Here are the answers to your questions.
Question #1: How do you like dinner appointments? Is it hard to eat all the different types of food they put before you?
Dinner appointments are most always something delicious and not crazy. I enjoy the food and am not bothered by that. The part I don't like is that it takes a lot of time out of our day. Often it takes half an hour to get to the house then we're there for an hour and a half, so meh.
Question #2: Tell us about your new companion. Where is he from? What is he like?
Elder Mahendran is from Germany but both his parents are Sri Lankan, wooohoo. When President Patch told me he was Sri Lankan and from Germany it reminded me of my favorite missionary in the mission, Elder Paramalingam who is Sri Lankan and is from Switzerland and speaks Swiss German. Elder Mahendran is about 6'1" and awesome. He is really willing to be obedient and work hard and has some good creativity. I am excited to teach him what I know and watch and learn myself. I love new missionaries because they don't know a lot and so rely on the Spirit. That is something I need to be a bit better at at times.
Question #3: What things have you focused on as you began training a brand new missionary this week?
I have gotten back to the foundation: Obedience and Diligence. As we use all our time to serve others and humbly obey we will be entrusted with the Spirit. I look back to how Elder Sikahema trained me and "try" to emulate the same things that he did. I look back and see the influence that he had on me and know that I have a great chance to set this missionary off right. It is fun explaining why we do everything and why certain things are important because as I testify of principles it strengthens my own testimony.
Matt, I already have all the beef, I checked on the scale this morning and I weigh a whopping 135! Don't worry, it all comes from muscle, you know me.
I have kept the streak of non-white companions, oh yeah! This week has been so great, I love the work we are doing and the wonderful ideas that Elder Mahendran has.
Last night we went to a part member family. The husband has been inactive since age 12 and the wife is a Buddhist from........Sri Lanka! Fancy that. Strange how it works. We will see them again on Wednesday and I envision the wife being baptized within the next couple of months. They didn't really care about religion before they had kids but now they want their kids to grow up with good values. I can't wait to teach them about the Plan of Salvation and tell stories of how raising kids in the Gospel sets them on the right path. I can tell about that from experience.
This week I am going to try a new style of finding every day. Elder Mahendran and I are going to do all we can to make finding exciting and to be led by the Spirit. I love planning things that will make work more effective and exciting. Still, my favorite approach is when I step up to someone and say, "I know that Jesus Christ died for you." The Spirit immediately comes and even when people reject us I'm confident that they will remember that and it could be a seed planted.
I know that the Book of Mormon is true. I have received revelation from it in my times of need. When I start the day by reading it, it opens the door for the Spirit to testify through me throughout the day.
Recently I have come to a greater knowledge of the truth of the Bible, emphasis on the New Testament. I read it and can't see why people are so confused, and it reaffirms the truth of the Gospel. I am so happy to share the Atonement of Jesus Christ with all in my path for I know that nothing else I could do would be better. I pray that people will be willing to do as it says in Alma 32:27 and allow room for the seed.
I love you guys,