy but it will all be worth it. That's going to be my motto from here on out.
Haha I watched the Best Two Years movie the other day and this part made me laugh:
I know for sure I'm going to be saying that when I get to South Korea haha.
By the way, if you haven't seen this movie you should definitely see it. One of my absolute favorite LDS made films. Well that and The RM. Kirby Heyborne is just hilarous.
Anywho... I'm excited to learn Korean. It may not be the easiest language to learn but as long as I can laugh off my mistakes and just try then I'll do fine. I know it'll be super difficult, but I want to do it.
Just to be able to teach the people in South Korea of Christ in their own language bares witness of D&C 90:11. I'm excited to share the gospel and be serving the Lord. You have no idea how excited I am to just focus on serving Him for once. To do that for a whole year and a half!? That may sound crazy to some but I'm super excited. I love my Savior, and I know that serving a mission will only bring me closer to Him.

42 days left...