Monday, February 24, 2014

Elder Holland has come into town!!

(sing that subject line to the tune of Santa Claus is coming to town)
....we'll get to more of that in a second:
Dear Family and friends,

Hello!!!! I have so much to share and don't know where to begin.

Monday was great we went bowling with the district, I played a game of all or nothing meaning: i either got gutter balls or strikes, (my bowling teacher at Snow College would have been so ashamed) and we ate at a Japanese burger place called MOS. Have you ever heard of it? Is it a HK thing? I forget which things are American and which things are just a China special. Anyways, it's really good. We taught a new investigator named Yeuk Seun and then I was asked to speak in Stake Conference next month. Yeah let's all pray that March never comes. I'm going to throw up. 

Tuesday we had Zone conference. President and Sister Hawks.. how do they do it? It must be exhausting to be inspirational all the time. They taught us about turning points in our lives and how they can inspire us for the future. We learned how to better teach the first vision and how to work with the units. This work is so important. Every time I teach the first vision I get goosebumps because it's true. It's all true. You know?

Let me pause with this week's miracle story:

It has been a good week in Butterfly. We had a huge miracle this week. We met a mom named Rainie (Siu Jimuih) a few weeks ago while we were less-active finding. We talked to her and her daughter in the elevator and invited them to English class. When we called them later Rainie said she had read up all about our church and her friends had also told us we were evil. After some testimony baring and inviting her, she agreed to meet with us. We saw her again the day before we were supposed to see her and she cancelled again. We were so sad, but told her we would call her. She just seemed different. There was light in her eyes. We called her again and just asked her if we could meet her at the benches below her apartment building. She agreed saying she didn't want to go to the church.

We met her and just spent a lot of time answering her questions and doing How to Begin teaching. We asked her if it would be okay if we could share a brief message with her. After the opening prayer she was crying. Instead of asking her why we just sat and listened. The Spirit spoke to her and she told us that she had met with missionaries of another church before and she never cried. She also said it was her first prayer. She then said "When can I go to your church?" We met her the next day with a great member and she believes the Restoration is true! She came to church yesterday with her daughter and is doing so good. The Lord really is orchestrating this work. My heart swells and my eyes water just thinking about her. Her daughter Tina might be the most precious thing since the phrase "cute as a button" was conjured up by an accomplished tailor. But really. Can't wait to take a picture of them so you can join me in some drooling! They really are too good to be true.

Wednesday brought some good finding time. Also I realize I complained last week about the cold weather but now it's taking a turn for the warm and I could be happier. We knocked on some doors in the middle of no where and gave a man with cancer named A-Sin the copy of the Book of Mormon. (our ward is doing a 40 day fast for missionary work. they're great, and we're trying to give a copy of the Book of Mormon out every day with a member's testimony in it.) 

Thursday. We got to teach Jennifer and her husband A-Chung. I love them too much. A-Chung is so logical but he is as tender as all get out!  I love them. We brought them some brownies fresh from our rice cooker (picture attached) and taught the Restoration. They're the best. Keep praying for them!

Friday and Saturday were great. But I'm antsy to talk about Sunday. So forgive me to skip ahead to this.
Sunday: not only did Rainie and Tina get their cute selves there but so did Choi Lai Wah! Are you still breathing because I nearly fainted when I saw her walking up the way. She hasn't been to church in over 20 years! The Lord really touched her heart and I am humbled to witness such a miracle. We had some great Sunday time and then that night, Elder Holland spoke to the members of Hong Kong from the Wan Chai building. It was broadcast to all the the Stake Centers so we watched it from Hung Shui Kiu. He spoke about pioneers and how we are all pioneers in this dispensation. He spoke about three points for all members to remember
1-We are the first dispensation to not run from Babylon but to turn around and face it. WE must all stand as disciples of Jesus Christ.
2-WE live in the dispensation of the fullness of times. We don't know how good we have it.
3-This dispensation has an assignment it is to prepare the earth for the return of Jesus Christ.
Elder Holland bore powerful testimony and he said, "I know Jesus Christ lives. I'm more sure of this than I know that you sit there and I stand here."

