Monday, March 18, 2013

Eirinn go Brach!!!! (Thats not Chinese hahaha)




No one knows this amazing day in Taiwan!! Zao1Gao1 (Well dang!). Haha But it is pronounced (cause I know you are all super curious (Sheng4 Pai4 Cui4 Ke4 Jie2)! It is super funny! My AMAZING family sent us these sweet Irish shirts and Elder E's mom sent us these funny ties that we wore together. Trainer and Trainee cute haha. But how crazy amazing is my Family! EIRINN GO BRACHHH!!!!!! Yeah! I can feel the Irish blood pumping through me now! (Don't worry Pops there is some German in there too ;)) Can I just take a moment to tell everyone how much I appreciate lucky charms!? I didn't realize how incredibly delicious they really were until recently :) hahahaha :)


Okay so first things first, I wanna give a shout out to my adopted brother Dane!!!!!!! YEAH! You enter the MTC soon right?! [Shannon here: Just a reminder - MTC=Missionary Training Center.] GOOD LUCK!!! You are gonna love it and you are going to carry such a strong spirit with you! You are God’s warrior! So go get it done! Go save some souls!!!! :) I am also going to need your address so however that gets to me is fine :) You can probably just give me the mission address since by the time I send a letter to the MTC you will probably be heading out! Take advantage of it man! Soak it up! LOVE IT! I love you bro! Go get 'em mate ;)


So lets get out the funny stories that I know you all look at this for haha. So I am the senior companion this transfer...uhoh...haha. But that means I am in charge of the Phone! Which I gotta SO FUNNY! I love it because people sometimes think that even though we can speak chinese we wont be able to read it (which is sort of true). But I would probably make more sense of the chinese they send me than of the english texts they try to send hahaha. Gosh it is so funny. We can't text back either which means we have to call them and because we don't want to embarrass them we have to guess at the meaning and then try to get it out of them in Chinese so that we can understand haha. Gosh it is soooo funny!

Oh and before I forget, my mom sends me these super amazing postcards ever so often. Have you all seen them? Holy cow they are amazing! If you haven't see if you can get her to show you some! She really should start a business! It is incredible! She is SOOOO artistic and amazing! Ah it blows me away!

Anyways :) (Just had to brag about my awesome mom for a moment :))

So one thing that was super awesome and fun this week is that we went to go feed old people! I don't know if there is a way to get the pics but if there is I will send them. Oh it was so funny. For multiple reasons. 1) All the Ama's (Old Ladies) were trying to get us young american missionaries to feed them haha, 2) The nurses were super funny teasing us about feeding them too haha 3) We sang a song and this old lady started walking in circles around us just clapping after we finished each verse hahaha. And 4) They all are SUPER old so they speak Taiwanese not Chinese...which is actually very different...haha. It was pretty fun and funny! And then after words we all went to go clean this old couples house, what was funny about that was that the bishop took us in his van. Now I had heard rumors about the Bishop having a lead foot...but I didn't fully realize what they meant till we were on a road like Prescott and hittin 100! [Shannon here: Prescott is a very windy, hilly and narrow road near our home in NH.]  I was just sitting there thinking HOLY COW.......It was super fun though. So finally after that we went to go eat together and I discovered that Pig Ear really isn't too bad! Now...its not good...but its not bad haha. Thats how I am about a lot of the food here! I think it is the Lord blessing me to just make it through haha. I always seem to just say..."oh thats not too bad" haha. Except for some of the fruit here that is not in it is AMAZING! I could live off the fruit here! The one thing that I really don't like about the food is that they are not big into drinking (unless its tea) so they don't really serve water or drinks so you just eat. And on top of that if you DO get something to drink it is the broth from a soup which is not only boiling lava temperature hot, but also pretty dang spicy....and let me tell you...there is nothing like biking around for hours with the Sun literally on top of you all day so that when you walk into the persons house they can basically see through all the white you have on since you are so drenched, then sitting down and having a nice boiling volcano put into your mouth which you have to finish and then drinking a hot spring! :) There is just nothing like it :) haha. Some times we ask for water but you don't want to embarrass the other person and make them feel like they didn't provide for you, so thats only if we REALLY know the person well. Haha, oh Taiwan, I sure love you :)


