Monday, October 31, 2016

Selamat Hari Halloween! (Happy Halloween!)

Wow. Okay, this has been a super weird week. Good week! Just a weird good week.
So, to start out I was by myself HALF THE WEEK. It felt like I was released already and I didn't like it! haha. I flew to Singapore, got some Starbucks (as promised), sat next to a super chatty guy from Australia, got to SG grabbed some quick lunch/dinner, got to the office by 7 where the sister Kunz gave me a big hug and gave me the info for my hotel. I then traveled in the direction of my hotel, asked someone how to find it, got lost, asked again, found it. Also, found out transfer news.
Then the next day I went to a giant district meeting which was spiritual food I definitely needed (my district meetings for the past transfer have been held in broken English. It's sweet but sometimes hard to understand :), then spent most of the day going to enlgish class training and repacking my storage suitcase. Then flew back. By myself. It's cool, I didn't get lonely!
My new companion is Sister Lee! She's actually from here (KK) so she's serving in her own city, which is a bit unusual! She's been transfered here because of back problems that make it difficult for her to ride a bycicle and this is the only area in East Malaysia with a functioning bus system. She's 29 and, yes, speaks Malay and a liiiiiitle bit of English. It's going well. :)
 It's an interesting companionship, I never thought I'd be living with a native Malaysian speaking Malay 24/7! I've been blessed a lot this week as I've prayed for strength, charity, patience, hope, and faith. Your prayers are also very, very appreciated.
Sister Welling and I have become very close this week as she is also training a Malaysian from West who is a little older, and she has only just finished being trained herself. 
In other news we've gotten so many amazing referrals this week!
Our recent convert V has been on fire with missionary work. I think of him kind of like Alma, he's had a might change of heart and he wants to share it with everyone! He was exactly what one of our English class students needed to have the courage to meet with the missionaries, and now he's brought his friend Mahudi to meet sister Lee and I! He's so funny, he always says, "Sisters. I don't play around. I tell people that if they want to learn they can't be 50/50, they have to be serious about this!" And he's bringing people that are seriously seeking truth. Mahudi used to be a pastor but decided he wanted to learn deeper about Christ and he just wasn't finding it where he was at. He told us that before he came to English class (where we met and later taught him) he prayed for guidance. After he prayed he... I don't know how to say in English. Us google translate: dia menerima wahyu (he had a revelation) that that night he would meet two people who would teach him truth. Later that night he met us and told us that we were those two people God had told him about.
We also met two referrals from one of our members who just moved her this last week. He's hilarious and brought us to meet his girlfriend and cousin. As we taught the were really shy and didn't say much, but as we shared the first vision both of their eyes welled up with tears. I knew it was the holy ghost but still was a little confused so I asked them what they were feeling and they both broke down sobbing! Not knowing what to do I said a quick little prayer and felt that I should ask them if they had ever prayed for truth. "Yes!" they both said. "Do you think that this, just like God answered Joseph Smith's prayer to find truth, could also be God answering your prayers to find truth?" To which neither of them could say anything they were crying so hard. I still don't know exactly their question but I do believe that they were so emotional because of the strong spirit that was there testifying to them that this is the truth they've been searching for. That is a miracle. :)
We also taught a less-active this week. She's really hard to teach because she won't. say. anything. How are we supossed to teach to her needs if she won't talk to us? But this, week after praying to know her needs, we found one! I asked her how her son's exams had gone and she went off! She told us, or rather our member present, how stressed she is about her son and the decisions he's making. For a good five minutes. After she was done I pounced on the topic of the two thousand strippling warriors! Granted I had to flip through the bofm for a good five minutes trying to find it, but we found it! We shared how their mother's example in faith and obedience to God is truly what protected each and every one of those young men as they fought in battle and exercised the faith they learned from their parents, and also how parents can really, actually, receive guidance for how to raise their children! Specific guidance! I don't think she believed me. But I told her about my own parent's example of faith and righteousness and how it's effected me and my siblings. I still didn't think she believed me so I shared with her what you two have shared with me before about the ways that God has guided you and answered your prayers as you sought to raise and take care of four growing individuals! I told that I know I don't know what it's like being a parent but that I can share from the other side that her example can move mountains for her son. I know it too. Sigh, now she just needs to believe it! After, I asked if they wanted to see my examples and showed them a picture of my family. :)
Also, Sister Julidah was amazed that none of my family is fat. Literally amazed. Congrats, guys. We're all skinny.
Families aren't always ideal, it's very true today. What I do know is that a happy, successful (defined in whatever sense you like) family is the product of a family who teaches and learnes and lives the teachings of Jesus Christ together. I know it and I love it!
Also, yesterday, was missionary Sunday and we all gave talks. Thankfully the elders talked a lot so I only had five minutes. Yes!

