Wednesday, March 30, 2016

SPEECHLESS! (3/27/16)

Like. Wow. My life is a dream. I  CAN'T  EVEN  EXPRESS MYSELF!!  I STILL  CAN'T BELIEVE  IT!  I  am  soooooooo  HAPPY  NATE!  SO  HAPPY!  SHOCKED!!

So  you  can  all  read  my  journal because  that  might  do  a  little better  explaining  on my reaction to  Nate's call!  :D  :D:D:D:D:D:D:D:  :D:D:D  Beckett  Chang  No NIM!!!

(Taken from Allie's journal)


As for today, my comp and I climbed down from the 47th floor of a building. It was awesome! I said, “Let’s take the stairs instead of the elevator.” And my companion said, “Okay!” So we did. From the 47th floor to the 1st! Fun! Now we have jello legs! Anyway, as for the really exciting news…TOMORROW NATHAN BOYFRIEND BECKETT OPENS HIS MISSION CALL!   AAH! I am so excited and have like a billion indescribable feelings.

I called President and asked for permission for Mom to send a member in our ward a video of Nate opening his call, and then let me watch it. And President was SO KIND and said, “I’ll make an exception, because I can tell how important this is to you.” WHAT A GEM! I just love Pres. Shin. He’s sooooo wonderful.

(Journal Entry next day, 3/23/16)

Today is a day that MUST be written about! Woooow, it all seems like a dream. Okay, Nate opened his mission call! And it KILLED ME to wait to find out where he was going. …

(Allie's Mom here:  I am just going to put the pictures she sent of her journal pages, because it is fun to see her excitement through her own writing. I hope you can click on them and read them.)

Also,  this  week  I heard  about the  terrorist  attack  and  the missionaries,  and I  felt  SO  SAD.  But it is really  cool  because  the  Korean church leaders  sent out the  missionaries'  names, and  wards  all  over  Korea  have  been praying  for  them  BY NAME. I  was  really  sad  and I  needed some  comfort  so  I  read  an awesome talk   by President  Monson  (sorry  I  don't  remember  the  name!)  and I  want  to  share  my favorite  part  with  you  all. This  quote  is  even more  meaningful  to  me  now  that  I  know how much  of  a  positive  influence  the  injured missionaries  are  having  on  the  rest  of  the  world!

"The  history  of  the  Church  in  this, the dispensation of  the  fulness  of times,  is  replete  with  experiences  of  those  who have  struggled   and  yet  who  have  remained  steadfast  and  of  good cheer.  The  reason?  They have  made  the  gospel of Jesus Christ  the  center  of their  lives. This  is  what  will pull  us  through  whatever  comes  our  way.  We  will  still  experience  difficult  challenges,  but  we  will  be  able to  face  them  to  meet  them  head-on,  and  to  emerge  victorious...This should be  our  purpose  --  to  persevere  and  endure,  yes,  but  also  to  become more  spiritually refined  as we  make  our  way  through sunshine  and  sorrow."
Blossoms are starting to come! And I heard Korea has the most BEAUTIFUL blossoms!
You lucky ducks get  to watch  conference  this  weekend!

Well,  I  have  to  go, but it  has  been  wonderful  talking to  you all! I  hope  you all  felt  the Savior's love  this Easter! And I  hope you let  Him know that  you  love Him,  too! Have  you all  watched  the  Hallelujah  video?  It  is pretty good! My  all  time favorite  is  still  Because of  Him.  So my commitment  of  the  week  to  all  of  you  is to  watch Because of  Him!  Because  because of  Jesus  Christ, there  is  always hope!  

Have  a super awesome week! I  am  about  to  mail  a  giant  package  home  via  boat full of  Korean snacks for  you all  to  try!  :D

Nate--get ready to eat more SPAM than you ever dreamed of!
Love you

Friday, March 25, 2016

Hi Kids! (March 20, 2016)

Transfer  calls were already today...can you believe it? I have already been here for 6 weeks!  I am staying. YAY! I really really love this area. I love serving in two wards instead of just one. Double the love!

