Friday, 27 March 2015

Haha... This is Sister Sangji Lee posting on the blog herself for the first time. Thanks Jisu for all that hard work...I don't know what happened but no emails were posted since last December but that's ok. I will just post my last email home to finish this blog. 

Here we go... last email...

이미라자매님 and her son got baptised! We've been teaching 이미라자매님 for a couple of months. She first came in contact with the missionaries through english advertisement a several years ago but she has never learned any english from us haha. She has been interested in the church for her family. I remember after the first time we taught about the Book of Mormon she has carried around the book everywhere to her work and when she travels. She has been reading whenever she felt that she needs the strength from God. We weren't able to meet with her for like a month because her husband was sick but she was protected and when she came back to church she had a desire to be baptised. The elders taught her everything she needs to know last week and got baptised!
It was a little hard for her to quit coffee but she wanted to be a strong pioneer for the family and did so well. 

On Saturday the musical fireside went well. We went with our investigator 윤희 she wanted to perform a song called 고양이 춤  on the piano. She first wanted to perform like 4 songs but her sister calmed her down and chose one song haha. She did so well and the members loved it!

The fireside wasn't a high quality performance but the members loved preparing musical items within their families and performing to each other. We all enjoyed it. 
Sister Jensen and I sang "잠잠하라" as a duet. 

도효진 and her son were meant to be baptised yesterday too but on Saturday they had an accident... 준영 ran into her wheelchair on his bike and they both were injured.. They couldn't be baptised but they are getting baptised next Sunday. Although I can't be there to see but I'm so excited for them. 

Everyone is asking me how I am feeling now that I'm finishing my mission. Honestly, I haven't been feeling extremely sad or depressed about going home, not because I don't love this work but I know my service to God does not end here. It's more of another beginning. I have been taught by Jesus Christ in the last 18 months how be His true disciple for the rest of my life. I have people to love and help come unto Christ wherever I go. 

I am feeling very grateful. I feel that even though I have tried to serve for others, I was the one being healed and strengthened in the power of His atonement. I was reading D&C 88:78. "Teach ye dilligently and my grace shall attend you, that you may be instructed more perfectly in theory, in principle, in doctrine, in the law of the gospel, in all things that pertain unto the kingdom of God, that are expedient for you to understand." When I was reading this scripture, the word "ye/you" kept standing out to me. In the last 18 months, as I taught His Gospel it was me that received Christ's grace, it was me that was instructed from Him so that I understand who my Father in Heaven and my Savior is. 

I know that my Father in Heaven lives. He is my Father. He wants me to be happy. I know that by following my Savior's example I can find true happiness, that happiness that lasts. I also know that there is only one way to follow His example because He is one Being. I know that God has called Joseph Smith as His prophet and restored His Gospel to let us know how to follow His Son. I know that the Book of Mormon is true. 

I leave my testimony in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. 

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Three ways we can push the rock

We have been having so much snow here... Apparently it hasn't snowed like this in 서산 for like 10 years. We were walking home and we stopped to talk with people on the streets but people seemed to look at me a little weirdly. (They usually do when missionaries approach them but worse).. haha When we got home, I looked at myself in the mirror and here is what I looked like. A Christmas Tree. haha

I love the snow! It's so beautiful but my companion hates it haha. The downside about the snow is that our investigators have been cancelling appointments because of difficulty of driving in the snow.

On Thursday, we went to a mission conference in Daejeon. Elder and Sister Aoyagi came to speak to us. Goodness. I love them. Elder Aoyagi told us of his mission stories. Something I liked that he talked about is having hope in the atonement.  He seemed to have similar conversion story as me. When he first came on his mission, he didn't really have a testimony of the atonement. He thought that his purpose is to let other people know that God exists. However, as he studied more and served more he came to know about Jesus Christ and started to have more hope in His atonement.

It's like me! Over my mission, I have strengthened my hope in the atonement. I have full hope and confidence that Jesus Christ can cleanse us from sin and enable us to become better. I know that we will have the chance to have a perfect resurrected body because of Him. It's not just words in Preach My Gospel that I mutter anymore, they are facts in my mind and heart.

After lunch, Sister Aoyagi spoke. She knew that we would get a little sleepy after lunch so she made her training so fun haha. She talked about the rock story. God told a boy to push the rock. The boy spends the whole day pushing and pushing but it doesn't move so he gets fraustrated and asks God why He told him to push the rock when it will never move. God says "I never told you to move the rock. I told you to push the rock. I move the rock." The boy realises that he has become stronger from pushing on the rock...

