Well, Helen had her baptismal interview on tuesday. We have seen her every single day this week! super awesome! We even bought her a mango cake, decorated the room--we were stoked! Well then the interview lasted TWO HOURS. what! And Helen didn't pass. ....YES! haha seriously the biggest miracle of all time!
Elder Kang is the district leader, and he talked to us afterwards and explained why. He said she got every question in the book right (yeah she did!) and believes everything and technically can get baptized! And he said he kept the interview going because the whole time kept having the biggest prompting that he just can't pass her. He looked over DC 20:37 over and over again and then finally it hit him, and he knew why.
. 37 And again, by way of commandment to the church concerning the manner of baptism—All those who humble themselves before God, and desire to be baptized, and come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits, and witness before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon them the name of Jesus Christ, having a determination to serve him to the end, and truly manifest by their works that they have received of the Spirit of Christ unto the remission of their sins, shall be received by baptism into his church.
Helen failed because of humility and faith. And the even cooler part is, he didn't tell her because he wants her to find out for herself! Well, after the interview, Helen didn't even seemed upset or bugged that she failed! She finally left, and we just cried. haha man we were so sad. and we brought that cake home and depressingly ate it at 10pm after planning. how great is that? well THEN, as we were saying a comp prayer, Helen called us! Begging us to tell her what she did wrong!
(wow. this apple store is the place of miracles! one worker just came up and said he always notices a bunch of missionaries come in here and he's curious on why there are so many different churches today. he also asked how we came to know that this church is true. YEAH! unfortunately we couldn't give him a BOM or teach him bc he's working, but we're excited to call him up tonight! amazing.)
anyway, Helen has completely changed! she now reads the Book of Mormon for 45 minutes a night, and has the strongest desire to get baptized! like crazy!
Anyway, this experience just helped me realize how important baptism really is. Baptism is no lukewarm endeavor! it's no casual dunk in a pool! we're not here to beg and try to persuade others to get baptized to just have more members.. no, this is an everlasting, eternal commitment with our Heavenly Father. wow. Helen could answer every question in the book, but baptism is not a statistic. The first and most over-looked requirement truly is humility! This makes me think back to that missionary in Becky's ward who said, "a mission is not about baptism, but it is about repentance." so true. Helen has never really felt like she needs repentance, or like she's ever really done anything wrong. Since taking the discussions, she's believed in Christ, but she's never had a burning testimony that He is the Way to Eternal Life.
Helen is extremely smart and asks a thousand unnecessary questions...but since this humbling moment, she has totally changed. practically all we do with her now is read the Book of Mormon and share testimonies. ah, it is incredible! If Helen got baptized just to get baptized, then the Atonement would be of NO effect. and if she doesn't think she needs the Atonement, then WHY get baptized? Anyway, this is so wonderful. We gave her a new date for Aug 31. This time, when we gave her the date, her eyes lit up and she got SO excited. I guess she thought she wasn't going to get another chance hahha. but that's the beautiful thing about this gospel, about our Savior and His Atonement... we always, always get another chance.
I am so grateful for this work! I am so grateful I am a member of the church! I am so grateful I get to EVERY DAY share about our perfect Savior and how he can help each and every person. No matter who they are, no matter what they've done, no matter how busy they are--Jesus Christ and His Atonement is for everyone. Keep praying for Helen. She is so wonderful. I just love her face off so much! Haha oh--AND, she's even started talking slow on the phone for me now! how nice! haha she's so great. oh, she also just bought a mini piano! so cute. i love her :) we're learning a duet of I Am A Child of God. :)
I testify with bold humility. As to my strength, I am weak, but in God's strength, I can do all things. I speak to everyone I meet about the Savior and the Restoration of His church.
I'm so grateful for this gospel! We are SO INCREDIBLY BLESSED! wow. I can't even believe it. we have so much to thank God for every day. Love you all!
Oh!!! So this picture in Chinese characters. One meeting with Helen, I felt impressed to share just the Intro of the BOM. boom, she grabs a piece of paper, and draws out this diagram how the BoM, Joseph Smith, and Christ's gospel all testify of each other. then we read on to the last verse and I asked her where Jesus Christ would go in her diagram. and she stuck Him right in the middle of all those things! AH SHE GETS IT. it was so cool. It was like in Indiana Jones when he finally figures out the mystery and everything connects together. SO COOL! Dad can you read this? :)
One member took us and Helen out to eat in Wanchi. I ATE SQUID!!! haha it was actually good. super chewy though!
oh that pic of that woman (suki) and Sister Cheung. So we met her on the street, named her daughter an english name for her, and then taught her. it was so fun! THEN, she gave Sister Cheung a makeover. ahahha.
HE IS SO CUTE WHAT THE HECK!!! OOOOH my gosh--this means he's an inch taller than ME?!?!?! NO WAY!!! he's so cool. he's going to be the MOST AWESOME missionary. he can already be one!! he better be hanging out with the elders 24/7! haha ;)
Note from MOM on Aug. 18th, 2014:
How are you??? O my gosh I love your letters so much. I love the sister missionaries in our ward to pieces too because they both remind me of you!! They are beautiful and thoughtful and loving and kind and really fun to talk to. And guess what? It's Sister Reid's bday next week and we get to have them for dinner! So I'm going to do a big candy bar poster and have cake and presents! So fun!!! She is going to be SO SURPRISED!!
Three events that were extra awesome that I'm sending you. First of all. TYLER IS NOW more than 2" TALLER THAN NATALIE. This was taken at the pre-show dinner party that Lucia did for all of the Angst family and us and friends. Can you believe how much Tyler is growing? I just bought him new sunday shoes and basket ball shoes and now they are both too small. AGAIN. You should see how tiny your shoes look next to his now! I'll take a picture to show you. lol
From Karli: Aw yay!!! Love you!! mom... i only have like 2 spoonfuls left of the powder.. haha you have no idea how happy these smoothies have made me! today all my groceries were for smoothies---and they have the best produce to freeze! Including awesome green/red spinach! so.. if you would like... please just send more powder and spiraling! I'M SO IN LOVE. i literally wake up and then smile thinking about my smoothie. haha thank you thank you thank you you are the BEST! and sister Cheung is starting to become so healthy now too! look how many lives you change ;)
LOVE These pics! haha Lucia is so cute. natalie is a babe. praying for her. looks so fun! tell Lucia I love her!
and those sisters are SO right. SO right. It's the happiest time of my life and no glamour or glory. Grandma sent me a pic of HBT and said, "aren't you glad you're on a mission?" it made me tear up. yes, i am so happy i am here.
haha but thank you for being so great to the sisters! You have NO IDEA how much we love members, when people feed us, when they give us apples, or anything! haha mom, thank you! seriously, you have no idea how much missionaries love members.