Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Week 2....a Week of Miracles

{I put links to some things she mentions....don't forget to take a look!}

Hello family!  I hope everyone is doing well!!

Gwen! Thanks for all the pictures!! I AM SO JEALOUS!! ahhh seriously! That's way fun that y'all are staying in little Korea =] Now all y’all need to do is take New York City, times the tall buildings but 100, squish it all together a bit more, add the smell of kimchi and fish and then you've got big Korea! I can't wait to hear about all the adventures! Especially Newsies!

So it was another fantastic week in the "Land of the Morning Calm". Have I mentioned that I love it here? Because I do! It seemed like everyday this week Heavenly Father gave us a reason to thank Him with all of our hearts!

Monday was my first P-day and it was lots of fun!  I love the Elders in my district!  They are tons of fun!  Elder Grose and Elder Jang are the AP's, and then we have Elder Innis who is the DL and his companion Elder Yoon.  I think my favorite part about P-day was our jam session. Elder Innis is AMAZING on the piano and Elder Grose is twice as amazing singing.  Needless to say we had a great time putting some fun twists on the hymns. After games and a delicious lunch (black noodles...so good) it was time to get back to work.

Tuesday brought a wonderful experience. During that day it seemed like all of our plans were falling through.  When you look forward to talking to someone and teaching them, it is always a little bit sad when they cancel. But as always, the Lord was watching over us, and because we prepared with faith He put someone in our path.  That night at the bus stop we were about to head over to visit a member when she called and cancelled on us.  While my companion was on the phone I began to talk to another man at the stop.  (Because he was older it was ok to talk to him).  I found out that he knew some English, so between Korean and English we were able to get to know each other and I was able to explain why we were here serving.  Half way through the conversation my companion joined me and when we finished talking, not only had he accepted the Book of Mormon but we also got his number in order to teach him more.  I think my favorite part of the conversation was when he explained that his family was living in Manhattan, and we were able to testify to him that although we are apart from our families now, we are able to live with them for eternity.  Before we parted ways he explained that this wasn't his typical route home.  On seemingly a whim he decided to go shopping further away from home then usual and then take a completely different bus all together.  I know that it wasn't by coincidence that we met him that night at the bus stop. With the Lord, everything is 100% probable.

The next miracle came the next night.  We have been in contact with a lady who was referred to us from her friend now living in SLC. She wanted a Book of Mormon and we were able to finally meet her!  (She is so incredible nice!!! I think the funniest thing had to be when she thought I HAD to be an actress or super model from America.  By the end of the discussion she made sure she had a picture with me Hahaha The people of Korea do wonders for my self-esteem lol jk jk) Anyhow, she was so excited to finally meet us. She told us that she remembers seeing the missionaries as a little girl, but because they were American she didn't think they spoke Korean and never talked to them. But what has interested her the most in our church was her friend’s love to this church and its gospel.  She wants to know what it is about our church that could invoke such great pride and devotion from its members.  She knew about some things but is curious to know more about Joseph Smith and the Word of Wisdom.  At the end of our meeting we gave her the desired Book of Mormon and she was excited to begin reading. I look forward to meeting with her and her two children again. 

It's amazing to see whom the Lord is preparing their hearts softened to the gospel. Speaking of that, the next miracle came two days later on my companion’s one year "birthday".  We were in an area searching out some less active members to go visit.  On our way to one apartment complex we passed a woman and her adorable son.  When we passed her we simply said hello, but the Spirit told us to say more.  We soon began talking and we introduced ourselves and explained that we have a message that will bless families.  Without much hesitation she invited us up to her apartment for a drink (one thing y'all need to know about Koreans, the way they show love or gratitude or kindness is often through food. One lady we were having a friendly conversation with on the street made us follow her till we found a place where she could buy us a drink and something to eat.  Another man we visited INSISTED that he buy us a bushel of oranges because we walked too far to come visit him. These great people are so kind and generous and would do anything to show you that). So we went up to her apartment and so started the hour-long discussion of our church.  This mother was so amazing.  She has such a great love for the word of God, as we could see when she showed us her very loved and worn bibles.  She explained that she wanted to know what made our church different.  Even though she has never met missionaries before she could see a difference.  Building off her love of scriptures we explained that the Book of Mormon was another testament of Jesus Christ.  Comparable to the Bible, it too contains the word of God.  And when you prayerfully read and studied its pages you would come close unto Christ.  We taught how like the prophets of the Bible, Joseph Smith is a prophet of God; and through him Christ's gospel was restored to the earth. She was intrigued and excited to learn more.  She readily accepted the Book of Mormon and agreed to read and pray about its contents. 