Anyway, I really liked that story. She then told us how we can push the rock. She gave us three ways.
1. Smile. We then got up to practice smiling.
2. Use the Book of Mormon.
3. Push along.. haha for this she did something unexpected. She got all of us to stand up and sing "Put your shoulder to the wheel" and showed us dance moves to it. All the missionaries, President and Sister Shin and Sister and Elder Aoyagi got up and danced to the song. It was a good laugh. When we skype my companion and I will show you the moves.

Goodness I just love her. I had to go up to her and give her a hug after the conference.  

Yesterday during the sacrament meeting, I kept feeling that I need to get up and bear my testimony on the Book of Mormon. I was hesitating then I felt my Heavenly Father saying to me that He will give me words to say and loosen my tongue that I need not worry. I got up and talked about what the Book of Mormon means to me and I felt the Spirit very strongly as I testified about the truthfulness of the Book. I felt my voice shake and His love burn within my heart. Before I finished my testimony, I looked at the congregation again and I just felt how much God loves this small but so faithful group of people in 서산 branch. I love the people here very much. I love my Heavenly Father very much.

The blessing of opening our mouths

Hello everyone!!!

This week my companion was really sick. On Monday night, after a less-active visit we stopped by a street food stand and bought some takoyaki (octopus balls). We ate them together during planning.

On Monday night, I wake up to Sister Morton throwing up in the bathroom. Goodness she was so sick... I think she got food poisoning but we still don't know for sure because I didn't get sick from the octopus balls. Anyway Sister Morton is staying away from anything seafood right now...
Sister Morton has been having trouble digesting food for like a week now. She really craved chicken soup so on Thursday night, we went and bought some ingredients for chicken soup and I made it for her. She cried out of gratitude.

This might sound weird but I've had a lot of opportunities to serve my companions and other people through my cooking skills. I didn't really think about that before my mission. I'm so grateful.

Sister Morton was too sick to work yesterday so we went to the branch presidennt's house and rested. I ate dinner with the members while Sister Morton was sleeping on the bed next to the Branch President's baby haha. After the meal, the relief society sitster got their essential oils out and gave sister Morton a massage haah. I got a shoulder massage too. We are like family here in 서산 branch.

A month ago we were walking home in the snow and we talked with two girls eating ice cream waiting for the lights. They apparently saw our english advertisement and was thinking of calling us to learn english. They also knew one of our investigators so they felt comfortable approaching us. We gave them our phone number and they said they will call us when school break starts. I didn't know if they really will but a week ago we got a phone call from them wanting to meet. On Tuesday, we had our discussion for the first time. They are good listeners and are willing to keep commitments. One of them actually referred her younger brother and his friend to the elders today. Woop woop! As Sister Shin always says "open your mouth." The blessing of opening our mouths.

I'm enjoying my leadership calling as a Sister Training Leader. I love calling the sisters to see how they are doing, listening to their concerns, the progress of investigators... I feel that the Lord has blessed me with a greater love for these sister missionaries with the calling.

I am running out of time but most importantly I love you!!

Sister Sangji Lee.

Sister Morton made a christmas tree and got me presents!!
Prezzies!! thanks Sister Morton!
Christmas lunch Shabushabu~~~
Thank you so much for the present!! I was so happy!!!
 Sister Morton teaching ice skating to our filippino member last p-day. haha
MTC 동기!!! so good to see the sisters I came to Korea with.
Apparently this sign mean 'I love you' 
Missed you Sister Jensen
Smile with sisters
with 한장로님. He translated the first Korean Book of Mormon and also was Sister Shin's mission president. He has a good sense of humour.
Our investigator 서종복자매님. She is the mother-in-law of our member. Very stubborn but really funny.
Christmas Party last night
With 규리. She is half fillippino, half Korean.
Food at the party.

with our member

Opportunities to be humble

Today we got our transfer call. Sister Morton and I will be staying together and I got called to be the Sister Training Leader for both the 천안 and 청주 zone. Goodness me. They used to have only one Sister Training Leader for each zone but because the number of sister missionaries went down, I'll have to cover two zones. I am humbled to have this leadership responsibility. I would need to get down on my knees even more...

Sister Deus is going home today. She called me the other night. I had to shed a few tears. She is one of the best missionaries I've ever known and I just felt so grateful I could serve with her and become good friends. 

