Monday, February 29, 2016

Finding Miracles

 Just an average beautiful sabbath day
Good morning beautiful family! 
What a crazy week this has been.  Not necessarily crazy things happening, but just super busy, and everyone wants to take us out to dinner and stuff.  Okay, so I've gained a little weight haha.  But who wouldn't? Taiwanese food is so good!! 
 Dinner with the Zhang family
                                    PIZZA HUT!!! + Exchanges with Sister Cutler and Guan

Lunch at Sister Chen's

The temple was wonderful, by the way. We did a session in Chinese, and surprisingly it was actually pretty easy to understand.  Mom, I saw Alice again! Haha honestly I don't even remember how she knows you, but it was so nice to see a familiar face from home (: 

Post temple with Sister Juarez

We a lot of cool miracles this week! So we didn't find any new investigators until like Thursday or Friday, which was really weird.  It was probably Friday or Saturday when we had only found 1 or 2, and we prayed so hard, and we literally only had 15 minutes before our dinner appointment to find on the street. Well, no one wanted to talk to us, and we might have even talked to a possessed ama that was just bai bai-ing at a buddhist miao.  We had to go, and we were a little bummed as we went to unlock our bikes, but then this lady, Sister Peng, walked by and kind of did a double take.  Those are the best (: We went to go talk to her super quick, prayed with her, she accepted our invite to baptism, and she set up! I'm finding there's people who are definitely so prepared, and some people just need a little more time.  That was just one of so many miracles this week. 
 Our sweet little Philipino member, Sister Lita
This was outside a cute little pottery place in Yingge (taoyuan) last p day
We ran out of wasi (gas) in the morning during showers, so we had a to call a guy to come.  Haha it's always a little awkward seeing a man in our apartment, but we decided we'd make the best of it.  So we gave our new friend, Brother Zhou a Book of Mormon, and got his number.  Then this week, I kid you not, we saw him riding around on the street probably 8 different times! Last night we finally stopped to talk to him, and set up a time to meet. This has definitely been Shen de anpai (God's setting up..?)
                                                              Cutest agong ever...
 Brother Zhu who owns a guitar shop.  And that's not the only reason
he's awesome--He said he's going to take the Book of Mormon and read it all!
We also met this cool guy named Brother Zhu, who works at a guitar shop! I thought Joseph would appreciate that.  He'll definitely be baptized, but he's just super busy.

MLC lunch at the mission home 

MLC was last week, which means zone meetings tomorrow! Haha it's interesting to work with the zone leaders from both central and north zones and see how different it turns out.  I've definitely learned a lot of leadership skills and how to work with people.  
You know, I'm really grateful for Sister Juarez.  She's been so easy to work with, and whenever we're done with exchanges, we're always happy to be with each other again (: She's definitely been a blessing to me and this area.  
Well, that about sums up this week.  Go to the temple, read the Book of Mormon every day, and pray as if Heavenly Father was sitting there beside you.  

Love, Feng Jiemei (:

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Because Heavenly Father Loves Us

 This man lives in our neighborhood
Good morning! 
It's almost 6 in the morning, and I can't wait to go to the TAIWAN TAIPEI TEMPLE today!! I have missed going to the temple so much.  That's definitely something I will not take for granted, is being able to go to the temple every single week.  Take my advice, and do it!! Don't miss out on those blessings that are so easily attainable! Wow, that was a big word in English.  Anyway, Sister Juarez and I are going to do a session in Chinese today. I figure I still have my last p-day to go to the temple and do a session in English, so why not? As long as we're in Taiwan anyway… (: 


