September 15, 2014I can't believe I've already been on island for five months!!
This week was so great! Lots of miracles. I can't believe I've already been on island for five months!! I've been a missionary for over seven months. So crazy.
A member invited us over to her house for dinner on Monday - she has family in California, so she goes back and forth a lot. She likes to practice her english with us. She's so sweet. She made us SO much food, and then put all the left overs in bags and sent us home with it. So yummy! That night was the Autumn Moon Festival, so there were tons of people outside of their houses barbequeing. It's a fun holiday - most people didn't have work, which is very rare for Taiwanese people.
We had an amazing lesson with a less active this week. The member we asked to help us peike cried as she told us about the importance of tithing and fast offerings. She talked about how it's so important to keep the commandments because you never know when you need blessings from the Lord. She told us about an experience she had when she needed financial help from the church. She expressed her gratitude for the law of tithing and fasts, and how much it really blessed her family. I really felt the Spirit testify that Heavenly Father is really watching out for each of His children. He wants to help them, and He has given us these commandments for our own protection and benefit.
A member in our ward told Sister Peng and I about how she's really excited because her cousin this week moved in Dong Hai! She has been less active, but wants to come back to church. It was really amazing to see the ward reach out to her at church yesterday. Another less active called us this week and asked us if she could meet with us because she wants to come back to church. I am constantly reminded of the scripture in the Bible that says, "What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?" We are all Christ's sheep. I love this picture that's on the cover of the first lesson. Christ is holding a sheep and looking at it with so much love. I sometimes imagine myself as that sheep - Christ is holding me and taking care of me. We are all so precious and so important to Him. Every single one of us.
Haha, Sponge went to Japan last week. She helped us peike for a lesson this week and she just talked and talked about Japan before we started the lesson. So funny. She kept talking about how the toilets in Japan are SO clean. And how some even play music. It was Chen JM's birthday, so we sang happy birthday to her in Chinese, English, Japanese, Taiwanese, and Spanish. She laughed so hard. It's little experiences like that. Fun times. :)
Really great lesson with a new investigator this week - we had a great peike who helped us with the lesson. After we taught her about prayer, she immediately shared an experience that reminded her of prayer. She remembers just being in a really dangerous situation one day, and pleading out for protection and then immediately found a way out of the situation. It was really neat to see her immediately think back to an experience where she saw the Lord's hand in her life. We are all literally the sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father. It is in our nature to reach out to Him for protection and direction. There is no denying that there is a bigger power working and moving things forward. Heavenly Father, the creator of the universe, has so much to care for. He has so much responsibility, but He reaches out to each of us individually. He is in the details of our lives. If we open our eyes and look for Him, we will see His influence in our everyday lives. I'm so grateful for His care and protection.
We went to the college here in DongHai this week for the first time! SOO PRETTY. We wanted to contact people, but everyone seemed really busy getting things ready for the beginning of school. We ended up finding a few people who were interested in our message. They all came at different times, but all at the same place. We stood at an intersection, looking up at the sign, with confused expressions on our facing, trying to know which way to go. When we asked people for directions, they seemed interested in more than just where the dairy is. A girl started talking to us about how she just got to Taiwan from Malaysia, and how it's been really hard adjusting. A few girls told us they came up from GaoXiong to come look at the Catholic church that's on campus. A boy talked to us about how he is getting ready to go to school in New York, and how he really wants to practice his english. We are all on our path of life. We all have a destination in mind, but sometimes we need to ask for direction. This gospel is something that helps and enhances every part of our lives. It gives hope and happiness to us as we move forward in an increasingly dark world. Heavenly Father is always at the intersection, willing to give us answers to our prayers and direction to help us reach our ultimate goal. He does not expect us to move forward on our own.
Sister Peng and I traveled up the hill to go tracting before a lesson. Before starting, we said a prayer and I really felt we should tract down a certain road. As we began, nobody seemed willing to listen to us, and most of the houses didn't have anyone home. We continued on, I kept a prayer in my heart. After knocking on a door, I turned to watch a motorcycle pass us on the road. I immediately recognized the people on the motorcycle, an investigator who we hadn't been able to contact for the past five weeks! They pulled over, the daughter jumped off the motorcycle and gave me a hug, and the mom kept saying how much of a coincidence it was that we ran into each other. I felt so much happiness knowing that we were at the right place at the right time. I know that Heavenly Father is in this work. He is guiding us and He is using us as instruments in His hands to bring to pass His purposes.
Last night, we went to a stake fireside. A member gave a presentation about what it's like to be a Mormon family in Utah. His family joined the church in Taiwan, and moved to Utah about six months ago. He showed pictures and talked about all the cultural differences in Utah. It was so funny to see his perspective. There were several moments when you could feel everyone in the audience gasp, because it was so different. Sister Peng and I chuckled a few times. He talked about everything from temples, dating, scouts, colleges, traffic, and weather. It was fun. I remember my first time attending church in Taiwan. Even though I did not understand anything that was going on, I could still feel the Spirit so strongly, I could still feel the Spirit testify to me that what was being said was true, even though I didn't really understand everything. That was such a testimony to me of the fact that even though the culture of members of the church is so different all over the world, the church is true and can help every one of us individually. The truths of the gospel are for all of us, despite our background and culture.
I love you all! I know this church is true. God lives. Trust in Him.
Love, Sister Berrey