Thursday, March 31, 2016

So Many Miracles! & She's Headed to Singapore!

Ahhhhhh! I can't believe Josh and Maddie are parents!!!!!! He's so cute! Oh my goodness! This is so crazy! This is so hard for me to wrap my mind around! I feel like I wasn't as mentally prepared for this one! Whoa! yay!!! What's his middle name? What day was he born? How is Maddie doing??

In other news........I'm going to SINGAPORE!!!! And my companion is SISTER ANDERSON!!!! I am so happy! We've been in the same apartment for the last five months and she's basically my favorite person in the mission. I'm so excited! We're whitewashing the area, so it's definitely going to be an adventure. And you know what? I hear they have CHEESE there! And real milk! And a Baja Fresh! ....But that's besides the point. I'm trying not to think too much about leaving KL branch because I just love the people here so much - they are my family here. I am so beyond grateful though that Heavenly Father gave me the opportunity to serve here and to make the friendships that already have changed my life and will no doubt continue to change me and my heart. I love them so much!! I can't even describe it. They're the most wonderful people on earth. I'm excited to meet more of the most wonderful people on earthy in Singapore. :)
I did. I.....AM ALIVE!!! IT LIVES! Haha, But really. I'm so excited about transfers! Sister Anderson is basically the happiest person I know. :) Yay!
Camera..... won't turn on. I'll probably end up buying a new one if that's okay? The senior couple was really nice and took it into a shop this week to try and get it fixed, but I guess the shop didn't know what to do for it. :-/ It lived a good productive life!
I uploaded some pictures from last week and this week. S. Anderson let me borrow her camera for a bit today to take pictures of our trip to Melaka. We stood on a boat! ...landlocked boat. haha
Thanks for the update on the bombings. I heard about those, I guess it's all over the news. Way to go for that missionary testifying! Prayers to them!

Thiiiiiiis weeeeeek was pretty good! Our investigator that I talked about last week has really just had an incredible transformation! Most of the times I'm left speechless at our teaching appointments with her because she understands the gospel so well! And she has no Christian background! She said that before she came to church for the first time she didn't understand the things she was reading in the Book of Mormon or what we were teaching her, but since she came to church everything just makes sense to her! We were talking about baptism the other day, explaning what it is, and before we could even get to explanion WHY we're baptized she explained to US why we should be baptized and how to her it just makes sense to be baptized. What?? haha, It's incredible how she is being taught by the Holy Ghost. It's amazing! Literally, awe-some how God blesses us with wisdom, understanding, and knowledge when we follow his commandments.
I had a funny experience this week where I got to talk to and teach a couple how to have a succesful the simplest, truest form; by making their marriage relationship a triangle relationship with God so that as they come closer to God they come closer to each other. I almost started laughing as I was explaining it because it seems so backwards! haha, A single 20 yr old sharing with people twice her age how to have a successful marriage! But as I'm saying this I'm realizing that it's the same with all the things we missionaries teach. Life happiness, overcoming challenges, knowing God, all these things from people who usually don't have all the much life experience. But I know that it is definitely God using weak things (like teenagers and old people) to do his work and it only proves His power and wisdom. Not that old people are weak.
This week there was also a miracle that happened on a really hard day when a member visiting from Hong Kong saw us calling potentials in a mall with our "free English class" sign and decided to buy us Smoothies! And then a few minutes later he showed up again with a bag full of candy, cough drops, and other nice stuff! It was such a nice thing to do, and it really got me thinking about how our actions effect others. Such a small act of some stranger buying me a smoothie completely changed my attitude on a hard day. We have so much power to effect those around us, for good or for bad, and that experience really made me think about how I'm effecting those around me. Moral of the story: if you ever see missionaries walking in the heat, buy them a smoothie. Jokes. You can buy anyone a smoothie. :)

I love you so much! I can't thank you enough for the pictures of Auggie!
I just wrote this real fast because we got back really late from our trip and I don't have a lot of time, so no one is allowed to be offended if they don't get an email!!!! Because I love you all, dang it! hahaha


Sister Anderson & her former companion.

Sister A. sitting on a subway

Awesome, fun KL missionaries!

Formal farewell to an awesome group in KL!

Our radiant missionary!


Happiest of Companions! MacKay & Anderson! -Singapore, here we come!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Awesome Investigators, God's Timing, and Miraculous Mexican Food!

