Sunday, July 28, 2013
I am so sorry for not saying this last week, but Dad, Enoch, Jared, and Jacob... HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! :) I love you all! And a special Happy Birthday to Olivia :) I hope it's great! (Eat some cake for me Brigg ;P ) I don't know if this is normal for everyone who has gone on a mission, but I just want to say I'm sorry to all of the people who write me letters and just don't get a response.... haha I am really so sorry but there is almost no time to write everyone. I want to say a special thank you to all the people who have written me since I've gotten here. Thank you to.... Graifs, Smithsons, Bracamontes, Anna, Ashlynn, Olivia, Emery, Kate, Leah, Kaleb, Savannah, Calyssa, Ben, Ella, Sister Talbot, and Allison Petramalo. I really love to hear from you and how life is there!! :) Just know that I really do love hearing from you, but I don't know that you will get a letter back right away...... haha. Once you're a missionary, you'll know. :) Joshua!! Thank you so much for the love brotha! The pictures were great to see :) Congrats on the new house!!! :) I am so happy for you guys. Sarah's trainer in the Canada Edmonton mission has been in Taiwan for an internship and she went to the temple about three weeks ago. She asked one of the Sisters in the visitor center if they knew of me and one of the sisters actually was in my Zone. She gave me a note and 500 NT to go get ice cream! haha so nice of her :) it's really cool and I don't know if she knows or not, but my name is on the money that she gave me!! (Wu3- which means 5) This week we had a new investigator (Lin Qing Yong) who came to church this week and he is doing great! he is meeting with us twice a week and he is feeling the love from God so much more! The other investigatory is Yu Dx. and he is doing so awesome!!! He has his baptismal interview set for next Sunday and will have it on the 8/10. Super stoked and he is so ready!.... It honestly is so crazy that he is so prepared! Now I'm going to share what I sent to President Day for my report this week. "This last week we focused on one less-active Melchizedek priesthood holder and another potential. They both have word of wisdom problems and it has been incredible to see the Atonement of Jesus Christ change them and give them strength. Huang yen wen is the one who we found recently and he is progressing so well! He has quit drinking and is now working on quitting smoking, but to hear his testimony and feel the Spirit as we testify to him that as he continues to come unto Christ and keep all of his commandments, that he can be forgiven of all of his sins. I actually think the most incredible thing has been seeing the light of Christ return to him more fully! The countenance of light that shows that he knows that he is a son of God, and that he has a Savior who has already suffered for his pains, sorrows, mistakes and sins. All he has to do is repent. And that is such a happy thing!!! The other one is Qiu Dx, who a year ago was in the branch presidency, and I guess got into the wrong crowd and started drinking and eating Beetle Nut. We have been meeting with him for a while and he has never really made any effort to quit, but this week we told him that we would call him morning and night to remind him to read his scriptures and say his prays to receive more strength. It was doing alright and he didn't always do it, but Friday came around and we had two members go over with us to visit him. One of the members has recently been baptized and overcome those same problems. We asked him to share his story, and bare his testimony of the things that helped him. It was powerful. We invited him to come to church and he accepted. He came!!! The Lord provides a way for his righteous servants to do his work. For the month of July, one of our goals was to get a less-active Melchizedek priesthood holder back to church. it worked :) Thank you Heavenly Father!!" I'm loving being a missionary, and I find the more I lose myself in the work the more ability I have to invite his children to come unto him and find the truth that He has provided them to give them peace and joy in this world full of hatred, pains, and sorrows. I love my Savior and I love His work. Please pray for Elder Hopper and I here in Toufen and pray that we will have the humility and ability to listen to the Spirit to find the prepared ones. Father in Heaven does hear your prayers and I am reaping the blessings from them. We need as many as we can, so keep it coming! :) love ya!! Hurrah for Israel!!!!!!!!