Favorite scripture.... I can't remember the verse, Alma 42? It's when Alma the younger says "I was in the gals of bitterness... so great was my joy that my pains were swollowed up in the joy of my savior!" It's two verses and it's basically poetry about the relief of repentance. :)
I love you so much! 

Zone Conference?

BofM and a steamer.

Me on day three of airports. Wating for S Lee.

HARRY! He's the one that's started learning from English class. He's amazing!

Our combined RS and Primary activity Sunday night.

Add caption

Some members that we bumped into in the mall! they go trick or treating in malls here. It's crazy!

Bus stop on a stinkin hot Sunday

My dying planner.

Today getting ready to leave the house with sister Lee!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Apa hal hak pilihan. Pilih yang benar! (Your choices matter. Choose the right!)

This week my faith has grown as God pointed out to me that no matter how many times I teach a lesson or contact someone new I still get nervous, but what I have learned is that He always will help me in these lessons. If I'm willing to accept the help. If I'm not, well, that usually doesn't end up going quite as well.
The miracle of this week was Joel! He's a referral from his muslim friend we met on the street. He's an SDA Philippino and has about the sweetest heart ever; he just loves God! We met him and shared the restoration but it was the best restoration we've ever taught! We were so prompted what questions to ask to truly understand his testimony and his concerns. At the end I asked, if you fell that this is true, will you follow the example of Jesus Christ -"yes"- and be baptized -"definitely!"- by someone holding the priesthood authority of God? "yes!" He was so excited! Not yet sure if there really was a true church and if this was it but he told us that he wanted to pray and find out. *sigh* now if he'd only answer his phone.
Branch wise we've really been trying hard to work with members and the branch council to find who in the ward needs strengthening and how we can use the goldmine. We've met with half the branch council this week going over the branch list with all of them. We're learning more about the branch, but it's proving to be very hard to find new inactives to work with. We're working on it though!
(I asked her about transfers.) Haha, I'm a solo missionary today and most of tomorrow. I have no idea who my new companion is, but if I have one she'll fly in on Wednesday. :) I thought Sister Welling would be going with m; but S. Quan (s Welling's comp and STL) let it slip that she's training, so she won't fly in to SG until Wednesday. It's a crazy week, the whole mission is flying all over the place! 
Ha, Sister Welling trying on the baptism dress for her investigator. It was a little small. Actually, I helped teach this investigator of theirs! Because S. Quan is gone so much we always went to teach her because she only speaks Malay...and only S Quan speaks Malay in their companionship. So I basically had a half investigator baptized this week! Us four sisters sang Where Can I Turn For Peace. S. Quan is a fan of impromptu musical numbers, haha. At zone conference they announced she was doing the musical number on her violin and she said, "Sister MacKay is playing the piano for me." What? So I made up a piano part as she made up a violin solo! It's exciting. She keeps me on my toes.
There are also pictures of English class! It was graduation so we played a lot of games. S Welling is very competitive. 
We finally found Indian food in KK!
We fixed both our bikes this week so we've been biking a lot. Our area is HUGE and everyone is spread out, so I convince Cloward to stretch her legs on some nice hour long bike rides along the beach instead of sitting inside a bus. Then again, buses are also very exciting here; they have disco balls.
We did FHE with one of my favorite families last week! The Chuahs! I look up to B and S Chuah a lot.We played UNO and compared obedience with Heavenly Father to obedience in our families.

Op, Taxi is here! Did I tell you that our branch president is a taxi driver? Anyway, time to fly! I'll think of you (but mostly Kristen) as I drink my steamer. I love you tons! I wish I could say more!
That's S. Welling. Her comp s. Quan is traveling most of the time as an STL so the three of us have been together for a lot of the transfer.