I am the luckiest missionary out here! I love this work and I know it's true. I add my witness that Jesus Christ lives and that because he lives no matter our struggle, we are never alone. I love you all so much. Thank you for all your words of kindness and support. 
Love you so much!!!!
Love, Paak Jimuih

ps- I get to shake Elder Holland's hand tomorrow. I'm repenting as we speak.
pps- I am going to the temple next week so I won't email until later :)
Love you!!!!!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Happy P-day (Presidents not Preparation)

FAMILY!!!!! HELLO GREETINGS. I'm warning you this is going to be short again because I only have 45 minutes of email time. Hopefully we can get this library situation all figured out before next week. Anyways! How are you? Your Valentine's Day seemed so fun. I thought of you all and how grateful I am for each one of you. Nikelle is home!!!! Will you ask her to email me? I need her new email address. AWW so exciting. I miss her. Wade is an Eagle Scout, Spencer went to Simplot, and you all don't have school tomorrow. Recipe for success? I think so. 

So this past week. At a very memorable District meeting, (Mckay you little district leader, take note) the Elders in our district did a sorting hat Harry Potter meets China style, and Sister Aldana were sorted and told that we are staying in Butterfly for another move. We're excited! I really appreciate Sister Aldana because she lets me live in denial that this is my last move and one day I will leave this Hong Kong paradise. But I am so happy that I don't have to move. I love Butterfly and even though sometimes I feel like I'm running around stressed but not trying to show it, I love it here. I'm happy and I am very blessed. 

We got to teach two part member families this week. One was Jennifer's.. I think I told you her story? She's the best. I need to have her email me the pictures. We taught her husband (non-member) and he LOVES the idea of eternal families. He is very logical and right now isn't sure if he believes in God, but he is going to get there! I love them so much. Pray for them. The temple is in their future! 
The other part member family is the Leung Family. I've told you about them before-- oh my they are the cutest little couple ever. (picture attached... ps I was wearing so many layers that day hence I am ashamed to admit I looked like I gained 200-300 pounds.. but I was mostly warm so who cares) Anyway! Yes we taught Leung Hingdaih about Jesus Christ and it was the best lesson. I felt the Spirit so strong as we talked about Jesus and bore simple testimony.

Other miracles include-
-a man that we contacted in finding last week called us and scheduled himself!!!! After email last week he called and then we met him and turned him over to the Elders. He is this little dad and his son is in foster care. It's amazing, he wants to be baptized and we gave him a date right there in the lesson. The Lord knows who's ready and He just puts us in the path of these people so we can invite them to come unto Him. I love it!
-Getting to teach investigators the Gospel of Jesus Christ is always a miracle. Am I right? Yeah. We had some great lessons this week. I've been in 3rd Nephi in my personal study and it's all about Jesus you know? Aw! I am so blessed to know he is my Savior and to know that because He lives I am never alone.
-do to the freezing cold temperatures I'm blessed to say my bones are still in tact.
-Yesterday we did splits with some ward missionaries and then we ended up not having time to eat Lunch or dinner. Should I have just fasted rather than blatantly starve? Probably. 
-Okay listen. There is this less-active named Choi Lai Wah Jimuih. We were working with her when I first got here and found her. Then one time, a month or so ago, she called and said I don't care about you or about God. I was so sad!!!! Well she called us this past week. Remember fruit doorbell ditching? Yeah well it paid off! She called and scheduled us twice this past week. Yesterday she fed us. She fed us so much sick food. I usually like Chinese food but she fed us red bean mochi and this sick brown thick jello stuff that they call lihn gou--it's a new year's classic. I usually like it but after not eating.. it was just too much. Ha it's laughable to think about now but I was suffering last night. Anyways, in one of our lessons she said, "I've let down God a lot, but he never gives up on me." Isn't that amazing? OH Choi Lai Wah. I love her. She's got a lot of forgiving to do, but she is so good. I love her. She's going to get her little self (maybe weighs 95 pounds soaking wet and holding a lihn gou cake) to church this coming week.