We had an eventful wee. Where to begin... Last P day we went to Taipei 101!! We went up to the top, and it was just amazing.  It wasn't the perfect clear day by any means, but it was still really cool! Also, on the 20th, I hit 18 months as a missionary.  I can’t believe how fast the time has gone.
We've been focusing a lot on working with members, especially from guonian, and we had a cool miracle this week. We had lunch with Sister Xu from our ward, and she's an RM and our gospel principles teacher. She teaches so simply and clearly, I love it.  Anyway, she just sat down and started talking about this friend that she's been preparing to hear the gospel for a long time, and finally gave her number to the elders.  How easy was that?? Haha if only it could be like that every time! Then we used our "who do you know" approach that we were trained on from the worldwide missionary meeting, and we asked Sister Chen who was also there, who she knew that recently had a baby.  Bam! The spirit reminded her of her neighbor, and we set up a time to go visit her.   Our members here are so awesome! Missionary work is the best.

The district

A few weeks ago when we just moved in to our new apartment, we didn't have any gas, and the next day was MLC and exchanges, so we were freaking out a little that we wouldn't have any time to get a new tank. It was late, and we asked a random guy on the street if he knew if the gas place would be open.  Well it turns out that he met with missionaries back in 2009, and came to church a few times! So we taught him and his 11 year old, really smart son this week and we're super excited about them! Pray for the Chen family (: (you won't know it, but at the same time you'll be praying for half of Taiwan! Haha everyone here is last named Chen)
We haven't heard from Chantelle for a while, and we're a little worried.  But we're still praying for her, and we're not giving up on her.  At least for another minute. 

Exchanges with Sister Knapp

There's another Brother Deng, who used to be super less active. His mom is a member and never forced him to come to church or anything, but always encouraged him to go.  We visited him a while back and he finally just started coming, and now he's been really active. We told him this week that I'm going home soon, and that was just enough motivation to accept our invite to meet with bishop for a temple recommend to go do baptisms! For some people, it's just their time! It's literally nothing that we've done, but it's been really interesting to see how Heavenly Father has planned it out so perfectly. We were reviewing the restoration with Brother Deng, and it was cool to see how he made the connection that he had a personal apostasy, but now his questions are starting to get answered, and he's feeling the Holy Ghost again.  The gospel is true!!

These members from Sweden came yesterday.  How cute!

We did temple tours this week, and I almost got to do a tour in Spanish! Hahah Sister Juarez and I were trying so hard to remember Spanish words, but nothing was coming.  We tried to pray in Spanish, but all we could come up with was "we know that Jesus loves us, and we need help at church, and the Book of Mormon is the word of God. Help!" Well, I guess our prayer of faith was answered by us getting fang'd.  They didn't come. But  we were willing to do our best, and that's what mattered (: 

Last dinner with Jiang family. Me, Jia Qi, Elder Facer and Dixon,
Brother & Sister Jiang, Sis. Juarez, Bro. Su,
Yi Ting, and Sis. Zhong (served in Beitou a few months ago but is home now)

You know how when you buy milk, and it expires a little after your birthday, and that means that your birthday is really close? Well, lately we've been inviting people to baptism past the day that I leave.. which means that day is really close. I'm dreading that day I have to leave Taiwan, but can't wait for the day I get to see my wonderful family. I've had experiences this week where two different people told me that they felt the Lord is very proud of my work.  I guess my prayers have been answered through other people this time.  I can't wait to see what miracles are still in store for us, and we're going to make them happen. This week’s ponderizing scripture is 3 Ne 9:12.  I'm so grateful that we have so many opportunities to repent.  It's such a blessing that because of the Atonement, we can have a new start every week when we take the sacrament, and every day when we repent.  Lately I've been thinking as we've been teaching that you could pretty much start out every sentence with "because Heavenly Father loves us..." because it's so true! He loves us so much, and has given us everything and more.  
Hope you have a great week! Love you!

Love, Feng Jiemei

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

 Just another beautiful day in Taiwan
Our cute investigator made us cookies for guonian!
Happy Valentines Day!

Unfortunately, that has absolutely no meaning in Taiwan, other than it was the last day of guonian. Bo,y did we experience guonian! We had lunch and dinner appointments every day, and it was so fun to be with all the different families for this celebration. 