Fun picture of the week: I ate a baby octopus. The whole dang creature! SO chewy and gross and the head popped. AHHHH!!! But I am the one who chose to eat it...members took us to a buffet. Hahaha. I decided I have to try every cool thing while I can. I think I won some brownie points for eating Ursula! I also ate who knows what out of these beautiful shells. It was a little gross because there was still sand. And I hurry and snuck the shell in my backpack when nobody was looking. Cool souvenir! Hahah

This is a really ugly picture so you don't have permission to post it anywhere...but this is the point where I was praying to swallow. It came back up! hahaha EWWW
With a recent convert from China (she lives here and goes to college. She is SO NICE!)
So this week we met with  (Y) and it went awesome! Thank you for the prayers! At first when we met her she was super stiff and uncomfortable and told us that she heard all of these weird things about our church and she doesn't want religion. the end we were laughing, talking, agreed to meet again. And snap, she already knows the law of chastity and word of wisdom! Right now she isn't super interested in religion, but me and Sister K really think that Heavenly Father is working on her heart, and we truly believe that she will accept the gospel soon! It was really a miracle to see how different she was from the moment she met us for our lesson to the moment we said goodbye at the end. Her heart is already getting softened!

This morning as I was reading the scriptures, a part of 2 Nephi 33:6 stood out to me: "I glory in my Jesus" Let me tell you, I GLORY IN MY JESUS! I love Him with all of my heart. He is my Hero and my Friend and my Brother and my Savior and He is MYJesus! I really love how it says "MY Jesus" . We each can have our own personal relationship with our Savior, Jesus Christ. My goal as a missionary is to help other people have Jesus become their own "My Jesus."

This pic is of a super cool wire car! It is the same size as a regular car and everything is 3D, but you prolly can't tell from the pics.

 Can you see me standing behind it on the right?

Me with quail eggs, duck eggs, and chicken eggs!
Also, in honor of my half birthday and my lucky day of the transfer, I made Oreo Dessert that you guys sent in a package! Here are some elders in my district gobbling it up! Thanks, it was super yummy!

HAHAH my comp just emailed these to me from her camera. This morning I was cleaning the bathroom and I busted our bathroom pipe! OOOOPS! And I look so ugly but it is funny so I am forwarding them to you! I look like a clown because I have a weird sore on my mouth. My comp said it is from not enough sleep and I didn't believe her but then a lady at church pointed to it and said I must be really tired! SO maybe I will take a nap today if I have time so my face heals!

AHHH!!! YESSS!!!! NATEY!!! Okay, about your call. I am going to a member's house at noon on Wednesday. She is about to serve a mission in temple square!! :D I got permission to watch a video you can send of you opening your mission call.

IF you don't email her, I will make HER email YOU! Also, why don't you go ahead and open it when you get it, and then after all of the initial shock and excitement is over, then you can email me. Maybe somebody can send a short video!

I have to go now, but I love you guys! And I can't wait to hopefully get a little video from you on WED!! Such an exciting, life-changing week! I can't imaging my life with out Korea and my mission! 

Love you all, gotta run!

March 13, 2016

My letter to President Shin this week (I LOVE HIM!)

President Shin,

Sometimes I don't know how much good I am doing in Korea. I am not really sure if I am making a difference (although I am doing my best!) I want to help other people so bad... But what I DO know is that I have already met so many incredible, loving, Christ-like people on my mission. My view of this gospel and my love for the gospel and my Savior have grown so much by meeting so many incredible people. I loved 첨단 , and I didn't think any other place could compete with it! But much to my surprise, 상당 and 흥덕 are incredible, too. I have met some of the most kind, loving, fun, selfless people since serving here. What an incredible opportunity! This week has been a week where my heart was FULL of LOVE! All week I have been thinking of the lyrics to the hymn, "Each Life That Touches Ours for Good." It explains the feelings of my heart perfectly.

