August 3, 2016




Elder George


FAMILY!! It's ssooo good to talk to you all again!

Alright, first let me start off with some items of business. The Seniors have officially graduated. They left yesterday morning. The super cool one that does crossfit from Southern California told me if I go to BYU to hit him up at his box he trains at called Crossfit Vitruvius. I'm not gonna lie, I felt honored. hahaha. But anyways, we get new missionaries in here today!! In fact, there are 44 new mandarin missionaries coming in. That's split between the two zones, but I honestly have NO idea where everyone's gonna go. Apparently, one of the new elders in my zone is going to play football for Stanford after the mission. HA! What a blessing I have my Stanford shirt here with me to rep my broken dreams. I wonder how long I can trick him into believing that I'm going to go there in two years...

So the best feeling here is when you walk out of a lesson with an investigator floating on cloud 9 and you and your comp were totally in tune and the Spirit led the conversation. Yeah this has happened like only once or twice so far, but it really is special. One time this happened, we were talking about the Book of Mormon and bearing testimony of it and our "Buddhist" investigator started crying. I mean, it could've been allergies or whatever but since I was feeling the Spirit, my money is on the Holy Ghost being the cause of her tears. It's also way cool when you're sitting in a lesson and you're praying super hard that Heavenly Father will help me know what to say and share and the scripture(s) I studied that morning come to my mind and it just fits in perfectly.

Thursdays are Violin Thursdays. Or at least last Thursday was. The craziest thing. Elder Van Slooten, the one with MAD violin skills throws down a sick riff, which in and of itself is crazy cool (you can rent violins that the MTC has). But to make it even better: Elder Yu, the little "Asian" elder in my district, can legit BREAK-DANCE!! WHAT???!!! hahahaha. No joke, the music just couldn't restrain him and he takes his tie off and starts going at it. Like REAL spinning-on-the-head-type break-dancing! hahahaha. Much respect!

I love Elder George. He gives the longest prayers in zhongwen EVER. hahaha. Also, I gotta shout out to dad for letting me have his ugly fat tie for fat-tie Tuesday. Everybody, even the sisters, were commenting on it. haha. Mine was easily the nastiest tie in the zone. People couldn't believe you wore that for your wedding engagement pics! haha.

I legit dream in Chinese. Well, to be more exact, I dream in Chinglish because my vocab is really small. But it's like I dream of being in class again with my teacher saying stuff over and over and over. I wake up and my thoughts are in Chinese. All chinese. hahaha. Even in my sleep I can't escape it! Just leave me to dream....Imagine Dragons is going through my head right now. If you know why, you're awesome. If not, you're still awesome. Also, I'll have times where I have to remind myself what the English word is. Can you say "progress"? I can't yet in Chinese, but baby steps.

K, I'm not really a choir boy, ya know? But I've gone to choir with my district every practice since being here. The choir director is absolutely incredible. His sense of humor is so awesome, but what's even cooler is the soberness about it. Like, he makes us all laugh our heads off at one moment, then the next he ties it into some super sweet spiritual experience. Let me leave you with a thought I got from choir this week: we sang Lead, Kindly Light in last night's devotional. The choir director told us kind of the history about the guy who wrote it and its kind of symbolic reference to the Savior. I mean, who do you think the "Kindly Light" is? This song is basically us submitting to God's will, no matter what it is. "Lead, Kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom...the night is dark and I am far from home, lead thou me on! Keep thou my feet, I do not ask to see the distant scene -one step enough for me." Fitting, right? But then the last verse: "So long thy power hath blest me sure it still will lead me on o'er moor and fen, o'er crag and torrent, 'till the night is gone." Lead Thou Me On!!! I know Christ will and does lead us. He might ask us to do hard things, but I testify that he is with us every step of the way.

Love you all!! Fight on!

Elder Barker


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