Well it has been an extremely long week, 10 days to be exact! We didn't have P-day until Thursday this week because earlier this morning we had the privilege of going to the temple! Which was much needed after all that has happened the past ten days.
Doctors. The past few weeks I have been all over Brisbane visiting doctors trying to figure out what in the world is wrong with my back. I got a CT scan done and there was nothing really wrong with my back, just a small bulging disc, but turns out everyone's disc are bulging a little bit. However, when the doctor was looking at my CT scans he noticed some odd junk in my kidney. He sent me to go have an Ultra Sound done ASAP.
After the ultra sound Sister Ng and I came home straight away and handed the written report to Sister Chen to translate into simple English--luckily Sister Chen almost finished her medical degree before coming out on her mission! After translating I discovered that my left kidney is just full of junk right now. I have 2-3 large kidney stones and 3 large cysts taking up space in my kidney. Thus the explanation for the intense back pain the past five weeks now! I am going to the doctor tomorrow to find out what we can do to solve my kidney issue and then hopefully I will be pain free in no time. It has been hard not sleeping at night because of the pain and then having to get up and go walk around the city. However, the Lord is very aware of me, His daughter, and has blessed Sister Ng and I immensely.
Miracles. All week we were able to have at least one or more lessons during the day so that I didn't have to walk around so much. Then on Tuesday night a huge miracle was Sister Chen and Cabamongan's investigator, Kelsey, asked to see me because Sister Chen had told her about the side affects I was having after taking the medicine the doctor prescribed me. So I went over with Sister Cabamongan and sat down in Kelsey's flat and handed over the medication I had been taking that left me loopy as a fruit loop necklace. Kelsey pulled out her laptop and called up her doctor friend and together they asked me questions about my side effects and in the end decided that I was having every negative side effect except hives and should stop taking the medicine immediately. Sure the pain was stronger, but I had my head back and was able to talk to people more effectively and help move the work in our area along more fully, rather than putting most of the weight on Sister Ng's shoulders.
Back in working condition Sister Ng and I were able to help our investigator Atticus get ready for baptism! I haven't mentioned him a whole lot in past letters because we haven't been teaching Atticus very long, but miraculously he is getting baptized this Saturday right before transfers next week! He is so ready and eager to follow Jesus Christ. It is pretty amazing how fast Atticus has been willing to change his life in order come closer to Christ, including paying tithing and giving up tea! I am very excited to see him enter the waters of BAPTISM! Which is the end result of many miracles and the beginning of Atticus's journey to returning to live with Heavenly Father again.
I also went on trade-offs with Sister Lai this week. It was fun to be her companion again for a day. She helped me realize that it is okay that I am in pain and it is okay that I am feeling weak because I am still working hard. In fact she told me I was working too hard and that I should take more time to relax because my health is not super great right now. I told her I needed to work hard because I only have so much time left in my mission, plus I really want the blessings for my family. At that moment I began to cry a little bit (I've been quite an emotional mess without sleep and a lot of pain) and just curled into my lap in frustration. Sister Lai came over and lifted my face out of my lap and told me boldly and lovingly, "Sister Jensen, you are trooper #1. I can tell you love the Lord because you are not using your pain as an excuse to work less, rather you are using it as a reason to work harder. You are crazy, but I love you and so does Heavenly Father." I love Sister Lai. I love that my Heavenly Father has placed in my path two amazing STL's who always are in tune with the Holy Ghost and know what to say to help me relax and appreciate the work I am able to do and appreciate the love of the Lord.
Another miracle that just occurred over and over agian this week was our members! They are getting the feel of the hastening of the work. One Sister in Relief Society said to me, "I can really feel the hastening. Even at uni my friends are asking me more and more about my church." Then this week we have been able to have multiple members come to our lessons. Not only are they coming to the lessons but they are starting to go the extra mile and invite the investigators to do stuff with them! Ben, a recent convert, willingly brings Atticus to church every week and offered to bring him to the baptism as well! Phil, a recent Japanese convert, has taken Ayako under his wing and walks with her to church is at every lesson to make sure she understands what we are teaching and is encouraging her to be baptized on June 28th. At church the members are eager to sit by investigators and welcome them to the ward. My testimony of member missionary work is growing stronger and stronger as I see members eagerly engage the investigators who are at church. It is a miracle for sure!
I know this church is true! I am a living modern day witness that the Atonement can not only help us receive the loving forgiveness of our Heavenly Father, but can also enable us to do more than others think we are capable. Such has been the case with my pain. This past Tuesday we took the ferry to English class, and I had Sister Ng curled up trying to escape the cold on my left and Ayako curled up on my right. I looked around at all our investigators on the ferry and all the other Asian faces and I just felt love. Love for the people I have been called to serve and the Holy Ghost let me know right then and there that that love I was feeling was the reason I have been able to push through the pain and the fears about what might happen at the next doctor's appointment. Love can conquer anything. It was love that caused Heavenly Father to send Jesus Christ to the earth and it was Christ's love for his fellow man that caused him to "drink the bitter cup." I invite everyone to put aside any feelings that are not love and to love those around you. I love you all and am grateful for your prayers. I can feel myself gaining strength from them each and every day. Thank you.
1) Sister Ng and I being very mature as we pick the crocodile's nose
2) My loveyly x-companion and current STL Sister Lai and I at the end of trade-offs
3) Another sister in my zone did hair before her mission and gave me a free cut today! Thanks Sister Bailey