Monday, March 31, 2014

City Lights, Rainy Nights

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My tears are gone, and I am now officially a city girl! I remember sitting in high school dreaming about going to NYC for school or just to live because I love the energy the big city has to offer. Well, now I am in the biggest city in Queensland and like it or not I am a city girl and it is nothing like I dreamed it would be! Being a missionary in the city is perhaps my worst nightmare, but it is becoming quite the adventure as I try to sanctify myself and talk to the swarms of people that now surround me.
The city is so different from SunnyBank. No longer do we have an office to teach at, no longer do I ride my bike, no longer am I in a family ward, no longer do I GQ bus stops, and thankfully no longer do I have hot sleepless nights. We leave the flat after lunch and do not come back until the end of the day. We teach in food courts and the library when we can book a study room. The ward I serve in is a Young Single Adult (YSA) ward. The best part is our flat has air conditioning.

My first full day in the city was a complete distraction. Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Aldo, etc. called at the natural woman in me. All day long I tried to focus on my purpose as a missionary by reciting in my head the scriptures President Henderson has had us memorize. It was hard with all the beautiful window displays, but I tried my best to look at people and not store windows. Luckily we had a lot of appointments and so my only struggle was to look at the investigators and not the people around us.

My birthday was Thursday and that is a day I will never forget! We had a packed day full of lessons and GQ and a dinner appointment planned for the night. We start off with GQ'ing. It was raining and so no one was sitting down. So there I am standing in the middle of Queen Street Square with people all around me. Sister Ng is off talking to someone and I feel the urge to find someone to talk to as well. I turn around in circles trying to figure out who I should talk to. I felt my heart jump into my throat as panic began to wash over me and feelings of inadequacy consumed me. How could I GQ here? Why so many white people? Why did the Lord send me here? I am not good enough or brave enough to talk to all these people.
The thought came to pray. I bowed my head right there in the middle of all those people and begged my Heavenly Father to help me calm down and regain control. I told Him my worries and my desire to continue being a good missionary. I asked, "Heavenly Father, I don't know if I can do this. Help me not to lose my faith." Almost immediately my heart dropped back into my chest and my thoughts turned into, I can do this. I am a servant of the Lord. I may have just wasted five minutes, but there is still time in the day for the Lord to work miracles. I have faith in miracles. Then I went and talked to someone who is now going to meet with us tomorrow. It strengthened my testimony that the Lord watches over me and understands that my desire is to do His will, but He also understands that I am weak and in a new area and so He is giving me the strength to adjust and become a city missionary.
Finally, it was time for dinner. We met up with our investigator and then the rain really came! It was like a summer thunderstorm in South Carolina, with sheets of rain rather than raindrops! We hopped onto the bus to go to our dinner appointment. We got off the bus and somehow, I'm not sure how it was possible, but it was raining harder. We had a 10 minute walk ahead of us until we got to the member's home. Sister Ng and I are sharing an umbrella because I don't have one and we were walking on small Australian sidewalks. All of a sudden I feel sidewalk against touching my foot and I realize my shoe has come off! I look back to see it sinking into some mud. I grabbed it and put it back on, mud and all. By the time we got to the member's house we were all pretty wet, especially our feet as every crossing had turned into a mini river.
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By the time we got home we were soaked from head to toe! We had to lay out shoes, socks, skirts and shirts to dry and then rushed into dry pj's. Then we thanked the Lord that through the hectic storm we had remained safe and unharmed. What a birthday eh?
I have completed my first week in the city and I feel much better than I did on my birthday. I have felt the Atonement immensely as I have used its comfort to adjust to missionary life in the city. My favorite part about the city is that we can teach lessons by ourselves on the street. If we are talking to someone and they are interested then you just start teaching and pray with them. Multiple times this week I would be GQ'ing a person and the impression to teach them a lesson would come to mind. I would pull out a pamphlet and teach, usually about prayer. One guy, named Adam, wasn't that interested when I started talking to him, but the Holy Ghost prompted me to teach him about prayer. So I continued talking to him until he gave me something I could relate to prayer. Then I taught him how to pray and said a prayer with him. It was a simple prayer, as often my Chinese prayers are, but afterwards when I asked Adam how he felt he said, "Peaceful, and like everything is going to be okay." Then he gave me his number because he wants to meet up again. Moments like this truly testify to me the power of Heavenly Father who, amongst all the hustle and bustle of a big city, takes the time to touch the heart of a single man who I had the pleasure of praying with.
I know that God loves each and everyone one of us. He wants us to succeed and we need only believe in Him enough to ask for His help. He will give it. I can testify of this! I love my mission and I love the city. Sister Ng and I are praying for miracles everyday and everyday we see them.

1 comment:

  1. father loves you, and he wants the best thing for you. Even something seems hard at beginning.