It was interesting to see the difference between all member families, and just part member families with other family members bai bai-ing the food to their ancestors.  Haha let's just say I've gained a respect for and a greater understanding of the Buddhist culture and religion. I really just love the feeling of being with a family all together and sitting down eating a meal.  Isn't that what holidays all over the world are about? I love these sweet Taiwanese families (: I got to eat a few new things too! We had (pig) ear cake in all varieties, and I even had my first chicken foot.  Yes, complete with the toenails and everything.  It wasn't half bad! 
I finally got to eat jizhua--chicken foot!
We got all moved into our apartment, and it's nice to finally settle down.  Changes are good.  We've found new places to find new investigators and new miracles (: For Valentine's day yesterday, Sister Juarez even made me cookies with our new stove! We got song'd a fruit called xiantao; it's kind of like a pumpkin, and we had a little bag of flour and who knows what else, and there ya go! COOKIES IN TAIWAN. Best Valentines day ever (:
Look who made me cookies with our new stove?  Best tongban ever!
Our two zone meetings went really awesome. We kind of took a more discussion approach this time, and I thought it worked out great.  Lots of room for spiritual impressions! There's a talk in the February Liahona about group discussions, and I think it was Elder Hales who said  "participation allows individuals to experience being led by the spirit." Well, it worked.  As a mission, we're going to nuli on working with members and asking inspired questions to find referrals. It's definitely still in the works, but we've seen a few miracles already! 
Rangers of the North zone-Elders Matua, Sessions, Facer (from Tennessee--
we've got to be related), Peterson, Dong, Dixon, Taulepa, Qiu,
Francis, Chen, Christensen, Sisters Qiu, Chan, me, and Juarez
Real quick, before I forget, next week is temple day!!! So P day will be on Wednesday instead of Monday. I'll get to bring my last two family names (: 
Haha so Elder Dixon, our district leader, comes up with the funniest sayings that sound like your 'typical Chinese' to the average outside person, but just normal phrases in Chinese.  Here's a few I just had to share: 
Shengdian shi zhu de wuyu (the temple is the House of the Lord)
Jingcha gongche tingche chang (police bus parking lot)
Yongsheng shi yizhong chouchang (eternal life is a type of reward)
Xili shi hen shensheng de yishi (baptism is a sacred ceremony)
Chi putao, bu chi putao pi (eat grapes, don't eat grape skins)
Haha good luck with trying to read that.  Either way, I think they're hilarious (:
 Dinner with Niki and Sister Zeng at a spicy hot pot place
Lunch with Niki and Elders Dixon and Facer
Lately, I've been writing a list of things I've learned from my companions.  I try to read the notes from my setting apart blessing pretty often (thank you for helping with that!) and I was told that I'll learn things from my companions that will help me in later experiences in life.  I love looking back at the things that I've learned, and how each companionship has had kind of a theme in helping me to learn and grow.  I sure hope I learned well enough to use those lessons in the future! 
 Dinner with Shi family.  They have the cutest little boy that reminded
me of Andrew
 Lunch with the Wu family.  She's an RM, and I just love listening
to her teachings
Exchanges with Sister Ioane. She's from a little island called Tuwalu
(not sure if that's English or Chinese way of saying it), but
it's by Fiji
My ponderizing scripture for this week is Alma 26:35, basically just putting all your glory in the Lord instead of yourself.  Man, he's done so much for me! It's interesting how people always comment on how we're so young, or our Chinese is so good, or how we're so great for leaving our homes, but we literally couldn't do any of it without the help of Heavenly Father.  He loves us so much, doesn't he? 
That is my share for the day.  Let me know if there's anything you want to know about Taiwan, or my mission or anything, and I'd love to share! Xin nian Kuaile!

Love, Feng Jiemei

Alright, so it's been a while since I've used a fridge.  I'm still
getting the hang of it...