Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Hello everyone!

Zoo trip!
I forgot to mention last week that temple day has come again, so P-day was moved to today. We get to go every three months, and holy cow that was a fast three months. I can't believe we're already going again! I'm pretty excited. 

Well this was a super awesome 10-day week, but Sister Haupt and are are both pretty excited we get to rest today  ha ha. We have been so busy and I'm just so exhausted. I don't know what happened to my bike, but it's been going super slow lately. I thought I was just getting out of shape and that my companion is just faster than the average human, but we went on exchanges and the sister using my bike said it's especially slow. So I've had to bike twice as hard until we take it to the shop, so that's been super fun!

I don't even know where to start! This week was amazing. My favorite part was probably going on exchanges with our sister training leaders. This time, I went to their area in YongHe. It's the second most densely populated city in the world, and I had the privilege of sharing the gospel with so many people! I was with Sister Wood, and she is seriously so awesome. I learned a lot from her. I've been working really hard on becoming a consecrated missionary. Meaning I do more than just what's expected of me, but really going to extra-mile. Really putting all my heart and energy into everything I do. The two biggest things I learned are to 1) Preach by the way, and 2) repent.

I feel like it's so easy to get used to only "finding" during the 2 hours we have scheduled every day. But when I was with sister wood, she would turn around on her bike if she felt like talking to someone. She talked to the guy we bought sushi from. She talked to EVERYONE and it really reminded me that from the minute we leave our apartment to the minute we return, we are always finding. I want to "preach by the way" (D&C 52:10) and open my mouth to everyone. The day after exchanges, we were running for exercise and I was praying in my heart that I would be able to apply this thing I learned to become a more consecrated missionary. An impression to talk with the girl running in front of me immediately followed. I was so quick to justify it being the spirit talking to me: "But I'm exercising right now", "I don't even have a tract to give her or anyway to get her number", "I don't want to bother her". But the feeling didn't leave. I said another quick prayer to have courage and I sped up my pace a bit to run beside her. Her name is Lin. She is a college student at Zheng Da University. We talked and agreed we could run together in the mornings, and she got our phone number and called us so we could have hers. She wants to meet with us and learn more!It was super awesome feeling - following that prompting. I know that's how God will truly guide us. When He trusts that we will submit to His way. He really pulls us out of our comfort zone to stretch us and challenge us. But it's because He loves us and wants us to grow.

The second most important thing I learned was to be worthy of those promptings by repenting. Sister Wood and I had a lesson in the morning before lunch. We didn't do the best at controlling time, and the lesson went over 45 minutes which is rule set for lesson times. I try to make obedience to the mission rules my first priority, but sometimes we just mess up. But the cool thing about this experience is this: we got on our bikes to go get lunch, and then Sister Wood immediately pulled over and asked if we could say a prayer to ask for forgiveness. So we did, and the feeling that followed was so peaceful. I hadn't even realized that each time I have messed up on my mission, I would only feel the guilt but sometimes fail to ask for forgiveness. Maybe by the end of the night, I was used to the guilt, which resulted in failing to truly repent. But why not just repent right then and there? Especially when the difference was so apparent in the rest of our day.

I really learned that we need to have the spirit to be with us in order to receive true revelation. We went finding shortly after, and it was seriously amazing how much easier it was to follow promptings of where to go and who to talk to. Eventually those feelings led us to this lady named Ding. Our experience with this lady was one of the most moving things I've ever experienced. She was sitting at this table outside of a 7-11. We introduced ourselves and asked if we could sit. She seemed a little unsure but agreed. We started talking to her about God, and she shared her opinion that she believes there is a God, but there is no purpose to our lives. We wake up, eat, go to work, go to sleep, and then do it again. She spoke with a lot of anger and passion. At first, I couldn't tell if we should keep talking to her. I didn't know if she'd even listen to anything we wanted to share. But something kept telling me to just listen. She opened up about her childhood that her mother died when she was very young and she never got along with her father. The pain and the heart ache rang in her voice and her words brought her to tears. "If God really loved me, He wouldn't give me such a horrible unhappy life". The spirit really worked through Sister Wood and I - looking back, I don't even remember all of the things I said. It was amazing watching her heart soften and the spirit touch her as we said the things she needed to hear.  As I looked at her and told her with every part of me that God loves her, the Spirit confirmed that it's true. God does love her. He told her through two missionaries that she'd never met before. She has a baptismal date for November 21st.

Oh if I could just express how lucky I am. There is nothing more amazing than the work that I get to do. I know God lives. There is no way that the things we share with others isn't true. I wish I could just sit down with every single person we meet for just 30 minutes and talk with them about the happiness that lays in store for them. I love this work more and more every day! I'm so grateful I get to be God's missionary.

Sister Hendricks

Ponderizing scripture of the week:
I know that which the Lord hath commanded me, and I glory in it. I do not glory of myself, but I glory in that which the Lord hath commanded me; yea, and this is my glory, that perhaps I may be an instrument in the hands of God to bring some soul to repentance; and this is my joy.
Alma 29:9

Taipei Zoo
We met two elders at the zoo :)
Zoo time!! Our area has the Taipei Zoo in it - about 5 minutes from our house. We went with some members for my first time!  
Got Bananas?
Beautiful area!
The elders in YongHe are pretty creative....
The zoo clan
Our new favorite place to eat: our apt. rooftop

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