From: Jessica McKay <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Yin-Yang and Peruvian Dinner
Date: July 22, 2013 4:59:29 PM MDT
Well time sure just flies by on P-day…especially when you are in a trio. When we came to the library earlier, there were only two computers open, so I let my companions write and I waited. We were planning to come back with enough time for me to get the whole two hours, but sadly I only get about 45. So sorry, but again we get the short end of the stick when it comes to e-mailing.
So let’s talk about this week. It’s been super fast and really busy. We have lots of study time during the day, so we don’t get as much time in our area as I would like. Also, being a Sister Training Leader, we do about two exchanges a week, so that takes us away even more. It’s funny that they would call me to be an STL to train and go on exchanges with the other sisters, considering that before last week, I had never even been on an exchange. Well nothing like jumping in head first! It has been really good though. I’ve discovered that I am really good at making others feel really good about themselves. Haha. If nothing else, at least I can make them smile and feel like the greatest thing since sliced bread. We’ve done two exchanges so far and are planning on two more this week, and we can pretty much get used to that from now on. They’ll eventually call more sister leaders so we won’t have such a huge load–we cover 4 zones and 11 sets of sisters (not counting ourselves) that we have to go on exchanges with every transfer. But that won’t happen until at least the end of this transfer (if even then) so just pray that my companions and I will be able to use every spare minute in our own area that we can to find, teach, and help others come closer to our Savior.
The baptism on Saturday was so beautiful. Gabby was so ready. She said she could literally feel the difference. It happened so fast, but she was so excited throughout the whole thing. Sister Christenot and I sang “I Know that my Redeemer Lives” for the program and it went really well. Some of my investigators from Andover came too, so it was really really good to see them. The next day she received the Gift of the Holy Ghost during Sacrament meeting and she said now she really understood why baptism is not complete without the Gift of the Holy Ghost. She felt such a huge peace and confirmation come over her when they blessed her. What a huge witness and encouragement it is as a missionary to hear these words from someone who has just committed their life to Christ and knows what they are doing is right. I am so grateful I was able to see Gabby before and after she became a member of the church so I could see that light that the gospel put in her life. Did I mention she is from Peru? That just makes her even greater 🙂 And next week she’s invited us for a Peruvian dinner 🙂
It’s fun to be Sister Christenot’s companion because she really loves to sing and has a lovely soprano voice, so we’re actually able to incorporate music into our missionary work in many different ways. Singing or playing hymns is probably one of the easiest ways to invite the Spirit into a room or lesson.
We’re teaching a young woman named Sue. She’s from Malaysia and is here attending school to earn her master’s in piano performance and teaching. She comes from a non-christian, buddhist family, so teaching her is an experience that is completely new and different than any other experience I’ve had yet, especially considering I’m serving in the bible belt. It is refreshing however because she doesn’t have any preconceived or biased ideas about the church and right now the biggest thing for her is finding faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus is my favorite, so it is a huge blessing to get to help her come to know her Savior by sharing how I came to know Him myself. We were able to teach her the plan of salvation on Sunday and had a great lesson. I had a great realization come to me when we were teaching her that helped me tie her buddhist background into the need for the atonement of Christ. Buddhists believe very strongly in Yin and Yang, which is represented by a circle made of two forms turning around each other. It represents opposites–white and black, positive and negative, strong and weak, harsh and soft, etc. These two forces work together in perfect harmony, basically making the world go round. When you’ve mastered that balance between the two in your own life, you can reach ultimate peace. So I took this knowledge and related it to the perfect balance between justice and mercy through the atonement of Jesus Christ. Without justice, God would cease to be all-powerful and laws would no longer have any weight or meaning. Without mercy, God would cease to be a loving father and the entire plan of salvation would be void. So through the great and eternal sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ–who was not only a perfect man in his human form, but also the father and creator of the heavens and earth–justice is satisfied and mercy prevails. For more scriptural truth on the matter, see Alma 34. We’re meeting with her again on Wednesday, so pray all goes well and that she can feel the Spirit! She says that so far she hasn’t felt anything out of the ordinary.
We finally got a phone a couple of days ago! What a blessing. I was afraid I was going to have to re-learn how to do missionary work…this time without a cell phone 😉 Oh it must have been TOUGH when you were a missionary, Dad 😉
Exchanges were really fun this last week. One of the Sisters in Andover (the one who took my place when I left) came up to our area with me on Thursday, and then Saturday, I went down to Derby to work with a new missionary. I actually got to speak a lot of spanish and realized how out of practice I was 😉 haha. It was way fun though. Well, my companions are awesome.
Mom, isn’t Sister Harris great? She’s stinkin’ hilarious. She makes us (her “girls”) call her every night when we get in because she worries about her babies. Please keep her in your prayers. She’s really having a tough time because her children and family have shunned her since she decided she wanted to become a member of the church, so she hasn’t been baptized yet. We’re not sure what we can do to help her. If you have any ideas, let me know.
Thanks for your thoughts and prayers! I can’t believe I’ve already been out almost 7 months. What a dream.