Tuesday, September 3, 2013

September 2nd

Hey mama! 

How is everything going? Is everyone enjoying their last week of summer? I can't believe that summer is already almost over! Time definitely flies! 

Everything is going well down under. Investigators are progressing for the most part (one of our baptismal dates got anti-ed by her landlord and told her friend that she wants to stop meeting with us :( we still have a lesson with her scheduled for this week though!) and I really love the members in our branch. I'm making some progress on language; my tones have been a real problem, so I am now listening to a preach my gospel cd in Chinese whenever we are in our flat and reading from the Book of Mormon a lot out loud reeeeeeaaallly slowly. Sister Z says I sound like a Chinese kid with reading disabilities, but at least I sound like a Chinese kid haha. 

I've really tried to improve on my prayers this last week. I realized that they had become a little repetitive and I wasn't putting enough time into them. I started studying about prayer in the scriptures and found a great definition of it in the Bible dictionary, part of which states: Prayer is the act by which the will of the Father and the will of the child are brought into correspondence with each other. The object of prayer is not to change the will of God but to secure for ourselves and for others blessings that God is already willing to grant but that are made conditional on our asking for them. The Lord wants us to ask. He needs for us to recognize what we are in need of and come to Him. Sister Z shared a quote with me recently that states, "I believe that, in this church, answers is a blessing we have. We don't need to fool around, we can go directly to God. If he is there, He will answer. If He doesn't answer, check the batteries, something is wrong with us." So, a commitment this week: Focus on pray this week. Make a conscious effort to come closer to God and understand His will. I know that as you do, the Lord will bless you with increased strength, love, and comfort. 

Just wanted to let you know everything is great. I love and miss you and hope that things are going well! 

Letter to the President:

Ups and downs this week. One of the downs, Betty got a job and was too busy to meet with us this week and get a baptismal interview. But, one of the ups was that she still came to church yesterday! And she said that she is still interested in being baptized. We find out what her work schedule looks like tomorrow and we are praying that she will have enough time. 

Another up: Yesterday after church, a girl came up to me and said, "Do you remember me?" She looked familiar, but I couldn't quite recall how I knew her so I responded that I didn't. She said, "We met on the tram a week ago. My name is Mel." Finally, I remembered. Sister Z and I were on our way to a lesson last week and I started talking with a girl next to me named Mel about the church. She had not seemed that interested and said that she was really busy taking test right now, but she still gave me her contact information. Since she was Australian-Chinese and spoke really good English, I referred her over to the English-speaking sisters and did not think much of it. However, Mel told me that she had prayed to the Lord for guidance the day before she met me and that I was an answer to her prayers. She told me the sister missionaries had called her yesterday and invited her to church so she came. 

Chinese is coming along, slowly and surely. Sister Z and I have been doing a lot of role-plays to help me improve on my speaking in lessons. I still do not understand a lot that is being said in lessons, but I usually understand the gist of conversations and am praying for the Spirit's guidance.

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