Hello everyone. I am definitely over prepared this talk but that's alright. As I was asked to give a talk, I was also asked to give a talk about the power, something along with the power of prayer. And as I thought about that, in the mission, we pray so much and we see so many miracles. I didn't know what to share because there's so much and I kept thinking about it and trying to figure out what I share. I realized that the times that I grew closer to Jesus Christ and the change I saw in myself the most was when my prayers weren't answered the way I wanted and the miracles didn't come right away. I know that God really does hear us in the end with our prayers. And I'm not really here to teach anything I'm just here to witness that I know that prayer works. Hopefully everyone can get something out of the things Im going to share. There's a quote that I like that I learned my mission and it's "prayer isn't about changing God, It's about changing us," and that really stuck out to me. I heard it around like the middle of my mission.
I just want to begin with a story, when I was a young boy in Korea, I was about five years old and the missionaries came over to our house all of the time. And I was always excited because that was the only time I can see white people. As you know missionaries, they share a message and then they give an invitation at the end. And because we were so young, usually the invitation they gave us was to pray and I took that really serious. So when they left, I would just find a room where no-one was and I closed my eyes and I prayed and I don't remember what I prayed about. But I remember not receiving my answer. And that was like the beginning of my fate crisis as a five-year-old. But God knew the direction of where my soul was going so, he brought back the missionaries and they actually had a lesson about prayer particularly. They answered the question I had. They said, If you have a faith of a mustard seed, you can move mountains. So I thought, oh, that's why it didn't work. I didn't have the faith. So, the next time I went outside, I found the closest mountain I could see and then I closed my eyes and I prayed with faith this time. I was like, my faith has to be bigger than a mustard seed and then Boom Nothing. Nothing happened. And so I went to a puddle of water and I knew the story about walking on water. So, I was like, okay, my faith might be really small but maybe it's enough to walk on water. So I close my eyes and I'm afraid and I jumped into water. My feet just went through the puddle and I was like what is going on? But Luckily, my faith crisis didn't continue. My conclusion was that my faith was really, really small. But now I know that faith isn't measurable and I know why my prayers were not answered then. If the mountain moved the way that I wanted, it would have probably crushed the whole city. And if I could walk on the water, I probably would have jumped into the ocean as my next attempt.
But to continue on I just want to read a scripture In Moroni 7:33. It says," And Christ hath said, if ye will have faith in me, ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me. In other words, if it is the will of God, it will happen, but the will of God also includes God's timing and not ours. At the beginning of my mission, I was really shy. I was so introverted, I didn't know if I could even go on a mission and I just wanted to do my best. There was a lesson that we had and it was actually about a talk called "Faith can move mountains" by Russell M. Nelson, and I absolutely botched it. And my trainer had to take over and he talked the whole lesson. I was very bummed out. All super discouraged. I was like, why am I here? I want to go home and I started praying and my prayer was like something like, "dear Father In hHeaven, please bless me that I can be a better teacher, please bless me that I can be more confident. Please bless me that I can talk by the spirit. I felt like It wasn't helping me and I was really really discouraged. That wasn't a bad prayer. We are encouraged to pray to be a better teacher and to have the spirit with us. But I was missing something. And I was recognizing what God wanted me to learn on his time.
So, this went on for a long time and somewhere along my mission and I'm gonna make this as big as possible. I was put up with a companion that was really hard. The first day we got in the car together, he was very negative and my goal that transfer was to be positive. And I was like, this is going to be a long transfer. But I was willing to do my best and try to help them out. Because the mission, the most important soul is yourself and your companion. And then the friends that you meet. As time went by things started getting really hard. Whenever I cook, he would ask if he could eat my food, which I was fine with. He liked my food. But then I washed all the dishes and then he wouldn't want to work. He didn't want to talk to people and I had to do all the planning's by myself. And he did participates in teaching but he taught the whole thing by himself. So this was really hard for me and it got to a point where I really wanted to go home. I remember I waited for God to change my circumstances. I prayed to God, "Please God help me change my companion and it wasn't helping. So one day I was praying really hard and I felt like I couldnt continue. Now, I felt very unhappy on my mission. I remember my older brother's homecoming talk when he talked about charity and I opened up to scripture Moroni 7 verse 45 to 48. And I'll skip some and it says, "Wherefore my beloved brethren, If ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth, Wherefore Cleave unto charity, which is the greatest of all, for all things must fail, wherefore my beloved brethren pray unto the father, with all the energy of hear, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God: that when he shall appear we shall be like him. For we shall see him as he is. That we may have this hope, that we may be purified, even as he is pure, Amen."
During Jesus Christ's suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane, he prayed more earnestly. I realized that I've been praying the same thing over and over again. I got into a routine. So this time I knelt down and I really, really prayed. I didn't give up prayer. I prayed and I talked to God, like I would talk to a person. And then following P day, I saw him call his mom. And when I was watching him call his mom, I just saw something different. My heart changed. I realized that he had a mom just like me. And he came out on the mission for the same reason. At that time I had the love that God had for him and all my frustration went away, that was because of prayer. But sometimes when we pray it seems like it is not fair. You don't seem to get an answer. I know a man named Dr Ong who lived in Korea during the Korean War. He was in Seoul studying, the North Koreans came in and he started running away back to his home in the South. His dad was assassinated his mom and his sister's were all burnt in their apartment. His home was burnt down. As he was sharing the story I was surprised by what Danny said. He said, because of this experience, nothing in the world ever makes him mad. Nothing in the world can ever make him frustrated. And he quoted Paul from Romans. "Not only so, but we glory in tribulations also, knowing that tribulation worketh patience and patience, experience; and experience: hope and hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shred abroad in our heart by the Holy Ghost, which is given unto us. And then he said he does not know the meaning of all things, but he knows he knows that God loves him. And the reason for their death, he doesn't know. But because of that experience, he has been able to come close to Jesus Christ. With patience and hope we can go through the hard things in life and overcome them. And I know that on the mission there's been times that I pray for a lot of things and sometimes it feels like God does not answer or he's not there, but I know that he is. From that experience and I when I look back, I see the growth that I have had. And I just want to finish up with the story about Henry B. Eyring's dad. He was 80 years old and he worked in the High Council in the stake presidency. He had Cancer in his hips. But one of the assignments that he had was pulling out weeds from the garden. Despite his age and the pain that he had he went and he would crawl around and pull those things out. Pull the weeds out. One day as he pulled out the weeds at the end of the day, a person came and said we actually sprayed the weeds that you just pulled out and they are gonna die in two days. So you did all that for nothing. And Henry B. Eyring's dad laughed, and his son, Elder Henry B Eyring said, "how can you be so happy? And so like non-caring about what has happened?" What he said was, "son I wasn't there for the weeds. So I know that sometimes things don't happen the way that we want, but we're here for Jesus Christ. And life is like: act one is pre-mortal life, act two is this mortal life, act 3 is after this life. Act 1 and 2 are not going to be perfect, but I know that act 3 is going to work out.
And I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.