I am Elder Jake Rose, and I am currently serving in the Tonga Nuka'alofa mission. I left to the MTC January 5, 2011 and will arrive back to my home in Utah in two quick years.
This is my story and the stories of the people of Tonga.
Hey everyone! It's been a couple weeks! First off thanks for all the emails! I loved them! They mean alot to me! They were very good thank you! Since we last talked. I've read D&C, Pearl of Great Price, and Our Heritage from cover to cover. They were all a very big growing experience for me! I learned alot reading through them! Like the third prophet died in kaysville which happens to be where my home is. and the first primary was started in farmington which is the town over. Those are good books! I'll go over some quick highlights over the last couple weeks! Well i've completed 7 months on the mission. Um...wow that's fast haha as usual. Last Pday was full of a zone conference from 10-5:30. Got to play some basketball! Man it was good! First like competition basketball i've played since i've been here, which is was tongan style so more like streetball but felt good to break some ankles again and make tongans laugh at making some look like they don't know what just happened ;) realized that the basketball court really is a sanctuary where i can just let go of my stresses and relax and have fun. It was much needed. Made a post mission plan of what i want to do with my life. First time i've every really done that in at least some detail. Got kevins package he sent april 8th, went through tongan post may 7 but for some reason i didn't get it til august 13. haha but it was all in one piece, everything in it. i got some letters on the 14th, Dear elders from ken sent mar 17, merrit may 23 and 2 other letters sent in march from other mission friends haha. But the big update over the last 2 weeks was definitely yesterday. my 10th baptism of the mission. A lady we taught a little while back but just barely was able to do her baptism. From the beginning she's been the person that i think has been the most ready out of all 10 so far. Well yesterday morning we got to do her baptism. I really felt the spirit there. Of course it helped that she was crying cause when other people cry, kinda get's to me, haha a quick thought, once i bore my testimony in church back home and i got a little emotional and my bishop said jake i didn't know you were a softy haha, so i guess i'm a softy. anyway, back to the main story. She was crying the whole program, we took a picture together before the actually ordinance. Everything went pretty much perfect. I think it was the first time we didn't have to worry or have problems with the baptism font haha. But i got in the font, offered my hand to help her down the steps, like i do with every lady we baptize, but she was the first one to actually take it, good thing too because she kinda slipped but didn't fall and baptize herself before i could because i helped her stay up. But then we explained how to do everything and then said everything good and baptized Venisi Kautai. After she came up out of the water she stood for a second and just looked really happy. I went in the bathroom to change and i guess i just really took the time to feel the spirit and think of the great work that had just happened. i almost cried. But just seeing so much joy from someone because of the gospel was amazing. You could just see it in her tear filled eyes. The feeling i had of just bringing another precious soul unto Christ and this church was undescribable at that moment. I could almost just say i felt the lords happiness. It was just a very awesome experience. Then later in the day we went to a birthday of a 1 yr old (you should see these first birthday celebrations they are crazy, you'd think the jazz won the championship or something ;)) but venisi was there and when we left we said by to her and she shook my hand and did the tongan kiss on the cheek thing and said "thank you, God bless you" it was one of the most sincere thank you's that one could possibly here. It was touching to me. She will be a great saint. Well i think that's about it on highlights for the last week! A couple other things. First off a question came up. Someone asked. If we lived with God in the spirit world how do we live with him in the celestial kingdom? Is it the same place? If anyone has any answers for the i'd like to hear! Last thing, challenge for the week. I encourage you to give some more. On your next tithing slip, donate some to every cause on the slip if you feel you are able if not, that's okay just do what you can. But that's the challenge for the week! Sorry this wasn't longer but i hope you all enjoyed it. It's a rainy day here in Tonga. It was raining way hard earlier. Don't think i've seen it rain that hard ever. Anyway i hope you are all well! I love you all and miss you so much! Thanks for all the support and help you give to me!
Hey everyone! Loved all your emails! Sorry wasnt' able to do this last week! I yet again dont have lots of time so this will be quick again. Definitely been a hard transfer but we are doin good still. Just trusting the lord and doing my best! That's what life is about right! It was quite the relief for me to get to read some emails today! Really needed it! A couple highlights from the past weeks! I've had 3 baptisms and expecting a couple more this transfer. Some people are committed just need to figure out the date they'll do it. had to speak in sacrament some more which went alright. got a few new scars on my right foot, had some spankings from the tongan missionaries and spanked some in return haha. I got a package from dad and grandma and grandpa rose. That was awesome! It was missent to sydney austrailia but i got it now! Thank you for that! Met DJ Rose. He keeps trying to figure out if we are family haha his last name really is rose and he's a popular DJ out here. I've had to teach a lesson in district meeting. Just tryin my best everyday. This language is still such a struggle but, i'm doin what i can. It's really hard to hear and comprehend. I can read and comprehend pretty well but listening is totally different. any advice on how to improve that would be nice. Good luck to my buddies Casey tanner and Mike mac on thier missions! They are both in the MTC. Way proud of them! Congratulations to my sister cortnie. I will be an Uncle again! Well the thing or challenge i guess this week for you is I want you to really think about what the purpose of life is. Think hard about it. If you need help you can find it in Joshua 24:15 in the Bible or Alma 34:32 in the Book of Mormon. Just think about life and take a step back and see what your purpose is and your goals in life are. Are they inline with Gods? Just something i thought about. Really can help you improve your life if you do i promise. Well hope that helped you all. Thank you all so much for all the love and support. Hopefuly my next area i can email more consistent and get more time. I love you all and miss you like crazy! A mission is definitely one of the most amazing, unforgettable, molding (for the better), life changing (for the better), hard (for the better) experiences. You find out alot about who you truely are. I know God lives and is real and loves us. I read a scripture last night in DC it's when joseph smith is in jail and he's praying. God talks to him and says my son your tribulation will be but a small moment and if you endure it well thou wilt be exalted on high. I was just thinking, well, if life is hard, straight through all the way, life is but a small moment compared to forever. Just kinda motivation to always just do your best even when it's hard and easy to just do the wrong thing. We can know if we do our best and just endure it well, we will be happy forever. If you get persecuted for doing the right thing, so what, if you really believe in God, you can know he's pleased with you and your joy will be greater than those who persecute you. Just do your best everyone. I love you all!
Love Elder Rose