Oh family I am so sorry this is so short, I almost have to go. But I am doing so good! Pray that we can find some new prepared investigators! We're out looking, but I'm remembering that this is God's time and he's going to fill it with what He wants me to do. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. He is changing my character and nature and I am eternally grateful. (anyone read Elder Scott's talk from Feb. Ensign? good read!) I love you all. This church is true! 

Have a wonderful week. Thank you for everything and I love you so much!!!!!!

Love, Paak Jimuih

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

HELLO AND HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!!! New Year's is wrapping up here, and I haven't seen any Valentine's Decor yet, so perhaps their skipping it here? But I'm not skipping it in my heart or my love for you all. Last year Elder Evans from the Seventy came and spoke to us on Valentine's Day, guess who is coming this year??????? Hold your cell phones and your mouse cursors tight because it is the one and only-- Elder Jeffrey R. Holland himself. It was announced this week so naturally I've spent a lot of time on my knees in gratitude but mostly repentance. I need to get myself ready for that handshake and looking into his eyes as he looks into my soul. My heart races just thinking about it. It's going to be on the 25th of this month. Hong Kong is celebrating 65 years of the church being here this year and we are all just so excited!!!!! So stay tuned!

Last week was so good. I continue to see miracles everyday and to see the hand of the Lord in my life. I love the Hong Kong people so much. I love the investigators and Less-actives we're working with and I'm working hard to really listen and then courageously follow the promptings God puts in my heart. Also in an effort to reply to the gems you bestow on me I'm going to write a little less about me so I can talk more about you.

Last Monday we went shopping in Mong Kok. I got lots of goods and lots of deals. I was just going to town on bargaining. Our investigator Vanessa came, The Tuen Mun sister's investigator (German exchange student) Caroline, and one of my dearest friends who you will all get to meet this fall from the first stake I served in --Victoria. It was so fun! (see attached pictures)  They helped me get some good deals and make it out of Mong Kok (Ladies and Flower's street) alive so we were all grateful, and were naturally exhausted.

Tuesday was a day of all finding and we saw so many miracles. One of which being right at the beginning. We met this girl named Ice. (love Chinese English names) It was so humbling to remember how the Lord really does put people in our path like that. We just have to open our mouths and find them. We taught her the restoration I felt the Spirit so strong. She asked great questions and  is the best. Hopefully we can see her again this week. Our member Ming Wai (she's the greatest!!!!) came LA finding with us for over 2 hours, and I was so grateful she was there. Members often don't know the influence we have!

Wednesday we hopped on the MTR to Kowloon Tong for MLC meeting and it was so good. I love everything that President and Sister Hawks teach us. I love them! I can't wait for you to meet them someday. President Hawks said, "if you dilligently study the Book of Mormon every single day of your life you won't go less-active." I've seen so many less-actives here. Returned missionaries who have been through the temple and have families. But a promise like that just reminds me of the importance of commandment and covenant keeping. It's true and it's real. Then we taught Vanessa that night. We focused on teaching her about the Spirit again. She's getting it. We shared the mormon messages about "light" from Elder Bednar. It's a 3 part mini-series have you seen it? You should look it up. Vanessa gets how the Spirit works now and is well on her way to being baptized next month! I love her. 

Thursday- We finished Weekly planning in one day. In under an 2 hours actually. That's a miracle in and of itself. I can't really remember what else happened that day. Days run together... but we went finding. It was good. And we visited some members and taught a lesson. OH BEFORE I FORGET. WADE YOU'RE THE HIT OF MEMBERS AND INVESTIGATORS IN CHINA. Everyone loves your 10 commandments rendition. Good on you! Thanks for your help.

