July 21, 2013
Get ready, this is a long one for some reason. Before I forget! I've been curious: how is your member missionary work going as a family? Especially with Jacob's baptism coming up, I've been wanting to ask :) PS when is his baptism again? I always forget but I'm going to write it down this time!
Secondly I forgot to tell you that last P-day I was craving sea food SO badly. Me! Craving sea food! So I bought fried fish and ate the whole thing (not bones) but I ate its eyes! Later that week we went to a new members' house and they fed us small catfish (pecel lele) and those you do eat the bones. I loved them! I had three! ("eating its teeth, eyeballs and bones... and that's it" haha)
Next. Remember back in Kansas City when we would have the missionaries over and ask them REALLY hard gospel questions? You should start doing that for me! Hit me with your best shot ;)
Lastly, Mom if you ever send a package/letter I have a few more things to add to my wish list. A Four Gen. fam. history chart, dried mango, ranch packets, biking shorts and the family pictures we took just before I left. Not urgent! But just so you always have some ideas :)
So this week was a good, average week. Sis Suryani and I are finding our place in the work and even though our numbers are low, we are contacting so many people and trying to serve whomever we can. I feel like I'm finally breaking through the language barrier and I am just starting to understand full conversations. At least the gist of them.
Alexcia has committed to read the Book Of Mormon, pray every day, follow the Word of Wisdom and has already completely quit drinking tea! She is too good to be true and I feel like her conversion is all between herself and the Lord and we are just the lucky missionaries who get to remind her about God's plan. She said she found the church where she wants to stay. I love her more every day. She stopped by the church the other day when we had a meeting and just wanted to say hello. We were going to watch the missionary broadcast so she watched it with us and loved it. Then she asked if she could go proselyting with Sis Suryani and I at the park and so she came! We talked to 3 families and then she went home. I think that she feels lonely here but has told us repeatedly that she feels home at the church and that we are all a big family.
Funny that we also have been teaching that bible basher guy I told you about. Well we taught the plan of salvation but he had another long-winded speech and this time we had the elders with us. It got a little more heated than before. He had three different translations of the bible and was trying to prove different points with different versions and then he was so upset that Joseph Smith "claims the Book Of Mormon is the most correct book" when his three bibles must be more correct than the Book Of Mormon. So sad it is almost funny. We just hope his family will get to be together someday. He gave us this story from yahoo.com and told us to pray before we read it to have the holy ghost and that if we did, the Lord would bless us. What?! hahahaha . Ya I didn't do that, sorry!
Funny story! The other day we wanted to do something to serve someone but had no clue what to do. So we stopped at a little shop on the side of the road and asked if we could wash their dishes and help them cook. They were so confused and kept trying to give us free food but we just washed and helped them cook chicken and wrap food. We were painfully slow so they ended up doing most of it anyways but I think everyone got a kick out of a Bule trying to wrap rice bukus (bundles) and we laughed a lot.
But we also have had a lot of frustration this week. As part of the 12 week training, we study videos, Preach My Gospel and talks about how to work with the ward and leaders. We also watched the broadcast finally. But through all of these activities Sis Suryani and many others kept saying, "But Indonesia isn't like America". Who cares? Baptismal services, ward activities, FHE, firesides or new member lessons with members... I was getting so discouraged because I don't believe that the whole chapter 13 of PMG doesn't apply to us, like they were making me feel. Especially after the missionary fireside. I feel like people have given up on the members here saying that it will take generations for them to change. What's wrong with now? I guess I just don't like people telling me I can't. But it has inspired us to work even harder and not accept the limits that others give us. I know I also need to humble myself and accept the culture more but still I am not going to stop before I start or settle with our goals. Just because it has never happened before does not mean that I should limit myself. I am going to try and work and never give less than my best for these people. Sure it's different but that doesn't mean we have to sit around and wait for the members to "learn the Utah way". Times are changing and the work is growing. It is a miracle that this is even a mission but I know that there are so many strong members here and all the Returned Missionary's do some amazing work when they come home.
I got your letters and LOVED them. The one with pictures made me cry and laugh and I can't believe that I get you as my family. But I feel so bad. I try to not talk about home/family/Utah very often but Sis Suryani has been really homesick this week. The difference is, she has no clue what is going on with her family and has no way to contact them when they have only sent her an email twice. She will most likely never get to go home either because the neighbors will probably hurt or even kill her. I want to say something or do something for her but it is so different than my wonderful family and I feel bad. Maybe you could send her an email this week! Just something short even! Just because she never has people to email or anything. I love you guys so much and know that faaaamilies arrrrre forrrever!!!! Dad, mom, emily, andrew, joshua, samuel, jacob, lucy. S H E F F I E L D!!!!!
One cool fact, last night it rained but in the morning one of our neighbors told us that it was raining ash from Mt Maropi (idk how to spell that).
To respond to your email. If I like teaching the English classes. I have mixed feelings about but we always sing a song from The Seekers (the Barnards are from Australia and they teach haha) and the night Alexcia came, we were singing Lemon Tree!! :)
My comp has felt funny for a few weeks so we went to a lab to get her blood tested but it all normal so we will see!
Loved the TL and HP quote of course! That is so cool you met with the sister missionaries! We went to the member's house whose son I met at the MTC and she spoils the missionaries. I think that missionary families must do that since they can't spoil their own children. True? :) I loved the pictures from Bear Lake! You're so funny. Don't feel like your emails are too long. They're great! I LOVE MY MISSION! I LOVE MY FAMILY!
PS Dad thanks for the extra pictures and the email. Sis Suryani and I were just asking about judgement the other day. How does it work in 1 Ne 12 when it talks about the 12 disciples vs the 12 apostles judging. Who is who and who judges whom?
WHEW! That was long. Sampai senin besok!
<3 Sis Sheff