Monday, July 17, 2017

Now Let Us Rejoice in the Day of Salvation

 



I don't think anyone really understands how much fun my mission is. We are in the only 8 elder district. We are in very high populated areas, which means fire inviting for hours every day. We are preparing for a temple. Baptisms are a weekly event. We all love to work and have fun. The 7/11 next to the church knows all of us cause we all stop there several times a day and we also magnetted a missionary nametag to this cardboard cutout of a famous person here and everyone thinks its funny. Anywho, I'm just really enjoying my time here and don't want to leave Minburi ever. There are too many people here I love and don't want to leave, many who are not yet baptized.

This past week has built upon my witness of the Savior's Atonement. It becomes more and more real as I apply it more to my life as well as so many other's lives. I see it's reality, and it brings me so much joy seeing the light it brings to people's lives. พ่อเรียน is one of those examples. Just a couple months ago he hated life and family and the world and just sat and yeah. In just 2 short months, his life has been completely changed around. His number one motive in life has become his family and his desire to be with them forever. He loves Christ and is always watching Bible Videos at work. I could say so much about this amazing man. He has brought me so much joy. Seeing him smile is literally touches my heart. He is my best friend. He is preparing to baptize his daughter next week who will turn 8 years old. I am so happy.

Minburi is finally getting going. Our 4 elders here are working hard, and seeing so much good happening. Our influence is being felt everywhere and the members are seeing their potential and this place is about to explode I am way happy.

Our amazing Brother Bee is always saying that 'he's a priest now, he has to share the Gospel.' He invites all of his customers in his job as a taxi driver. His number one desire in life is to serve others. He is always saying that money doesn't matter to him anymore, he is happy now. But he is still okay on money haha. He is going to be an amazing leader in the church one day. He has another job as a constructing manager. He's driven us around and shown us many very beautiful buildings he was in charge of. It's impressive, but even more impressive is his leadership and participation in the church already.

The Atonement is real. I have witnessed it over and over. This week as I have focused my studies on understanding more the pain and suffering Jesus went through, I have felt more the power of the Atonement. I have desired more to share the message of the Atonement. It has brought me so much joy seeing it WORK in God's Children. I have been addicted to the song 'Now Let Us Rejoice' all week as we have seen so many people become better. I really do rejoice in the day of salvation for these people that I love.

We had a week straight of floods but then this week it was just really hot everyday. I'm not gonna talk about the heat because it hurts and I don't wanna sound like I'm exaggerating haha.

I wanna challenge you to not just study the Atonement, but try to understand more what Christ went through. It will strengthen your relationship with Him and your desire to serve Him.

I feel like a few of the million reasons I was called to Thailand is to completely build a hatred against sin. Specifically idleness. It makes me so sad how people just do not do stuff. My favorite word is Potential, and I preach Potential so soooo much here because potential is important. I got too many thoughts on this topic haha.

Ask yourself everyday:

Am I going to be amazed or amazing?

Have an amazing week. You are good.

ຮັກເຈົາເດີ 💙

--
เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน
ແອວເດີຮິກກິນສ້ນ

Monday, July 10, 2017

Believer

I've shared this before, but I have done it again. I listened to the April 1998 General Conference this past week. It is the greatest one, and it is also the first one to occur after Elder Higginson was brought to this world. I recommend it to everyone. 

What this transfer has taught me so far is to be a problem solver. Heavenly Father has given me hundreds of a wide variety of situations in which I have to be a decision maker and go forth in Faith. God is helping me to build confidence in myself, handle serious situations, and also help my influence reach out to others. This is very good haha.

