Monday, July 15, 2013

Week 4 "Hurrah for Israel"

July 15, 2013
Dearest family,
Thank you for your thoughts about charity. Relief Society is the meeting that I always feel the most lost in, so sometimes I forget that we have that as our purpose. My companion is from Magetang? I don't know how to spell that but she has been living/working in Hong Kong for like 8 years. All four sisters are in one house and I LOVE IT! They are so great to work with and so fun to talk to. We have language study set aside but I didn't have much room to bring books so we usually just read something and I will read in Indonesian to practice and Sis. Suryani reads in English to practice. We will read from the Book Of Mormon, from Preach My Gospel or from Gospel Principles, whatever! And then I try to memorize scriptures too. We cook breakfast and usually lunch too but the members and those we visit always, always, always, always, feed us so even lunch I usually just make IndoMei (ramen noodles) or a PBJ or an egg or something. We eat out a lot since there are so many food places. Fun fact: this month is fasting month though so most food places are closed until it is dark out of respect for the Muslims.

SO! My week. Wow.
Last Tuesday: woke up so happy! We had an average day, visited a few people and did some online training courses. One highlight- Sister Baantjer recieved a jump rope in the mail and all the missionaries were at the church at lunch so we all jump roped in our church clothes and it was so funny. I love our little district! Oh, I found my one qualm with Indonesia... they don't believe in leaving the heel of bread on a loaf when they sell it. Waduh!

Wednesday: I remember specifically telling Sis Baantjer that it was going to be a great day. We showed up to our morning appointment and she canceled, then the Barnards told us our after service project was cancelled so all we had left on the schedule was study, find an address and visit a member! (PS my study was so good that day. I wanted to know about "the council of the eternal god" from D&C 121 and I was struck in awe at how magnanimous our Heavenly Father is, yet he is "a being who cares for the salvation of our souls" as the bible dictionary bilang.) Then right before we left to find the address it started to rain. We had to wait it out a little then we got on our huge rain poncho's and my bag to protect my backpack ripped so I had my backpack on under it and we headed to find the address. Well it was JAUH BANGET! (really far) and I got so tired that I had to stop and put my backpack in my basket anyways (this is important later) since the rain had eased up a little. Well we found where the address was supposed to be but it was non existent. We took off our rain poncho's and Sis Suryani noticed that my nametag was lost. AGAIN!!!!! SECOND TIME IN THREE DAYS! I had no idea what to do! It was now completely dark, still drizzling, we had an appointment, and we had driven for probably 45 minutes. I was so frustrated and upset and confused and hopeless. Why did this have to happen again? What was I supposed to learn?! We prayed for a miracle and then tried to figure out a plan. We could either walk the busy street with our bikes on the wrong side in the dark and in the rain and be late to our appointment to check the ground for the whole path we drove, or we could just ride our bikes back to the spot where I stopped to take off my backpack and hope it was there. I had no idea what to do so Sis Suryani (trying to keep us good to our appointment) suggested that we ride our bikes back to the spot and she said she thought she remembered where that was so we got riding and I was still trying to clear my thoughts to just be lead by the Holy Ghost but I was thinking a million things per minute. How to make a new nametag, what lesson was I supposed to learn, trying to watch ground the other side of the road still, wondering why I hadn't gotten a miracle to find my last nametag, feeling so vulnerable without anything to set me apart as a representative of the Lord. Then I thought, "Everything had seemed to go wrong today, even though I told sis b that it was going to be a great day. So was it still a great day? YES! Everyday is a great day that I get to be a missionary." And right after that I thought I recognized the spot across the street so I shouted to Sis Soriano and we crossed the road. And IT WAS THERE! Name-side up, lying in the mud. I stopped crying tears of worry and started crying because I knew it was a miracle. THE MIRACLE OF THE NAMETAG! It was seriously amazing. It probably sounds so little but it was so important to me and the Lord's hand had to have been in that experience. (I seriously looked down and didn't even move before taking this picture since I was so grateful.)
The Miracle of the Nametag

Thursday: we were tracting/biking in the rain and contacted so many people! Then we got my favorite foods from these carts by the church and when we got to English, 3 new people were there. One was a girl from Portugal named Alexcia who stopped by the church just to see what it was. I got her number and then we had to teach another family. He is a total bible basher who believes in the Trinity and read the whole Book Of Mormon but also read the Wikipedia source about the church like his second bible. What do I do about him? Anyway I got really shut down after his lesson but Friday: we had a big spaghetti lunch with ranch dressing and salad and garlic bread since we wanted to spoil our district. It was amazing and then I called Alexcia. She asked me if we could meet before I even did! So we set up an appointment for the next day and visited a member then went to Atin's house. She has been investigating the church for 9 months but we asked her about baptism again and SHE SAID YES! She is going to be baptized AUGUST 18TH!!!!!!! Saturday: Went to visit a member whose husband is bed ridden and then on our way to the next appointment my chain came off my bike in the pouring rain and I had black all over my hands from fixing it. Too funny. But we taught Alexcia and SHE ROCKS! She is like the most unique person I know. She came to church the next day and SHE WANTS TO BE BAPTIZED IN AUGUST TOO! A little about her. She is 21, her dad was a prince from Solo, Indonesia and her mom was Indonesian. She has an adopted son from Australia still in Portugal and she is writing a book/teaching watercolor here right now. She is also pregnant from a sperm donor and wanted to find the truth to give her future child. She has previously been Buddhist, Hindu, Jehovah witness, catholic, Muslim... she believes our church is true though! She feels so much peace and I asked her to pray with us for her first time and we were all crying after her prayer it was so sincere. She knows the plan of salvation is true because she has a sixth sense and sees people waiting around in the spirit world. She has a potty mouth and flirts with the elders a lot but she is a miracle. ALSO she doesn't speak Indonesian, only Javanese, Italian, Portuguese and every other language, so we have to teach her in English. Miracle or what?! She has a lot of changes to make but I am so excited for her that she has finally found rest in the Lord.
Sis. Suryani, Alexcia and Sis. Sheffield

I HAVE TO GO! :( I LOVE YOU ALL! The temple was fun today and the art gallery was beautiful. We had FHE with the bishop. So fun!
Water Castle

Had to... smile

Selalu, Sis Sheffie

Family picture
gaylin/teresa's email address
Alexcia/ctr ring
Miracle of the Nametag

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