Today was super great! I got to get up early and go skpye my wonderful family for mother’s day!! Man, they are just the best. So great to talk to everyone for a minute! I’m especially grateful for my mom. My mom is the greatest person in the world I swear. My mom and dad have given me so much, but most of all, they have taught me the gospel, given me an example, and helped me to gain my own testimony. Every time I have a hard moment, I think about one of a couple of things- my goals, my family, or my testimony. Those are the things that drive me the most as a missionary. I have goals to serve my Heavenly Father as best as I can because I know that through the gospel of Jesus Christ, my family can be together forever and everyone else can have that opportunity as well as I strive to share this gospel with as many people as I can. I am so glad to be a missionary and I am so glad that I have the BEST family in the world that supports me so much!
My last couple of weekly emails have been a little bit lacking… sorry. But I’m going to make up for it right now. Here is a smorgasbord of miracles that have happened since I began training Sister Shen about 2 weeks ago. Ready…go!
*So in our area, we have a huge college that is actually the 2nd best in the country NCKU (ChengDa haha…). THERE ARE SO MANY EXCHANGE STUDENTS FROM EVERYWHERE. We felt like we should go contacting up there one day and found a super huge miracle!! We just started talking to a girl and then she started speaking English to me. She was actually from Vietnam. It was super cool. We taught her how to pray in the end (actually my first time in English haha). It was really cool to pray with her and feel the Spirit with her. She’s testing this week, but she said that maybe when she’s done she’d be willing to meet again!
*We are meeting with Zeng Mama, the 70- year old mother of one of the members in our ward. She’s super cute and smiley. Sister Shen’s first night here, we went and met with her and her daughter. She really likes the change that she has seen in her daughter since joining the church, so she is feeling more willing and open to it. We are excited to keep meeting with her and helping her understand the gospel.
*Yesterday on Mother’s Day, we had another member bring her mother to church! She’s about 80 years old and she’s aboriginal, so she Mandarin is her second language. It was hard for her to understand some of the more advanced vocabulary in church, so I was whispering simplified versions to her and showing her pictures all through the meeting. I was also cracking some jokes, because she was super cute and funny. But, after the meeting I asked her if she was going to come back again next week, and she said, “I want to come EVERY WEEK!”: Miracle.
*We’ve seen a lot of improvement in a more less active family that we have been working with. Their 9-year old son is hoping to be baptized, but right now his dad wants him to wait. We were able to set up to meet with the whole family for FHE and we are so excited about that improvement!
*One morning at 8:30, we got a phone call from someone I had met on the road a couple days earlier and set up to meet with at what I thought was 8:30 that night. But, we obviously didn’t communicate something well because she was thinking 8:30 in the morning. She called us and said she was already there. We said we’d be there in 10 minutes, and then called our fearless district leader for permission to leave the door early. We got there and taught a really marvelous first lesson. Sister Shen and I both really felt the Spirit and she did as well. I love sharing the message of the Restoration of the Gospel- anytime of day. In the end, we discovered she actually lives just outside of our area, but hopefully she’s be able to continue meeting with the 1st ward sisters and keep learning more about the gospel.
*On Saturday morning I woke up with the random urge to eat McDonald’s. I promise I’m not a disgusting person and that doesn’t actually happen ever, but we had seen the advertisements for a special New York themed sandwich that was a burger on a bagel and we both felt the need to try that haha. So, in the end, we ate McDonald’s for lunch. Ha. And… while we were there we had a HUGE MIRACLE. We were about to leave, but then I felt like I really wanted to talk to the girl sitting next to us. So I prayed that I would know what to say so that we could talk to her. Honestly, I don’t even remember how it started now, but we ended up talking to her and she told us she had a friend who is a member of our church, and that she had been with her to some church activity before. We ended up talking to her about prayer and prophets and the word of wisdom and missionary work. She is really curious and interested to learn more and we set her up to meet the missionaries in Jiayi! Miracles. (Oh and Sister Shen was also super excited to teach her how to pray and use the prayer is like a hamburger metaphor in McDonald’s- a prayer is like a hamburger because you have to start it right and end it right, but you can put whatever you want in the middle haha).
*Sister Shen really likes to write letters on P-days. So, I have now had 3 “lazy” just chill in the apartment p-days in a row for the first time in my entire mission. HA. It’s been nice, but also weird. I don’t know how to not do anything anymore!
*We started teaching a mom and her son this week with the help of the 1st ward sisters! They are super cool. She was recently in a car accident and has had to have a lot of surgeries, so they are currently living in the hospital. It was a really special spirit to share the Restoration with them there.
*I really love the Tainan 2nd ward! In introducing Shen Jiemei to everyone, I’ve kind of been able to meet everyone all over again. Wow there are some amazing people here in Taiwan. I am so lucky to be here and meet them.
*We have an investigator who has needed some daily encouragement, so it’s been fun to go see her every day this last week and give her a note with a scripture we read that day. We’re really praying that helping do those little things will build her faith.
*Can I just tell you all how cool my companion is? She’s super cool. I really love her so much.
*We found members to come with us to teach even on ward temple day!! THAT is a miracle.
*We had a really good Zone Training Meeting this last week where we specifically discussed planning. SUPER SOLID stuff. There was this awkward thing where the zone leaders asked me to copy a couple of the pages in my planner to use as an example for everyone. They didn’t tell anyone whose it was or anything, but I felt like everyone was looking into my soul! Haha. I love my planner.
*We took a super awesome young woman out with us tracting last night. She was just SO EXCITED to knock on doors in her own neighborhood. It was such an example to me that I should always be just in love with the work that I am doing, no matter what.
*We had a day where we were in a tripanionship with Sister Hancock because her companion had to go to a meeting in Taizhong. It was super fun! I really liked taking two new missionaries out for the day. We saw a whole ton of miracles as the three of us taught and studied together. I learned a lot from both of my companions that day.
*I am the English leader this move call! I was a little bit nervous about it at first because I’m really not that great of an English teacher. But it has been really fun to organize some things for our English class. It’s a really great tool we have here for sharing the gospel. I am also not the kids class teacher for the first time in my life! I’m teaching the intermediate class now, which has been fun and challenging!
*One of our investigators who has really been struggling to feel the Spirit had a huge breakthrough this last week! We invited her to read the Book of Mormon again from the beginning and those words at the very beginning of 1 Nephi have made monumental changes for her. She has felt the Spirit so much and has asked a lot of questions and found the answers. I know that the Book of Mormon is true and that it will teach us all we need to know if we are willing to look and ask.
*We called up a super solid former investigator last week who is totally prepared for the gospel now. We talked to her about prayer and she really believed the simple truths we shared! Miracles!
*We started meeting with someone in our apartment complex last week! We just started talking to her and she invited us over to meet her sometime. She was super nice! She’s a Christian and for now she is willing to listen to the message of the Restoration which is all we need!
*I don’t know if you all remember or not, but a couple of weeks ago Sister Kwan and I were teaching a super amazing investigator who in the end lived in the next area over. Last week, she texted me and bore her testimony to me then told me that she has made the decision to get baptized! I couldn’t be more excited! I know that the gospel is true and that it really will change her life as she continues to live it!
There is nothing better than being a missionary. I am so glad for this opportunity and I am trying to make the most of every minute! LOVE YOU ALL!