Tuesday, August 27, 2013

McDelivery or Costco anyone?

So I am sitting in the mission office emailing because I am being emergency transfered to South Busan--an area called Daeshin.  One of the sisters has to go home because she is sick or something and so I am taking her place.  When President called the other night, he started by saying, "since nothing has been normal in your mission so far, we are going to have an emergency transfer and you are going to Daeshin."  My new companion is Korean sister.  I don't know too much about her except that she is like 26 or 27.  So one of the youngest missionaries with one of the oldest!  Crazy!   So this will be an adventure!   I am so sad to leave Shinjong--all the members, less actives, investigators, etc. that I have gained good relationships with, and of course my companions, but I know that the Lord wants me in Daeshin right now!  It will be good to have a new start--no one knows how good my Korean is, or what mistakes I made in Shinjong--I know I will learn so so much!  Funny that I am getting transfered exactly 2 transfers worth of time (12 weeks) after i got here! 

We had a good week in addition to that too!  Costco was super fun last Monday.  It looks a lot like Costco at home--with a lot of the same stuff too!  We bought muffins, cheese, cereal, a little candy, etc. that all looks very familiar.  I took a box of Lucky Charms and a thing of peanut butter with me so I will still have that! 

We met with lots of less actives last week.  One of my favorite things is meeting with less actives because I love helping remind them of the faith they once had.  Sometimes it is hard, and you have to dig really deep,but it is all part of the challenge!  I just bear my little heart out and tell them that I have faith in them.  I have felt the love of Jesus Christ in my life and know that he loves them too.  Even when they don't see their faith, the fact that they will meet with us is a step in the right direction.  I am sure there will be more less actives in my new area too!   Sadly, such is the church. 

Thursday, we went and helped one of the members clean her house.  She is probably about 26 or so.  She served a mission at Temple Square, and now is married has a little girl.  She just had a miscarriage, and was really sick before then.  It was fun to talk to her about Salt Lake and Temple square.  It was also so neat to see her faith, and trusting in Heavenly Father.  She said the first thing she did was pray to Heavenly Father saying, "help me to believe what I know I believe."  I thought that was so sweet.  People have the same trials here in Korea as in America.  And the gospel can help everywhere.  Such a testimony builder! 

Sunday, we went to church (of course).  I bore my testimony and thanked the ward for being such great examples to me.  I told them how I can see the love they have for one another, and for the missionaries and that I am so grateful for their example.  I love them, and will miss them!  All the missionaries also sang "Oh How Lovely Was the Morning" while my companion played the violin.  It was awesome! 

Sunday afternoon, we went to a wedding for the Relief Society president's daughter who is less active.  Imagine Korean traditional wedding, with all the bowing and a bunch of other stuff I couldn't understand, and then the announcer guy (they don't have a priest, just some guy that talks about what they are doing...I don't get it.) broke in to song.  Yes he was wearing white pants and a orange blazer with sparkly buttons and a big flower.  I had to work really hard on not laughing.  Then a girl sang the "Beauty and the Beast" song, but all the words kind of ran together because she was singing in English that she didn't know how to speak. It was fairly entertaining too! 

Last night we went to the area next to ours because they don't have sisters there and they have a few female investigators.  The branch president was super nice, and gave us like 3 people that they want us (well my comps and their new companion--a girl who is going to Seattle but doesn't have her visa yet.  She is from within the mission boundaries) to teach!  What a miracle! 

Well I guess that is about it for now.  I am excited to tell you everything that will happen next week!  Apparently we are having a general authority speak to us on Thursday too!  So fun!!! 

I love you all!!!!!!!


Monday, August 19, 2013


Adventures of the Waygookings

The week has been pretty good! It has actually not rained very much at all! It is just stuffy and hot. All the time. I actually have heat rash on my arms and neck which kind of sucks. 