This week had so many miracles! Let me count the ways. 
We had an investigator, J, who lives a few doors down and was investigating the church, we taught her how to pray and who God was and she looooooved it! ...But we dropped her because she never had time to meet, and she never would come to church. BUT last week she called asking if we could meet on Sunday and ended up coming to church AND meeting with us! She could only stay for the first hour of church because of her work, but she loved it. She was so happy with all the people saying hi to her and said that she felt so peaceful there. She also came to a RS party on Saturday and was going up and talking to the sisters, then came to church yesterday and said that next week she's going to stay for all three hours, and she wants her friend, daughter, and fiance to come with her and learn from us! I love to see the enlivening effect the spirit has on us! It's almost like a spiritual energy drink that wakes us up and drives us to run around sharing the gospel with everyone we meet!
The next one is a less active member we met with this week. I'd met her once a few months ago when she wasn't really interested in coming back to church or meeting with us, in fact, she told us that she had been avoiding us. haha, But our branch president mentioned that we might want to try visiting her again, so we went, and boy did she welcome us with open arms! She was so happy to see us! We ended up talking a lot about faith and how faith without works is dead. I love her because she's so straightforward, so I can be straightforward with her; and she teaches herself. She had said that she missed being so active in the church but that she still read the BOM and prayed and had faith. After we read James 2: 14.17,18 with her she said "oooh! I get what you're trying to tell me!" and then explained to us that if she says she has faith but doesn't act on that faith then it doesn't really mean anything; and that if she has faith and wants to be as active as she used to be, then she needs to come to church and make herself more active. Haha, It was the best! Right when I was about to ask her if we could visit her again, she asked us if we could come regularly! God really does have his timing. Sometimes, people aren't ready when we are, but in their own time their hearts will be ready.
Oh, another one of my favorite experiences this week was going to sister H's house. She's like my grandma away from Grandmas. :) She doesn't read very well so she asked me to read her her patriarchal blessing, so she could get some guidance with the trials in her life. It was a beautiful experiences as I read to her the words of guidance God has given her. It reminded me how much God loves each of us personally, and knows each of us personally. I've also read my own blessing many times this week. Thank you for your love and your prayers! The knowledge that my family always has and always will love me unconditionally is often the tool that my Heavenly Father uses to strengthen me on rough days. I love you so much!
How is march madness? Who's on top? Is UNLV still in, or already out?
My birthday was great! The sisters were so cute and nice and baked me a cake. They even got me a new shoulder bag because my old one is....gross. :) AND, another miracle, I had been thinking about how much I loved/missed Mexican food and how we always have Mexican food on special occasions (like my birthday), and that night sister H, who had no idea it was even my birthday, refused to let us leave without feeding us and pulled out some leftover enchiladas and plopped them on our plates. When I thanked her for this and told her about how much I loved Mexican food she said, "oh, what's Mexican food? Is that what this is?" Haha, God takes care of his kids! S. Anderson actually had a similar thing happen yesterday. She was having a hard day and wasn't feeling well and was thinking about how good a nice thing of strawberry yogurt sounded when, out of the blue, a man started talking to them about English class and right before he left the train pulled a strawberry yogurt out of a bag and gave it to her. Coincidence? I think not.
Anyway, my camera isn't working and neither is this computer so no pictures this week. Tell Papa thanks for the money! He's so kind! Maybe I'll use it to get a new camera? haha
Next week is transfers, I'll let you know what happens then. :) I love you so much!

Monday, March 14, 2016

A Visit from Elder and Sister Nielson!

Ha, my cat is so fat. 
It sounds like it was an exhausting week for all of you! But amazing. I'm excited to see the Miss Amazing pictures!

