Thursday, May 16, 2013

Week 43, in which I exhibit phenomenal brute strength and mental prowess, and in which I learn more than I'll ever need to know about professional massages

Hello everyone! I'm still in Macau! Honestly, I get surprised every week when I find out that I have another week in Macau--it's such a miracle. I love this area, love the people, love the food, and love my companion! We have so many fun times, and so many weird, WEIRD things happen. It's just weird.

But first, t-shirt of the week! This might be my favorite. It's really cute actually; I almost bought it, but it was too expensive. But maybe I'll still buy it. But it's a man's t-shirt. So maybe I'll buy it and then make a man wear it. Or maybe I'll wear it anyways. It has a picture of a cute little mini scooter, and here's what it says: "Mint Green. But the are best used if you just want to have some fun. They're right for getting around as well. If you have a mini van you don't really need a scooter. The motor scooter on the sidewalk."

So this week, I broke three apples in half with my bare hands, just because I could. Turns out this whole serving a mission thing has greatly increased my upper-body strength. Maybe it's from carrying all those Book of Mormons (Books of Mormon, copies of the Book of Mormon, take your pick).

I don't think I can explain to you exactly how much I love these sweet sisters from the Philippines. They are just wonderful, so generous and loving and willing to smile and serve. And they are just so funny too! We had a health and wellness activity on Saturday, and one of the sisters is a professional masseuse, so she taught all about the history of massage, the importance of massage, how apparently Swedish massage actually came from China, just about everything but the one thing that I wanted to learn: how to convince your companion to give you a shoulder massage (those Book of Mormons really do weigh you down sometimes). She even listed off every part of the body that should never be massaged... including the orbitals haha. And after her 30 minute lecture, she looked at the clock and said, in the most serious tone of voice, "Do you really want me to do a demo? It would take over an hour..." It was just so funny. Trust me. It was.

Sundays are always great, but always incredibly exhausting. We have to try to talk to so many people while still taking care of our investigators, paying attention in lessons, running around trying to organize classes, taking pictures with everyone EVERY WEEK (they love taking pictures!), and still trying to maintain the dignity of the missionary calling. But it's so fun, a real mental challenge, trying to fit everything and everyone in. I love it! Yesterday was especially crazy, because there was a baptismal service, Sister Lau was giving a talk, and I was playing a musical number. But it was such a great sacrament meeting. The Spirit was so strong, and as I was playing, my mind flashed back to Poquoson ward, playing in the huge empty chapel. I had some of my greatest spiritual experiences there, some of my greatest growing moments.

We've worked with a less-active named T a lot this week. She's from Mongolia and hasn't been to church in years. She seems very depressed, and she misses her home country and her family a lot. Her husband is Portuguese, and neither of them are very proficient in English, so it's hard for them to communicate very well. She's lonely and is home all day with her little baby and three yappy dogs, and my heart just hurt for her when we visited her. But by the time we were leaving her home, it was like a light turned on and she was saying how happy she was and how much she felt the Spirit. She committed to pray every day and to come to church on Sunday. She hasn't come to church in years, and she said she was scared of all the Filippinas, because she has had bad experiences with people from the Philippines in the past. But we just testified of how much church will help her, and she really did have a desire to come. She said that for the next few days after the visit, the Spirit was with her, but it slowly started to fade away, so we called and prayed with her and then read a scripture and sang a hymn, and she said it really helped. We'd planned to visit on Sunday right before church to help her get there, but she texted us to tell us not to come. Then we called her and talked with her for a while and helped her to overcome those depressed feelings enough to get out of the house. And she came to church! And had a great experience! She loves the members and says she'll come back next week. It's such a miracle. I love this calling. I love it so much!

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