We have a christmas party coming up this Thursday. We are excited!! I'll take photos and send it to you~~

We had a lesson with 이진숙자매님 on Monday. It was a wee bit different than other lessons. 
When we first met her we introduced the Book of Mormon and told her that it supports the Bible so she thought our religion would be similar to her religion. However, when she learned about the plan of salvation, she was in awe at how different it is from anything she had believed so far. However, this isn't bad because I've never seen her get so serious in our lessons. She has always been "ahh whatever... all the other churches say that they have a prophet" "haha living twelve apostles? that's so weird." "nahh I don't think the Book of Mormon is true." "I don't want to be a Mormon because I like coffee too much"

After the plan of salvation lesson, she had been thinking about this the whole week. She said she couldn't get it out of her mind has been feeling heavy in her heart about it. She said she has prayed about it. I felt that she already feels that this is true and because she feels the truth she is burdened by the worry that she needs to be baptised and change her life a lot. She kept saying "It's so hard to change a religion though... I have had this religion for the last 10 years..."  We talked about how the Book of Mormon is the cornerstone of all the truths we have shared so far and invited her to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. At the end of the lesson, she said the most sincere prayer asking if these things are true and she asked for the strength to not make decisions with her own desire and thoughts. She is at the make-or-break-it point at the moment. She has been very sick lately so we haven't been able to meet. We are a little worried but we are planning to visit her to drop off some food for her.

On Saturday, we were knocking on doors and we talked with this lady who was just getting home from work. We introduced ourselves and she was like "ahh... I'm not really interested.. I'm into Buddhism" then she looked at our badge for a little while and talked about a friend of hers who attends our church. As I was listening to her it sounded like one of our members 강임숙자매님. I asked "혹시 강임숙자매님이신가요??" She said "아 맞아!! 임숙이 임숙이!!" She then softened her heart towards us and started talking about how impressed she is by her example. She said that she admires her a lot and talked about how she reads the Book of Mormon a lot and pays the tithing even during difficult circumstances and how she raised her kids well in the church. She then told us to come again with 강임숙자매님 to talk about the church. I was impressed at the power of one member's example in the work of the salvation.

Your example matters!! Those around you do observe!

I gotta go~~

Bye~ love you~~ 

Sunday, 23 November 2014

I love my companion Sister Morton!

I feel like the 1 year and a half of my mission experience is like a training to be a member missionary forever. I really want to be a member missionary forever. If I ever get slack after returning, you have to kick my butt. ok??

Last night, when I was talking with my Heavenly Father before going to bed. I thanked him for blessing my family. In your and mum and dad's letters I can see the Lord's hands drawing you all closer to Him. I can see His hands pouring out blessings upon you. Sometimes the work seems hopeless but last night as I was praying I was filled with His love that He know each effort that I put into His work and that He is blessing me in the very way I want; by blessing my family.

Thursday was transfer day. I met my Greenie, Sister Morton!! She is amazing! haha.
She reminds me a little bit of Miley Cyrus when she was young haha she hated that comment but apparently she got that comment before from her friends haha. She is very humorous and has a passion for missionary work. I'm so blessed to be her trainer. She loves Korean food. We had 순대 for lunch on Friday and she loved it haha. The first American I know who likes 순대. 

I love my companion Sister Morton. I can tell you honestly that Heavenly Father helps me to repent through each of my companion. I learnt new weaknesses of mine from each of my companion and they have all helped me to strengthen it. The key to a successful companionship is being open with each other. I'm learning that more and more. I am not very good at that so I'm learning.
Sister Morton is very adventurous. She wants to try 보신탕... goodness. I'll just be watching her...haha

We have had a lot of miracles this week. Sister Lorena and Sister 황향숙 set a baptismal date for December 6th. I'm grateful for the Spirit that led the lessons we have had with them the past week. 

I love you all
 Farewell 안규진 자매님 at the branch president's house.
District Photo.
We went flower viewing with our investigator lorena and our member.
안규진자매님 and I.
월남쌈 at our investigator's house.
분식 with Sister Morton. All for US$ 7.50...

Monday, 27 October 2014

A test of Faith

Lately, we are not able to meet some of our investigators because it is the harvest season of the year. Sister Nam works harvesting ginger so she is too busy to meet till middle of November. We call her occasionally and she is doing well reading the Book of Mormon and praying everyday. Gosh, I feel for her. She works so much that she only sleeps like 4hours a day but she still takes time out to pray and read every morning. From what I've observed, I think a lot of investigators who end up getting baptised has this kind of period when God tests their faith before baptism...