Friday- Zone meeting was so fun. We changed our goals and actions and presented them to our zone. We had a great time and got our zone excited for the next month. Moves calls is this week but I'm not nervous. I think I'm staying right here for the next year or so. We also had Zone 24 exchanges. Sister Aguilar came to Butterfly with me and in a 20 minute finding session (it's all we had time for) we taught a woman who was so prepared. Heavenly Father answers prayers, you know what I'm saying? She said she saw, but didn't talk to missionaries last September but was too scared to talk to them. We taught her right there how to pray and about the Book of Mormon. God is involved in the details of our lives. We then taught Erica (who is doing great-- she's reading AND praying!!!!!!!!!!) and had English class, and then we had a spiritual lesson where we read 1 Nephi 1 with her. She's the best. Also so fun to be with Sister Aguilar again.

Saturday- woke up did studies and then Sister Aguilar and I were interrupted in language study (right between ching and chong.. you think I'm joking........) to heart moving beating drums. It was the dragon dancers!!!! Did I tell you about this last year? They go everywhere all over Hong Kong. And they beat these loud drums so you can know they are coming. Then finally the dragons show up and do tricks and all sorts of acrobats. Needless to say, language study became harder with the pink and yellow dragons 34 floors bellow us. I got some videos. I'll show them to you someday..... you'll love it. Then we had district find, met a great new investigator (she already had a Book of Mormon!) switched back companions and then it was time for the ward New Years party. It was a wild hit and I was laughing so hard the whole night!!!! I love Butterfly ward. They're another big family that I didn't know I had.

Sunday- was fast Sunday and so good! Chan Hingdaih our cute correlator even mentioned me in his testimony! I almost sobbed like a new born baby right there. We got 2 new ward missionaries (we have an army now) and then we did some finding in the rain and then studies.

Wow sorry I promised that would be shorter and look at me! I apologize. But let me just close with my testimony. Family--I know this church is true. I know that as we are on the Lord's errand we can't fail! We just have to follow the promptings that the Lord puts in our heart even if they seem strange or we don't know why. I love this work and i love the Hong Kong people. No matter how many people say No I'm going to keep searching for the ones who will say yes. They're out there and I'm praying and looking for them. I love the Book of Mormon. I'm in my reading in 3rd Nephi and I love reading about Christ himself teaching. It's all true. I love you all! 

Have a wonderful week and a Happy Valentine's day!!!!!
Love, Paak Jimuih

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Year of the Horse

FAMILY- Hello I love you all and your emails so much. Honestly. Thank you for taking the time to care about me even though I'm thousands of miles away in a little place called Hong Kong, China. You all sound like you are doing so good. Sometimes if I ever think to myself, "I miss my family on 1050 East" I slap myself mentally and think NO my family is so blessed and so happy. I know Heavenly Father is taking such good care of you all and blessing us. He is too good and I just need to be better. You know? You know.

So this week was like a flash and a half blink of my eye. Last Monday was spent with a little shopping and basking in all the Chinese New Year decor. The malls were packed with anxious Chinese people just making their last 50 purchases before the new year. We went shopping at the grocery store TASTE which is basically target meets costco China edition. In what may well be the best impulse buy made last week I bought Turkish Delights. Thanks for the inspiration CS Lewis and Edmund. We also received our brand new and approved by church headquarters split name tags. We gave three cheers of hip hip hooray (x3)

Tuesday we had studies, district meeting and then we went down to Kowloon Tong for a Priesthood Meeting with members of the Area Seventy and all the Priesthood for New Territories and Tolo Harbour stakes. I got to see some people (Priesthood Brethren to be exact) from Tai Wai and Ma On Shan and all were grateful that I am a missionary so all that were exchanged were some firm friendly handshakes. I just love these people so much.. I wanted to hug them! Inappropriate? But all can breathe out easily because I restrained myself. The meeting itself was great. I was given the microphone to be a spontaneous spokesperson for all the missionaries present and I am embarrassed now that I think about it. Let's leave that subject and move on.