Posted by Sarah Westover & Aleck Lang at 11:18 PM
Sunday, July 21, 2013
Hello!! Hey! Yes, I'm alive! haha I am so sorry I didn't get a letter off you you last week but we went to the temple the temple on Wednesday last week and.... I forgot to tell you that I would not be writing you... :) hahah not that ya'll cared or anything I just thought I would tell you. And my excuse for not writing you on Wednesday is............. My companion and I took a little trip................... to Tai Chung. Hahaha Next week I'll send a video of our little experience, but we took the High Speed Rail and missed the last stop in our mission.... Super funny. President Day heard about it and laughed!! WE have repented. I promise. :) We got Sisters in Tou Fen!! They are super great and we are super excited to work with them. One is a native and the other is from Sacramento California. My companion gave me the phone, so my Chinese will improve. I am completely amazed all of the time at how great my God is and the power he has to change people. Here are just two experiences from these last two weeks. "We had just been our appointment fell through so we went out to find. We came down the stairs from the chapel and right in front of us was a man who looked like he had some physical ailments. I had earlier in the day chosen a scripture to share about the resurrection (Alma 11:44) I felt a feeling so strong to talk to him that I was stuck where I stood. I could not move. I felt the feeling so strong that he was the one that needed to hear that part of the message that we bring. Elder Hopper was about to go contact a younger boy, but as he started to leave my side I said, "Wait!, we need to talk to him." (motioning to the older man) We started talking to him (Liu Dx), and eventually got to talking about his ailments. I shared that scripture with him. I bore testimony that what it said was true, and my companion had my back. We had a prayer with him to help and bless him as he went to the hospital for some treatments, gave him a Book of Mormon, got his number and then he had to get on the bus. I don't know that he will honestly have interest, and when we call him, if he will want to set up with us, but I do know that there was a truth shared, and that means a seed planted. It's amazing to have that feeling. To listen to the promptings of the Spirit... and ACT. I know that I felt the spirit and I know that he felt that same spirit. I know that he is my brother, and I really did see him as he can become... I saw him dressed in white, looking strong and firm. Young and full of life! I know that he is my brother, and whether that vision was of my premortal life, this mortal life, or in the life to come, I don't know either. But I know I will see him again." "We found a lost sheep. The Spirit lead us to a lost sheep. In a way, the Spirit lead him to us. A couple of weeks ago we were leaving the church building to go to another appointment, when a man came up to us. He was really hard to understand, because my Chinese is still not that great, he had a lot of teeth missing, and he was drunk. I can't remember much more about that visit. Then this Thursday we were on our way to eat dinner coming from an active member visit and a man sitting on the side of the road at the opening of a house started to yell at us. This place had no door, a floor that had the tile taken out, a chair, a mattress, and a small blanket I couldn't quite understand what he was saying but then I realized it was that man. My companion wanted to stop. I protested but followed. I was thinking too much of our schedule and what we could be doing, but when I finally realized that I was being prideful and selfish. I tried to listen... listen to the words that he was speaking, and listening to the spirit. We found out that he had gone to church, and he used to have some nice clothes like ours, but obviously doesn't have it any more. Earlier this week at work, he had stepped on a nail and it had gotten infected. Super bad. We asked him why he hadn't gotten it looked at but he said that he just didn't have enough money. We shared with him about how much Heavenly Father loves us and what we need to do for him to help us. We encouraged him to quit drinking and smoking and set up a time to come back and meet with him. He gave a sincere prayer pleading for Heavenly Father's help. We met with him two days later and committed him to quit drinking in two weeks and invited him to come to church with us the next day. On Sunday 8:55 A.M. came, he wasn't there. We went down the stairs to check the bus station (where he often is) and he wasn't there. We went out on the street to look for him and we couldn't see him. We decided to pray for him in our hearts. We returned and right before the Sacrament Hymn started, he walked in! I got to sit next to him and when the Sacrament Hymn was over, he leaned over and said, he felt so good. I could see it too, I could see the happiness radiating from him! We went to Gospel Principles (Sacrifice), and Elders Quorum (According to our Faith) and the lessons were absolutely perfect for him. The members were great! We found out he had been baptized and confirmed! He had shared with me that he had been baptized and I shared that, but we weren't too sure if he was saying he had been baptized or had just mistaken the Sacrament for baptism, and it turned out he had been baptized. We went over with some other members yesterday to give him some church clothes and a little food and shared with his mother. Also a very special experience. She prayed and said one of the most sincere prayers that I have ever heard. She weeped as she truly shared with her Father in Heaven the desires of her heart, and pleaded for His help. Sweet tender mercies like that make all the rejections worth it. " I love this Work. I am so blessed to be a missionary and have the calling from a prophet of God to proclaim the most important message. The Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ among the people of Taiwan. Hurrah For Israel!!!!!
