Alohaaa one last time!

5:55:00 PM

I can't believe I'm going to be home next week! So this will be my last email on my mission :(
I'll be back in Toronto on March 30!
Thanks for all your support and love! For you missionaries still serving, keep up the good work, press forward in faith, don't forget to write in your journals, pray fervently, love the people and your companions! You will continue to see miracles, changes, and your love for Christ, God, and others will grow!

Sorry if this email is cheesy. It had to happen.

VC:
1) Chatted with a girl named Naomi from Iceland who was super interested in our faith, but wanted to wait until she moved to learn with missionaries. I have never talked to anyone from Iceland! So crazy. 

2) From the tram tours, we met a old man named Brent, from Alaska. He talked fondly about his own mission experience years ago, but told us in was inactive. Something really tragic happened in his family which scarred him, and led him to have trust issues with people, and because he didn't feel welcomed anymore by members of the church, he just left. In smaller communities, the church is small too, and we were so sad to hear about his experience. But the great thing was, he doesn't have anything against the gospel, but has a hard time forgiving those people who have hurt him. The look in his eyes showed that he really came to the temple for some spiritual strength. Sister Domingo and I testified to him that there is so much more peace that Jesus Christ offers to us when we choose to seek His help - to forgive, to change/repent, and to look beyond the stumbling block. Sometimes we do get hurt, deeply, but there's nothing in the world that can't be lifted from us through our reliance on Jesus Christ, and knowing what He did for each of us. Sister Domingo and I really felt sad because we could see that he yearned for more spirituality in his life, but he just can't let himself go to church or really follow the commandments.

But I know that Heavenly Father led him here to visit the temple grounds. We told him how if we have the faith to press forward, we can come to see Heavenly Father's plan and blessings clearer. But that faith must lead to some sort of action! Honestly, meeting him was an answer to my prayer, because for my last tram shift, I really wanted to have a conversation where I knew for certain we made a difference.

Major lessons I've learned on my mission (just a few):
1) I can become so much more, so much more loving, kinder, compassionate, patient, etc. with Christ's example and help, more than I can muster on my own.

2) Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live! They are in the details of our lives, He has a plan for each of us, and He will give us what we need, when we need it, according to His will.

3) Sometimes I can be dramatic. But the eternal perspective of the restored gospel helps me to remember, everything will be okay, as long as I'm doing my best to do what's right in the sight of God, and if I'm acting on the faith I have.

4) When we are serving others, we feel a piece of God's love for us and them. When we're being Christ-like, we're happy. Life is so much more meaningful when you're looking beyond yourself, and become an answer to someone else's prayer.

5) The Atonement of Jesus Christ can help our burdens be lifted, can help us be cleansed from sin, pain, sorrow, etc. It's a real power in our lives, a blessing so we can return to live with God again. I've seen others change, and myself too! We are eternal beings who are meant to change, one day at a time, to become more like our Savior, Jesus Christ.

6) Each one of us are children of God, and have so much potential! It doesn't matter who we were or who we are now, what matters is that we can be happier and live more fulfilling lives when we choose to follow Christ.

7) God answers our prayers, always. Not in the ways we expect it, not necessarily the answer we want, but He gives us what we need. Because He loves us :)

8) We will have trials, inevitably. If we seek to understand God's will, through study, prayer, and listening to the Holy Spirit, and seek to be the change, rather than wait for others to change, and we can find a solution. Putting blame on others is immature, negativity can be avoided, and taking personal responsibility to change, by turning outwards, has always been the solution for me. :) And of course, pray about it!

9) It takes effort to be happy and to grow spiritually. Our conversion requires daily effort. “God’s love is infinite and will endure forever, but what it means for each of us depends on how we respond to His love.” Elder Dallin H. Oaks

10) Obedience is the first law of heaven. 

I'm sure you'll hear more from me in the near future about my mission and my experiences. I'm so grateful I kept journals, or else I would not remember all the wonderful and unique individuals and families I've met here! Elder David A. Evans, a General Authority Seventy, came to speak to us a few days ago, at the Visitors Center. He was the previous Executive Director of the Missionary Department, and said that at Visitors Centers, we teach and speak with more people than any missionary in the world. So true. On average, the VC has maybe 22, 000 visitors a month, and 400-900 people come in a day depending on the day. 

I love love love my mission experience, and I have learned life lessons that have changed me and will influence my future I'm sure. It's not easy to love everyone, or be patient with myself, but I know that Jesus Christ suffered for our sins so that we can have peace and joy in our lives. I know that the Book of Mormon is another witness of Jesus Christ, a scripture that contains the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Joseph Smith really was a prophet called of God, and God's church is led today by a living prophet, by divine revelation. I know that when we are exactly obedient, and do our best (I mean, that's all we can do), God will bless us and we can recognize His guidance through the Holy Spirit. I know the happiness we feel is greatly correlated with the way we treat others, ourselves, and the love we have for our Heavenly Father. Every day, we make a choice to follow Christ. Families can be together forever through temple ordinances. I am so so happy that I know this is true. And I was able to share the truth with so many great people. 

Scripture: Alma 27:7
"And Ammon said: I will go and inquire of the Lord, and if he say unto us, go down unto our brethren, will ye go?"
Elder Evans said this is the question of our lives. Will we go and do what the Lord asks of us? I hope my answer will always be yes! :)

Pictures:
So international. Chinese/Canadian, German, Filipino/Korean-speaking!
The birthday surprise last week!
​At around 7:10 pm, at the PCC, when we're done with tram tours, waiting to go back to the Visitors Center! 

We were so blessed to serve with Elder and Sister Card. They are the funniest and kindest people ever!

Plumerias on our ears, being lady-like.

Bishop Dunn and Sister Dunn, serving in the Married Student 2nd Ward!

Hannah, who also served in the VC, now working as ticket-taker, and Lance, one of our lovely tram drivers! :) 

Much aloha,
Sister Wu

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