So for the past couple of months we missionaries in Hung Shui Kiu have been planning a big activity mainly for parents and kids as a way to find new investigators. Pretty much every spare moment has been spent thinking about this activity and it actually got turned into a stake activity which stressed us even more because we didn’t have any new help in doing it! But this Saturday we finally had it and although things didn’t go exactly the way that we had planned, it was still a success and we had quite a few families there that we were able to meet and exchange info with! If there’s one thing that I’ve learned, it’s that things will almost never turn out the way that you plan for them to, but if you work hard and keep the right attitude then they will always work out the way that they need to! After being in a room with a whole bunch of kids running around for a couple of hours we were pretty tired, though it was still worth it and was really fun!
We taught Mary again this week and she is doing so good! The problem that we seem to be having with most of our investigators right now is that they all have really weird schedules and cancel a lot which makes it really hard to see them on a regular basis. But it turns out that she has actually been praying and reading the Book of Mormon (what?!?!) and really has such a big desire to find out the truth of things for herself. We had a simple lesson where we taught about Jesus Christ since she doesn’t have any Christian background and I felt the Spirit so strongly during that lesson as I was able to bear simple testimony of my Savior. At the end of the lesson she herself asked what homework we would be giving her and then asked for more scriptures to read!!!
We also taught Michael and I feel like he is so close, but he’s still missing the desire to really learn things for himself. He mostly just likes meeting with us because we’re nice and help him with English. But every time we teach him, the lesson always goes so well and he has such good questions that we know he is so so close!! It’s so hard when you know how much this gospel can help someone, but they’re not quite ready to put in the effort to take things seriously. One thing that I’ve encountered a lot on my mission is that people like meeting with us because they feel happy, but then we leave and they forget everything and don’t do the things necessary to KEEP feeling those happy feelings!
So here in the New Territories (AKA the middle of nowhere) there aren’t separate Mandarin and Cantonese wards, we all just meet together because there aren’t many members. Church is usually taught in Cantonese since that’s what most of the members speak, but yesterday for some reason pretty much everything was taught in Mandarin which made it kind of difficult for me because I can only understand about 10% of what people say to me, if even that much. It was a good reminder for me of what it was like when I first got to Hong Kong and didn’t understand like any Chinese and I kind of laughed to myself because I felt like a brand new missionary all over again! And then the funny thing was that on the train on the way home the girl that I talked to was from Mainland and so she only spoke Mandarin, although she understood Cantonese. So we had a funny little conversation where I was speaking in Cantonese and trying to guess what she was saying in Mandarin and there was a lot of miscommunication haha! You had better believe that I was relying 100% on the Spirit in that conversation because my Mandarin is terrible and there were times where I just guessed what she was saying and it turned out to be right–blessing from the Spirit for sure!
This week it has been raining cats and dogs and on the way home from service. One day we all forgot our umbrellas and got absolutely soaked, but we laughed and enjoyed the rain anyway! That is until we got home and saw that one of the windows had been left open and it just so happened to be the one right by all of my books, so my journals, scriptures, and everything else made out of paper also got soaked! So I kept laughing and pulled out some hair dryers to make the best of the situation and once again things turned out fine! All my books just look a little more used now 🙂
This experience made me think of a quote that I like by Jenkins Lloyd Jones:
“Anyone who imagines that bliss is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around shouting that he has been robbed.
Most putts don’t drop. Most beef is tough. Most children grow up to be just people. Most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration. Most jobs are more often dull than otherwise…
Life is like an old-time rail journey–delays, sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders, and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed.
The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride.”