Thursday, April 15, 2010

14 October

Hello everyone!

I have several exciting stories from this week but I just got back from a very long and strenuous hike and I am kind of tired. So it might come out kind of spastic. Sorry. :)

The first exciting story is that I am the coordinating sister for my stake, which means that I get to go on exchanges with the Taoyuan and Zhongli sisters. Last week I went to Taoyuan with Sister Tedjamulia for two days. And I was so glad I had a bike odometer--because I rode more than 50 km in two days! No wonder I am so tired all the time! The day after I got back I fell asleep on the floor after I got up in the morning. My morning exercises are getting more and more pathetic and sometimes my morning prayer lasts for the full 30 minutes of exercise time. Not because I am super spiritual but because I am super tired. :)

So while I was on exchanges we went to visit a woman who is blind to read the Book of Mormon to her. She is actually transcribing the Book of Mormon into Chinese braille and we would read to her and sentence by sentence she would punch the dots into the paper. Right now there is not a Chinese braille Book of Mormon so having missionaries read to her is the only way she gets scripture reading in. One of the missionaries calculated how long it would take and said at the rate that she is going, it would take 12 YEARS to finish putting the Book of Mormon into Chinese braille. After we left her house, I was extremely touched by her sacrifice and her faith and realized that really, the Lord asks so little of us and gives us so much in return! And truly, sacrifice breeds faith.

And then, Friday night Lin Man Rou (we call her Xiao Man) got baptized! We were very excited because she has been investigating for several months and has developed enough faith to walk through the gate to join the path to eternal life. :)

The best part of the baptism was halfway through the service, when the elder next to me said "I forgot to turn off the font!" and ran out of the room. Well, the small overflow drains can only handle so much and the girls bathroom was flooded. After the baptism, my companion and I went in search of a mop or a squegee to clean up the mess. Unfortunately, all they had was a scrubbrush with a long handle. Never deterred, I grabbed the scrubbrush and tried to sweep all of the water back into the baptismal font so it could go down the drain. It was a painstaking process but after only about 25 minutes the floor was close to dry. It was definitely a memorable baptismal service!

And now a story about how my lack of humility once again gets in the way of being effective. :) Yesterday there was a member in the Bade ward who wanted the missionaries to come to her house to eat lunch. Well, neither my companion nor I knew where she lived so the elders gave us some directions. Never one to trust elders (sorry) I looked at my map, couldn't find the road they told me to meet them at, and figured that they read the character wrong and went to where I thought it must be. Well, when it wasn't there you think I would learn my lesson, but I have never been one to put my pride down quickly! When I called the elders to ask where they were to meet them, the elder told me "on xin xing road" but he said the tones wrong, making it a completely different character and definitely not on the map. Well, once again doubting the ability of the elders to give directions, I tried my own way several times. I won't bore you with the details but just know the last laugh was on me, when we were almost an hour late because I kept going to the wrong places while the elders waited patiently for us. I certainly wasn't laughing then--I was actually quite frustrated--but it is kind of a funny story. Maybe one of these days I will be more humble, eh?

Oh, and finally, conference was AWESOME! It was so great to hear 8 hours of the prophets and apostles speak IN ENGLISH. I understood every word and it was really really exciting. And Monday was zone conference and they asked me to give a talk. The topic? "How the Book of Mormon has changed my mission."

Anyway, please excuse the spastic nature of this email. I hope you are all doing well! And congratulations to my sister Kaitlyn, who successfully birthed her first child, a little boy named Talmage. (Their last name is James.) (Just kidding!) Love you all,

Sister White

PS--Brittany, congratulations on your mission call to Armenia!

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