Another great opportunity this transfer has given me is my amazing companion, Elder Xaiyavong. It seems as if his whole mission and all of his worries and difficulties have gathered up and led to this point, where we are companions. His Faith, his family, girlfriend, learning english, studies, inviting, teaching, being a missionary, many things have been difficult. Some think that the reason we were put together was just so that I could learn Laotian from him. But I know for sure, we were put together for me to be able to help him. We have set goals and a plan for him in everything. We have been diligent at it. And the effects are finally showing as I have seen this last week. We know God is helping us because of our planning, and diligence in our goals. Elder Xaiyavong has experienced miracles in learning english and this transfer has increased his skills probably faster than if he were in an english speaking mission. His family and girlfriend situations are doing better. He is inviting and teaching with effectiveness. I have also been teaching him piano and how to type which I have tied in to help him learn english faster as well. I've got lots of strategies going haha. At the beginning of the transfer, and through much of the transfer he was really having a hard time studying. So we read Preach My Gospel Chapter 2 together and we set a plan. We read in PMG to 'focus your studies on increasing your relationship with Jesus Christ.' We set goals, made a plan, and got to work. That same day he got caught up in these spiritual bursts and could not stop studying and to this day really cherishes his study time. I love seeing others become better.

I think this is a good truth for everyone who struggles to get their daily study in... focus on your relationship with Jesus Christ. Beginning with this will cause you to ponder on different questions, which will then give you the desire to and the plan to get a good study schedule going. I know that we must do our part to feel close to Him. It is off our desire and our effort whether we will personally know him or not. As we come to understand and love the Savior more, we will feel of His great and eternal power. We will feel of His Atonement. I have so so much more to go in this process, but I can confidently say that I Know the Savior lives. One thing really special to me is that I Know He understands me. He knows me. He knows all of us. I love Him.

I have been so blessed to be surrounded by such amazing people. These people are a great portion of the testimony I have of the Savior. Most may not get a chance to see the Savior in this life, but we can truly see Him in others. In His true Disciples we can see Him and His influence.

So one question that is really similar to a very common one I have had in my mind a lot this week is...

How do you Faith?

I've thought of it like this because Faith should be a verb, and as I've thought about this question, the typical answers come to my head... "repentance, baptism, action, etc." But beyond that, Faith applies to everything, not just the Gospel. In one of my favorite devotionals, Craig Manning speaks of Faith as it is applied in sports. Faith comes before you take any step, shot, hit, anything. How much Faith we have in our action, will contribute to the outcome of our action. I can testify of this, because I played golf. Golf is the the greatest sport which requires more of your mind than any other sport. Golf requires true Faith to succeed. I have found that when I golf with Faith in myself; no pride, just confidence... that that is when I play the best. Faith begins with how you talk to yourself. Faith in your action does determine the measure of the outcome. Anywho, as I teach God's children, I help them take many many actions. But as I focus on developing their Faith in the actions, and in Jesus Christ...the outcome always comes out better. PMG Chapter 3 and the lesson about the Gospel has 6 points to cover. They are:
1 through Jesus Christ and His Atonement, we may be cleansed from sin
2 Faith
3 Repentance
4 Baptism
5 Holy Ghost
6 Endure to the End

But many many missionaries don't teach or forget step number one. As we have focused on that number one point and developed a stronger Faith in it, as well as other's Faith in it...the outcomes have been amazing and it has been a testimony to me that it is true and of God. Anything you do, especially in the Gospel...have Faith in yourself and what you are doing. & the Savior.

Anyways theres my tangent which makes no sense. We've had a great week. We have watched that video by the DI a million times. It's called A Piano's Purpose. I love it. I'm working for them soon.

The reason I've had these thoughts about Faith in yourself is because we've been helping many people who need help overcoming something or just need help having confidence in their lives or many things like that. This can be done by Faith.

One thing way funny is when I play chess or basketball or ping pong, I'll sometimes say 'askerisk.' Which you understand what that means but everyone else in this world doesn't and its so hard to explain it for some reason. It just makes sense to me, and us. So those of you who read this and know what it means in our family, try to explain it to someone... then try to explain it in another language and see what I'm trying to do here haha. If you have a very simple definition please tell me.
 I love my family. Stoked to destroy you in basketball again soon.