Gosh... we have been getting a lot of punks this week.. haha.

On Tuesday, we were on our way to go to our investigator, Sister Hwang's house. We wanted to suddenly visit her and give her the Restoration Video. We were walking past the bus stop where we met her spontaneously last time. I thought "It'd be so funny if we see her again here" then there she is casually walking towards us with her bag full of 목욕탕(public bath) neccessaties. She was on her way to the public bath again. We were so ecstactic to see her. She said that usually she goes to the bathhouse earlier during the day but her grandson locked himself in a room with her celphone so she had to go later. Sister An and I were both thinking "what should we do?? We really need to talk with her...This is a rare chance!" then Sister An was like "can we go to the bathhouse with you??" haha yes we ended up going to the bathhouse with our investigator... We followed up about the Book of Mormon reading and everything and taught her a lesson while she was on the water massage machine in the bathhouse.  We took out our meal times for the time we spent at the bathhouse. 

Sister Hwang is doing really well. She is praying about our church, reading the Book of Mormon and attending church so we are expecting miracles for her. Recently Sister Hwang's ancestors have to appearing in her dreams and we felt that her ancestors want her to do the family history work and take their names to the temple. We've taught about the temple and she was really interested in it. Yesterday at church she told us of another special dream she has had recently. The reason why Sister Hwang refuses to be baptised is becaused she has already been baptised with her mum at a different church and doesn't understand the importance of the priesthood authority. In her dream, her mum appeared in her dream and she was handwashing a white dress then her mum handed her the dress. Sister Hwang noticed that the dress was still dirty and when she tried washing it again a lot of dirt kept coming out of it. When Sister Hwang told this dream to her daughter (Sister Kim who is a member), Sister Kim was shocked and realised the meaning of the dream that Sister Kim's grandmother wanted to tell her mum that the baptisms wasn't valid. This dream is making Sister Hwang, think more deeply about everything.

My companion, Sister An is not well lately. Her health is getting really bad. I'm worried about her. I hope she doesn't have anything serious...The church members are worried about her health because she doesn't look healthy. The branch President's family gave 보약 to us yesterday and this Recent Convert gave her a 1 hour 1:1 lecture on natural healing... haha. She had a headache by the end of it. haha We have such a loving branch...
I'm having so much fun serving with Sister An. She has such a deep understanding about the Gospel. I learn so much during companionship study time. Lately, during personal study, I have been trying to ask good questions to myself while studying the plan of salvation. It's so fascinating. I'm learning the importance of asking questions while studying, the best personal studies have been the times when I asked questions to myself and found answers to them in the scriptures.

Personal goals

Our mission has 140 missionaries and we have not been having baptisms for 3 weeks in a row so we are having a special fast.

I'm am constantly reminded of how important it is as a member to be fed spiritually everyday with scripture reading and prayer. We have been working with and visiting some members. When they are having their trials when their faith is tested, I am saddened about their trials but I am even more saddened when I find out that they don't do their daily prayers and scripture reading. When we seek to help our members, we are always prompted to bear testimony of the importance of daily prayer and scripture reading.

Lately, I have been slacking at talking with everyone. I made excuses like 'we haven't seen much fruit from proselyting' 'we need to focus on thinking and praying about the investigators we already have' etc... This week, I noticed myself that I am starting to fear men more than God. I noticed that I am slowing down a little and being more nervous. I told this to the Lord. I asked Him to lift me up. By experiences and feelings, He reminded me how important it is to open my mouth at all times. I have made a personal goal for talking with more people and this has made a big difference to my spirituality.

We went to the countryside to help our member's mother pick chilli. Sister An had so much fun with that dog. That dog has some kind of a mental problem so it barks at his own foot... The member's mother became our investigator and we are excited to go again next week.
Our investigator and her friend took us to a 팥죽 place. It was yummy but we had to drop her after that meeting... She is not willing to keep commitments... :(

Yesterday this lady we met on the street showed us how to get to a bus stop. We went past her garden with a pumpkin patch. Sister An told her about the Halloween party we are having and how we need a pumpkin for pumpkin carving. She said that to invite her to the party but the lady actually ended up giving us a pumpkin hahah. We carried that around with us on the way to the member's house haha.