This is just something crazy that I realized this week! I was sitting on my bike calling some investigators and I looked up and saw a ball in the sky, I looked directly at it! It was bright but not bright enough to make me squint or have to look away...then I realized it was the Sun....haha. The pollution was so bad where I was that when I looked up I could look directly at the sun! How crazy is that!? Now that isn't where I live, it was just a place that we happened to be, but still it was crazy to think that that was possible! But it made me think about us...we are all meant to shine like the sun. Just so bright and powerful! But sometimes we make mistakes and sin....which is like pollution and it fogs up the sky. And eventually it gets to the point where we really have lost most of our power and light...BUT!!! That is not the end! If the sky is getting too polluted, do we just give up and say oh well, that place is done for? NO WE DON'T We start doing things to clean it up and eventually the sky will be so clear that we can hardly look up at all because the light from the sun is so strong! That is like baptism and repentance! And it doesn't all happen at once, it is a process, we get to take the sacrament every week and continue through that process! How great is that?! What a wonderful blessing!! This gospel really does give us SO MUCH HOPE! The sacrament is so special...I LOVE church :)

Plus! At church the Man I baptized, C. D., got his baptism record (like certificate haha) and it had my full Chinese name on it! It was crazy to see that...To actually have the physical evidence of the miracle that took place! Oh it was SO amazing to see! You know what else is amazing to see? How willing some people are if we only invite them! I have recently started to be much more bold in my invitations and on some cases will even give a goal to a person to be baptized in 5 weeks and thats from the very first time I ever see them! It is amazing how many people will accept. Of course there are a lot of rejections...But one person accepting makes up for a million rejections! I am so glad that I have had my family to push me to be the best I can. I remember a Letter my Cousin Zach Wrote me (He has taken the role of an older brother for me)  he told me to always do all I can to be the best Chinese speaker on the Island and the hardest working missionary and the best at everything I do. Not at all out of a pride thing, but out of a desire to serve God. And I will tell you what, it is amazing to see the miracles that will happen when you put your full trust in God and then go out and work your very hardest! I am able to communicate so much better than I ever imagined I would be, and every day just gets better and better, it is because of the Lord...100% because of him. I know that there is NO WAY I could do any of the things that I am doing on my own.


So here is an example. One day we were out pretty late trying to save some souls :) and we thought we should hurry back. So we started going. And usually we try to talk to everyone but we were already late to get back on time so we just started going, and every person we passed I was just thinking...dang...they might be the one. Then I saw these too boys and I had a big thought...okay you HAVE to stop. So I did. I started talking to them and they didn't seem interested at all and were about to walk away and I was about to just say "oh well" and go on my way, but again I thought "no no, this person could be it." So I asked them to wait and just give me about 30 sec. Well that thirty seconds turned into 2 min, then 5, then 10. It turns out that a member had given us a referral we were never able to get a hold of and one of those boys was that referral!!!!! HOW AMAZING! We set up and we are planning on getting that man baptized! (He doesn't know it yet....but he will :)) haha. It is just...It is amazing! People that just turn those noses and don't give it a chance really don't know what they are missing...I feel so sad and hurt for them. I can't MAKE them accept this or MAKE them give it a chance, but if I could I would haha. There is NOTHING like this gospel, nothing that will bring more peace of joy or just pure happiness!

We have a few new investigators, one we call gao1fu2shuai4which means tall and handsome haha His name is L.c.y . He is a lady killa, and so funny! I love the people of Taiwan so much! They are all so great and they are all so prepared! They might not know it, but they are prepared or are in the process! It is amazing to see hearts and lives changed! I have too many people that I could name that are just so prepared and so ready! All they need is to be taught and loved. They need to see and feel the love that Christ can offer. And we can be the way they see that, in fact, for some, we might be the ONLY way they can see that! One thing I love talking about is how we are LITERALLY sons and daughters of God! We are meant to shine as children of God would! 

I love you all!

Shine Bright!

Elder Gish