I would love to describe to you the beautiful land of Preston. Oh wait.. I'm not in Preston, I'm in LANCASTER.
Yep.. President Ulrich was inspired to change transfer plans. He had this nagging impression 3 hours before transfer meeting that I needed to go to Lancaster to serve with Sister Lee. I am so blessed to have a mission President that is so close to the Spirit. So here I am in Lancaster. By the end of my mission I will have a total of 5 companions and 4 areas. This has gotta be a record..
Remember Sister Lee? We served in Wrexham together. I love Sister Lee so much and I am so grateful to serve with her again. She blows me away with the spiritual power that always accompany her words. I am so grateful that she gets to stay in Lancaster and I hope she will be able to stay for awhile; She has served in a new area almost every transfer. She is helping me a lot with my Chinese. It got a bit rusty since we weren't teaching in Chinese much in Wrexham. We have so much fun together.
I could not be happier to be here. It is so beautiful and this place is crawling with Chinese people which is quite the contrast from Wrexham at the moment. The members here are so supportive and excited about missionary work.
Right before we got on the transfer bus to leave the chapel I spotted President Preston. Once your mission president, always your mission president. It was so great getting to see him again but also a bit weird to see him with out a name badge. The Prestons will always have a special place in my heart.
I got to give my introduction testimony yesterday during sacrament meeting. I was prompted to share a bit of my testimony in Chinese. I scanned the crowd to see the faces of our Chinese investigator and recent convert and they both had big smiles on their faces. I love being able to gain their trust as they see how hard I have worked to learn their language.
Jun is our dated investigator here. She is doing really good. She came to church yesterday and seems very able to be independent. The members are warm and welcome to her. She will be interviewed for her baptism this week.
Our area needs a lot of work. I have reviewed the area book and we are in desperate need to start finding more investigators and potentially drop investigators that are not progressing. I am excited to find new investigators that are PREPARED. The time to find, teach, and baptize is now. There is also a great need to strengthen the recent converts. There are at least 5 in our stewardship and I can feel the weight of our responsibility to nourish these members. We are very fortunate to be serving in a ward that cares about their recent converts and has done everything they can to look after them.
How am I? Well I could not be better! I have this great boost of energy and I have no idea where it came from or how it is possible to be so full of energy at this point of my mission. Oh wait, yes I do know where it has come from. This has come from a loving Heavenly Father that knows and loves me so much. I am ready to ''sprint to the end'' and give this last area my all. It has been a blessing to have long areas my whole mission because now I am in the mindset that I will be in Lancaster for a long time and it is helping me remain focused and settle in. It usually takes me awhile to be myself when I first go to a new area or serve with a new companion but since I already know and love Sister Lee I already am able to be myself. I cannot express enough how much the Lord has blessed me this transfer. There has been problems with missionaries bus contacting in Lancaster in the past (i.e, Elders being thrown off buses) so for a long time missionaries who serve here typically do not bus contact. Well you know me. I don't want to spend a second not talking to somebody. So I have been sitting next to people on the bus and gently weaving the gospel into the conversation. So far so good. I know the Lord will bless us for our extra efforts. Perhaps this will be the time we can break out of that mode of no bus contacting if we do it right.
I wish I could describe in words how grateful I am and how much love I have for the Lord right now. This week I have learned that when we are willing to do the will of the Lord we are LIMITLESS. So often we limit our happiness and our ability to achieve our potential when we stubbornly want to do what we want to do. The moment we give our will to the Lord, He will be able to guide us to where we need to be and that path will always have great happiness in store than the path we want to take because we are short sighted. He sees the end from the beginning. We cannot see our lives the way He sees it. He will not do things against our will and that is why He patiently waits for us to cheerfully submit. Like Nephi, we may not know the meaning of all things ( 1 Nephi 11:17) yet we can be confident that He knows and loves us. I would have never imagined that it would be in Lancaster that I would fulfill my greatest potential. I wanted to badly to stay in Wrexaham but now that I am here I see that I am happier here than I would have been had the Lord granted me the chance to stay where I was. I am grateful to have learned this important lesson of humility.
I invite you all to ask Heavenly Father in prayer what His will is. Once that will is made manifest to you have the humility to DO IT. Trust that everything will always work out for your good.
p.s- Since I only arrived in Lancaster on Saturday I have no pictures yet. Stay tuned though!