Sunday, September 13, 2015

Facebook missionaries, Chinese flashcards, fun with Sister Howard, not rich toward God

14 September 2015
Dakeng, Taiwan


Facebook missionaries
It was a good week. We found out we're Facebook missionaries for this transfer which we're really excited about. 

Chinese flashcards
Trying to type in Chinese is a bit rough because I haven't studied characters yet, but we're figuring it out alright and it's really fun. Our mission has helped provide us with some materials to learn Chinese, mostly flashcards, and they're organized into 3 phases. 

Phase 1 I finished while I was in training and it's strictly church words so that you know how to teach people basic lessons. Right now I'm working on finishing up Phase 2 which is broken into a green, red, and blue box, so I'm about to start the last box and then I can move onto Phase 3! 

In phase 3, you learn how to read and write characters, still mostly words that you will find in scriptures so you can read with investigators at church and in lessons, but it also includes some other useful words too. I was a little worried when I arrived in Taiwan and heard about this system for learning Chinese because I lost about 3 months while serving in the states and waiting for my visa, so I wasn't sure how much I'd be able to get through. But it's turning out just fine and I'm excited I'll still be able to learn some characters before going home!

Sister Howard and me in Taichung
Fun with Sister Howard
Sister Howard and I are having a lot of fun together. Turns out we're actually pretty similar! At least the most similar so far out of all my companions. 

Companion study is really fun because we always talk a ton about gospel principles and we could go for hours discussing what we learned during personal study! 

Lately I've been giving her cooking lessons because she's never really cooked at all her entire life, so we made banana pancakes together for Sunday breakfast yesterday :) 

She went to BYU Hawaii before her mission so we can bond over the beach. Her mom is from New Zealand, and my 2nd trainer in America (Sister Worthen) was from New Zealand, so it reminds me of fond memories from the Moscow days. 

Sister Worthen and me in Moscow, Idaho
It's fun being companions with Sister Howard because she's super open to trying new things. Her trainer had tons of allergies, so she couldn't really eat any Taiwanese food. So I get to introduce her to crazy stuff everyday and she's always up for it. I love it! 

We also have some fun companion traditions, like every week during weekly planning, we write down each others strengths on post its and give it to each other so it's fun to see them accumulate over the weeks. 

And for every 10 people who reject us (including us testifying and asking for their number or to set up with us and them saying no) we get to buy a yummy waffle treat. For every 5 people who say yes and are willing to meet with us again, we get to buy bing.

Not rich toward God
Continuing from last week's talk, I enjoyed learning about another part of the Savior's journey to Jerusalem. It is when He gives the parable of the rich fool:
“Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.”
"Ultimately the man was condemned not for the wise practice of storing temporal provisions but for failing to prepare spiritually for the future. Being “not rich toward God” (Luke 12:21), the man was eventually deprived not only of the treasure he had temporarily accumulated on earth but also of “a treasure in the heavens that faileth not” (Luke 12:33). His choices in life left him impoverished in eternity."

In direct contrast to this man, Jesus was on His way to His death, yet He was doing so willingfully because He was willing to give everything that He had, including His own life and will to Heavenly Father. He declared, “I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!” (Luke 12:50). He had already been baptized by water. Here, He was referring to the Atonement He was about to perform, in which His entire body would be covered in sweat and blood, descending below all things, suffering for us out of love. 

I'm grateful for the Savior's Atonement. Through His life, we have a perfect example to learn from and we can know what sort of lives we should aim to live. 

So happy
I'm grateful for all of your support and I'm so happy to be a missionary in Taiwan! 

Love you!

Sister Hancock

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