Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Ni hao ma Kung Hee Fat Choy Chow Mein Orange Chicken

Hello Everyone! :)

This week has been hilarious and awesome and all over the place! But so so great! On Monday, I got a flu shot. It hurt. But I was brave and didn't cry. On Tuesday, we headed out to Livermore like we normally do and had an amazing day we got a ton of lessons! It was so amazing! The Lord truly blessed us on Tuesday! We also had lunch with this sweet lady we were dropping by to visit her granddaughter but her granddaughter wasn't home and she wasn't letting us leave without feeding us lunch! So sweet! It was so wonderful to be in a home and to have someone take care of us.

The rest of the week went great and we ended up with a grand total of 20 LESSONS! YAY! For some that might not be much but it's the most I've ever gotten in one week on my mission! Haha! Sis. Bliss and I looked back to when I first got to this area and Sis. Johnson and I had a total of 4 lessons my first week in. Haha. I've received some tender mercies from the Lord because the work is exploding now and it is awesome!

On Sunday we also sang in Chinese branch that meets in our ward building. We sang Joseph Smith's First Prayer. It was so beautiful and Sis. Bliss and I even learned the last verse in Chinese and I sang the alto part! It was awesome. Sis. Bliss taught me how to do it! Then later that night we also had a musical fireside for the Livermore stake! It was called Finding Faith in Christ. Most of it was music, but I was asked to bear my testimony about my faith in Christ. :)

I knew that it had been coming up for a while but I couldn't figure out what to say.I would see different quotes or read different scriptures but nothing really stuck out to me. This happened for weeks and then last night, I was slightly freaking out because I had no idea what I was supposed to say. But then I thought about it differently. Instead of thinking about myself and how I had come to find faith in Christ, I pondered the question what do the people in attendance need to hear in order to find faith in Christ. :) Yet, another tender mercy from the Lord. I stood up and though it was short. The Spirit guided what I had to say and I had no trouble getting up and speaking! :)

But....for all of you who are wondering about my wonderful Chinese on the subject line! :) Guess what?!? Haha! As of next transfer... I will also be serving in the Chinese Branch! Yes, Chinese Branch means they all speak Mandarin. No, I don't speak any Chinese. Yes, I sit in front of the translator so I don't have to wear headphones and can still understand what's going on! Haha!

Haha but really though! I love them all already! They are so hilarious. We were introduced to a bunch of the members of the branch and they are so cute! I'd tell them, "Hi, I'm Sis. Ellis!" (You know trying to keep it easy for everyone...) And they'd look at my name tag and tell me, "Hello, Sis. Kwan." So hah... apparently I'm Sis. Kwan now in the Chinese Branch. Haha. Oh dear...I love being a missionary!

I hope you all have a great week and hopefully by next week, I'll actually be able to say something that makes sense in Chinese! Haha! Love it!

Sis. Ellis-Lui-Kwan

Monday, October 21, 2013

Aloha! : )


Sorry I wasn't able to hop on the computer last week! I was at "Poly Day". Haha...because as we all know I'm pretty much the most Polynesian person out there. Ahhh...haha. Anyways, it was pretty fun. All the Polynesian missionaries in our mission got to spend P-Day together and we pretty much ate, hung out, and played volleyball. Another shocker there...

Haha...but really though. It was totally fun! I got to meet a whole bunch of people who I don't have to explain how "flip-flops" are called "slippers". It was so great. I wasn't the only one with a tita bun. :)

Anyways, these past two weeks have been awesome! So many miracles. This week we have interviews with our mission president. As always, they were great! President Watkins makes me feel like I'm the best missionary on the face of the planet every time I talk to him and then I want to just go and tell everyone about the gospel! Haha! So awesome! On Wednesday, one of our investigators dropped us. He called us and told us that he wasn't interested anymore and didn't want to meet with us. It was really sad. Especially when his cousin, a recent convert, who had been there at every lesson was helping our investigator along the way. Sis. Bliss and I think he took it really hard. But everyone has their agency. I know it will all be fine and that the Lord will continue to bless him and his cousin!

Then, on Thursday the miracle of all miracles occurred! I thought I was in a movie! We went to visit our other investigator and she was amazing! We talked to her about how she thought sacrament meeting went this past Sunday. She said she loved it and even though she had to leave she said when she got in the car she said a prayer asking Heavenly Father if the church was true and if it was the right thing for her and she said she had a voice come into her head and say, "You already know it's true!" What?!?! Ahhhhh! It was so great. I was sitting there listening to her continue to tell us all of these awesome spiritual experiences she was having because she was willing to accept the Lord's will and be receptive to the Spirit. Oh so great! She told us she's excited to go shopping for church clothes now and she wants to get baptized! Whoo hoo! I'm so excited. She is so solid. Man... I felt like I was on "The District" it was so great! It totally was a testament to me that the Lord really does prepare people. She told us that right before we started teaching her she had just told her boyfriend that she wanted to get her life in order and wanted to look for a church! Seriously, tender mercies from the Lord. Things like that really don't happen everyday! I'm so glad that I've had the opportunity to teach her and get to know her. She is such a blessing! 