Also Happy Birthday the most beloved person ever. I love you mom. 😊💙Thank you for my life and all you do and you. *sent July 13, 2017

(Her number is 801-839-6331, get her a nice gift and a happy birthday message everyone)

I love you 💙

God gave you style and gave you grace
and put a smile upon your face

go do stuff

--
เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน
ແອວເດີຮິກກິນສ້ນ

Monday, July 3, 2017

doubt not fear not

Monday, June 26, 2017

ປາດິຫານ





Tuesday, June 20, 2017

ແສງສະຫວ່າງ

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

ຄວາມຮັກ

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Restored Truths

Hey there! 😊

This transfer and week have just been the greatest and I am the happiest. My companion and I keep saying to everyone we're both greenies training eachother cause we don't ever want to leave this companionship or area or Thailand. Its thee best. Elder Bastian is so great.

We had the lovely opportunity to have Elder Cook come visit our mission. He spoke to all the missions and bore sacred testimony of his witness of the Savior. I feel like that moment was life changing for many people. I am so blessed to have had part in that. I love and sustain all the leaders of the church. They truly are amazing. My love for Elder Cook after that meeting has grown so much.

Before that meeting we were all taking a picture together. When Elder Cook arrived I also saw another familiar face from home... Brother Tyler Swain. I felt like I was dreaming, same as when I first saw Elder Fillmore. After the picture Brother Swain called me down and we gave eachother a hug and then he kissed my face saying "this is from mom." Haha. I sure got lots of questions and things said to me afterwards since the entire mission saw. Brother Swain is such a great guy I was way happy to see him.

That night was a big meeting. There were so many people from all over the country there and I was able to see all my fans from all of my previous areas haha. I didn't think anyone would remember me but instead we were caught up taking pictures and talking to people and getting lots of gifts for hours. I love everyone I have met here so much and miss all my last areas for reals. Thailand has got really amazing people.

Friday one of my friends from Kamphaeng Phet, Brother อ๊อฟ hung out with us all day. He helped us teach and invite and we had a lot of fun before he left back up north that night. On friday I ran into Brother Tuck on the streets. I was exhausted from inviting that morning and sat down for a bit but as he walked by something made me get up and go talk to him. How I invited him was definitely from the Spirit because I had never invited like that before but he happily agreed to meet us later that night. 

After teaching Brother Tuck the restoration (and loving it!) we asked him if he had any questions. All he had to say was that since he was really little, he has been a person that rarely dreams. Not very much at all, but every time he does dream it has always foretold something in the future. After giving us a few interesting and neat examples, he said that when he was 8 years old... he had a dream that "i quit my job, and two days later ran into Elder Higginson, and that he shared me a message that I needed to follow." So yeah talk about running into pre-mortal life homies! He knew me before we even met. It was way cool. He loves everything about the church and basically keeps all the commandments and is way stoked to be baptized.

I love being a missionary. 

We had a super awesome Zone Conference on Monday and have started applying what we learned and it has brought us alot of success these last two days.

I initiated a (friendly) key indicator contest between our companionship and the ZL's haha and these last two weeks have been very successful. Proving that competition can be a very good thing.

I didn't feel like a successful missionary for a while on my mission. But once I started to really apply the principle taught in Mosiah 18:20. As I have focused on repentance and faith, that is when I have seen miracles and people's lives changing. Faith, and especially repentance is how we are able to สำผัด to God's love. Repentance works. I have felt it in my life and seen it change so many other people's lives. One lesson on a switchoff, an investigator asked 'what does the word witness mean?' and I compared it to someone climbing climbing the tallest mountain ever, but only one person sees it happen. So that one person is a 'witness' as he tells the world about this amazing feat. I am a witness of Christ. I have seen the amazing things he has done to me and especially to all those I have the sacred opportunity of teaching. I know He lives. I know He loves us. 

Last principle I've taught myself: It's okay to feel successful, but never be satisfied.

I love the Lord.

