Monday, November 3, 2014

November 3, 2014: Happy Halloween

Mahnsinjit faailohk!! happy halloween! (: (direct translation is 10,000 holy festival happiness). Also learned how to say batman- pinfuhkhahp. Enjoy, Jaiden!

Monday we had the opportunity to meet with our less active member Sister Tsang. She's pretty busy with work but is really excited to be meeting with us. When we taught her the time before that, we gave her a new Book of Mormon and invited her to read the first chapter of first Nephi. When we followed up, she said she's been reading- and made it to first Nephi 4. When we first met her she said she really didn't like to read books, so the fact that she's continued to read and pray every day is absolutely incredible. I am so proud of her progress and hope she can continue to come back to the church. Her situation is kind of sad because she doesn't even remember when she was baptized- just that she was in high school. But that's okay. We've started to reteach the missionary lessons and will help her find her testimony. We know it's there- just buried!

Tuesday we had the opportunity to meet with Cammy. She's doing well. We only saw her with one of her kids, Natalie, so it was easier to teach just two of them. We're still facing challenges on how to teach kids because these two kids are a terror when you put them together. but the Lord is giving us strength and I think they're learning from our lessons. Tuesday we taught Follow the Prophet and sang Do As I'm Doing together and went over the role of a prophet again. Both Cammy and her daughter agreed to follow the prophet. Tuesday I also had the opportunity to go on exchanges again with Sister Cook (brand new!!) and it was wonderful. We didn't have any lessons planned that evening, so she and I went out and did some finding with our recent convert Sister Yeung. It was a good opportunity for both of them to practice their finding skills. We met Winnie, who is in her twenties and is busy with work. We gave her a Book of Mormon and Sisters Yeung and Cook both shared touching testimonies about the book. We'll hopefully have an opportunity to meet her again later this week.

Wednesday we went out and did some more finding before exchanging back, and met a woman from Guangdong. her sister lives here in Hong Kong so she's here to visit her often. We also gave her a Book of Mormon and invited her to read and pray daily. Though we have no way to contact her again since her phone number is a Mainland number, I know she'll have a chance to meet missionaries again. She was so nice and so prepared! That evening after our exchange, we met with another less active that we've been working with- Sister Cheung. She is really sweet and I'm glad we get to work with her. We think she's worried about coming back to church because she hasn't been in so long. After our visits she always says she'll try to come on Sunday but never does. She's working closely with the Relief Society President though, so I think over time she'll gain the confidence that the ward loves and misses her. Sister Tsang (LA) came to Family Home Evening too which was really good. She's really shy and doesn't have many friends, so we're working on finding some people that will reach out to her. Right now, most everyone who meets her thinks she's an investigator... She's strong though, and we love her.

Thursday we had the opportunity to teach Janda. Our fellowshipper, Sister Hung, was in a similar situation before- working on Sundays was a hard thing for her. Sister Hung shared her testimony about how she talked to her boss and he let her have Sundays off, and she invited Janda to do the same thing. I think it was really good for Janda to see that she's not the only one in this situation. We still aren't sure what to do about her baptismal date, since it's for November 23rd and she still hasn't come to church. We're going to probably move it to December (because the Lord will bless us with a 65 in December miracle!!!) and continue to encourage her. She's just so nice that she doesn't want to offend anyone. We also taught Cherry! We shared about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Sabbath Day. At the end of our lesson, Cherry shared some of her feelings about how keeping the Sabbath Day will be hard for her because this month in work is the busiest. We had a short discussion about how real Satan's power is, and how he's trying to get her to move away from her baptismal date. She said she is aware of his influence. She's doing well though. She continues to pray and read. I killed the NASTIEST cockroach in the church kitchen this week though... almost 3 inches long. SO gross. Both me and Sister Lubeck saw it and screamed. they don't even bite or anything, so it's not like they're scary. they just run really fast and are nasty big. ew. be grateful you don't have them if you don't have them!

Friday we had a wonderful zone training meeting that really got us pumped for 65 in December. I can't wait to help bring people to Christ- what a wonderful Christmas gift that would be to give! I can't imagine a better gift to give someone than the gift of being baptized and confirmed. I expect to see some pretty incredible miracles and pray for them every day. The elders planned a really great halloween english class but nobody really came... so we felt really bad. oh well. next week.