I can't wait for this new week ahead! All of the wonderful blessings that lie ahead for all of the great people I get to teach and talk to every week are really starting to blossom. I'm so excited for each of them!

I love you all a whole ton! Stay safe. Stay wonderful! Get a tan for me because I'm turning into this weird...pale-ish...person. Love you all!

Sis. Ellis-Lui-Kwan

Monday, October 14, 2013

Happy After-General-Conference-Weekend Day! :)

(Aloha Gang, This is last week's (10/07/2013) post.  Sorry it's late, I didn't have access to a computer. Sister Ellis wasn't able to email home this week (10/14/2013) because she was in San Jose for the day, but I did hear from her companion who said that she is doing well and will email again next week!  Mahalo for all your love, support, and prayers on her behalf! Love, Anela )

Hi Everyone!

I hope everyone enjoyed General Conference as much as I did! Oh my, it was amazing! It was great to be able to listen to Conference and see all of those we're teaching have questions answered. I can't wait for this coming week and have the time to share all of the messages from General Conference with them. Ahh! So amazing!

This week was as amazing as ever! We got to go to the temple which was just so perfect. It couldn't have come sooner. Ah I love the temple and all the peace it brings to my heart.

We went on exchanges with Sis. Bassett, she's our new Sister Training Leader. She is so great! I loved it! We also gave a church tour this week! It was Sis. Bliss's first church tour and she did amazing! I love giving church tours. I feel like the Spirit is already so strong from the moment someone steps in our church buildings that you just have to feel happy when you're there! 

We also picked up a former investigator! It was great! She had a whole bunch of questions for us and she seemed so open and receptive to meeting with us. Her whole countenance changed from the time I first met her and she really wants to learn things about our church and it is making me so excited! I can't wait to meet with her again this week.

Other than that, everything is going great! We traded in Old Bertha (our Navy Car) for Big Red (the Elder's red car). I was sad to see her go. But seeing that we had to fix our duct taped bumper every couple of days I'm appreciative that Big Red doesn't have those problems. Haha.

But I hope everyone had a wonderful week and I hope each of you have an amazing week to come! I love you all so much!

Sis. Ellis-Lui-Kwan

"Old Bertha"

"Big Red"

Sis. Bliss & Sis. Ellis-Lui-Kwan

At the Oakland Temple
Sister Ikegami's (2nd from left) Grandparents & Aunty are in Nu'uanu Ward

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

You Know You're A Missionary When...

Aloha Everyone,

This week I wanted to do something a little different because Sis. Bliss, the other two sisters we live with, and I all started talking about the crazy things we do as missionaries...

So here it goes...

You know you're a missionary when... someone texts you to ask for a priesthood blessing and you drop your whole life.
One of the people we teach gets really bad migraines and so sometimes we go over and you can just see the pain on her face. She gets them quite frequently but at this time in her life, she doesn't really want anything to do with the church or the priesthood. We've asked her before if she'd like a blessing and she's never wanted one, until Monday night! She had asked us to pray for her earlier that day and of course we had her in our thoughts. Then Monday night, we got a text from her asking for a blessing. We called her home teacher and his father and we headed to her house. It was amazing to see everything fall into place so easily. First of all that we didn't have a set appointment then so we could go right away. Second, her home teacher answered his phone and then was willing to come. Such a tender mercy from the Lord. It was amazing. They gave her a blessing and the Spirit was so strong. I was so glad to have been able to be a part of that precious experience. 

You know you're a missionary when... you invite someone to come to church without their iPad. Another one of the people we teach has had a hard time coming to church and paying attention because he is constantly on his iPad. When we invited him this past week to come to church without his iPad and sit in the chapel with us, we thought he was going to attack us, but then after a long pause, he agreed. Another tender mercy from the Lord. Hah. Seriously though, that could've gone down a lot differently. 

This week has been amazing. We got to meet with both the Livermore Stake Presidency, the stake we're actually in, and the Pleasanton Stake Presidency, the stake that we cover and the rest of our zone is in. Both stake presidents and counselors are amazing! They are so empowering and motivating! The Lord has called great people to lead the members here. We also had the Sisters Retreat! YAAAYYYY! So....for those of you who don't know... my mission president and his wife are the best that are out there. We had a day long retreat for all the sister missionaries in our mission. We all came to San Jose and went to workshops and listened to speakers. It was such a wonderful spiritual boost and a perfect lead in to the Relief Society Broadcast this past Saturday. I am so grateful for the wonderful Spirit I am able to feel as a missionary and I am so looking forward to General Conference this coming weekend! Ahh I'm so excited! 

I hope everyone is doing well! I love you all so much!

Sis. Ellis-Lui-Kwan

The Best Zone in the Mission!