I love you! 💙

Elder Higginson

Up&Up&Up
ศักยภาพ


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เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน

Sunday, May 7, 2017



Transferred to MinBuri

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Plan of Salvation and Repentance

The Plan of Salvation is so special and important. We can understand this great plan by reading in 2 Nephi, specifically chapter 2. This chapter is very well known and quoted very often. But as I study it over and over and ponder and pray over it, I have found that there are many hidden and deep messages. The chapter begins very strategically in verse 2: 'thou knowest the greatness of God; and he shall consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain." Through this chapter, and through our lives we learn that opposition, when handled correctly, always makes us better. Makes us stronger, smarter, gives us experience, and especially opportunities. We learn that this opposition is part of God's Plan of Eternal Happiness. Also that righteousness, happiness, and even God could not be without opposition.

"Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself." The gift of free-agency is truly a blessing we should be thankful for. Whether we use it for good or bad, we could not grow and progress without it. "Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by [good or bad]. Because of this gift and because of enticings, Adam and Eve did something necessary, but against God's commandments. And now, "they have brought forth children; yea, even the family of all the earth." One by one all of us, God's children, came here for our opportunities. Our opportunity to "choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death..." And now, my beloved family, "I would that ye should look to the great Mediator, and hearken unto His great commandments; and be faithful unto his words, and choose eternal life, according to the will of His Holy Spirit."

This is wonderful, but I and everyone is mortal. Where is hope if we have done wrong but desire good? "Wherefore it must needs be for an infinite Atonement..." "And the Messiah cometh in the fulness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from [sin]" "For the Atonement satisfieth the demands of justice,' for those who follow Him. "O how great the goodness of our God, who prepareth a way for our escape [from sin]." I love the Savior.

"And because they are redeemed... they have become free forever, knowing good from evil; to act for themselves." God's purpose is our happiness and for us to receive all of His blessings; including Eternal Happiness, and Family. As I study, ponder, and pray about His plan... I have more Faith and Hope in Him. It makes sense, and it is good. He is our loving Father with perfect intentions. "O how great the plan of our God!" 

Very important is knowing what we must do to take part in this plan, as well as developing a loving relationship with our Father and Christ. This is achieved by learning and following the Gospel of Jesus Christ. But once Baptism and the Holy Ghost have been received, there are only two things we can do continuously the rest of our lives to come closer to Christ. Faith always first, and then the action...Repentance. Repentance has always been very central to God's plan since the beginning. "According to the will of God, that they might repent..." Repentance is our opportunity to use the Atonement. Partaking of Christ's Atonement is central to our purpose in this life.

So if we don't sin, we cannot fully become better and perfected through Jesus Christ and His Atonement. Sin is necessary, but like I said in the beginning, 'only if opposition is handled correctly.' Repentance, and never turning back.

 One last important blessing and purpose of this life is learning to be self-reliant. That is the goal of free-agency. In Doctrine and Covenants 58:26'For behold, it is not meet that I (God) should command in all things; for he that is compelled in all things, the same is a slothful and not a wise servant; wherefore he receiveth no reward.' We are supposed to rely on God, but also making good decisions by ourself is how we can become like Heavenly Father.

Choose to repent. Christ atoned for us so that we could repent.

Anyways I've just got a million thoughts going through my head. I'll be done. 

Read 2 Nephi chapters 2-9

We had a way good week! Our district baptized 4 wonderful people. We also got transfer calls last night. We thought since our district did so well this last transfer that not much would change, but all but one Elder is leaving. Elder McKay is headed up to Udorn. Elder Wankier to my greenie area Bangkhen. And I am going to be opening a new area with an Elder Bastian just outside of Bangkok in Minburi. I am way excited, but I will be missing Ubon and this district and the members so much. I love this place and was looking forward to being here quite a bit longer but there are other plans for us. I love Thailand.

I love you 💙



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เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน

Thursday, April 27, 2017



Dare

Thursday, April 13, 2017

personal prayer

Solid week in preparing people for their first covenant with God. Switchoffs. Meeting German doctors working with leprosy in Laos. Commitment giving. Drama in the ward. Love. Teaching and Inviting. Zone Conference. Friends. Getting an investigator married. Our RC getting a random person a desire to be baptized. Traveling 16 hours to the mission office and back. The Plan of True Happiness. Faith and Faith in yourself. Power Statements. Buddhism. The Book of Mormon.

