Monday, December 28, 2015

Weeks 73 and 74 - December 21, 2015

Subject:  Merry Christmas 
I feel very comforted and grateful for the gift of eternal families.  What a blessing.  The knowledge that we have of the Savior Jesus Christ, as well as His Father, is truly remarkable.  As this last week has passed, I am still blown away at the fact, that the knowledge of just knowing who God is,  is such a blessing.  This last week I have been able to meet with a handful of new investigators and a few of them had personal ideas of who "God" is but don't really know or have knowledge of Him.  They believe in the Deity but don't believe that it is God, nor do they believe that prayer is a way of communication.
The sentence, "I believe in God" and the sentence "I have a knowledge of my belief in God" are very different.  We can believe, but if we don't have a knowledge, our belief can become as sand.
I truly believe that it is through our experience by which we gain knowledge.  We can go to Harvard, Yale, Stanford  or any of the top schools in the world, but until we have experienced for ourselves, we cannot have an asurety of that knowledge or belief which brings me to the importance of the special promise given in the Book of Mormon:  To Read, Pray, and Ponder upon the word and gain personal experience or witness that it is another testament of Jesus Christ.  What a blessing.
As I was reading in 2 Nephi Chapter 2 this morning about the fall of Adam and Eve, I was grateful for another strong witness of the Fall and for Lehi's teachings.  Seeing it from the same story but different view.  I was able to apply things in my life and compare a lot of things that have come to pass throughout my service to the Lord.
I am putting all my efforts here.  Focused on the Lord.  I am striving to change.  I hope that I will be at the top of the mountain on the last day of my mission.  I am climbing and am not going to stop.  Fighting everyday to change and see my weakness with a focus on the Savior, always staying positive with my strengths.
I have also been thinking a lot about our life's purpose and the true meaning of Christmas.  I am trying to do all things unto Christ and create a stronger relationship with Him.
I love you.
I am thankful for everything and my family
I dont have much time left here in Korea, and I cannot wait to be reunited with my family.

Elder Cole Thomas Johnson
 On Christmas Day, Elder Johnson's family was thrilled to have a call coming from Korea from their son.  
 Elder Johnson was just as excited on the other end of the connection to see his family, including his grandparents.  It was the perfect Christmas gift for everyone!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Week 72 - December 7, 2015


Whoa.. Watch out!  I think mom's gratitude is going to send tsunamis across the oceans! Mom, I am so humbled to hear of all your experiences and cherished testimonies you are gaining at this time.  I feel that you as well as each of the members of our family are serving our own kind of missions, in our own kind of ways.  It's interesting that as we accept the Savior in our life, He begins to enlighten and reveal to us the plan that our Heavenly Father has for us.  I can't imagine how God works.  His ways are mysterious, but He asks us to follow His Only Begotten Son and by doing so, He has promised to lead us on that path back to him.  The Knowledge that we have, (not just the Belief) but the knowledge we have of the Resurrected and Living Christ, is truly remarkable. 

I have been thinking a lot this week about my thoughts and my beliefs.  I have asked myself a question that formed as I was reading Elder Rasband's talk this week.  Are my beliefs just beliefs or are they true Knowledge.  It's one thing to believe in something and it's one thing to have a knowledge of something.  As I have been pondering this throughout the week, I  have come to the conclusion that before my mission a lot of my belief was just "belief."  As I have been out on my mission and experienced the Gospel in my own way, It has become a sure, pure, and precious Knowledge. 

(The Korean Thanksgiving feast Elder Johnson and his companion made.)

I have also been thinking a lot on what it means to Become One.
We focus a lot about that in our mission.  We focus on the importance of being one with the Lord.  Our Companionship.  Our districts.  Zones.  And as a mission.

As I have been thinking about this, I have been led to the thought of our Johnson Family.  How special our family and extended family is.  I am amazed at the amount of "oneness" we have within our family.  Our family does a great job with being one.  And I truly believe that it comes from living a Gospel Centered life.  Centered on Jesus Christ.  I have seen families while growing up and throughout my mission that don't have that "oneness," and it has been sad.  I know that the Gospel of Jesus gives anything to anyone, if they will just live according to it.

This week, we have seen lots of miracles!  Met lots of new investigators and have been deeply blessed!  Serious!  Tons of good things are going on right now.  We are Finding.  Teaching and it is leading to baptism.  We have lots and lots of potentials, and we were so close to setting a baptismal date yesterday for the day that Ty left on his mission--December 19!  The person is the guy from China that I have talked about a little.  We met him through a fast, and he is progressing well!  He leaves back to China this month, so we don't really know what to do!  He will eventually come back.  We are just jot sure when!  Anyway, he has a few things to overcome, and he can be baptized.

Cole's new comp Elder Jung Ingyu

We have seen lots of other miracles as we have fasted this week as well.  One of the days we fasted, it was snowing and freezing!  It was like one of five people we were able to start conversations with, and he had had the thought as he walked our the door that day, "Today I want to make a foreigner friend."  Well, sure enough, because we followed the prompting to talk to him and get off at a later bus stop, we were able to meet him and he has great interest.  Lots of time and wants to come to church this week!

I love you and hope you have a safe week!  Plant your seeds of guided gratitude and let it grow!  Mine is starting to grow slowly.  This week I have been extremely grateful for Change

Change to Become.

Elder Cole Thomas Johnson

PACE Trust(ing) in the Source

(Elder Johnson got his pre-Christmas presents.  He was pretty excited!)