"When we know why we serve, it won't matter where we serve." Pres. Howard W. Hunter
Epiphany this week: Though I don't love the actual physical place I'm serving, which feels so foreign to me, I know that there is an exciting reason I'm here. In this time of the world's history, one of the last groups of people on the earth to receive the gospel is the Chinese people. It can't happen on their own soil right now, but as they flock in droves to America, they come with instant and full appreciation for the freedoms America offers. That means their souls are already fertile to hear the gospel, which makes their freedom complete. They are very open to hearing the gospel, with many receiving it. It is an astonishing and humbling realization to watch our pioneer missionaries, some of whom are the only and first members in their families, to teach the gospel with such conviction to their own culture. And I get to see firsthand this part of the hastening process, in this particular time of the world's history. That's the best part of my mission so far.
Another best part is when my family comes to visit! AJ and Emily came and what a blast! We went directly to the LA temple right after they got off the airplane. After that, off to the beach and Santa Monica Pier, which was totally fun!
We had frozen yogurt, vintage creamy ice cream, cool church tour with missionaries, and toured the local exotic Asian supermarket. Who knew you could eat frozen armadillos and turtles? We visited Hollywood's Walk of Fame and the hundreds of sidewalk stars. Our personal favorite was the Mickey Mouse star, and it took serious walking to find it!
We checked out Santa Anita Park, the huge horse racetrack in Arcadia, and visited the Arboretum while we were in the neighborhood. When we tried to find the squirrels at Almansor Park one evening, we discovered they are morning people, while we also discovered turtles are evening people! We saw GOBS of turtles in the lake!
We packed a lot in to a little bit of time and loved every fast second of it! Thanks for your love, support, and now -- memorable visits !!
And here is my dear little Sister Huang, the Elder, as she is just leaving her mission to go home to Canada. I will miss her so much!
For Labor Day, we went as missionaries for a quick afternoon of bowling. It was lots of fun, and considering our p-days normally do not match to do fun stuff, it was a rare day we could do some playing as old and young together.
Sister Martin and I are invited frequently to dinner at peoples' homes, both Anglo and Chinese. We appreciate the kind hearts and hospitality shown us and we are making some cherished friends.
Sister Martin's expertise in blindness is serving her well, because we are finding multiple times she's needed for her help and knowledge.
And my mission in Arcadia goes on with "so-on's" and "so-forth's."