THANK YOU SO MUCH EVERYONE!!! Wow-- I had so many birthday wishes today! You are all the best! :) I wish I had time to email everyone back, but just know I am so grateful for all of you and your kindness! Thank you thank you!
Well, you know what's crazy? My trainer is home! Sister Cheung! I miss her. (I hope you're stalking my blog sister Cheung and reading this! ;) ) But honestly, her testimony, fire, and energy is still the best example to me. I'm so grateful for her happiness!
So on Sunday morning, Dec 7th, I woke up thinking the same thing I always think, "what am I grateful for today?" and I thought, "yay! Cindy is coming to church again! oh!! Grace is getting baptized! Yay!" and THEN I thought, "oh yeah- it's my birthday?!" That little moment in the morning was such a special moment for me. Sister Smith's bday was Dec 2, and she would say, "I really just want to become such a consecrated missionary that I forget my own birthday." I love this work. I'm grateful to lose myself in the service of God. It's life changing!
But, Sunday was awesome. it was fast sunday! WOO! that means extra miracles and more dedication and faith! it was great. we got a lot of time to go finding on the streets, but I truly feel like Heavenly Father blessed us in so many ways (the best birthday gifts!!). Sister Richardson and I found ourselves laughing SO hard many times on the street yesterday! Building our relationship, seeing miracles, and meeting just the funniest people. One girl we met is obsessed over the elders. she's never approached them, but wants to meet them so bad. Sister Richardson and I just kept trying as hard as we could to bear testimony and make our purpose of the restored gospel clear, but she kept interrupting asking, "are they dating anyone? do they date? how to foreigners find their boyfriends?" and oh man, my answer was so bad but honestly true, "through church!" ....she's coming to church.... haha Sister Richardson and i never laughed so hard after this contact.
When we got home, we made a dinner together, listened to Christmas music, and that night, I opened my package! From YOU and from grandma! ahhh i love everything-- thank you SOOOOO MUCH!!!!!! I can't believe how kind and thoughtful you are! I went to bed literally just SO happy-- so happy to work hard, spread the gospel, have fun, and feel so much love from my family. thank you all. :) Church was incredible, too. I feel like another birthday gift from God was how much I felt the spirit. Sister Chan (deaf one) bore her testimony with a translator. I was bawling. BAWLING. That woman has changed my life forever, and I am dead serious. Missionary work is the number one priority in her life. She does everything to help the Lord. Her planner is almost busier than ours ;) the deaf section in our ward has flourished--because of her. Grace Lee just got baptized this sunday, and she is also deaf. I love her to pieces. Member missionary work is true. Don't forget the responsibilty we all have as members! hate to break it to ya, but missionary work is so much more than feeding the elders once a month.
Well... I have some sad news. Wednesday, Marlo texted us. Her husband said if she continues coming to church, he will leave her. and that's that. The gospel is SO important, but our focus is eternal families. there is no way we would ever even dream of hurting their relationship. however, we will never stop praying and fasting for her. with a heavy heart, i keep wondering, "WHY did the Lord have us meet her? how can someone with THAT much faith not be allowed to follow Him?" at moments like this, I remember how small I am, and how great, all-knowing, all-powerful, and all merciful and loving Heavenly Father is. His plan is perfect. We are all His literal children, and He loves us each so much. I know everything will work out for Marlo :) God is too loving to have it go any other way. It's all just according to His time.
fun news!! Today we are going to a salad shop-- WOO!! and fro yo!! and then later in the afternoon, we'll be going to that Mandarin potential named Mia and spending a few hours with her. she is so cute and really just wants to be with us :) i love the relationships we get to build on missions!
oh, shout out to Sister Dunbar's mom! THANK YOU! we love our apartment! we have a mini christmas tree, decorations, and even the scent of pine cones. I smell sylvyville every time I go to bed. LOVE IT :)
Have a merry christmas everyone! It's the season where we can truly remember our Savior and His love for us! I am so grateful to spend this December serving Him and sharing about Him :)
Pictures: Pillow case from Grandma, cute Santa in our home! and Grace Lee's baptism! all the woman in PFL and ABD. :) much love here in HK! :)
So one night last week, actually it was your birthday, I was missing you so much and thinking of you and about to go get ready for bed after doing the dishes. All of a sudden at 9PM the doorbell rang. It had been pouring rain all day and was still so dark and wet and I thought, "Who could be coming over this late?" And though the side window, I could see that it was Bill, our postman. I opened the door, and he looked so tired. I said, "Oh, my gosh, Bill! What are you doing here so late?"
And he responded, "I hate my job." He told me that his hours were so long and he was so tired and on and on. I tried to help him see that he was appreciated and had a good retirement and he might as well enjoy his work because you never know what will happen in life. MIght as well enjoy the journey, right? Then he pulled your package out of his bag. "Well, this is for you - it looks like it came all the way from Hong Kong."
I was so excited I was screaming! Bill left, knowing he had done a very good deed for the day!! I ripped open the box and saw all of your cute Christmas gifts for everyone and OH, it was just so sweet!!!! Then I saw your card and read it over about 10 times and that's the BEST gift you could EVER give me!!!! I love you so much. Your card was like a tender mercy and I just can't tell you what perfect timing that was. Karli. You are just the BEST. I hope you know how much I love you and that I will always try and be the best mom and friend I can ever be to you. Wow. I am so lucky. So blessed beyond measure!!! Thank you with all of my heart.
I will write more tomorrow but tonight I am going to bed and saying my prayers in gratitude for such a beautiful daughter.
Another miracle: I've been sick for two weeks (cold) and tomorrow night I am soloing in the Messiah in Oakland. ON Temple Hill. Even this morning I couldn't sing. So tonight I prayed and then decided to practice one more time and I don't sound sick AT ALL anymore!! I can't wait to sing tomorrow night!!!
I love you Karli. You are an angel in all of our lives. Especially mine.