Answers to Questions

7-18-16 (Monday)
Today was such a good day! I thoroughly enjoyed everything today. P-Day was really fun and relaxing which made me ready and excited to do the work! ;D I enjoyed Brayden and Sadie’s email. It was nice to hear from Sadie in Brayden’s email. 

But anyway.. I was asked if we should call out repentance to our friends that aren’t always making the right choices. I understand this question. Like.. Is it really our place to call out repentance unto our friends? I think the answer is yes. Even if we have to nonchalantly tell them to get their act together. The best way to teach repentance is to simply testify and share the blessings received because of obedience. Then testify that they can have those blessings too if they do the same. I hope that was good advice.. 

But what was interesting was I was able to help answer this question by the things I learned from Sister Diaz last week. She really is the best! Our companionship unity is insane! Because we are both very comfortable with one another, we open up about our thoughts and struggles. And because of that.. we can both help each other. It’s just been great spending the last couple weeks with her. It’s like we’re best buds. :) But man, I am just so grateful for how easy it’s been to get along with every single one of my companions. Life is such a party and I love it! :) 

7-19-16 (Tuesday)
Honestly.. Nothing really note worthy happened today. But it was still a fun day! I really like Sister Diaz. Just being around her makes me want to be a better person. She just has life figured out. Even though she’s a lot more mellow than I am, we still have a lot of fun together. It’s the best when I can get her into a silly joking mood so we can mess around with each other. :) 

Anyway.. We went to go teach the Llamira family this evening and they were all working together trying to finish this big school art project thing for their youngest son Jesse. Which is so cute that they were all working together to help little Jesse. But.. I then realized they were all stressed because the sun was going down and they have zero electricity in their house. That just hit me hard in the heart. Then later 16-year old Jason asked me when I go back home if I’d take him with me. I realize he was just “joking” with me, but these people here don’t realize how good it is to live in the Philippines. 

Honestly, people here are so incredibly kind, generous, loving, and just happy. Filipinos are the happiest and friendliest people on the planet earth. People don’t realize how good they have it even if they don’t have the same living style or amount of money we do in America. It’s honestly insane how everyone wants what they don’t have. People here would like to have the money/life style I have in America, but I would like to have the kind, friendly hangout on bamboo benches life style. Let’s just say I am truly learning to be happy and content with the things I do have. We can’t always have what we want. I just wish people here could realize how happy their lives are even if they don’t have a lot of money.

7-20-16 (Wednesday)
Oh man, today was great! I just thoroughly enjoyed work today. I’m telling you man, there’s nothing better than working hard all day and being able to actually teach lots of lessons. I’m just in such a happy mood when I actually get to sit down with people and testify to them that God loves them, and share with them some of the evidence that proves God is our perfectly loving Father in Heaven. 

In one of our lessons today we were teaching about the Book of Mormon and that we can pray to know the truth. And while Sister Diaz was talking about how Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon into English.. I realized that if uneducated Joseph Smith can understand and translate Egyptian, Chaldaic, Assyrian, and Arabic into English.. we can read the Book of Mormon in our own language and understand it. If I, miss-wandering-mind, can read the Book of Mormon and understand it.. so can everyone else! If God is all powerful, so are His holy words. 

I know the Book of Mormon truly is the word of God and brings nothing but hope, comfort, and understanding into our lives if we simply read it! Search, ponder, and pray! These truly are the things that we must do! I’m telling you.. The Book of Mormon can change your life in ways you couldn’t even imagine! And I don’t want to hear anyone say “But I’m perfectly happy and I don’t read the Book of Mormon.” NO! You are NOT perfectly happy! I promise you there is a sense of happiness that comes into our lives only through reading the Book of Mormon daily. Because as we read the Book of Mormon we gain a better understanding of the Atonement of Christ, and there’s nothing more glorious in life than gaining better knowledge and understanding of the most selfless and sacred act ever done in the history of ever. 

And.. on a lighter note, I saw a goat today that was literally creepy to look at. I’m not joking, its head and neck was pure black and its body and legs were pure white. I’ve never seen anything like it before. And! I saw the biggest snails ever! They were as big as my hands! I didn’t know snails that big really existed! 

And.. I also ate a shrimp today as long as my hand and couldn’t help but think how jealous my dad would be. ;)

7-21-16 (Thursday)
Sister Standage and Sister Sanico, our STLs came to have personal study, language study, lunch, and weekly planning with us today. It was a lot of fun and I enjoyed having them here, but it’s the second week in a row people have been coming to have weekly planning with Sister Diaz and I. There’s nothing wrong with them coming but it makes me wonder if Sister Diaz and I are doing something wrong with how we plan or work in our area. 

Anyway.. while we were teaching the Castro and Pablo family, sister Diaz and I felt prompted to change the lesson and talk about the responsibility we have to always set a good example for our families. We read Mosiah 4:14-15 and it just hit me how grateful I truly am for my parents. If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t be nearly the person I am today. I love my parents so dang much! I hope they know that! 