Go away, sin!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Fabulous Week: Exchanges with Sister Simmons, Tracting in the Jungle, & the Power of the Book of Mormon

This week has been great! Late Tuesday night I got a call from Sister Simmons asking if she could go on exchanges with one of us, so we battled it out (I won), rearranged our schedules, and I got to go on exchanges with Sister Simmons! It was great. We went to see a member who really needed her life experience, then went to meet a potential at a mall. He wasn't answering his phone so we searched the mall for the place where he worked, couldn't find it, he eventually called us back and said he couldn't actually meet, rescheduled, and contacted! Haha, It was fun contacting with Sister Simmons. She can speak some Malay (I'm really impressed!), but we tried contacting in a strange compor of English and Malay which actually got us to meet an amazing girl! We talked to her and at first she was slowly edging away, but then we asked her if she felt like God knew her. She paused, looked at me and told me that she wasn't really sure. People always ask her if she knows God, but people never ask her if God knows her. I got to tell her (because at this point the conversation had moved into Malay) that God does know here, but I knew it didn't mean much if I knew it if she didn't. I told her about the Book of Mormon because that is how I know that God knows me. She was so excited to hear that in the Book of Mormon she can learn not only about Jesus Christ suffering and dying for her but why he did it, why he sacrificed himself for her. Yesterday, we also taught very specifically about the Book of Mormon. We met a really cute girl who really truly want to talk to God and feel like she's heard, but she feels really distant from God right now. I loved this lesson so much because God taught me as I was teaching! We taught that our relationship with God is like our relationship with a friend; praying is like talking to that friend, we get get to talk, talk , talk ,talk, they listen, they learn all about you, they know you, it's great. But at the end of it, do you know the other person? No, you only know that they'll listen to you, which is admitably nice. But you need more than that for an actual relationship, you need to listen, too! One of the ways we can listen is by reading the Book of Mormon! It is the word of God, after all. When we read the Book of Mormon we're listening to God, we're hearing what he's saying, we're learning about Him, His likes and dislikes, what makes Him happy or sad, what He truly lives for (hint: it's us)! When she and her sister heard that, they lit up and said "I understand! If I want to feel close to God I need to read the Book of Mormon!" yes! Exactly! We promised them that as they read the Book of Mormon consistently and daily that prayer would ultimately become natural and would even feel like talking to a friend.
I have loved talking about the BofM with everyone lately because my testimony of it has recently grown so much! I realized that there are a LOT of promised blessings associated with studying the book of mormon daily, but that I have never actually read it daily! I decided I really wanted to know if reading the Book of Mormon would make me happier, feel closer to God, resist tempation, have more energy spiritually and physically, have greater strength to do what's right, and a whole load of other things. I can now say that I know all of those blessings are true because I've seen in personally in my life. It's amazing and beautiful and, in the words of my recent convert, "I don't know why I didn't try it sooner!" Message for your seminary kids: Try it. You've heard the blessings, you've heard everyone say it, you parents, your church teachers, your Great Aunt Ruth. The things you find in the Book of Mormon will forever change you! I don't need to promise you because it's already been pormised by actual prophets of God! The things you find in your Book of Mormon will show you how to become the person you want to become, but aren't sure if you can. If you don't know who you want to become, you can find who God knows you can become as you read the Book of Mormon. If you feel like your prayers are more like talking to yourself than an actual conversation, read the Book of Mormon! If you have doubts about any of this being true, read the Book of Mormon, you will know if it's true or not. You have to try it out or you will never know and you will live your life wondering. Why wait? Learn now! It is so much more than just "worth it."
We also had Zone Conference this week, it was about repentance, finding people who are prepared, and something else that I don't remember right now because I'm pinched for time. Haha, Most of the Zone conference was actually about "for those of you who are going home in a few weeks." A third of our zone is going home next transfer, so half of conference was about missionary work, the other half was about applying all of it to after your mission/ :) I love the Simmons! They actually remind me a lot of you two. 
We have one investigator right now who we can only meet once a week, so we're doing a lot of knocking, talking, and.... knocking. I have fun with it! We had a mission wide fast yesterday and things are already looking up. :) We met some great people yesterday! I wish I could tell you more but I think I spent to much time talking about the amazingness of the Book of Mormon. (Did I mention that it's amazing?)
Some guy showed up at the church Saturday night, gave our members a bag of fish and said it was for the two white girls and that he wanted to meet with us and learn about our church. Miracle or crazy? I don't know. I just know there's ten pounds of fish in our church freezer, and I don't know how to cook fish...

I love you! Life is great, I love God because he gives us so many amazing things. :D Oh! Pictures of FHE with Suzy (we played spoons!)
We hiked through the jungle to contact
We did a scavenger hunt for zone conference and we won! The Simmons were on our team! 
we went to a museum last week and learned more about head hunters.

Head-hunting Museum! 

FHE with Suzy

FHE with Suzy (we played spoons!)

Planning her shopping for clothes as an RM? lol

Exchanges with Sister Simmons, Mission Pres.' Wife!

so fun!

zone conference winning scavenger hunt team!