I love my mission.

I have realized greatly the importance of commitments. Commitments are invitations for action. Faith requires action. Acting on Faith is how you build Faith and receive more personally your own witness. The more difficult the action, decision, or test... the stronger your testimony becomes. So this week as we have focused on giving meaningful commitments, we have seen one of the most successful weeks ever. Have Faith, build Faith, test Faith, see miracles. It is the neatest thing when someone follows through on difficult commitments. that is when I start to see their own person testimony in Jesus Christ begin. One of the most important commitments we are all given the opportunity to do, by our Savior Jesus Christ, is Repentance. Teaching a very Buddhist people, who believe sins are with them forever, has given me a new perspective to Repentance; and especially that people really can change for better. The simple miracle of Repentance can sometimes be difficult to understand. But as we bear testimony of the joy and realness of Repentance, through the Holy Ghost, people both desire and feel of its truth before even trying it. These people usually will want to meet again really soon and will have an eagerness to fulfill any other commitment you give to them. They'll show up with this new light and peace with them. They will have just experienced one of the miracles Christ offers to everyone. They're Faith in the Savior and His Atonement is magnified and they are committed to follow Him.

I love the Lord. I am so humbled by this sacred opportunity from Him to help others know Him and be changed by Him. One of my biggest desires as a missionary is to change lives. My goals as a missionary are to change the lives' of everyone I meet, to change my own life for better, but also to change my Family. I need to do better at this. One important thing I've greatly learned as a missionary is the importance of Family. Being separated from you physically, in a land where family is rarely seen as a necessary thing, has brought me closer to you spiritually. My love for you and desire to be with you forever has become more real. The plaque we see in almost every mormon's house which reads: FAMILIES ARE FOREVER has become one of the most powerful statements in my life. My desire for your Faith has increased greatly. And as I know you have got great Faith already, I want to give you a commitment. Just a simple little one. Every day these next 7 days (and so on if you desire): pray, study 5-10 minutes on Sincere Repentance, and then Repent.

I love the beauty and simplicity of the Thai language. It may be considered one of the hardest languages in the world, but once you understand it you realize it actually is a very basic and simple language. One neat translation is the word for Repentance. การกลับใจ. This word's literal translation is 'returning heart.'

Return your heart to Christ. Everyone sins every day. This is our 'turning' our hearts away from Him. Let us return our hearts to Him each day. And through this action and commitment keeping, our Faith grows rapidly as we feel His Love & Joy in us. And as our Faith, Hope, Love, and testimony grows, so does our desire. Our desire to learn more, to pray more, to Repent more. But most of all, our desire to Love HIm and be like Him. I know Repentance is real. It is our commitment to action we must take part in. Given to us by our merciful, loving Heavenly Father.
I love you 💙

sweet disposition


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เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Pictures from The Land of Smiles.

Thank goodness for the mission mom (Sister Johnson) and nice people in Thailand that post pictures on Facebook.




Monday, April 3, 2017

Riding Elephants

Hey there! Sorry had a way busy P-Day RIDING ELEPHANTS and had no time to email. I will get you pictures and an update on April 14th; our next P-Day. I love you sooooo much (:

I'm printing your emails so I'll read those too (:

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เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน


Monday, March 27, 2017

the lover, the dreamer, and me.

ສະບາຍດີ
It was transfers week. Kind of a slow week but Elder McKay and I will be reigning Ubon for 6 more weeks.
The new Elder who replaced Elder Gremillion is Elder Wannasri. He is sooooo awesome. He is Thai.  It is always good to have more homies around.