Posted by Sarah Westover & Aleck Lang at 11:51 PM
Monday, July 8, 2013
Hey all!! This week has been great and I can't wait to tell you all about it, but first off... HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!! (That's my favorite holiday) I hope you all saw plenty of fireworks, ate plenty of watermelon, and listened to tons of country music! Happy Birthday to: Adelynn, Sister Talbot (Mom2), and Elder Travis Talbot! I love you all and I hope your day is so awesome today!! .... Hahah I get to celebrate your birthday before you do!! ;P Ok! So back to my week this last week. Last Monday was Elder McKay's Birthday, so they came up from Miaoli to Zhunan and we all ate pasta rice (just like I used to do with Sarah, Tarah, and Rebekah), and ate some.... MANGO bing qi ling (ice cream).... Taiwanese Icecream is different. Shaved ice, with whatever fruit or topping you want, and lian ru (condenced milk) :) Sooo good! I cleaned the bathroom, and we finally bought a shower curtain!!!!!!!! Hahaha that is some thing that I have been bugging Elder Hopper about, becuse in our bathroom there is no room and the water from the shower goes everywhere and it's super gross.... :/ hahah I'm a clean freak. This week we have recieved many answeres to prayers and many blessings in our area. We are working with 5 progressing investigators right now. We set two baptismal dates and are super excited! Jeff (Yu Dixiong- 63) just came out and asked us...!!! hahah I couldn't believe what I was hearing when he asked! Set it for October 10! The other is Zhou Jiemei (15). Elder Davidson and Elder Hopper found her before I came in and she has been progressing for a while. She has a great desire to get baptized. She's keeping commitments and is coming to church every week! Super excited to get them in the font! :P hahah (but seriously...) We have been so blessed with having miracles with our tracting. It's usually after knocking on about 20 houses before we get someone who is willing to atleast listen to us. The Lord is leading us to speak with potential Melchizedik Preisthood Leaders. We really need them here in Tou Fen and really hope build this area into a Ward. We are trying new Finding Ideas!! Hahah My favorites are: Going to the park to sing, "Build and Investigator", and asking people where the best place to eat is! The last is probably my favorite, because all we need is an opportunity to let people talk to us... Elder Holand said that with everyone we talk with, there is always something that will lead into the Gospel and how it can bless them personally. I'm really trying to develope that skill to listen. Listen to the Spirit and listen to the people I speak with. Taiwan is so amazing, and as much as I wish I could be back in America with you and could have celebrated the Fourth of July with my fellow Americans, I am absolutely inlove with Tou Fen and all the people that are just searching for the Light and Truth that the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I am just starting to really realize it. This time really is going to fly by. My time here in Taiwan is so short, and I don't want to give anything less than my all. After a discussion with a man we found at the park (Wang), I realized how bad it hurts to have someone reject a message of happiness. A message that is brought by young men and women to share with their fellow brothers and sisters, because we want them to know of the Joy and Love that can come from this Gospel. It really does hurt. But you... my family (and friends), and the Lord, our Saviour Jesus Christ is my motivation to go and to it all again, hoping and praying in Faith, that the next person I speak with will feel the Spirit and want to know more. Even though my Chinese is not good at all, and there is so much that I have left to learn, I know that God is my Loving Heavenly Father. He sent His Son Jesus Christ to Earth to perform the Atonement to allow us to return to God's presence. I know that the Book of Mormon and the Gospel of Jesus Christ are the way that we can have EVERLASTING life and happiness. There is no other way than through Faith. And our Faith leads to Actions (baptism), which will lead to a testimony, developed into a full conversion to obtaining all the promised blessings through the sacred ordinances of the Temple. I love you all. I love this Work (fun), and I love my Father. Hurrah for Israel!!!!! Love, Elder Jordan Westover
Posted by Sarah Westover & Aleck Lang at 8:50 AM
Monday, July 1, 2013
Hey! wow. It's been almost a month on island and I can't believe it!! Hahah We are doing awesome here in Tou Fen and the work is progressing! Just as it always is :) But we are really being blessed here. I recently have been praying for more experiences to develop the Christlike attribute of Humility... I have always known that Heavenly Father answers prayers, but I did not realize that if you pray for Him to help you align your will with His... It's a faster process! I have had many experiences this week and I am very happy for those. Keep the prayers coming! I really do love you and appreciate them! The people here in Taiwan are all so nice. They really are. And I am so happy to be here sharing this message of happiness and joy with them! My Taiwanese brothers and sisters. We are busy all the time! Tuesday night to teach the Lin Family that we tracted into two weeks ago and they are really interested! (My first time leading a lesson) Very humbling. I really learned that the work that I am doing can not be done on my will and strength alone. This is the God's work, and I have been called by His prophet to share the Message of happiness and salvation to the people of Taiwan in their own tongue. In order to do that, I must humble myself and rely on the strength of the Holy Spirit. The next lesson that I lead went a little better. His name is Lance and we started sharing when we asked him if he had had any experiences with our church. He then shared with us that when he was 12 he had been "Ma"-ed (mocked) by some missionaries and he was still pretty bitter about it. We told him that we were sorry that he had had that experience and kept on teaching. The Spirit was super good and he committed to pray. We are meeting with him at the church building this week! He will soften and will be happy he keeps meeting with us. There is more, but my time is up. I love you all and really am so grateful for your prayers. I pray for you all also! The Church is true, God is our Father, He loves us, and I am about His work... Hurrah for Israel!!!! Love, Elder Westover
Posted by Sarah Westover & Aleck Lang at 6:46 AM