I love this missionary work!! I love having the special opportunity to help people come unto Christ and recognize their diving potential.  I think my next favorite part about the day was calling Sister Gilbert and telling her about it!  I swear she was more excited then we were haha.  It's wonderful to have such great support for this work.  I especially feel all the prayers from home, Thank You. 

The icing on the cake was General Conference this weekend!!!!! I LOVE GENERAL CONFERENCE!  So on Saturday we were able to watch it in English with Korean subtitles.  Then, on Sunday we had our own little room for the missionaries to again watch it in English...this was a pretty interesting adventure haha After LOTS of technical difficulties we had to watch the Sunday afternoon session in just Korean... my brain couldn't take it for too long so I kinda fell asleep... haha I'll have to study the messages in a month lol

Oh man!! Y'all would be SO PROUD of me and all the foods that I ate this past week! Haha So on Wednesday we have District Meetings. SO fun! We get together, go over mission announcements, we have a gospel lesson, and then we learn and practice some Korean. (This part was hard because everyone there has been here for a year+ or they are Korean lol)  But my favorite part is when we each talked about our investigators and we were able to receive input and advice from one another.  After all that it was time for Lunch!! We went to a restaurant and I had DUCK! It was actually really good!

Next food adventure happened on Thursday.  If you remember me talking about my definition of sushi mix up... well Thursday is when we had raw fish.  And yes... it was really really raw. Haha Like, some things still had faces-raw, lol!! But overall it wasn't too bad.  Most of the fish didn't really have a taste.  You would put it in a lettuce with some kimchi, and pepper paste and then eat it like that. I had some other interesting things but I have no idea what they were so I can't really describe them, haha! Some of them were a little chewy though!! Hahaha (I can't just imagine mom cringing lol).  The member was impressed that I was so willing to eat everything!  Thanks mom and dad for always making me try things at least once!

Friday, because it was Sister Lee's 1 year, we went out for lunch!  We had these really good noodle-stuffed-kinda-looked-like-sausage-things. Soon Deh I believe it was called.  And it was delicious!  For dessert we had some delicious vanilla ice cream and a waffle (it's kinda fun that they make waffles into desserts!)

It has been so fun here!  I am really enjoying myself and my companion says my Korean is getting better (though I think she is being nice lol!) Like the MTC, I think my favorite and most sacred time I spend here is in the morning during my scripture study. The scriptures have become so precious to me and I am grateful for everything that Heavenly Father is teaching me through them.

In the MTC there was a talk given about the need to sanctify ourselves in order to accomplish this work.  I was curious to see what the scripture had to teach about how we sanctify ourselves.  I first read in Helaman 3:35.  After reading it a few times one part really stood out to me.  It was along the lines of "and we became STRONG in our HUMILITY" Whenever I think of humility the word strong or strength doesn't really come to mind. As I was writing my thoughts about that word choice my mind was drawn to a scripture mastery scripture, Ether 12:27.  This scripture describes that the Lord can make weak things become strong. I have looked over this scripture many times in my seminary years, but I have never noticed that it contains the word humility, not only once, but 3 times.  In the scriptures, when something is repeated 3 times, it is the superlative, or a concrete and very definite and eternal truth.  We are weak and the Lord is strong. We cannot be filled with the Lord's strength if our hearts are already filled with the pride of ourselves. The last scripture that was brought to mind was Alma 26:12.  This is a missionary story and they are rejoicing in the strength the Lord has given them, because it is through the Lord's strength that they were able to succeed. I know there are more ways to become sanctified unto the Lord, but I also now know with more assurity that there is great strength to be found in humility.

Thank you for the love and prayers.  I love you all and miss you!

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