Lots of love,
Sister Beckett

Heart attacking!
I have to tell you all, I really do love my companion with all of my heart! She is the kindest, most patient wonderful girl!

Well, here's a fun fact: since Korea is so close to China, when we eat Chinese Food, it is LEGIT Chinese food. ALl the stuff you eat in the USA is NOT Chinese food. Hahah. Maybe similar...

Also, I can mail stuff home via ship/boat and it is really cheap, but it takes 2 months. SO I think I am gonna send you all my letters and filled journals because I have too much stuff! I will also send some Korean Ramen (IDK what the heck we eat in America...the ramen here is SOOOOOOO good and a little spicy!) And some of my other favorite Korean snacks/food. 

So tell me about Nate:  When will his call come?!?!?!?!?!?!  My guess is Stateside: NYC or DC! And Foreign: I hope Korea because maybe I would get permission to see him before I come home! But I don't think he will go here. My real foreign guess is Finland because it has the hardest language (I think I heard Korean is 3rd hardest!) and since he is so smart he would pick it up in his sleep!

So Mindy and Ryan, you are going to sing in your ward? My vote on what song you sing is "Each Life That Touches Ours For Good." That song is seriously my life right now! I want to type all the lyrics to you, but I don't have time! SO please pretty please read it sometime. It is gorgeous. I have met so many incredible, INCREDIBLE people on my mission. Let me tell you about one in my new area.

A*: She is Korean, she used to live in America. She lied her way through college and she used to run an underground gambling business. She is straight up from the hood and I LOVE HER! She is a recent convert, and I have never met a more charitable, loving person. Now she runs a food truck here, and she always tells us to come anytime. She speaks gangsta English. I love it. Anyway, she literally has a HEART OF GOLD and she has the most powerful testimony. Last week we went and visited her food truck, and I heard something BLASTING LOUD. I thought it was the radio at first, but nope, A* was blasting the BOM (Book of Mormon) out of her food truck. Like SO LOUD! HHAHAHAAHAHAH Everyone could hear it. That is how cool A* is. Every time I see her I learn to judge less and LOVE MORE!

I love you all soososossosososososossosooso much! I am sorry I have slacked at letter writing, whitewashing is a little crazy! But I will write letters better! Love you all sososos much!

Sorry, have to go!

Love you
There was a giant fire a couple of blocks from our house. These are melted motorcycles!

This was a store on the lower level, apartments above. So sad!

Friday, March 11, 2016

HEY THERE! March 6, 2016

Dear family who I love love love,

This week I was a tad homesick. I know it is pretty much spring at home, and I just keep thinking about how the daffodils and tulips are probably poking their little green bodies out of the ground. And I think about how maybe the grass is getting green, and the sky is probably a nice bright blue. And you can probably look outside and see the stars at night! I miss that! This week everything has been so grey and polluted. Right now we are having yellow dust storms (I read about this before I came to Korea) It is when yellow dust from China blows into Korea. Apparently it isn't that good to breath, but whatevs. I really miss seeing the stars. I think when I come back home I am going to be blown away at how bright and clear the night sky is! And since I live in such a city (practically all of Korea is like this) I never see grass or flowers. So this week I was a little bit sad about that! 

I have also been thinking about Nathan Boyfriend Beckett going on his mission! I can't believe that it is so soon! So maybe next week will you get your call?! I have to not think about you leaving on your mission, or else I get depressed...three years with out seeing you might kill me! AHHH!!! So please come to Korea on your mission! And dang, sorry I am on a roll about Nate, but you got a scholarship from swimming?! WHAT A STUD! 

