Hey everybody! Christmas is almost here. I love this time of year. The music, food, decorations, smells, snow, parties etc. Though Christmas is very different here in Taiwan. Most people here don't celebrate Christmas. But here in Sha Lu if anything is happening we have a huge feast. People here really like food. So on Christmas we are planning on having a big dinner. And of course I am so stoked to skype my family! I am so grateful for our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. He is the reason we celebrate this season. I know that Jesus is the Christ and that through faith in Him we can be saved and Redeemed.
Oh and thank you family for the Christmas package!
News – I have a new companion named Sister Cardon and we are the STL’s (Sister Training Leaders).
We weren't planning on going to FHE because we didn't have any investigators there. But then a member called us in. He told us to hurry. We got to the church and Grace was on the couch moping. She was very upset. We tried to comfort her. We sat there for a long time. Once in a while she moved as if she was going to say something but no. Then she wrote in the notes section of her phone "I want to go home. I will text you later." and then showed it to me. I texted back that we would call her later tonight. She agreed. Later tonight when we called she said that she was feeling better. I’m still not sure what was wrong but we are trying to help her the best that we can.
Tonight we visited Zhang jie mei and her husband. Their big concern right now is that they have different goals in life and it is affecting their marriage. I feel like a marriage counselor as a missionary. Not ready for that. But we are able to apply Gospel Principles into their lives like "The Family: A Proclamation to the World." They really liked that. There was a miracle! Zhang Jie Mei said the closing prayer. Whenever we asked she said that she was not ready. But she did tonight and it was a beautiful prayer.
We sang Christmas songs at the library with a bunch of little kids. They were all so cute. We will be performing on the 24th at an old folks home.
We also visited an investigator, Shu Hui. Today was FREEZING! So when we went inside and she was talking with the pei ke I almost fell asleep because it was really warm inside.
We also met with Vanessa, our English student. She had lots of questions about God and Jesus Christ. She is awesome and she is committing to reading the Book of Mormon and praying.
OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH you know when it’s the end of the day and you are just super tired but super happy? Ya that was tonight and I was thinking, what could be better? It couldn’t have … except some hot chocolate. But then the elders texted us and told us that there is a family that lives in our area that wants to be baptized! MIRACLE! It’s especially nice because I feel like all of the investigators that I teach end up not being in our area. For example, found out recently that Grace, Vanessa and ZHang Jie Mei live just out of our area. Oh well, we are all enlisted.
Today was 45 degrees. It felt like 9! The wind has been really strong lately.
Things that you do not see in America:
People offering Hot Water
Red bean and mochi for dessert
Non-frosted sugar cookies
We saw Grace at a 7-11 and she seemed SUPER happy. I have never seen her smile so much. It makes me super happy that she is smiling.
We also saw Chen Jin Zi (grandma) tonight. She is really confusing. A few weeks ago she told us that she believes in God and Jesus Christ. But then tonight we asked her if God was standing in the room what would she ask Him. She said, "Do you exist?" hmmm....Ok, back to square one.
I found out that I have an ingrown toenail. Does that happen to missionaries in the states? It's not bad. Hopefully I don't have to have surgery.
I went on exchanges with Sister Payne. First exchange as STL. It was so much fun! We just did normal missionary work and found some amazing people! Sister Payne has been in Taiwan for about 1 year. So she is older than me and more experienced. I learned how to be simple with my teaching so that everyone understands. She quotes PMG like none other. I hope that I could have influenced her like she did with me.
Saw Grace again...she just shows up everywhere! Not a bad thing but kind of weird. The elders told me that in their lesson with her they asked her what miracles she has seen lately. She said, "Sister Graham." Ah! Totally made my night:) I love Grace so much and I want to be here when she gets baptized
We went to a relief Society activity. We made cookies for when we go caroling around in the ward. It was fun! :) We also went on a walk with a Ye jie mei. She is so cute. Not progressing but she calls the sister missionaries to come and see her every week.
There was a baptism tonight for Wang Yi Zhou. He is the Elders investigator. He is sooooo cool! He is from China and here for school. He wants the blessings of the gospel soooo bad and you can feel it in his testimony. I love baptisms and I wish that our investigators could make it to the baptisms because the Spirit is so strong there. Every time I see a baptism the Holy Ghost confirms to me that all of this is true. I can hardly remember my baptism when I was 8 years old. So I am so grateful that I am a missionary and can attend a lot of baptisms.
Today's topic in church was, "recognizing the beauty of the gospel." My testimony was strengthened of the importance of church attendance. Going to church today really strengthened my testimony. Listening to the testimonies of others gave the Spirit a chance to confirm in my heart what I know to be true.
Today I was craving Nana's pineapple cheese ball. I would make it here but cheese is ridiculously expensive.
We ate dinner at a member's house. There are two boys there who are preparing to serve missions. One to Canada and the other to Germany. It is really cool to see other's excitement for serving a mission and the different perspectives of why they want to go.
We went to visit a potential investigator tonight. She was super sweet. Her names is Chen qun mei. She is really sick so she can’t work and she has to stay at home. She is already Christian, but doesn't know why she believes in Christ. We had a great conversation with her and shared Ether 12:4. The Spirit totally filled the room. She wanted us to come back and share with her husband. FAMILY!
I LOVE YOU ALL and hope you have a wonderful Christmas :)) See you this Friday!