The adventures of the Waygooking (Forigner) threesome continue! I got us lost on Wednesday. That was a struggle. We were going to visit a less active. I had never been there before, but was really proud that I found her house on a map. So I thought I knew exactly how to get there. And I thought we could get on any bus going to the University and it would pass it. Of course I lead us on the one that went the roundabout way there though. So as soon as I figured out we were going the wrong way, we tried to ask people where to get off, and our Korean skills failed us a bit, so we got off at the wrong place. So I tried to figure out where we were (I relatively knew) and figured we could just take a Taxi there. Yeah of course none passed us though. So we just started walking back the other way until I saw familiar things. Then we made it to another bus stop where a bus that actually did pass her house went, and got on it. It is really hard navigating bus maps and reading the sides telling where they go in Korean super quick and have to make a decision immediately on which one to get on. I am doing okay though, and definitely feel lots of help. We got there like 35 minutes late, and shared a message. Unfortunately, her husband's family is totally against the church and she said she wanted to meet with us this once, but couldn't again. So we will pray that their hearts will soften and she will want to meet sometime. We left her with all the pamphlets, and want to text her some scriptures to read to at least keep her mind semi thinking about the gospel.

On Thursday, it was Korean independence day so we got to go to the Branch party in the mountains. It was right by a river, and all the members were sure that we could get in, even though it was against the rules. It didn't help that a few of the elders got in a bit, but anyway...We just stayed on the side and talked to some of the moms which was good. It was hilarious. There is no such thing as camping food here. When it was time for lunch, they opened their tupperwares of Rice, Kimchi, Meat, etc. and we ate that! Then for dinner, they made this soup called Suejaybee which is broth with noodles and potatoes. I love it, but it was pretty funny that they just whipped out their camping stove and made it all from scratch right there! I will send pics of the activity.

We got to meet with our investigator again this week. She asked us if we had ever heard God's voice, and we tried to explain how we have felt a warm feeling, which is the spirit, and that is how we receive answers a lot of the time. We asked her if she had ever prayed when she was scared or needed help, and she said yes and that she felt good. We told her that was the spirit! It is so fun helping people realize that they have already had those experiences in their lives! We talked a little more about baptism and showed her the font because she is scared of the water (lots of Koreans are and don't know how to swim). She still wants to think about it, and we haven't set an actual date, but hopefully we can meet again this week! Keep praying!

Because there are 2 American families in our ward with kids in primary, we have gotten to go help in there the last couple weeks. I am basically the new primary pianist, which is pretty fun! Then we help translate for the little kids. It is testing my Korean skills but I really do love it.

Last night, we went and kapjoggie (suddenly) visited some of the members. My companion has a violin so she played while the other two of us sang. They loved it and the spirit was so strong! Hopefully we can do it again next week:)

The language is coming. No--I don't understand most of it. Still. One day. Probably in like 9 months I will... I am picking up more and more every day though. I am trying to work on both learning new words and grammar forms, and just spitting it out even though it is really hard, and I usually say things wrong. I have gotten really good at praying in Korean though because I do that a lot. Being just the 3 Americans, it has forced me to have to understand and say more though, because we have to rely on each other a lot. Heavenly Father definitely helps us a lot, even if we translate things wrong sometimes:) I don't know if it is harder or easier than I thought it would be. I just can't compare myself to those spanish speaking missionaries who are already fluent after a month. Korean takes lots longer…

We are in a really nice part of the city and spend lots of time outside! Its kind of hard to explain the "neighborhood." We jundo at bus stops a lot becuase that's where a consintrated amount of people are I will try to take more pictures to send to explain.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

So Many Blessings

Sounds like you all had a great week, as did I!!!!!!!  Thank you thank you thank you for the birthday packages, notes, letters, etc.  

