Oh my goodness, yes, I have realized that as well, I have been a missionary for 9 months. That is a weird thought. It really has not seemed that long. Wow, so fast, and I always felt that once I was out halfway through I would be so confident in how missionary work should be done and so confident in speaking with everyone. There is still so much that I don't understand and so much of the language that is completely beyond me, haha, but every day is a miracle and I still have so much time to improve!
This sat we were able to see mei fen be baptized! It was so amazing and really exciting. Her mom has been so great and supportive through this and it was so cool last week. We stopped to talk to her mom before going inside to visit mei fen and she talked to us about how life has been really hard lately. Then she started crying and talked about how she wants to go to church with her daughter. So great! Her neighbor is also a member of the church and we sometimes have lessons at her house. The mom and neighbor are already friends so it was the most perfect thing, at the baptism they were able to sit next to each other. During the baptism she was really moved and started crying again. And, Brother Guo, the bishopric representative was so awesome. I love when he conducts the baptisms because he really cares about the investigator and really shares according to their needs. When he gave a share at the end he gave his talk and then said that because mei fen's mom might not understand he would repeat the talk in taiyu (taiyu is the language that a lot of the older generation uses that dad talked about before, a lot of people can speak both. It's similar to mandarin, but actually, to me it sounds a lot more like cantonese). It was a really spiritual baptism and such a cool experience to see how when you teach one person there are always more opportunities to find and meet others to share the gospel with.
The thing is, she wasn't able to be confirmed yet this week because of a little friend called typhoon. I don't know if you guys hear about things like that, but there was a typhoon that came to Taiwan so church was canceled. Don't worry, don't worry, it really wasn't bad. Nantou is in the middle of the island so we pretty much are protected from everything. The worst that happened to us was that our window was really weird and our desks and papers got wet :) A lot of rain, a lot of wind, but we still were able to go out and do missionary work so it was pretty much a normal day. It was really exciting and I'm almost sad that there wasn't more to it. But, I hear that the southern part of the island got a lot more so I hope they are still ok.
One thing that I thought of as I wrote to Austin was the opportunities of sharing my testimony everyday on a mission. While I was in the MTC and we would practice all the time, it felt a little weird at first just because I wasn't used to it and when I first came on island it was pretty much the only thing I knew how to say so you get to say it all the time. And, when you learn other words sometimes you forget the power of a simple testimony. So, recently I have made an effort to make sure I include my testimony. Testimony along with scriptures is the way to bring the spirit into lessons so we can never forget their power. It is amazing how a simple testimony can be so powerful. And, each time is special. I used to worry that it would get routine and not be special, but when you are able to share your own personal feelings and personal witness of the gospel it is always special. I can't really say, but, unscripted words that come from your heart are always going to be special. That's just how the gospel is. You don't need to say much to let people know what these things mean to you. Just say what you know to be true and the spirit will testify.
dearest family, I love you all!
-sister allison ko