Also.. while talking to Patrick Castro today after our lesson, I found out his major in college is culinary arts and got so excited! Then I asked if his school teaches food science and he said “Yes”! Oh, I got even more excited! I want to study here in the Philippines, I really do. I honestly don’t want to leave here after my mission. I’m constantly thinking of ways I can come back here after I go home. Maybe I really can go to school here for a year or something. Sorry dad.. But I could stay here forever. ;) Sorry, but I absolutely love life in the Philippines! Aayaw ko umuwi, talaga. ;) [I do not want to go home, really]

7-22-16 (Friday)
So yesterday Elder Lind and Elder Raymundo brought me two packages. One from mom and dad that says I can’t open till August. So I will open it on August 11 because I think it’s to celebrate being halfway done with my mission. :) And the second package was from Aguilar with all the important things I left.. Like my stinkin’ pillow! How I forgot that I do not know. But! I do know that last night I had the best sleep ever! Two weeks without a pillow was a century too long. ;D haha, joke lang! It actually wasn’t that bad. Dad taught me how to rough things out. ;) 

Anyway.. Today while teaching a family, Sister Diaz and I kept asking them inspired questions because we both felt like we were kind of losing them. We were right.. I don’t even remember what I asked Tatay, but it got him to talk and he told us he has no plans to be baptized into our church and likes being Pentecostal because it’s the closest church to their house. He just “likes us to come over so his kids can listen to the words of God”. I’m glad he finally opened up, but I’m pretty bummed with what he had to say. I had so many things I wanted to say to him and testify about, but I didn’t know how to in Tagalog! I tried so hard to have strong enough faith to be able to express the feelings of my heart! I’m sure the Spirit made up for my weakness in Tagalog, but it was still a little frustrating for me. I just wish I could get over this language barrier already. But I am grateful that at least I can now understand Tagalog pretty well. I guess I should just be grateful I was able to understand Tatay well enough to help Sister Diaz deal with our situation. Then again.. Maybe it’s a good thing I couldn’t say whatever I wanted because I had a lot of ways to prove Tatay wrong. ;) So I stuck to my testimony of prayer and let him know I received an answer that I know he could receive too if he were to sincerely try. And I testified that I had no doubt that my answer was “yes this church is true and brings nothing but happiness” to the point I left everything for 18 months so he could have the same happiness I have that all came and started with a sincere prayer. I know this church is true. I will never ever deny that!

7-23-16 (Saturday)
Today was fun and went by really fast. While working in the afternoon I saw a street sign that says “Bryant St.” so of course I had to take a picture to send to Elder [Bryant] Gardner; he’ll love it. :) 

Then Sister Diaz and I went to the church for the other sister’s fireside they asked us to sing at. It was great! I thoroughly enjoyed the testimonies after we watched “Finding Faith in Christ.” They had 4 boys bare their testimony: one preparing for a mission, a return missionary, a recent convert, then Elder Cochrane as a current missionary. It was so powerful hearing their testimonies all coming from different points in life come together and testify that Jesus is the Christ! There’s nothing more powerful than hearing a sincere testimony. I’m telling you. Nothing. 

And then after the fireside, Sister Diaz and I taught Kat and her Grandma Adelina that was just great! Nanay Adelina asked lots of questions about who we believe in. We ended up having to explain we just worship Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ. Not Mary, Saint Joseph, or Pope Francis. But that we do have a living prophet today. She seemed to really like our answers and was grateful we answered her questions. But the best part was when I got to bare my testimony in English. :D They always tell me to speak English because they understand it better than my Tagalog, but I usually stick to Tagalog because that’s what I was called to preach the gospel in. But.. I finally just bore my testimony in English and loved every second of it! There’s nothing better than being able to actually express the feelings in your heart. It was good to finally get some of those feelings out. I felt like a new woman coming out of that lesson. ;)
Kat, the one in the pink, is our investigator
that will be baptized when her mom
will sign the parental consent. (:

7-24-16 (Sunday)
Honestly nothing happened today. I mean it was a good happy day, but the most exciting part was when I ate the grilled cheese sandwich I made. :D

A didn’t come to church today and don’t know why.. That’s kind of a bummer considering her baptism is supposed to be on Saturday. Hopefully she has a good excuse for missing church so she can still be baptized at the Stake baptism. I was really excited to go to that and have A see all the other people making the same righteous decision with her. But I guess if all else fails, it could be a good thing so we can teach her some of the lessons more clearly and help her be even more aware of what she will be committing to once she is baptized. 

Also.. I want everyone in the whole world know how much I absolutely HATE ants! Holy freak, THEY ARE EVERYWHERE! I hate it so much! I honestly like spiders more than them now.. Haa! The things you learn in the Philippines! ;)