This week has been really hard but really good. I come home every day just EXHAUSTED! It is really hot here and we are working working working. We have found a lot of success. But I never realized how many people you have to set up appointments with to get just one new investigator.
5 appointments in one day turns to just 2 … but that is ok
We cleaned our apartment today. Call me boring. But that is ok. It didn't feel right to live in a messy house. “Cleanliness is next to Godliness”! It totally brought in the spirit when we were done cleaning :)
So tonight we went to visit Ye jie mei. She was super cool. She has had a hard time believing in God. But Sister Crowell has a great bi ru (example?) to put God in perspective. It was a really great lesson and now she wants to hear more! And then when we went outside I felt like we should pray to thank God for putting Ye Jie Mei in our path. After we said a prayer a lady walked past us. When we said that we were missionaries she got all excited and had us come to her house. She is Christian. And she made us food. Good because we didn’t eat dinner. She was definitely an angel sent from Heaven! It was just an amazing night!
Sister Crowell and I are trying to SYL (Speak Your Language) whenever we are out the door and she said that my Chinese has already improved. I learn a lot more when I just speak the language all the time. Not just with Natives. It is really cool! I am learning a lot!
Tuesday: Testimony Tuesday
We had Zone Conference today. It was really good! We talked about repentance and we are starting the purification project. It is really cool! You fast for 24 hours and the Lord with reveal to you what you can improve on with your life … What you can start doing or stop doing to be a more consecrated missionary. And then every morning to commit to God that you will do (or avoid) those things that He has revealed to you. And ask for strength because obviously you can’t do it all on your own. And at night you reflect, pray, see how you can improve, and do better the next day. I'm really excited to start this process. I think it will really help change my “natural man” and will help bring the Spirit to everything I do.
I bore my testimony and sang, "Nearer my God to thee" with some other sisters. It was really good! Mom, be proud … I sang alto.
We had a great lesson with Alexis, a recent convert. I always thought that she had no problem with the Gospel. Her testimony is strong and she definitely has the Spirit with her. But today we got deep. I knew that she had a strong testimony about Jesus Christ. But I had no idea about the Restoration. We started talking about the Book of Mormon and then we talked about Joseph Smith. Turns out that she doesn't even understand the need for prophets. I feel like we have finally gotten to her concern and that we are ready to help her. I love doing missionary work!
We had another lesson with a new investigator. She is lonely and just wants to be loved.
When I came home today I thought to myself, "2 new investigators in 2 days. Amazing! And we are pretty much booked for the rest of the week with appointments. Does that mean I get to slow down? Take a break maybe?" And then I thought ... NO! I can't be comfortable with what I have and with who I am working with. I need to keep on going and finding new people! Even if I don't see them be baptized that is ok. It doesn't matter. We are all working together to bring others unto Christ.
Wednesday: Happy Birthday MOMMY! You are 50 - WOW!
I learned a valuable lesson: DO not leave food on the stove when you go into the shower. :(
A lady gave us a whole watermelon and we ate the whole thing for dinner! It was really good but super filling! It was a yellow watermelon too!
Thursday: Thriving Thursday
It’s Thriving Thursday because we spent the whole day tracting or contacting. Trying to find new people to teach. We ran into a 16 year old girl who was very interested!
Sister Crowell and I tried on some cleansing night masks and we look really funny :)
We had a full day of appointments and all of them bailed. :( We did end up having a lesson with our peike, Shi Jie Mei. She is 33 but acts like an 18 year old. We didn't really know what to teach her but the Spirit was there and led us to know what to say and what to share. Sister Crowell is an expert at using the Book of Mormon in her teaching. She remembers any reference! The Spirit is so strong when you use the words of God. Shi Jie Mei taught us some Taiwanese sarcasm which was fun J
Ok we actually did have a lesson with that 16 year old girl, Emily. She is really cool and totally into learning about Jesus Christ! But her father does not approve of her meeting with the missionaries though. And we have a rule that if the parents don’t approve we don’t teach them. She refuses to tell her parents that she is meeting with us but she really wants to learn more! hmmm what to do what to do…
Vickie got baptized today! It was a great baptism! The missionaries sang, "When I am baptized" which is one of my favorites. And Vickie asked me to bear my testimony. I was the first sister missionary who started teaching her and I know her the best. So she wanted me to do it. She is so cute! When she went up afterwards to bear her testimony she could hardly speak Chinese. She is literally American!
Sister Crowell and I made a delicious dinner to end our fast. We put chicken, peppers, onion, carrots, cucumber, and some soup found in the kitchen into a crock-pot. And it was super good! I had some yummy brown rice and flax seed bread to go with it. And pineapple for dessert. #wifeusup … except we are missionaries. haha :)) We have decided that every Sunday we are going to try and make something new.
We had a great lesson with a potential investigator, Dong Jie Mei. I met her on the road. She investigated other churches before, but stopped because her family was unsupportive. But now she lives out of the house and she wants religion in her life. She is a lawyer and going through some big challenges and needing to make a lot of decisions in her life. A lot of people would say that they are too busy for religion. But Dong Jie Mei wants religion to help her make these big decisions. She is soooo cool! We had the lesson in the chapel. And we told her about prayer and the Book of Mormon. How they can help us receive guidance to making these big decisions. We told her that if she has a question in mind and then just flips to a page in the Book of Mormon she will find an answer. So we did that with her. She asked a question and flipped. What we read went right along with her concern. It went along with faith. Faith is a huge part of the Gospel. Without faith it is really hard to make courageous decisions. That is what is so great about the gospel. This isn't just another thing to take up time or to believe in something. The gospel is a part of life and can help anyone with anything.
Today I had a great experience while reading the Book of Mormon. Lately we have been inviting everyone to read the Book of Mormon and ask, in faith, if it is true. I realized that I haven't done that in a long time. I took my personal study time to read in the Book of Mormon (Alma) and pray to know if what I was reading was true. At first I had no feeling. I thought, "why am I asking to receive an answer when I already know that the Book of Mormon is true?" and then I changed my prayer. Instead of asking to know if it is true, I bore my testimony to God. I said, "I know the Book of Mormon is true. I know that it is your word. I know that through God's power, Joseph Smith translated the Book." and then I had an overpowering feeling come over me. You know the "burning in bosom" always talked about? Ya, I had that. It wasn't just a small voice telling me that the Book of Mormon is true (like it has in the past) but it was a feeling of strength and power. I could feel the power of the Book of Mormon. Not just the truthfulness. I felt this power in my heart and it strengthened my testimony. I am so grateful for that experience.
I am so grateful for the amazing experiences that I have had on my mission so far and I am excited for the many new adventures that are in store for me.
I love you all. Hope you all are having a great summer and keeping the Gospel of Jesus Christ a priority in your lives.