Monday, September 9, 2013

Sister Peng's first baptism!

Every week, I ask Sister Peng a few questions to see how things are going.  Here's her response to a few of them.
Are you staying healthy?
Pretty much.  Yup! Not sick! Just tired.  Oh, and my back hurts, because of my bed...  We only have the box spring... not a mattress... we are supposed to have a mattress, but yeah....  I don't know what's the deal.  We gave operations manager a call, they said they would go to IKEA when they have time.

How is your companion staying dry or dealing with the rain? 
She doesn't, she also gets wet.  She is a Taiwan person.  She is used to it.  I'm from Utah, and I have the personality of a cat.  Rain in Taiwan is not my friend.  I think it would be better if I could just wear a t-shirt and shorts while biking in the rain, or if I didn't have to care about my clothes looking nice.... But... I'm a missionary.
What do you do while at church?  Any callings?
Umm... I'm a missionary... we don't have callings since we have enough members.  I sit with investigators or recent converts and then sit and listen to the lessons and such... Don't understand much of it.
Now on to her letter
Dearest Madre and lovely people who still read my updates,
Wow! Another week!  It's funny how time moves while you are on a mission.  Everyday is still an eternity, but at the end of the week, you keep wondering where all the time went!  It's really weird... I don't understand it... someone should do a research project on it...

The curry chicken
Anyways, this week was a rollercoaster.  Good some days and frusterating/ not fun the other days.  Of course, everyday can't be good.  That would be too boring and monotonous...  And you can't grow without having trials, so yeah.... 

Last Monday was pretty okay.  We just went shopping for groceries.  Oh! And then we made curry.  Like a lot of curry.  Then we ate curry and froze the rest of it in little packets so we can eat curry whenever our little hearts desire.  We also made soup out of pork bones and winter melon.  All of it tasted good, but not as good as the stuff my mom and grandma makes.  I'm In Taiwan, craving Taiwanese food... from Utah....  I guess the food here is missing one important ingredient.  Love.  Haha! Anyways, in question about the food.... My companion and I are cooking about half of our dinners and lunches.  Just because the eating places here in Ping Dong are a bit more expensive for some reason.  I like eating out a bit better, because the food we cook gets a bit boring after a while... Perhaps I'll try and buy more exciting things to cook with this week....

Oh! Something fun to share, I am now teaching an investigator in English, because she is from America!  Her name is Amber and she is super nice and open to learning about the gospel.  She came into contact with missionaries about 5 months ago, but for some reason then never followed through with visiting with her.  My companion has been wanting to meet with her, she's met her once before, but hasn't had a way to communicate effectivley with her until I came along.  So now the roles are switched!  She's the one who doesn't know what to say and is lost in the lessons.  I told her now is a good time to start practicing her English. :)  Anyways, Amber met her husband in the US, he's taiwanese, and then moved to Taiwan with him.  She has a 15 month old named Logan who is the most energetic toddler I've ever seen.  His favorite thing to do is run around and say "YAAAAAAYAAAAAAYAAAA"  He did that for about 45 minutes straight.  We were in an indoor playground and his grandma was watching him.  He's so cute though!  Amber and her husband both have interest in the church, so hopefully in a few months, we'll have a new family in the ward!!!!

Talking about English, I know I barely ever mention teaching English Class... Probably since it's not my favorite thing to do... I teach the kids, ages 3 to 12... which is a very wide span of ages, and none of them have anything in common.  We have about 30 kids on average every class... so it gets a bit crazy.  Sister Liu and I have begun dividing the class into two, so half of the kids will spend time with me, and the other half will spend time with her, and then after thirty minutes we will switch.  It's still crazy, since the younger kids don't have attention spans to learn english, or they take a very long time to write.  And then the older kids do everything really fast and get impatient and rowdy....  I keep telling Liu JM that we should divide the class by ages, but she doesn't think that is a good idea...  But yeah....  I kind of wish I was teaching adults....  But ah well, I don't think the Elders could handle the kids, honestly.  Elder Buckwater, our District Leader, has shared some pretty funny stories about the times he had to teach the kids...

