Sunday, September 14, 2014

Week 48

Dearest family and friends and whoever may read this...

This week was so so SO awesome. So crazy and busy with Chuseok holiday, cleaning day, a zone activity, and a last minute exchange with the Donghae sisters.. There were ups and downs as always. But overall, it was so wonderful. This week I learned that sacrifice really does bring forth the blessings of heaven. Sister Lykins and I did a special fast on saturday to sunday.. and we had 2 investigators at church this week. Fasting works.

I realize that I am a lameo and I didn't even describe what Chuseok is in my email last week! It is basically like the Korean equivalent of thanksgiving. It is a few days long, and families just get together and eat good food, play games.. basically just spend some good time together. Sometimes they have a special 'ceremony' type things where they all get dressed up in their korean traditional clothing called "hanbok" and the kids bow to their elders (usually grandparents) and they get money from them. Sweet deal I think haha! Tuesday night we had a Chuseok party with our branch members who were still around for the holiday. It was SO much fun. We played this Korean traditional game called "Uke-no-ri". I can't really describe it.. you roll sticks and you want them to all be right side up.. sorry I can't explain it haha. Okay, so I have played this game several times over the course of my past 9 months in korea (wow that's crazy) but I still don't understand it. But guess what.. apparently I am SUPER good at it. My team won because I rolled the sticks perfectly 5 times in a row haha.. Everyone kept asking me how I was so good.. I was like beats me, I guess the spirit was just guiding me or something! So much fun :)

Change day was on monday! We deep cleaned our house. Man it was a doozy. Had some great adventures cleaning.. like my all of my desk falling onto the floor (pic to come). Man this week was just a week of cleaning. We also deep cleaned and weeded the church on wednesday! Its actually so much fun whenever I get the chance to clean. Its fun to serve that way sometimes :) 
We hiked Taebaek San again this week! This time with the Donghae missionaries, for a zone activity. So fun as always. The best part was that there were these people at the top who gave us a bunch of asian pears. I love Koreans. They are so charitable. Sometimes to the point where its like "no! Just because I said hello to me does not mean you have to give me all of the groceries you just bought!" 

Because of the Holiday and how crazy busy everyone was, we weren't able to meet with many people. We were only able to meet with Jeong Sung Kyong and Kim Kooee Young... And like I said they both came to church yesterday. We haven't had investigators at church for a VERY long time.. long before I came to Taebaek. Yesterday was a day of miracles.

Jeong Sung Kyong came to church. I can't explain the happiness I feel because of it. I am so proud of her for keeping her commitment to come. She has committed so many times before and has flaked out last minute. But our meetings with her this week were really good, and I think she realized that she couldn't oppose what we were asking of her if she didn't experience it for herself. She realized that she needed to come and see for herself. She also came to our Chuseok party on tuesday, which I really think helped her feel comfortable around our members and realized that coming to church wouldn't be hard. Everyone was so loving and welcoming to her. She had such a fun time, I have never seen her laugh and smile so much. Her experience at church yesterday was a similar experience. She was so engaged during gospel doctrine, she listened intently to the talks in sacrament, reverently partook of the sacrament. I saw her crying during the sacrament. Last night I called her for a bit and talked to her about her church experience.. but she wouldn't really anything except! "it was fine! it was interesting! different than my church!" She did say that everyone was so loving and she felt so comfortable. I know, she really had a wonderful experience at church. She knows she felt something special there.. its just about helping her to admit it, and to see those good feelings as her answer. She has also been trying to keep the word of wisdom. She has made progress, she says she is smoking less and less every day, and she doesn't drink unless its with friends. She refuses to quite coffee yet.. but progress is definitely being made. Definite miracles with her this week!

Kim Kooee Young (or however you would spell her name in english, I have no idea..) Where do I start with her.. Well, obviously, she also came to church! Which is so amazing. She doesn't have much desire to apply the things we are teaching her. Last week we ended family english with her, and she wanted to keep meeting with us.. she said she would study the book of mormon in English. We told her the situation, how we would still be teaching her in Korean, but if she wanted to read it in english on her own, she definitely could! This week we had an interesting lesson with her. We started out talking about faith. We read some of Alma 32 with her, and she really liked it. We talked about how when we combine our faith with prayer, we can receive answers. We asked her if she would pray about what we have been teaching her to know for herself if it was true.. and she said she already knows that its all true. We were so shocked. So we then explained the steps of lesson 3 and how if we believe these things are true, we should act on those feelings, through being baptized. She seemed to understand and accept everything we were saying. Then I gave her the baptismal commitment.. and she said.. "No.. do I have to?"  We are having a hard time explaining to her why it is important to act. She just wants to believe its true. She believes that every faith, every knowledge is good and true. She doesn't see the need to act on it. How can we help her to act?

Like I said we had a last minute exchange with the DongHae Sisters again! Sister Ness came to Taebaek with me. I don't know if I already talked about this, but the Elders in our district are meeting with 2 spanish men. And Sis. Ness is a fluent spanish speaker, so she came to translate for lessons and church this weekend. Well.. they weren't able to come to church so they had to work.. that was kind of frustrating. But we did have a lesson with them afterwards and it was great. I felt like I was in a spanish speaking mission haha.. it was so cool! It was so cool to see the gift of tongues in action.Such a faith building experience. Also the 2 hispanic men, Orlando and Nerri (coolest guys ever) were convinced that I was fluent in spanish because I told them I took 2 years in high school.. but I literally can't remember anything except Hola and the days of the week. Korean did this to me.

"And he said unto me, my grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in my infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong."
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
This was my scripture this week. :) 

Have a wonderful week everyone!! 

Sister Holmes
ํ™ˆ์Šค ์ž๋งค

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