Do you remember that my stake president told me that on my mission I would meet a 19 year old girl who needs me to help her and I would have a flash back of me sitting in his office and him telling me that?! WELL THAT HAPPENED THIS WEEK! We were doing ping-pong in the city again, and I saw this girl just watching me and watching me. So I went and talked to her and BAM I thought of me sitting in my stake president's office and him telling me all of that. So I asked her her age (already knowing it would be 19!) and YUP, she is 19! We talked for like thirty minutes and we have an appointment to meet on Saturday. YAY!!! Maybe this isn't the girl, but from my stake president's description, I think it is her! Hahaha. Even if it isn't the one, I am gonna do my darn best to teach her the gospel. She is a professional golf player here. Fun fact!! Her name is 육은비 (pronounced Yook Un Bee). So please keep the prayers rolling for her! Also, at the ping-pong activity, I got another fan club going. Do you know how awkward it can be to be a tall American girl in Korea? Pretty awkward. These teenage girls just kept touching my hair and poking my face, and they begged me to wink, so I winked and they started SCREAMING. Slightly awkward. 

ANYWAY...Here is a picture of me slightly sad because I just want a blue sky and plants and nice nature sometimes. But, the city life is fun too!

OH YEAH!! I GOT THE EASTER PACKAGE!! Thank you so so so much! You guys are angels! I loved the letters, and pictures, and food, and cute jacket thing. You are all so thoughtful. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

Yesterday was one of those days where I realize just how different my life is than it used to be. In Korea, old, OLD, ANCIENT people walk around puling giant carts picking up cardboard or plastic so that they can recycle it and get money. Yesterday on our way home from church we saw the tiniest oldest lady pulling a bunch of cardboard up a hill, so we decided to help her pull the cart and pick up paper and cardboard. As we helped her and talked to her, we found out that she collected this cardboard so that she could buy cigarettes. SAD!! SO SAD! And then...SHE PICKED UP A USED CIGARETTE off the street and tried to start smoking it. My Ninja Korean companion karate-chopped it out of her hand (well not really, but she made her NOT smoke it). It was so sad! And then I took a bunch of pictures of her. She was so cute, and we really love her and want to help her, but she doesn't want the gospel. She just wants ciggs!

In Korea they demolish business alllll the time. One day a shop is there, the next day...this!

Also, I walked through a traditional Korean market and it was CRAY CRAY! Just giant pig heads everywhere! And meat just hanging from the ceiling everywhere! And this lady was just stirring a giant bowl of soup and she kept pulling pig ears and snouts and mouths and intestines out of the soup. AHHH! Please don't feed me that!

Sorry yall, I have to go! :( But I love you sososososossosoooSOSOSOSOSOSOSo much!

And, my favorite quote of the week:

"When obedience ceases to be an irritant and becomes our quest, in that moment God will endow us with power." -Ezra Taft Benson

Make obedience a thing you WANT to do. I am learning that that makes life easier and happier, and it helps us see that everything God does and commands really is to help us be happy and successful. LOVE YOU!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Miracles!! February 28, 2016

I see so many of these clam tanks outside of restaurants EVERY DAY! I want a pet clam! Sometimes they squirt water!
This week has been full of miracles, big and small. I would like to share two of them with you. Miracle #1: Earlier this week I was walking and I felt something slip off my wrist. I looked down, and my watch had broken! The metal part that holds the band to my  wrist was gone. I figured that there was no way to fix it, because I had no idea where the metal piece was, or how long it had been missing. As you know, missionaries walk all over the place, so I figured it was impossible to find the metal piece. But God wanted to show me a miracle! So the next day, after it had rained all night, we were walking down a path and 김미형 자매님 said that she thought that she heard a little "ding!" sound in that spot the day before, and that maybe tiny metal piece missing from my watch was there. I looked down, took a few steps, and what did I see gleaming on the brick ground? My metal watch piece! WOW!!! We thought that was the coolest miracle ever. I am thankful that my companion listened to the Spirit! It may seem like just a small miracle, but it meant the world to me. 