Wednesday we did some nice finding and did some door bell ditching.. Chinese style. Sister Aldana had what was a stroke of pure genius and said let's by fruit and doorbell ditch it to some of the Less-Actives that hate the church. So we bought some oranges the size of two baby's heads put together and wrote little notes that said Happy Chinese New Year Love the Missionaries.. and then put them there and ran. We're going to call them soon to see if our little act of service is going to change their thought. Later we saw Vanessa and she is just doing so good. Reading, praying and just progressing so well. We made Brownies with her for an object lesson and everything that just comes out of her mouth I want to film because she was born to be a member of this church.

Thursday we had district find on the bridges and everyone was busy with New Year but a lady did give me a red pocket.. and I tried to refuse it but I may or may not have received $20. First time making money during finding. Don't worry.. that little bill is going to be sent to the missionary fund next Sunday. But I'll keep the red pocket as a memento. We visited a less-active who called me a while ago and said no matter how much I cared about her she didnt care about me, but we bought another 2 baby head sized orange and she let us in and turns out it was inspired that we went because she is having a really hard time. I love her regardless. She's going to come back soon. Then had correlation that night at Chan Hingdaih's house with his cute family. We made some plans and then Chan Hingdaih made us delicious food all by himself because his wife broke her ankle. I love that man. He called us last night trying to pretend to be a random American but unfortunately for him we guessed it was him right off the bat. He's too much.

Friday was weekly planning and we saw Vanessa again and she had lunch with us. We taught her and then went finding. Our area has some of the places that look like a 3rd world country and we can knock doors. On our way home we were walking down the steep cement hill, I was singing Climb Every Mountain and then we were a gasp from a nearby window and we saw one of our Less-Actives that we are working with. We knew she lived in a house like that we just didn't know where. So we stopped in for a short visit in her beautiful home. Next time I'm getting pictures. You would just die. Her kitchen is the size of something big. I can't think of anything relative in America to compare it to. Use your imagination?

Saturday was DEEP CLEAN and boy did we deep clean. After a little run and pose next to this nice pink horse statue, we began. Everything was sanitized in a 1;10 bleach solution which left my hands red and raw but our apartment clean as freshly laundered temple towels. We cleaned for over 12 hours but it is clean. Entertainment was found in story time. Sister Choi and Sister Aldana shared the complete story of Lord of the Rings for 3 hours. I also shared the story of Anne of Green Gables. Too good.

Yesterday we only had Sacrament meeting. As we were greeting everyone Vanessa, Tang Jimuih, Mak-mak and LEUNG HINGDAIH all came. Leung Hingdaih has NEVER COME TO CHURCH. he's the one we've been teaching for the past couple of months but we've only been able to teach him about three times. His wife and grown three daughters are all members but as I looked down the road and saw him pushing his wife to church tears welled up in my eyes. It was a New Year miracle! The Holy Ghost is softening his heart and i can't WAIT to hear the story of how he ended up there. Such a good day.

In closing I want to share my testimony. I know this church is true. It's amazing--even though almost all our investigators and less-actives are in Mainland for New year, The Lord has still entrusted us with so much to do. I read a talk recently that has got me thinking. If I was to receive a letter from myself in the pre mortal life, what would it say and how would I change. As I think about that, it gives me a greater resolve to work harder, past tired, and be better. To be selfless and know that GOD IS THERE. He hears all of our prayers. I know that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is real. I can't wait to share with you all the many things I have learned about the Atonement here in Hong Kong. I love repentance. This gospel is perfect.

I love you all so much. Have a wonderful week. Thank you for all your prayers, nice words, kind thoughts and unending thoughtfulness. Love you!!!!!!!!

Love, Paak Jimuih