Our zone conference last week was bomb! We didn't really have any games it was like all conferences and talks but it was really good!! I learned SO much. We talked about spiritual gifts and how we can pray for them and how real they are. I think we really underestimate the power of the spirit sometimes. But I've been praying for the gift of revelation and it's actually been really cool. I've received so much help and guidance for myself and for my companion and for the people in Cabatuan. We also talked about repentance. And about how sometimes people think of it as this huge bad experience but really if repentance is done right, it's a very beautiful and sacred experience. And how once we've gone from good to bad we still need to repent and go from good to great and great to excellent until eventually in the next life, we will be made perfect through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I learned more how to effectively teach and show investigators and members the importance of repentance in the conversion process.
I'm doing really good. I'm sure sometimes you wonder if I really am doing good but I want you to know how happy I am! I'm so happy!! I know this is exactly where God needs me at this time. It's kind of crazy how perfect His plan is. I just think of all the things and people I would be missing out on if I didn't serve. And it's mind blowing. So thank you! For always encouraging me to go on a mission. Even when I didn't want to. And thank you for always showing me such a good example to follow. I hope one day I can be such an example to my kids!! You are my inspiration. I miss you so much it hurts sometimes but at the same time I am comforted cause I know you are being watched over.
The baptism went really good!! Definitely one of my favorites. The Spirit was so strong!! And a lot of her family came which was really cool to see. We are now going to church her 9 and 11 and 14 year old and then her sister also said we could teach her! So we are really excited.
Here’s the deal with one of our investigators… Wednesday we taught him and it was the best lesson! (or so I thought) Cause he accepted to be baptized and boom bam. The spirit was so strong and yeah it was just good. BUT THEN we learn from his friend who's a member that he's kind of just testing us to see what we know? Also, in the past he has wanted to start his own church. My companion and I have been praying really hard for the gift of discernment and for us to have the spirit to know what to say. But he's a really nice person, and even if he has some weird intentions, everyone can change. And he said he was really inspired by conference, so hopefully he's being sincere. So we'll see what happens there.
I have decided to "ponderize" a scripture every week. But I am memorizing it in Tagalog cause I realized a don't have very many memorized in Tagalog. So it will help me with that and also to think about the scripture more in depth every week.
Santiago (James) 1:5- "Kung nagkukulang ng karunungan ang sinoman sa inyo, ay humingi sa Diyos, na nagbibigay ng sagana sa lahat at hindi nanunumbat; at ito'y ibibigay sa kanya."
I have a new companion. She's Philippina! She is really sweet. She has such a desire to serve. It's so much harder training than I thought. Makes me really appreciate the patience my trainer had with me, haha. It's just a lot of responsibility! But it's definitely pushing me to be better and be a really good example for her. I'm really trying my best. She's really quiet. And I'm just a loud crazy beast but she loves it. But I know she will do great things and I'm excited to be her companion for the next 12 weeks. I'm really grateful, even though a lot of the times I feel super inadequate and don't quite know what to do-I've really felt the love and help of Heavenly Father within these past few days.
Conference was the best!! So. Dang. Good. I don't think I quite have a favorite but I learned a lot. One thing I liked... I don't remember who said it but he said "direction is more important than speed." cause I think sometimes we want our progression or blessings to come right away but that's just not how it works. But as long as we are on the right path and doing the right things and going the right direction, that's what's important. I also liked how much they talked about the Holy Ghost and how we really need to weed out those things in our life that our keeping ourselves from progressing or from being worthy for the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost. And also how we not only need to endure but endure WELL. :)
We started teaching that referral. He is GOLDEN. He came to church again. And we took president (our branch president with us) when we taught him last week and that was probably my favorite lesson so far on the mission. He explained some of his questions and experiences in life. He's 28 and feels bad cause he's not married like his other friends, he dated a mormon girl once but they never talked about religion. His mom died in 2013 and he's wondering if he will ever get to see her again. I don't remember everything I said but the spirit was so strong while we were teaching. You could tell he felt it. We will be teaching him tomorrow and I'm so excited. I absolutely love teaching about the gospel! Lessons like that make all the hard times worth it. I just remember feeling in that lesson. Oh yeah. This is why I'm here. :)
I love how you said if you didn't know it was true you wouldn't have let me come all this way. That's something I love sharing with people. If I didn't know how true this gospel is I would not be half way across the world sharing it every day for 18 months. But I too know that it's true. More than ever. '
We have two baptisms coming up this Saturday! So stoked! First time I actually had to fill out all the paper work and organize everything. One Sister though, I thought she was a member! Cause she goes to church every week and is so good. But come to find out she hasn't been baptized yet because her boyfriend lives in Cauayan. And she used to live there, but once they learned about the law of chastity she moved back to her mom's house until they have enough money to get married. They have a four year old. (not a whole lot of people get officially married here.. ps) And she was waiting to get baptized with her boyfriend in Cauayan but since she is staying here we get her! She's SO excited. :)
We visited a brother who goes to church every week and I always shake his hand but we never had a one and one conversation. President was telling us how he was preparing for a mission in the past but then stopped. So we decided to go share to him. And now he works with us like 2 or 3 times a week! And is starting to prepare again. He said the night before we came and shared to him he was struggling a lot and prayed for an answer. BOOM. He is such a great addition to our lessons! And is going to make such a good missionary. I'm so excited for him! I love of course being able to help investigators, but I love helping the members as well!!
Even though I am a missionary and have all these wonderful experiences, there's still times of struggle and temptation. But I'm so grateful for the Atonement. I know it is real. And not only does it cover our sins, but any weaknesses, trials, temptation, sorrow- we can draw strength from the Atonement. I've never felt so close to my Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ as I do on the mission. Their love is incomprehensible. And the only thing I have to compare it to is the love I have for you! And the love I know you have for us. So thank you for your love!! This gospel is true! I absolutely love sharing it. :)
Work is going good here though in my new area. My new companion and I are getting along great!! She still loves me and is kind of freaking out cause she doesn't want to transfer ha. But if she does, I know she will do great! I know that it's been revelation for sure that we are companions. :)
We visited one of our investigators again and he had his hymn book out so he must have been looking at it throughout the week. So I asked him before we left if we could sing a hymn. I asked him his favorite. The Spirit of God. We just sang one verse but the spirit was INSANE. He is a real trooper. And is making crazy progress. I feel so blessed to have met him and look forward to visiting him often.
I know as well the church is true. I know Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love us and are just waiting to bless us. I'm also so grateful for the Atonement. I've learned so much about this wonderful event and love sharing and learning more about it. We are so blessed. I love this work!! Thank you for raising me in the gospel. :)