She always did love the park!

We hiked through the jungle to contact

"nice" contacting

"ninja" contacting!

We hiked through the jungle to contact

Read the Book of Mormon!

Monday, October 10, 2016


I'm going in for a visa run to Singapore, I'll definitely go incognito. Thanks for sending the flight info! Without it, I'd probaly get chopped out of SG.
I'm feeling hungry, but, otherwise, I'm feeling great! My fever is gone, energy is great, cough is almost gone, and my sore throat is finally gone!
I could tell you about SG next week. :) I made a list of things we can do. Thanks for planning so much! I'm down for beaches, temples, and elephants! I actually never went to botanical gardens, but I hear both that and Gardens by the Bay are amazing. Look that one up and tell me what you think. :)
Thanks for the article! I don't know what it's about but I'll print and read it! :)
So awesome news! I just found out that the girl I taught in Singpore got baptized this week!!!! And her brother will be baptized in another week or two!! I'm so happy for them! 
One of our miracles happened yesterday as we were contacting. We were excited to go for the fourth floor, last door, and were hoping to find a wife for one of our members, Andrayano. One of the first houses we approached we met the driver for the family who lives there. He was excited to meet us and told us how much he respected us for sharing the gospel. He loooooved Jesus. We asked him if he liked the Bible, he said he loved the bible. We told him that we had a book when knew he'd like, and handed him a Book of Mormon. He quickly took it from our hands and flipped through it as we told him what it is: another testimony of Jesus Christ and that through this book when can learn deeper in the teachings of Jesus Christ and even come to know him personally. He kept saying "this book is very good!" When I offered to give him the book he didn't wait for me to finish asking before he said "yes!" We're more than excited to meet with him again.
Another miracle is a girl, Relesteka, we met last week. The missionaries met her in May and she couldn't meet until sister Cloward called her last week on one of my sick days. When we met her she couldn't wait to hear what a prophet was. When we told her we were asked by a living prophet to share what we know is true she said, "that! What is that, a prophet?" So we told her alllll about God's pattern of calling prophets, and that because he loves all of his children he'll always call another prophet. After we told her about Joseph Smith seeing God and Jesus Christ we told her that because of that we have a prophet who lives today, to which she said, "whoa." yeah, "whoa" is right. Throughout the lesson one by one her friends slowly walked over to the pavilion we were sitting under, at first standing just far enough to see us, then to hear a little, then they sat at the table, until we had eight people standing and sitting around the table, listening to the message of the restoration. It was a beautiful miracle. 
My faith has grown as I've testified over and over and over again the past few weeks that we have a living prophet today who speaks to us all! That Christ speaks to the prophet who then shares that message with all of us so we can hear God speaking to us today - just like in the bible! I love to share the message that God loves us today as much as he loved the people in the time of the bible, that's why he gives us a prophet. Isn't that amazing?? The days leading up to conference this last week felt like the days leading up to Christmas. I couldn't wait!
I'm so greatfull for the experiences I've had on my mission. I was thinking about it yesterday, and I've realized that through all these experiences I can now say with complete certainty that I will always have a testimony, that I will always follow the commandments, that I will read the Book of Mormon and pray every day, and that I will be able to stand before God at my last days and be overjoyed to see his face. I love this church. I love it because I know it's true, I know Thomas S. Monson is God's living messenger, and more than anything I know that God loves his children.
And I love you all!
This is the haunted house that they built in the middle of our mall. They let Zombies loose in the mall, too, that people have to catch. It's exciting to walk through it all every day, to say the least.

These are also some of the Zombie prisoners loose in the mall that we live in. I now live in a haunted house.

This is another FHE we did last week. WE played charades about spiritual gifts. Highlights were the santa clause impersination and my trying to act out dinosaur. 

There's another picture of this MOUNTAIN we biked up to go contacted at the appartment on top. I'm glad I don't live there. Well, we started biking but it got to the point where I was on my lowest gear and peddling a hundred mph and going nowhere, so we walked instead. Or rather, hiked.

Pictures are of FHE last week with the Sokupit family and our RC V! We taught them how to play ninja, then talked about the family proc and how we don't want our family to be like a game of ninja ( everyone fighting and hitting each other), but we want our families to be more like a game of human knot (which we then played), where we work together to solve problems. It was so fun! V kept distracting me in ninja so he could get me out. He's sneaky!


Conference! That's not my foot.

We went contacting last night and it rained really hard! I didn't bring an umbrella. It's too heavy.

Sister Cloward!