Sunday, April 6, 2014

Small and simple things

Sister Fernley sounds like she is doing fabulously well! Qishan is ready for the harvest it seems. Here is her latest message:

Dear Family,

Well another week has gone by and this move call is almost over! What! Move call comes in on Saturday night. Sister Yeh and I are pretty sure that she will be moving (she's been in Qishan for four and a half months), and I will be staying in Qishan, but you never know. 

This week started out as a pretty normal week. It didn't seem like there was anything outstanding happening. Actually we have had a really hard time getting a hold of any of our RCs or LAs. But the past couple of days I've been able to look back and realize that there have been so many miracles. Many are small, but it is through "small and simple things that great things are brought to pass." 

Tuesday morning we went to go try and visit an LA that our Relief Society president requested we go visit, but once again she wasn't home. The last time we tried to visit her and she wasn't home we decided to tract her street. We were just about out of time but decided to tract a few more doors. At one of the homes a lady answered the door and we were immediately engulfed with the smell of smoke. This lady looked pretty disheveled and was wearing pretty skimpy clothing. She also sounded a little drunk. It reminded me a little bit of Dad's story about Patty Thurston (?). We told her we were sharing a message that will strengthen families and that has blessed our lives. I asked if we could come back and share more with her and she said we could. 

So when our LA wasn't there again we decided to try and visit the lady we had tracted into. She was home and let us in. She said she had had missionaries come over before and pulled out a bunch of pamphlets and magazines from the Jehovah Witness missionaries. We have actually run into a lot of people who have had Jehovah Witnesses share with them before. When we told her we were a different church and that all Christian churches weren't the same she started asking why there were so many. She said it didn't make sense. We started the first lesson and were telling her about how the Lord calls prophets and how the prophets in the Bible were called of God. 

When my companion was telling her about Moses and Noah this lady exclaimed, "yea, but they are all dead. Right?"

I replied, "Yes, but we know that we have a living prophet."

As soon as I said this she very excitedly asked, "where!?"

We were then able to testify to her about our living prophet and talk to her about the authority of God, and luckily I had the conference edition of the ensign in my bag so we could show her pictures of the Prophet and his Apostles. Through this whole thing she was very attentive and started telling us that all the churches should combine into one and that we should tell our prophet to arrange it. We taught her more about the priesthood and when I was telling her that without the priesthood we didn't have authority of God and that we need prophets and apostles to guide us and help us know the will of the Lord. I told her that other churches didn't have this authority. She then pointed at the pictures of the prophet and apostles and said, "well they should ask them."

She was so willing to accept that these men were called of God, it was incredible. We taught her the first lesson and gave her a Book of Mormon. When we told her about Joseph translating the book into english she asked us what language it was in before. We showed her Nephi 1 where it talks about it being the language of the Hebrews with Egyptian characters. 

We then continued to invite her to read the book and pray about it, and if she would do these things she would know it was true and is the word of God. 
Her reply..."I already believe it is true."
Me: "Why do you believe it is true?"
Her: "Well translating that must have been really hard. He had to have the help of God."

Incredible. We invited her to read and then she started talking about how she has read a little bit of the Bible and doesn't like it. She started reading in Genesis when the Lord tells Abraham that he is going to destroy Soddom and Gommorah. She doesn't like the idea that the Lord would destroy a whole city because they were completely wicked. So she told us, "I believe the Book of Mormon is true, and I believe in Jesus Christ, but I don't like His actions."

 She doesn't like Jesus Christ. What? That's a problem. 

We didn't have time to sit with her much longer, but we testified of Christ and of the gospel to her and invited her again to read and pray. This week we will hopefully be able to go over again and share from the Book of Mormon about Christ and the atonement. We'll see if that helps. 
For the past week every time I have thought about this lesson or flipped through our Area Book and saw her information it has made me laugh. She is probably my favorite contact so far.

Anyway, other miracles we have seen:

We tracted into a member's mom who was really lonely and discouraged because her daughter didn't come home for the weekend holiday. (Friday everyone went grave sweeping. Basically they just clean the graves of their family members and then go and bai bai.) We were able to cheer her up and comfort her a little bit and now have the ward on board to help her.

We went to go find an LA family and had an incredible lesson with the mom. She is really willing to come back to church. We asked about her conversion story and I could see her eyes light up as she talked about it.

Our 7/11 contact did come on Wednesday, but she came super late and her grandma (who had driven her) was really irritated because of a ton of mis-communication with her granddaughter. So we spent a lot of time explaining who we were. Her grandma had no objections though, she was just mad because her granddaughter hadn't told her why she wanted to come to our church or what she wanted to learn. So around 9:30 we left the church with a slightly less irritated grandma and a pretty sad teenager. But she came to church again on Sunday. And guess what the lesson in Young Women's was? The Restoration...perfect. We are going to meet with her again this week.

Shao Jie also came to church again and is on track for her bapismal goal. We just need to finish teaching the commandments and commit her to live them. She started to get a little afraid of baptism because she is afraid of water, but between us and the elders I think we've lessened her fear.

Zong Jiemei wasn't able to come to church this week, but when we were trying to asses her desire to be baptized she told us she want's a happier life and believes baptism will help her have that. We haven't been in contact with her for a few days, so we aren't completely sure where she's at right now. But we hope to meet again with her soon.

Last week we were riding our bikes to find a place to tract and I looked into the window of a house and though we should tract it. Before I could tell my companion to stop she stopped and parked her bike so we could tract that street. When we knocked on their door the husband said they were getting ready to leave but that we could come back another time. Last night we had an extremely long lesson with him spending most of our time answering his questions. I think he has a lot of potential, but we will see. They will be really busy for the next couple of weeks, but he said we can come back after then.

The slew of cockroaches has slowed down. For a few days we were finding a bunch of little ones and every once in a while some bigger ones, so we think a cockroach had babies and they were periodically showing themselves. The past couple of days we haven't had any though. Hopefully we've found the last of them. 

And we have found a ton of referrals for the elders lately!

I'm sure I've forgotten a lot of things. You can find miracles everyday if you just look for them, but that's all I can think of right now.

Last week I said it was nice to be living out of one apartment. Before we moved in we were going up to our new apartment on the ninth floor to shower because our previous apartment had no hot water. The people who lived there before had already moved out and they were just having people go in a fix things up and clean the place. So its nice to be able to shower in the same apartment we live in now. 

It sounds like conference was great. I'm so excited to listen to it next week. I can't wait to hear what they will invited us to do and learn how we can become better. 
As always the pictures are so much fun. The cake pops look like they turned out great and that Jemma had a good time doing them. 
I hope dad has a good time in New York and that he gets to go to Elis Island like he wants to (he's right, I would have gone to see Newsies on Broadway :) ). 
Nicole's photo shoot idea sounds really cool! I hope it works out. If it does I think it could be really inspiring and spiritual. 

Our musical number has been moved to the last week of April. So we may have to start practicing all over because new missionaries will probably come in next week. President and Sister Blickenstaff are coming to Qishan to speak in church that Sunday so the Bishop wants us to sing then. I'm excited to see what kind of influence that will have on the members (hopefully I'm still here.)

Well this email is already long enough and I'm just about out of time. I love you all and love hearing about your week. (I loved the picture of Jemma reading her scriptures! So cute! It makes me really happy that that was the book she grabbed. She is definitely benefiting from the example of her parents.) Have an incredible week and remember that we have the incredible  gift of the gospel. He provides miracles every day of our lives.

You are always in my prayers.

With all my love,

Sister Fernley

No comments:

Post a Comment