Miracle #2: We have a progressing investigator! This miracle came out of the blue! The previous 이사야장로님 (who now lives in New Zealand) gave us a referral! Her name is 최다미. We met with her on Saturday for the 30/30 program, and started teaching the gospel. We were having our lesson at the 흥덕 church, and it just so happened that a ward BBQ was happening right after our lesson. So after our lesson, we went to the BBQ together, and she was able to meet a lot of the ward members. We also talked a bit about baptism, and she said that maybe if she learns more about the church she would get baptized. We invited her to come to our ward the next day for church. SHE CAME! She attended sacrament meeting, and we taught her a lesson after that. Isn't that awesome?! I am so thankful for her, and that 이사야장로님 referred her to us. 

Heavenly Father is really sending us a lot of blessings. I am so thankful for such a kind Father in Heaven!

Also, this week I got Valentine's Day letters From Deb-T and her family and Aunt Tawnja and her family! They were all so sweet! Deb-T and her kids sent a heart attacking kit for me to hang up in my apartment! The hearts all say the cutest and funniest things! Huge thanks to Debbie's family & Tawnja's family! Here's a picture of the heart attack:

Heart attack!
 Also, I just wanted to share with you guys that this week I have learned a lot about humility! I have to tell you, it can be so SO hard to live in a country and not feel like you can communicate with anyone. This week I hit some lows with the language and I prayed soooooo many times telling Heavenly Father "I KNOW I can't do it by myself. I KNOW I need you! I feel like I am cut down as low as I can get, now can you please help build me back up? I have been here for 5 months and  I am doing everything that I know how! PLEASE HELP ME! " Anyway, this morning in my personal study I learned some cool things. Let me share.

First, Ether 9:35 The people were in a drought, and when the HUMBLED themselves, the Lord sent rain, and NEW GROWTH came.

"And it came to pass that when they had humbled themselves sufficiently before the Lord he did send rain upon the face of the earth; and the people began to revive again; and there began to be fruit in the north countries, and in all the countries round about. And the Lord did show forth His power unto them in preserving them from famine."

Then I remembered the talk by Elder Christofferson where he quotes President Hugh B Brown and tells the story of the current bush. The bush was becoming a tree, and not producing fruit, so the gardener pruned it. He said, "Thank you, Mr. Gardener, for gutting me down, for loving me enough to hurt me."

All of this really seemed to apply to me lately. I need to humble myself and figure out what it is that Heavenly Father wants me to become. THere is a reason I am being cut down. There is a reason that all of us have trials. How can we grow? Who does Heavenly Father want us to become? How can we find new growth? Heavenly Father loves us so much that He is willing to give us hard times because He knows that it will help us become something EVEN BETTER!

Anyway, my thoughts for the day!

Me and my cute compy wompy!

Thursday, March 3, 2016

February 21, Mission Tour!

Hello!!! Things are going gooood here!! I have so many pictures to show you and things to say!

First off, this week was our mission's Mission Tour. We had Elder and Sister Whiting (Asia North Area President) come and visit. They were INCREDIBLE! I went to mission tour with questions/topics on my mind that I had been pondering and praying about, and EVERY SINGLE ONE was answered by President and Sister Whiting. It was definitely an uplifting day. Here are some of my favorite things that I learned:

-Find a purpose in EVERYTHING you do. When plans seem like they are falling through, trust God! For example, if we miss our bus, or if an appointment gets cancelled, rather than getting upset, we can think, "Okay, God has prepared something different for me!" And then FIND that purpose. Turn the negative into a positive and look around for what it is that God has prepared for you. Turn EVERYTHING into an opportunity! And this doesn't just go for missionaries, it obviously can apply to each of you every day, too. Turn the negatives into positives and find a purpose, because that is how you follow God's plan of happiness!

