Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Love in the Mission Field?

Dear everyone!                                                                                                               September 9, 2014

Heaven only knew what crazy things could happen when you put two white girls together in Korea. Well, here are the most memorable moments from this week:

- An older guy texted us asking about our English class! And then proceeded to text "I'm afraid I can't attend this week. But I am excited to meet my future spouse. One of both Bonney or Hurley will be mine." And later "I am wondering about Bonney and also Hurley. Will you send your pictures?" The elders wisely informed us that texting him back would be a bad idea.

 - Ran into a group of drunk American guys. Yup. SO grateful to be serving in Korea where even the drunk men are kind.

 - And on the subject of drunk men, we have a friend. His name is Dr. Yang. He has three dogs and he hangs out on the corner by the church on his laptop. We usually say hi to him. The other day, he was especially excited to see us and he wouldn't let us leave. I offered him an English flier inviting him to our class as a way out, but he grabbed my hand and kissed it. Wow. He wouldn't let go until we gave him our shoe sizes.... We saw him later that night just chilling outside with a samuri sword. God bless his heart.

 - We were also given free beer by our landlord. When we explained that we don't drink it because we're missionaries, he says, "That's okay! I don't drink it either cause I drive." He still gave us the beer. We didn't drink it... 

And now on to the important things:

Before my mission, I'd never really thought too much about the Atonement. I also knew that it was for forgiveness and we needed it to return to Heavenly Father, but I never really understood how to apply it to myself. Throughout my mission, Heavenly Father has taught me more and more about this precious gift. And this week, I learned a little more.

This week, I was beginning to feel so burdened down with so much that I felt I couldn't do. I felt so weak and that there was so much I was doing wrong or had not done as well as I should have. There were so many things that I felt were my fault because of my weakness, and it all culminated in tears on Saturday night. Right in the middle of our meeting with our branch mission leader. Solid. Well, there's a first for everything. ANYWAYS, our branch mission leader is amazing. Remember Sister Park, my eternal companion in Gumi? Well, it's her older brother. And he said something that I will never forget. He said, "When you've done the amount you are able to do, you don't need to worry. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ will bless and help you. That is the Atonement." In that moment, I learned something new. I had heard and read about that portion of the Atonement many times, but until that moment, I had not yet really understood it on the level of my missionary work. Even though my efforts are imperfect, even though my Korean is imperfect, even though I can't talk to every single person in Bangeojin or be as bold as I want to sometimes, it's okay. That is the Atonement of Jesus Christ. As each of us strive to live our lives and give our all according to the Spirit, even if it doesn't seem like enough, know that it is. Heavenly Father never wanted us to be perfect because then we wouldn't need Jesus Christ. The fact that we are imperfect and that we do need Jesus Christ is one of the greatest blessing in this life because through His Atonement, we can be perfected in Him. Now, we are learning and learning requires inadequacies and mistakes, but later, after we've given our all and sought His help, we will be perfected in Him. I know that Christ lives. I know His Atonement is real. And I bear this testimony in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

I love you all so very much!

Sister Bonney