enjoy! we love this missionary sooo freakin much! we're so happy she writes diligently every week!
last week's email...
The Magic of Prioritizing
HAPPY EASTER! I hope everyone's Easter was restful and full of remembering our Savior.
I forgot my planner this morning so I can't give you as many specifics as I usually do but I'll do my best. This email will probably be pretty short because you'll hear from me again on Monday. I had a weird P-Day this week because I got to go to the temple today! :) I never thought I would miss a place as much as I miss going to the temple. As a missionary, I'm only able to go once a transfer (9 weeks), which means I'm much more spoiled than a lot of people in the world but boy do I miss the temple the other 60 something days that I can't go. Those of you that have a temple near you, I hope and pray that you are taking advantage of that gift, especially for those of us that don't have it so readily available to us. You have the opportunity to serve so many people and you'll be doing yourself a service as well.
Alright, so, other than temples because incredibly sacred and spiritually magical, my week and a half has been awesome, but I'll admit a little slow. We had so many people cancel on us and/or just not schedule us all together. It was a little frustrating but, it was a good faith builder because that meant we had to spend our time street finding, less-active finding, and doing administrative work that we haven't had time to do in weeks. The lessons that we did end up having this week, were all lessons that I think will stick out in my mind for a while. We have a lot of investigators and less-actives in our mission that will meet with the missionaries every week but won't make any progress. Sister Takahashi and I have been working really hard to break this streak and get them to keep at least ONE commitment.
So, we've had to take a look at our teaching style and figure out where we can change, what we can improve and how we can teach more like the Savior does. There's one lesson that we had yesterday, that sticks out to me today. It was with a less-active named Ann. We've been meeting with her almost every week since I got here and I have yet to see her come to church (this sadly isn't uncommon). This week we focused more on her, on talking to her about her life, her interests, her struggles. Rather than teach her about doctrine that WE thought she needed to hear, we ended up teaching what GOD needed her to hear. We taught her the magic of prioritizing. When we put God first, put His commandments first, everything else in our day falls into place. If you start your day with a prayer, end your day with a prayer, read your scriptures, and keep God's commandments everyday, the difference that it makes in your life is astounding. I had a lesson like this when I was in high school, I was struggling a lot with balancing time, I was constantly sick because of lack of sleep and my grades were quickly dropping. My young women leader challenged us to take a look at our life and see what small changes we could make, and then testified to us that prioritizing God first makes all the difference.
I, too, can testify that when we make the small changes in our life and show God through our actions that we love Him and that we're willing to TRY, He will bless us with the time we need to do everything we NEED to do and even everything we want to do. This is all because He is a loving Heavenly Father. He wants to bless us. He wants us to have happiness. He wants us to achieve our dreams. We just need to be humble enough to accept that we need His help to do it all and we need His help to have true happiness.
I'm grateful for my Savior and for His perfect example. His example in how to be a better teacher, leader, friend, sibling, child.. better everything, is one that we should strive to emulate. He's already given us so much guidance. I invite you all to analyze your life and see what small changes you can make to bring you closer to following HIs example better.
I love you all,
this week's email....
"It's not an exchange unless you have an adventure."
How is it already April? I have no idea. I ask myself this everyday.
CONFERENCE WEEKEND!! For all of you stateside people! How was it? I'm so excited to watch it this weekend even if it is a weekend behind. Words from God spoken by the mouth of a LIVING prophet. What could be more exciting than that? If General Conference does not show you that we have a loving Heavenly Father than you haven't prepared yourself properly. I will admit, before my mission, I took General Conference for granted. I'd get on my phone. I'd fall asleep. I can't tell you a time where I watched all of the Saturday session on a Saturday, but don't make my mistakes! Don't take this incredible blessing that God has given us for granted. It truly is incredible that we get to hear a living prophet tell us God's will and that we get evidence that God still speaks to His children today and is VERY aware of our earthly situations. He's very aware of every question, doubt, fear and joy that we have. If we prepare ourselves properly, God will answer our every questions, help give us courage and build up our faith.
If you haven't noticed, every lesson that I have been teaching in the past week and every lesson that I will teach this coming week is centered around prophets, God's love, faith and General Conference. Every single one of these topics is related in such a way that it's hard to teach one without teaching about the other. My testimony and undertanding of these principles is strengthened and enlarged everytime I share about it, it really has been an incredible week.
My companion, Sister Takahashi, is a Sister Training Leader. Which means that she has to go to A LOT of meetings. A LOT. So, I get to go on exchanges with other missionaries A LOT. It's been quite the growing and learning experience for me. I've learned a lot about my weaknesses and a lot about my strengths. I feel like I have three companions rather than just one. It's interesting to see how other people do missionary work, because as we all know, there is not just ONE method of doing missionary work, but there is only one way to have success and that's the Lord's way. I have had many opportunities to learn from others methods and to try to apply them into my own work.
This week (actually is may have been last week) Sister Ng, my "second" companion, got to stay at my apartment with my for the night. When we got home that night to prepare for bed, we went into the bedroom and found that the walls were covered in moss and little flies (very weird and gross). We thus decided to move all of the mattresses out of the bedroom and put them on the floor in the living room (See picture above). When Sister Takahashi came home the next night, she and I had the pleasure of bleaching the walls to prevent the moss from growing further and killing all the bugs. We had to sleep on the floor for a couple of days until the bleach smell went away, it felt like camping. LOL! Welcome to Hong Kong where it is so humid that if you aren't careful, moss will grow on your walls while your out proselyting. Sister Ng and I now have a saying when we're together (because crazy things like this always happen to us), "It's not an exchange unless you had an adventure".
I hope that you all are taking the adventures in life as they come and finding some way to learn something and to get a laugh out of them. Life is tough but if we're positive and try to understand why we have the trials we have, we are much more likely to have happiness in our lives and we're able to grow SO much. I hope that you all know that God will never give us "adventures" that we can't handle. He loves us to much to do that. But on the other hand, He knows us so well that He knows what we need to grow, to learn and He knows how we are going to handle the "adventures" we are given. Trust in Him and lean on Him and you will ALWAYS be able to get through any trial you are given.
I love you all. Enjoy General Conference and enjoy lifes "adventures".
P.S. excuse my pajamas, we were prepping for bed when we fought the bleach that night.
|sleeping on the floor of their apartment|
|ready to tackle the gross moss covered walls!|