Nihao everyone! I feel like I say this every single week, but this week has been a great one! I have learned and grown a ton.
Last week, I started feeling comfortable as a missionary...a little too comfortable- and that's a sign to me that I'm not pushing myself enough and trusting in the Lord enough and that my relationship with Him is getting a little lax. So, I asked Him to humble me and help me get back to where I needed to be. He showed me all of the things that I needed to improve, which sounds like a terrible thing, but it was actually quite wonderful! I made a list of the things I need to work on- my weaknesses. I decided I needed to have more frequent and sincere prayers, to be more humble, to listen more to the Holy Ghost, to improve my planning, to push myself with the language, and to use every single minute I have to serve the Lord- really, just to be a more intentional missionary. As I've striven this week to improve those things, I have seen miracles- it's been amazing!
|It's been a while since she's seen the sun!|
We got to see J and H (a couple that comes to the MTC to eat with the missionaries) at lunch 3 times this week!! I love them so so so much- they are the most amazing, sweet, loving, truth-seeking people I have ever met in my entire life. I usually talk with J- he has the most thoughtful questions about the gospel, and we have really deep discussions about our beliefs and God, and he is so open to everything. He also comes up with AWESOME analogies based on the things we talk about. The missionaries who are officially teaching them taught them about the word of wisdom this week. H loves tea, but the missionaries told her that keeping the word of wisdom would help her have the Holy Ghost more and feel his guidance. She said that she wasn't sure if that was true, but she wanted to believe because if it were, that would be the greatest blessing to feel the Spirit more. Even though she had just purchased a big jug of expensive tea, she decided to not drink it. She started crying as she told us how much it has blessed her and that she feels like it is true. When we saw J on Monday, we could tell he was really excited about something. He had this grin on his face, and he said, "guess what? I went to church yesterday." We were so excited! We asked him what he thought, and he told us that he and H thought it was beautiful. He told us all about the two people who spoke- both were converts, and told about how they gained a testimony of the gospel (not a coincidence at all, right?). He just said that the speakers and the classes touched his heart and how he agreed with everything. We talked to them again yesterday, and they told us that they love music, so of course we told them about Music and the Spoken word and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. J told us the sweetest story about how he met H and how much he is thankful for her because he knows that she is a gift from God for him. When he took her home to meet his family, he was a little embarrassed because his family was very poor and had literally nothing. She told him that she didn't care what he had, she just cared about him. He said, "this is why I love your church- because I want to be with her forever and ever". So so sweet! They are going to be the most amazing church members- I have no doubt in my mind that they will be baptized. We bought them a Tabernacle Choir CD yesterday at the bookstore as well as a Spanish Book of Mormon that we are all writing our testimonies in to give them tomorrow. They are actually leaving on Mon to go to Guatemala for a month, so we won't see them again until we get back from our missions, which is really sad. But we told them how to find a meetinghouse in Guatemala and we gave them our contact info, so hopefully we can stay in touch with them and they will keep progressing in the gospel. They just make me want to talk to EVERYONE I see, because you just never know who will be like J and H and just be super prepared and ready for the gospel.
|Good thing Samuel Smith didn't have to carry his laundry too|
|This is for you Zoe|
Please go to lds.org and search for "Hastening the work in Europe" and watch the video that comes up when you click on the first result. Also, to https://www.lds.org/training/wwlt/2013/hastening/members-and-missionaries?lang=eng and watch the video "I'll go where you want me to go". I watched them this week, and I just caught the vision, so to speak, of how amazing this work is. It is NOT just something missionaries do- we can't do it alone. We are here to assist members- YOU are crucial! You could even write me a dear elder about what you thought about it... :D (sorry people, gotta solicit for mail somehow! but really, it's an awesome video!). I love what Elder Oaks says: "when you are involved in the work of the Lord, the power behind you is always greater than the obstacles before you".
This morning was a little different than a normal p-day, because we had to go to class! For some reason, our district was chosen out of all the classes at the MTC for executives from GM to come to! The church gets missionary cars from GM, so they like to let the executives come and see what missionary work is all about! We introduced ourselves and told about what we were doing and our schedule and how we (are trying to) learn Chinese. It was actually super strange to introduce myself as "Nicole Murri". They asked us to speak for them, so Elder Stewart recited the purpose in Zhongwen, and I gave the first 2 minutes of the first lesson. It was pretty neat to get to tell them all about missionary work! The 9 of us in our class represent the church's entire force of 84,663 missionaries to them, which was pretty cool!
|Three more weeks until she is in Taiwan!|
Thank you to everyone who sent me letters and dear elders and packages this week! If I didn't email you back, I'll be sending you a handwritten letter today!
I love being a missionary so much. It is hard work, but it is so worth it. Sometimes it can be discouraging but the Lord really does bless his missionaries and all those who desire to follow Him.
Love you all! Thank you for the support and prayers.