So, the biggest news this week is the fact that Xuen Xuen (her nickname so it's okay to share it) was
Sister Peng with her trainer, Xuen Xuen and her cousin
baptised and confirmed!!!  Yay!!!  After only two months of meeting with missionaries, she's completely changed.  She used to be bai bai, but now she has complete faith in God.  She is super cute!  She's only about 22, but everyone always thinks that she is way younger.  And she is super funny.  She is already a strong member in the ward! I think it helps that her cousins are members, and also the fact that she has made great friendships in the ward.  Her family still don't know that she got baptised, because they are super against our church.  I pray that their hearts will be softened.  That's a problem here in Taiwan.  Well, it sounds weird to call it a problem, but the family ties here are super strong.  You have to do what your parents tell you to do, even when you are in your 30s or even older...  It causes difficulties, because then you get people who believe with all their heart that the gospel is true, but they don't get baptized because their parents say "no".... There's nothing we missionaries can do, but pray for our investigators, and help our investigators develop more faith in God.  Because in the end, that's where it comes to.  Do you want to follow God, whose council is perfect?  Or do you want to follow the council of parents, who are just mortal and aren't perfect?  It becomes a trial of faith....  And one that is not easy to face.  But for me personaly, through following God, I learn how to strenghen myself and then strengthen my family.  I know God will help all of us in any of our trials, even when those we are standing against are those who may love us the most.

Sis Liu, Sis Peng, Xuen Xuen, Elder Buckwater and Elder Teerlink
So, missionary work here is still continuing.  We've been searching for investigators.  Actually, we've been searching for people who have an earnest desire to listen, learn, and develop a relation with God.  Because we have a lot of investigators, but many of them don't have a desire.  They just meet with us because they are bored, or they like us.  But our purpose isn't to entertain or make friendships.  It's to invite people to come unto Christ.  We have found a few people.  There's a former investigator that has begun meeting with us. Her name is Y JM.  Before, she didn't have a desire, because she was content with life.  But recently, something has changed, and my companion isn't sure what.  But she listens intently, and even attended Xuen Xuen's baptism and came to church!  She is searching for something more in life, because now, she isn't content.  She is in need for guidance and love in her life.  Something that the Lord and his church can perhaps provide for her.  I really love her! Of course, I love everyone we teach, and I desire for their progress.  But more than that, I desire for their happiness and joy and peace which they can attain through the Gospel.

Oh, on Sunday, we also met with someone new.  There was a girl, who is in PingDong for college and wanted to attend church.  She is a member of the Zhang Lao Church, which is extremely agains our church, but when she was asking around for a church to attend, someone referred her to our church.  So she came, and she liked it!  And she is hoping to be able to come next week, and she wants to meet with us to learn about our church!  Super exciting! I really hope something happens!  She is a super sweet and nice girl.  And Xuen Xuen, our newest member, took her under her wing and was showing her around.  Perhaps Xuen Xuen should become a missionary herself! Haha! :D

Also on Sunday, we met with some other people, members and missionaries, at a member's house and made rice balls.  Yum!  Basically, rice balls have stuff in the middle that you add yourself, and then you pack rice around it.  Super yummy!  We also played uno, which I haven't played for a while. And many people didn't know how to play it. It made me miss playing Uno with family and friends.... But that's okay.  We'll make Uno champs out of these people in no time!!!! :D  Haha!

Anyways, to conclude, since I've written a novel again...  I just want to let all of you know that God loves you.  Whenever you are in the midst of trials, never forget the Lord can help.  Pray.  Also, when in the middle of trials, don't use them as an excuse to become less diligent in following the council of God and keeping his commandments.  For in our darkest hour, is the time that we will be tested.  But if we remain true, the blessings of heaven will be poured out upon us.

Mango Ice cream Yum!!!
Also, never forget what is most important in life.  Don't let worldly cares distract you from eternal treasures.  "For where your treasures lie, there lies your heart also."  Trust in the Lord.  By keeping the commandments and doing his will, he will bless us in this life and the next.  Of course there will be times where you have to sacrifice worldly pleasures for eternal blessings. The things of the world will all expire with time.  But the blessing of God will last beyond time itself.

Love you all!  Be true to who you are!  I hope you have a good week! Until next time!
Love, Sister Nicholle Peng

No comments:

Post a Comment