-The very first meeting with an investigator...GIVE THE BAPTISMAL INVITE! (the soft one, not the one with a date unless you are feeling super prompted!) I am not showing my faith when I wait to give the baptismal invitation until later lessons. These people are INVESTIGATORS, and they know I am a missionary...they know the invite is just do it the first lesson so they know what our goal is for them. And President  Whiting did an awesome invitation example that was so smooth and polite and kind...Inviting people to be baptized (Or for you guys, just talking about our church or God with anyone at school or work) is NOT offensive. You can share beliefs in a loving and kind way. Lately I have been thinking a lot about this: Our lives are like the coooooolest movie ever. We all chose to come to this world, but none of us could remember our lives before, or even why we came here. Then God sent out some straight up Mormon Marine Secret Agents to go tell everyone and REMIND everyone of why they are here,and how we can successfully get back to our incomprehensibly glorious Father in Heaven . And of course the only way any of us can get back is through our heroic Brother, Jesus Christ! So our lives DO have a purpose! If you feel like you are just existing in this life, and not making a difference, get to work! Show some faith! So many people need to know find out about this awesome plan that God has made for us. And we are the lucky few who know it, so we better share it, and share it boldy (and kindly, of course. ^^ )

-Hmmm I learned a lot more but I have other things to tell you, so I will leave it at that for Mission Tour. Just know that it was super powerful, and I know without a doubt that Heavenly Father inspired President Whiting to know what to talk about.

Well, these new areas are getting better and better. I love the ward members already. They are so kind and loving and welcoming.

Annnnnd... you probably all already do this, but for real, read the scriptures EVERY DAY!! We can't afford to miss a single day. We are the warriors, and the scriptures really to put a shield on us. So many people's testimonies start to waiver, or they have a hard time and don't know why...but it really is through prayer and scripture study DAILY that we ALWAYS can stay close to Christ. If you are constantly doing those two things, you won't wander off the path. And also, I LOVE the Liahona! For all of you in the USA I suppose it is the Ensign. I would encourage each of you to read an article from the Ensign daily, or read/listen to a conference talk daily. Our prophets and apostles and leaders really are sent to us from Jesus Christ. I know that! I have found so many answers and comfort and peace and happiness and I have realized a lot of new things just by reading the modern-day prophet/leaders words. Instant spiritual pump up.

Anyway... sorry this was a long one! Now get ready for like 10 billion pictures because it was an eventful week!

That city life...Sometimes I can't believe that I am here! This is definitely different than beloved G-Town!
Surrounded by skyscraper apartment complexes!
Just chilling on the 45th floor of a building. (no big deal, right?)

But I don't life in the fancy city part. I live in the cute little ghetto humble part.
My super cool granny apartment (that is actually quite homey now that it is clean!)

This is a picture of the very PC 방 I am sitting in emailing you. Hahah. It is right by my apartment!
This week our district did the coolest 전도 (proselyting?) activity downtown. We brought a ping pong table downtown and had a ping pong tourney. The prizes were pamphlets, and free English (gospel...coughcough) with foreign missionaries! It was a hit! While the Elders played ping-pong, me and my comp worked on getting phone numbers. We (sisters alone) got 17 phone numbers! Sweet, huh?! 

This area is a little more...ghetto-ish and I don't think there are many foreigners! So girls kept coming up to me and asking if we could take pictures together. And people kept taking pics of me (attempting to do it secretly) and it was awkward but hilarious. Most Korean girls (literally most) have had surgery on their eyes so that they have eyelids, and almost everyone wears fake contacts so that their pupils are bigger. Everyone always asks me if my eyes and nose are fake. NOPE! REAL! Hahaha. I wish they could see that they are beautiful just the way they are!

A few before and after pics of our nasty bathroom. Hahaha. This is our sink BEFORE we cleaned...


AFTER! Hmmm maybe you can't tell a difference, but I can!

At mission tour I was reunited with the one and only Sister M! (her companion from the MTC) (DANG I LOVE HER!!!! :D :D ) And she is soooo funny! SHe lives by a military base and got a hold of some rootbeer! So at mission tour she whipped out of her purse a can of rootbeer and carton of milk and we had brown cows. (I taught her that at the MTC and she loved it! HAHAHAHAH!) She is the BEST! 

Sorry, I am out of time today, but I love you forever and ever! Love you all!