It. is. so. hot. It really just makes you want to laugh and cry at the same time.haha, This week was....uh.....a bit of everything! Hahaha Moderation in all things! haha, We had a mission tour conference with Elder and Sister Nielson, the head of the missionary department. He talked a lot about the combination effect of the cleansing power of the atonement and the enabling power of the atonement. I couldn't tell you what he said, but what I got out of it was that we cannot do this life on our own. Or, we could, but there wouldn't be much purpose or joy in it. We're asked to do things that, by ourselves, just isn't really possible, but that though Christ become a reality. It really made me think a lot of you two; I'm not sure I know busier people. In fact, after having watched mom for so many years I know there's no way you could possibly do all you do. It's not humanly possible! But I've heard you testify so many times that it becomes possible through the enabling power of the atonement, and I know that's true in my own life too.
As I'm sure you can guess from the pictures, we went to the zoo last week! It was, guess what, so hot, but so fun. I feel like you just get a lot closer to the animals in Asia. I saw a camel, I considered showing Josh up and trying to knock it over, but decided that I liked my shirt to much to get it trampled by camel. Next time. 
I have a request! Wait for me to see Batman vs Superman...? :D :D Sigh. Okay, you'll probably go see it. There's an outdoor bigscreen that sometimes plays movie previews that we have to walk past everytime we go to or leave our house. Zootopia looks cute. :) Batman looks, um, awesome.
Ugh, I heard about Trump! What the heck? I didn't know he was a republican though. You know what? America is still incredible! As crazy as it seems it's still doing really, really, really well. Really well. I love my America! Thanks for the update. :)
The pageant sounds amazing! exhausting for everyone, but so good! What a neat experience! Man, Imari is so amazing! Tell her I love her! Maddie is so pregnant! It's crazy! When is she due? This week? I don't know this!
Prayers? Um, just prayers in general are great! Ha, companionship is a little rough, but it's an incredible growing experience! I feel the streeeeeeetching! haha, ha, ha. Whew! Yeah! Growth!
....I don't know what else to say! I'm out of words! Umm....cats! Ponies! Ooh, I don't like ponies. Remember that lady who's ponies I took care of? Weird times. Weird times.... Okay, I love you both so much! As some country song says,
 "Beer is good, God is great," except not beer!

Monsoon Season!

It's HOT

Monday, March 7, 2016

We Can't Overcome Our Trials on Our Own

Okay, this week my miracle and faith building experience are going to be the same. So this last week I've been having a really hard time contacting. Just the act of opening my mouth up was so hard! It felt like it was more than I could do. Then this week I also read the two talks for zone conference about the Enabling Power of the Atonement. As I read them the thing that kept sticking out to me as Elder Bednar said them over and over again is that it's silly for us to think that we can overcome our trials with our "clearly limited capacity." I thought about that some and realized that I was trying to be a missionary by relying on my own limited ability. Well gee, that's silly. Once I remembered that I needed Christ's help through the Atonement and started again praying for that increased ability to open my mouth to everyone and share the gospel, it became possible. It was close to a night and day difference in my ability to talk to people. It's still a little awkward, I'm not sure that will every completely go away, but now it's possible. In one day we got 3x more potentials than we had in five days.

We have awesome investigators right now, but a lot of them are struggling with coming to church. I don't know what it is, but if they start coming to church then they'll be prepared for their baptism dates!

Thanks for all the pictures! I especially love the one of KC in the cockpit showing off Jett. :) Thanks for the video, dad! I'll definitely pray for Jett and Krissy to get better!

That's way exciting about the Miss Amazing Pageant! I know that's something that Imari loves, so, therefore, Ty loves. Imari prepares for it for a really long time, right? That's so exciting! I'm excited to be able to really see it from the pictures this year!

Umm... half way talk... You could start a signed petition to allow missionaries to take in stray kittens? Umm... I like cheese and really miss it.... If anyone wants to donate to the cheeseless missionary fund..? You could tell them I'm thinking about changing my name to Andy! In fact, maybe you could have them vote on if they like Alex or Andy better while you're at the podium. Tell bishop it's a special request. Oh! I'd like you to sing one of my letters in your best Dolly Parten voice. And, uh... yeah. I think that's it.
In other words, I can't think of anything specific. I trust you! represent me well, mother!

Oh goodness, Papa looked so happy in that picture with Jett! I think that might be the biggest smile I've ever seen him wear! Seriously!

Dang. This email looked a lot longer when the window was smaller. I've been deceived!

I'm so happy to hear about the office! I'm glad things are going well with Elizabeth. Tell her I say hi!

I hope you know I brag about you guys, my family, daily to complete strangers! You're basically famous! I love you so much!
Waiting for the bus.

We were waiting for a really long time at a basically empty train station, so we got creative. :)

More monkeys from Batu caves!

In the trio! Sister Chua has already gone back to Kuching. :)

Jenga dinner time!