This summer has gone by super fast!!!  So crazy!  I'll be there the end of next summer which is super crazy!  It has almost been 5 months since you dropped me off at the MTC.
We have seen so many blessings here this week!  Obviously, Heavenly Father is hearing all of our prayers here, as well as all of yours at home!  Amazing things are happening!
1. I haven't gotten us lost yet.  i'm pretty proud of myself.  Even on the buses!  Remember how scared I was to ride the bus to the U the first time?  Well now I can navigate the buses in Korea (more or less...wouldn't be suprised if we got lost this week haha) so that's exciting!  And i got us to Busan the other day.  Thank you Heavenly Father!!!
2. We have a super solid new investigator.   On Tuesday, she came to English class. She started asking us questions about English and missionaries, which led to a gospel discussion and she asked why we were so happy all the time!  Perfect way to introduce the church eh??  So she shared a little about the plan of salvation and then called me over to help.  She said, "if it isn't too much of a problem, could you possibly meet every day this week and we could talk about English and your church?"  WHAT?!?1?!?!?!?! Nobody says that!!!  We already had  few other appointments, but we met with her on wednesday and Friday.  We got permission to do the 30/30 (30 min gospel and 30 min english) program with her.  She is trying to learn English (She said she doesn't know what sparked her recent interest in English, but we do.  Obviously Heavenly Father wanted her to find us!)  so when she got there on Wednesday, the first thing she wanted to do was read the intro to the Book of Mormon in English since we had already read it with her in Korean!  Then we told about our families a little bit, and taught the first part of the restoration.  We try to teach as much in korean as we can, but she likes us to speak English, so we are trying to find a balance to the point that she can still understand.  THEN on Friday, she brought her 2 daughters to meet with us as well!!!  One is 15 and the other is 11.  SO CUTE!!! They didn't come to church yesterday, but we are hoping we can stress the importance of church this week and get her there next!  Ahh!!  We are so excited!
3. We met with the less active we meet with every week, and had a really awesome lesson with her and got her to consider coming to church next week which is a huge step for her!  I have already seen her faith grow so much in the last 9 weeks i have been here!
4. We met with another less active who was baptized last year.  (Really sad that she's already less active and got baptized less than a year ago.)  Anyway she reads her Book of Mormon every day and it is super marked up, but she has had lots of trials in her life, and had to move a few times.  it's kind of a long story, but it was neat to hear her talk about how she can see even though she has the trials, she prays that she can receive help from Heavenly Father to forgive people.  She wants to go to church in the neighboring branch and not ours, so we're not sure if she went yesterday or not, but we are definitely going to keep an eye on her and get her to church so she can learn from the spirit there too!
5.  The girl who got baptized 2 weeks ago answered so many questions in Gospel Principles yesterday.  I was so excited to see how she has taken what we taught her and let it into her life:)
6. I got to celebrate my 20th birthay in Korea!!!  We got up early and took the bus to Busan!  So i got to eat tacos there for lunch at the mission president's house, which was delicious haha and we got treats there and the way back.  Basically I used it as an excuse to try all the treats I have wanted to here!  Then for dinner, we went to a Korean BBQ place (I will send pictures) and bought a cake at Paris Baguette--the bakery that is literally everywhere here. 

So I was reading Alma 5 this morning and loved verse 13 where it talks about the people having a mighty change wrought in their hearts.  I got the institute study guide for the Book of Mormon at the mission office the other day, so have been studying it along with the Book of Mormon which has been awesome!  I read this quote in it about being converted and thought i would share!  (It is super long so I paraphrased...)  "When you choose to follow christ, you choose to be changed.  The Lord works from the inside out.  The world works from the outside in.  The world would take the people out of the slums.  Christ takes the slums out of the people and they take themselves out of the slums.  The would would shape human behavior, but Christ can change human nature.  To paraphrase Harold B. Lee, they set fire in others because they are on fire.  Not only would they die for the Lord, but most importnatly they would live for him."  -President Ezra Taft Benson

I love this!  First I love thinking about it as I teach others and want to help them draw closer to the savior.  I can help them see the light of Christ in their lives, and then help their lives improve because of it.  Then I love applying it to my own life.  I have to continue to convert myself to the Lord more and more each day, and as I do, my nature can change because of the atonement!  I know that you can do the same as you let the power of the atonement work inside of you.  it is amazing what we can do when we do it with the Savior!

Love you!!!