Saturday was a miracle in and of itself. We taught two lessons back to back- something that never happens. We taught Cherry again- something that never happens! We shared with her about the ten commandments and she willingly accepted to keep them. I know she'll struggle with the Sabbath Day, but I also know that no matter what, God will help her. We shared Mormon 9:21 with her and helped her realize that if she asks God for strength and the opportunity to keep the commandments, she will be blessed with those blessings. Then we taught Cammy and her kids about the Word of Wisdom. We had a fun activity where we had lots of food and things drawn on paper and they got to cross out which things were not okay to eat. They really enjoyed it. Even though little Ivan had a meltdown about something, it was a good lesson. Our fellowshipper was a really good fit. We asked Cammy why she thinks we're asked to not drink tea, and she told us because it's because God said so. She did say she drinks tea, but she also said she's willing to keep this commandment. I have seen her faith in Christ grow so much over the past few weeks we've been teaching her. Stake conference was also good, because Penelope (member) was speaking and her non-member sister Trisha came with us to her Penny speak. I really think she enjoyed the talks and hopefully she felt the spirit.

Sunday was also a miracle. Stake conference was wonderful and though I didn't understand most of what was being spoken, I can testify that I can feel of it's truth. our investigator Mrs. Lau came with her two kids too. I was really impressed- her kids are really well behaved and sat through two straight hours of stake conference without so much as a peep. that really helped Mrs. Lau have the opportunity to feel the spirit. her story is kind of funny though- two weeks ago she came to church with her kids out of nowhere. Nobody knew who she was. She said her mom's friend was a member and referred her to our church, but couldn't remember who the friend was. Definitely wasn't anyone in our ward. I leaned over before the meeting to ask her if she found out who the friend was, and she said the friend was actually a member of a different church...oops. Haha. I'm just glad she still comes to ours! After conference, we taught them the Restoration. We gave her a Book of Mormon two weeks ago when we first met her. We followed up if she'd been reading with her kids (she didn't have much interest last time, just wanted her kids to have religion) but said that no, she'd been reading the book herself. She could feel of the truth in the words and we invited her to be baptized on December 14th. We got chenged out for dinner (members fed us) and the food was to die for. so good.

The book of Mormon is an incredible power. I know of its truth and I know it helps our investigators gain testimony. Bring on 65 in December!!

PS. I've discovered since being here that I really. really. REALLY love keijit... eggplant. learning how to cook it in tons of different ways! it's so great. everybody should eat it all the time. that good.

(in response to mom's emails)
(BriAnna hit 1/4 way done with the mission last week): Umm, yeah. That's insane and I am 100% not counting. that freaks me out. I can't leave these people. ever. I may just never come home. (; haha just kidding.

When I first got here everything made me sick. not so much now unless we eat greasy food. Even pizza just goes straight through me, guess my insides have just jaapgwan to junggwok food. (adjusted to Chinese food)

Thank you so much for your testimony. I also know that these things are so so so true.

No daylight savings time here... all of mainland China is actually on the same time zone too. weird stuff. yeah, there's no point- no farmland in HK.

Seriously. pohpo pants are so great, all the pohpo wear them. If I didn't have to wear a dress I'd probably wear them everywhere too. Best investment EVER. I'll see if we can head up there in a couple weeks. Sister Lubeck leaves this transfer so I want to make sure she gets to do the things she wants to do before she "dies". I can look though. SSP has a massive store of just crazy colored Thai clothing. it's so great.

(in missionary terms, "dying" means going home-we asked her if Sister Lubeck wants to die): Naw. Nobody wants to die. Nobody. When you spend literally 24/7 serving these people, you don't ever want to leave. I mean sure you have bad days and are super super homesick and just end up crying and saying you want to, but then you wipe your face and get to work. it's just a thing.

(in regards to missionaries having to be able to work really hard): You have to be able to work. Missionary work isn't just go out and give people fliers. I run up and down streets chasing people. You get yelled at and people say crude things to you. If you're even the least bit fragile you won't survive out here unless you have your priorities straight. It's sad, and it's hard, but it's true.

(Funny name facts): Hey, it's better than half the stuff people name themselves here! I've heard Kinky, Purple (I actually think hers makes sense because her name in Chinese means purple, i think) Kelvin, Cherry, Yolanda... you name it, it's weird. hahaha.

Also. Funny thought. You know you're in China when you can eat:
noodles in soup
fried rice
sticky rice
brown rice

...with chopsticks.
Eating pizza in China

I heart eggplant

I love ice cream!

Sister Lubeck

Selfies through a mirror on the bus

A roller coaster in a mall?

More selfies in a mirror on a bus.

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