Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Missionary Letter: Report from Taiwan

Tuesday, August 4, 2009 11:54 PM

Okay, so lately, I don't have much of an appetite, but since my companion is leaving everyone wants to feed us! So ahhH! I learned how to say appetite in Chinese the first time we had a meal with someone though, and so that's good, and people are understanding and say it's because of the weather, and don't force me to eat much, since they figure I can afford to lose weight. haha. It's been fun, every meal is an appointment the last like 5 days. So we've seen a lot of investigators and members and eaten a lot of different foods.

Yeah, so I found out what's happening to me when my companion leaves tomorrow finally...haha. I knew there was no way they would make me senior companion yet. My chinese has improved from what it once was, but it is not nearly good enough to be able to be senior quite yet. Maybe in 3 or 4 more transfers...and even then who knows. I'm just glad the Lord knows what I can and can't handle and didn't give me too much to handle. My new senior companion is going to be a Sister Chen. But there are 3 on the mission. I think I know what Sister Chen the assistants were talking about, E. Lin, the old office Elder, told me she was the ABC (American Born Chinese) Chen...he THINKS. But I guess I won't be POSITIVE it's who I'm thinking until tonight or tomorrow morning...probably tonight so we can coordinate her coming up to Zhongli and I can figure out if I need to try to set people up for tomorrow, depending on if she has a bike or not immediately will determine what we can and can't do. But with a new companion and me being the one familiar with the area, I will get a lot more responsibilities with my new companion. So that will be nice. I'd like to take on some new responsibilities and kind of repent for my laziness before and become a better missionary. Sister Hill was really good to me, she just let me do what I want when I wanted...but it's time for me to step out of my comfort zone and do what the Lord wants when he wants me to instead. But I have changed a lot over the months I think. One of the Elders even told me the other day he thought I'd grown up a lot since he first met me. Probably because I'm a stubborn person and my district has known me through some pretty bad moods. And my bad moods are a lot less frequent then they were back when I felt more inadequate and like I couldn't possibly speak to these people in a tonal language, or understand their food menus or weird squiggly line characters. Haha. Not that I'm all of a sudden always happy. I mean, I really respect that about some people who are always happy (I honestly believe there are some missionaries who are just always happy, and it's super respectable)...I don't know how they do it because I have ups and downs. But I have more ups lately and my mission has been a lot more fun...

So I'm excited for a new companion and for my old companion to go home, because she's excited to go. And she can get married and send me another wedding invitation, since I've gotten a few lately. It's fun to see people getting married and having babies. Haha, which reminds me...I told my companion about that Natasha Beddingfield Song, "I wanna have your babies" but she wasn't nearly as amused by it as me, so I think maybe I just have a weird sense of humor because a lot of things I crack up at...others don't so much...but what can you do. I haven't completely lost Babylon in that way, I still get random songs stuck in my head, but they aren't distracting and usually make me happy because I remember who I am and my personality and none of them have bad lyrics. It's interesting as a missionary to try to figure out what you can keep from before and what you need to give up. And then you just let your experiences and the Spirit shape you. I try to be an obedient missionary, or I made the goal to try to be obedient from the beginning and sometimes I fall short..but I think you need to learn to be obedient but remember who you are and have fun, because when the mission isn't fun, that's when it's unhappy. And work is and can be fun. So maybe I agree with the "it's not all fun and games" with the games part, but I think everything should be fun! Talking to everyone can be fun...and reading scriptures can be fun...seriously. Everything is fun when you have that attitude. So it's amazing.

Today, Rita is going to be baptized! I don't remember what I said about her last week, but her background is she was totally ready but then freaked out and didn't have her interview last last Sunday. So we've been really focusing on her, and this Saturday night, we still didn't know if I was leaving Zhongli to be with other sisters in their area, or they would send someone here, because the assistants had told me I wouldn't be with a duanchuan, for which I was grateful. But other than that, we still didn't know. So we called Rita Saturday and at first she had always been like that she would just be baptized in a few weeks and I'd be there and it would be fine. But my companion was really straight and said we weren't sure either of us would be here after today (wednesday) and that we knew she was ready and wanted to be by her side, but to just really sincerely pray that night, and God would give her her answer...and if she wanted to wait after sincerely asking, that's okay, there's still missionaries and other missionaries would love to keep working with her, because baptism is a start...and she will continue studying her whole life for the enduring to the end part. Well, church was crazy...we had 14 investigators at church, and 12 in the second ward, so it was just ahhh trying to make sure they all were talked to and sat by and happy and good. And we got to talk to Rita and she said she got her answer and showed us a scripture in Alma 38:9. She had opened up to that after her prayer and knew she needed to be even though we were headed to Taipei that night, E. Lord's was amazing and did the interview with her...she passed and we set up the baptism for tonight (since her husband couldn't come yesterday) on our Preparation day, and we have English class at 7...but her baptism is at 6 and we will be fine and able to pull it together I'm sure, and it's worth it because she's amazing and really understands the gospel. More than any investigator I've met so far. Things just click for her. And I'm so excited.

Zhongli is amazing and we have a lot of investigators that are so prepared, they are just scared, so we have a lot of work to do, and I'm excited. Maybe a lot of change is coming up, with transfer calls next Friday (not this one), so Sister Hill is the first to leave, but tons of people could end up moving in my district/zone very soon here. But we had an amazing transfer, the Neili Elders have someone getting baptized next Sunday, a Jenny who is great! She spoke with me on Sunday and was like, "Sister, next Sunday I want to be baptized and change my life!" Aww. And the Zhongli Elders have had a lot of success lately too. Their newest convert, James who was baptized Saturday, is very friendly and had a lot of good input at FHE Monday. And yeah everyone is just really doing good right now here in Zhongli 1st and 2nd ward. My district has really been praying for each other, and we've been seeing a lot of miracles and seeing our goals really being reached. It makes me excited for the future and glad to be in Zhongli. I mean, I could move at transfer calls, but I highly doubt it. I think I still have a little bit more to do here. And so I continue my mission in my first area, Zhongli, and things are going pretty good.

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