What a week this has been. I have learned so much. To be honest, this wasn't the easiest week--its was actually pretty challenging work wise. Sister Coleman and I got canceled on/stood up 11 times the first three days of this week. We didn't understand why. But, we both kept a really positive attitude and just kept thinking, "What does Heavenly Father want us to learn from this?" The last few days of the week was when all the miracles came--we ended the week on a great note!! I am so grateful for these weeks and days that are sometimes a bit more challenging. I mean, if we didn't have challenges and hard days, we wouldn't know what happiness, joy, and the good times are. :)
We did have some really neat experiences this week. A couple who was baptized just over a year ago attended the temple for their first time on Saturday--they were able to do baptisms, took our their own Endowments, Sealed for time and all eternity, and their 2 year old son was also sealed to them. Us missionaries, unfortunately didn't receive permission to attend their sealing but Sister Coleman and I went over Friday night to share one more message with them before they went up to Taipei. We shared with them this video that has pictures of multiple temples inside and out and then as the Temple Celebration for the Ukraine Temple. What a neat spirit that was brought into the room. This last year has not been easy for the Gao Family. They have had many challenges and trials but they overcame them all and they were able to partake and participate in a very important ordinance on Saturday. Neat, was that Bro. Gao said Friday night how smoothly Friday had gone and they were surprised but they knew it was a blessing from Heavenly Father and just another confirmation they were to go to the temple.
A bitter sweet moment occurred yesterday at church. After the rest hymn, I came back to sit by Sister Coleman ( I was asked to play the piano) and she turned to me and said, "GAO DIXIONG IS HERE!!" We didn't even see him come in. Gao DiXiong is a new investigator we find who lives up on top of the mountains in one of the Mountain Tribes. He has no understanding/very strange understanding of Heavenly Father or Jesus Christ. When we invited him to church on Saturday, he agreed to come for 30 minutes because he said that was all the time that he had. When we called him Sunday morning, about 10 minutes before church was started, he told us he had yet to shower and wouldn't be able to come. BUT, he surprised us and he was there!! After asking the Elders after Sacrament Meeting, they said he came in through the back door right after the meeting started! He was able to partake of the Sacrament and hear the testimonies of those who went to the Temple for the First time on Saturday. Even though he might not have fully understood, this man, Gao DiXiong, truly has a desire to learn, grow, and he came to church despite the fact he knows nothing. What faith he has!!! Yes, he only stayed for about 45 minutes but Sister Coleman and I basically ran after him as he left and told him thanks for coming. He said he enjoyed it. Sadly, he will be traveling all this week and won't be home till next week sometime but, we will visit him once he returns home!
Friday, Sister Coleman and I went and found in an area a bit farther away. Our area here in YuLi is the largest land mass wise in the mission but the smallest amount of people :). We went to a place called DaYu and found in a mountain tribe all day. We had the opportunity to talk to many people. They were all much older and told us they couldn't ever change their religion due to traditions but it was bitter sweet being able to pray with these people and talk to them about their lives and the blessings they have seen. The very last person we talked to their was a younger man, who was really willing to listen and set up an appointment with us this next week.This week, I really came to cherish the words in Helaman 3:35
35 Nevertheless they did fast and pray oft, and did wax stronger and stronger in their humility, and firmer and firmer in the faith of Christ, unto the filling their souls with joy and consolation, yea, even to the purifying and the sanctification of their hearts, which sanctification cometh because of their yielding their hearts unto God.
Often times in our life, we don't know why we are experiencing the things we do. But, when we learn to align our will with God's our minds will be opened. When we are faced with challenges and trials, we can ask ourselves, "What does God want/need me to learn from this?" I know if we face our trials knowing we can learn something from them and relying on Heavenly Father's will we will become stronger and become more like our Savior, Jesus Christ. Heavenly Father will never challenge us more than we can bare. As we continue to live our lives, we must learn how to align our will with His. He gives us trials to shape and mold us into who He knows we have the potential to become. Our Heavenly Father loves us. He loves us each individually and He knows us each on an individual basis. Don't ever forget the LOVE He has for YOU!!
I love you all so much!!
HAVE A GREAT WEEK!
The Elders found this picture frame! Our Mission theme is "Captained By Christ".
Sister Coleman and I in DaYu.
People working in the Rice Fields.
Our Last Taiwan mango of the season...yes we spent almost $200 for this :( MANGO IS THE BEST!!
A future temple will be built here...it is SO beautiful!!