I also realized that I haven't talked a whole lot about the people that I am teaching or meeting with. So I thought that I would let you know about some of our members/investigators:
Lin Ya Ping (Less Active): Her husband works ALL day so she is usually stuck home with her CRAZY son. She seems very lonely so when we visit her - she treats us very nicely and we have a really good discussion.
Li Chen Xiu Hua (LA): She is an older lady and doesn't come to church because she doesn't feel the love from the ward. She feels judged. She is one person that doesn't really NEED the missionary lessons but just needs to be loved by someone. Last time we visited her she gave us this HUGE box of cookies. More like crackers but because Taiwanese people don't really like sweet things their cookies are like sweetened crackers. Her english is very good and every time I meet with her I learn something new.
Li Xiu Hua (LA): She doesn't come to church because of work. That's true in most cases for the less active members around here. Education and Money are the number one priority. It is really hard for these members to give up activities on Sunday. But her testimony is strong and every time we visit her she gives us the fruit from the tree of life :) Pineapple and mangoes. She actually just had surgery so we probably won't see her for a bit.
Xie Jie Mei (LA): Her husband is in China working so she is taking care of her little girl all by herself and most days she is taking care of her niece. She is a very deep thinker and loves to read the scriptures. Every time we meet we give her "homework" or a chapter in the Book of Mormon to read and then we discuss it the following week. I absolutely love just sharing a scripture and talking about it. Those are my favorite lessons :)
Huang Xiao Wen (LA): Her son just went through lung surgery so we haven't seen her in a while. We don't know if everything is ok. Been really worried about her.
Sandra (Investigator): She is a total hippie with two little girls. She came looking for the church because one day she was meditating and something told her that Jesus Christ lives.
So miracle for the day! I'm not afraid to talk to others in Chinese over the phone! This is actually a huge step for me. Sometimes Sister Voss will hand me the phone and say "ask her when we can meet with her this week." I always have to put it on speaker phone so that she can help me with my Chinese. But I have gotten more confident about speaking. When I call members they know it's me and are very patient with my Chinese. And when it's someone that I don't know I have gotten into the habit of asking them to repeat the question or whatnot instead of acting like I understand and just moving on with the conversation. I am really learning to listen and not just say "hm" or nod my head.
I dyed my hair tonight! Not too much of a difference. I had Sister Voss help me out. She loves dying peoples hair. Just like a lighter brown. If I could do it again I would have picked a lighter brown or a dark blond. It'll get lighter in the sun :)
We had a great District Meeting today and we had a big discussion about our purpose as missionaries. Everyone has a different view on what a "Successful Missionary" is. I feel like my view changes a lot. Sister Voss shared a story about a missionary who was a very diligent missionary. He had a lot of baptisms and members going to the temple. Exactly obedient and did everything that he thought a "successful" missionary would have done. But on his last day out in the field he told his companion (who was being trained at the time) that he hated every day of his mission and he absolutely hates missionary work. Does that sound like a successful missionary? I think not. When I first started my mission I would say that I was that missionary. I was so caught up in trying to be that "ren Zhen de" missionary that I was not necessarily enjoying what I was doing. Now in my mind I see a successful missionary as someone who works hard but doesn't kill themselves doing the work. We can never really achieve what, in our mind, counts as a successful missionary, mom, dad, friend or person. We can definitely try the best that we can. But if you aren't enjoying being a missionary then what are you doing?
We had a great lesson with Li Xiu Hua. Along with the yummy pineapples we talked about the temple. It was a powerful lesson and really woke me up. The member who was there with us pretty much taught the whole thing. Li Xiu Hua told us that she wants to come closer to God other than coming to church once a week (she cant make it sometimes because of work). So that is when the temple was brought up. She is going to prepare herself to attend the temple! Yay!!! This lesson made me think about why I am here. We don't just baptize and help members keep coming to church but we help people prepare to further their covenants with God. After that lesson I really pondered about the temple. Most of my inspiration and testimony building experiences have been in the temple. Why wouldn't I want others to have that same opportunity? Really, I am so grateful for the temple and the feeling I have inside. I am really grateful that I can make those covenants with God through the Priesthood.
We went to the hospital today. Sister Voss needed her toe checked out. On our way in we saw this guy being wheeled inside with his hand in a metal box. There was blood dripping behind him with some big blood clots. It was so gross. It looked like he got his hand stuck in something. Eeewww. Well, looks like Sister Voss has in ingrown toenail and needs surgery :(
SURGERY! Sister Voss got surgery on her toe and now she can't really walk or do pretty much anything which is a bummer. That means that I can't do anything either. We spent a lot of time calling people and studying.
We had another full day of ... nothing. But tonight we finally got to meet up with the Bishop! None of the missionaries had been able to meet with him. Great chance to talk about how to help out the ward and get people involved. We got lucky! And they fed us pizza. It was so Asian though! So they always use mayonnaise as a dressing so there was that on all of them. One had seaweed and shrimp. One had chicken nuggets with a cheese AND PEANUT BUTTER filled crust. The other one was a veggie one with corn and all sorts of stuff. Really interesting and good!
Study and calling phones. Really nothing happened. Oh actually Sister Liu found a HUGE cockroach and it was so scary! IT FLEW! Sorry - flying or jumping bugs? No! We didn't get to bed until almost midnight because after squealing over that little monster we cleaned our kitchen like none other, so that no more would come.
Again, nothing much. Church was great! In Gospel Principles class we talked about the Spirit world. Kind of an unusual topic but it was good. My favorite part is that even if in this life people don't have the chance to accept the Gospel they have another opportunity. It really proves how amazing the Plan of Salvation is for EVERYONE!
Every Sunday we teach Wei Jie Mei and Alexis PeiKe's for us.
So if you wanna know what Sister Voss, Alexis, Wei Jie Mei and I are like here is what Sister Voss says:
Alexis: We can't stop
Wei Jie Mei: Don't wake me up
Sister Voss: Anything Katy Perry
Me: Marry You (I always have that song stuck in my head and I sing it a lot:)
Time has been going by SOOOOO fast! Really it is scary! Not just the weeks but the days just fly by! I have already been in Taiwan for 1 month and it seems like I just got here!
"I've heard that you stop growing when you're perfect. Don't know what happened to you!"
-Sister Hughes #funsized
Love you all!