March 22, 2017 I opened my call 1 year ago this day.
We taught catholic named Jane. For some reason we are teaching every english speaker and every non-thai person in Ubon. But it is soooo good. We taught her the Restoration and she kept saying 'it all makes so much sense.' And then at the end we bore our testimonies she stopped us and said: \wait, the way you say it... it just feels so good like... it's all true.'
She is awesome. We got her a baptismal date.
I made a list of the variety of nations I have taught on my mission so far.
India, America, Mexico, Switzerland, Cameroon, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Brazil, Hong Kong, Japan, Isle of Man, Vietnam, China, Taiwan, Portugal, Laos, Myanmar, Mongolia, Cambodia, Thailand, etc.
I love Thailand & I love my mission (:
I got my first lighter and pack of cigarettes while teaching a man on the streets and so I offered to help him quit. He gave em. I threw them away no worries.
We also taught a Baptist from India who is way neat. We have a loooooot of investigators from the Seventh Day Adventist church. Some of them are so close and we feel that once one of them finally get baptized that the whole church will collapse and join the True Church!
We also got another Thai Catholic investigator who loves reading the Book of Mormon more than anything.
Teaching lots of real neat people. And most of them are Buddhist if you forgot that Thailand is Buddhist. Way too much haha. Too Buddhist.
Thanks for the loooooove (:
Last thought, was thinking the other night how excited I am to one day have kids who are best friends with mom & dad. That'll be the day.

You be you.
one day we'll find it, 
the rainbow connection
From your Elder Hig เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิก


One thing I've realized is that I have been having companions who have just
had a pretty stressful companion or something like that. Elder Weaver has
had lots of hard companions as well as a few that went home early as he's
told me. Elder Woodbury had just had Elder Brown go home. And Elder McKay
was just with Elder Eaton who went home. Think it's way cool what my
patriarchal blessing says about my Gift of Charity and Love and how I will
become an instrument in the Lord's hands to help uplift spiritual,
emotional, and temporal burdens. That I will help heal the brokenhearted.
All my companions I've gotten along with so well. But it's neat that I've
been able to help 'provide faith and encouragement to others.' And 'through
the Holy Ghost' I have 'known who to help and how to help them.' I love how
it is so easy for me to just get along with everyone. It truly is a
blessing. Anywho, just a thought. Love you Dad!

-- 
*เอ็ลเดอร์ฮิกกินสัน*

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Beautiful Morning

We did good.
 
We started off this week by being invited to go to an elementary school to teach english which was way jammin.

We had basically like a four day switchoff cause of Zone Conference week. The other Elders in our district who live about 2 hours away came over Tuesday night. We had interviews all day with President, Wednesday, then Zone Conference which was good on Thursday, then we switchoffed in the other Elder's area Friday to interview one of their investigators for baptism, and then had a huge Sports Day on Saturday.
This week was so so good but didn't get a whole lot of work in due to meetings and traveling. But it was so good and the Holy Ghost has been so strong.

It's been unbelievably hot, but... it started raining! Way hard last night. Best thing ever taking a shower outside and then falling asleep to rain.
We had a bunch of Sport's tournaments and I took part in the Church Ball tournament which we won by a lot. Had a huge crowd. Met up with Elder Weaver, my trainer, and that was awesome.
2 Nephi 2:25 & Alma 34:32

Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.

For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.
Just had a neat thought about how much joy doing God's Work has brought me. Literally our purpose on this earth is to work. It is a Godly thing and that is why it (should) naturally bring us happiness, especially when it is doing His work. I love it, and I am happy. If you read in Jacob 5 it talks about the laborers and how the Lord labors with us and how we will have joy with the Lord as we labor with Him. Its neat and I can easily testify that it is truth. I can feel my Savior strengthening and guiding. I know He lives, especially because through us, He has changed Sister ทิพย์ life. There is nothing better in this life than fulfilling what He has for you to do. I love being a missionary (:

Also what makes me so so happy is having Sister ทิพย์ help us teach lessons and even come to Ward Missionary meetings because of her desire and Faith. She is amazing. She shares scriptures and recognizes the Spirit and testifies of the truthfulness of Jesus Christ. She is already bringing others closer to Christ, including the missionaries.
Transfers this week, will update you next week.
I love you (: 💙
light

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เอ็ลเดอร์ยอหนขิมบัลล์ฮิกกินสัน
Elder John Kimball Higginson
Thailand, Bangkok Mission