Miracle in Hardship

11-21-16 (Monday)
Today we had an FHE with a recent convert family at Elder and Sister Jensen’s house. And boy was that a great experience. (: For our lesson we just read Alma 7:11-12 and bore our testimonies. But as all the other Sisters were bearing their testimonies about the Atonement of Jesus Christ it just hit me how incredibly important families are to God. Everything Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ do for us are for us to have an eternal family. Obviously the most central part of God’s plan is the Atonement. But I truly believe the most central part of the Atonement is eternal families. I better not mess up when I pick my husband. (:

11-22-16 (Tuesday)
Happy Birthday my Dearest Abigail. ;D I don’t know if it was a coincidence or not that the best day of my life was on Abby’s [Nelson] birthday, but I think Abby is my new lucky Lenny. ;D
Rizza and Maryann

Anyway.. This morning during personal study I wanted so badly to sleep, my eyelids were so heavy! And I straight up had a mini angel-devil battle on my shoulders kind of experience. (; I was like “it’s okay to sleep now, you used to fall asleep during studies all the time.” “No! You can make it 20 more minutes! Do it for the miracles!” 5 minutes later.. “Just sleep now so you won’t need to nap at lunch time.” “No! You set a goal not to sleep at lunch time anymore anyways! Magaral pa more! Kaya mo iyan!” [Learn more, more! You can do it!] And I am proud to say I did not heed to the temptations of my mini shoulder devil. (; (AND! I didn’t sleep at lunch either! SUCCESS! :D)

But after studies, while Sister Buna Cruz was getting ready to go out to work, the sleepiness hit me again. So once we finally left the apartment I didn’t want to talk to anyone. I did not feel like OYMing at all! But as we were walking down the street I saw a lady sweeping the leaves in her yard and luckily I saw an opportunity and took it. She wouldn’t let me help her, but it sure helped me. Ever since I finally opened my mouth I was on fire! I talked to everyone. (:

But the most exciting thing I have to say about today is that I am already seeing miracles in the work here AND my life. (: The first miracle is the referral our Branch President texted us this morning. President Bautista was like “can you go visit him today at 1:00?” Uhh. Heck yes! So we go out to work and eventually went to go find our referral, Arnold. And he lives in a barangay [neighborhood] that even Sister Buna Cruz has never been to so let’s just say… OYMs were a total score there!

But after we finally found A.. Let’s just say he is what we call elect! Oh my word, I wanted to see him baptized right then and there! The Spirit.. man, his heart is wide open. I have no doubt he will be baptized one day soon. (:  The best part was that we were literally able to answer all his questions in order with Lesson 1. He’d ask about prophets right as we were getting ready to talk about prophets. Then ‘why we have so many churches’ right before we talk about the Great Apostasy. It was just crazy to see the Spirit working through ALL of us. (:

Then… because I have been doing my best to show Christ I am truly focused and here to work, I have felt the Spirit in my life a lot more and a lot more powerful. And I am here to tell you.. when we have the Spirit in this great of abundance.. The gift of tongues is real. I was able to almost understand perfectly all of R’s stories. I didn’t understand or know every word, but I truly was able to understand her struggles, desires, and even random stories. BOOM panes! ;D Life is 100% when you give 100% of your effort to the Lord. (:

11-23-16 (Wednesday)
All kinds of stuff happened today but I’ll talk about our experiences with R today. This morning we went to go help her do the laundry so she would have time to go to the church for her interview. So as we were all doing the laundry and washing the dishes, the supply manager, Elder Pawasa called and told us he was at our apartment to fix things. So we had to hurry up with the laundry to get back home before we were able to teach R. So.. we just told her her baptismal interview will be tomorrow. Then later in the evening we went to go teach her and fill out her BCR [Baptism and Confirmation Record] and have her husband sign that it’s okay R will be baptized. And while we were visiting and teaching she kept talking about how happy it made R’s mom that we came to help R with her house chores. I don’t know.. But I believe that service will one day open R’s mom’s heart and door to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. (:

For Bubby
Now.. Fast forward an hour or so.. R’s husband will not sign the “permission slip”. Ouch. I thought we were friends, R2. R, Sister Buna Cruz, and I were all completely heart broken. Like R was border line mad that we told her she can’t be baptized till her husband signs the paper. But as heart breaking as this is.. I still have a lot of hope.

But most of all, I feel just fine because I know I have done everything I can. Just because R2 is being a brat doesn’t mean I haven’t fulfilled my purpose as a missionary when it comes to R. But once again.. the desire to be exactly obedient is insane. I will do everything I can to help R accomplish desires. Obedience brings blessings. But I need miracles so.. That’s why I need to be exactly obedient.

11-24-16 (Thursday)
The closest thing I had to turkey on this Thanksgiving Day was a chicken sandwich from McDo… [McDonald’s] Kill me. (;

Anyway… Sister Buna Cruz and I went and talked to R2 today while he was at work. It worked out good. He opened up a bit and actually listened to what we had to say. He still hasn’t signed the “permission slip”, but I think he will sometime soon.

I just told him that him and R need to actually talk and try to understand each other in order to fix the tension in their relationship. I sure hope when we go to check on R tomorrow things will be better.

But on a brighter note, we were finally able to see J for the first time in a while since she’s always busy at work, and she’s still living the Word of Wisdom! :D So her, J2, AND J3 are still good to go for their baptism on December 10th! :D Man, life is good. I’m truly seeing the miracles in my life now. I think they’ve always been there though.. I’m just now learning to recognize them. (:

11-25-16 (Friday)
Today was AWESOME! It was just one of those days where the plan for the day was actually successful. Like.. we didn’t get punted very often, but when we did we weren’t let down by our back up plan. (; Honestly it was just a good fun day. There’s nothing better than actually spending the whole day teaching instead of walking around saying “well, where do we go now?”

We did get to visit with R today and she told us she said sorry to R2 and that they talked and she thinks they’re better now. He still hasn’t signed the paper, but it looks like he might here pretty soon. Sana.. [should] (; But the miracle I believe I saw today was with one of our hardships.

So! Yesterday while we were visiting with R2 trying to get him to be okay with R being baptized, we met his friend J4. Now.. J4 is one of the most genuine and sweet men I have ever met. He was so cute! As we were talking I asked him about his family and he has a 7-year old, 4-year old, and a 1-year old. And he is actually married to his wife! So I was just super giddy as I was talking to him about his cute family. Then a little later while we were talking to R2 some more, J4 comes back to introduce me to his kids. And freak.. Ang cute cute nila! [They are cute, cute!] (: So of course after we were done talking with R2 we went to say goodbye to J4 because he lives in the same building that R2 works. And as we were saying goodbye we asked him if the Elders over their area could come visit them; and he said yes so we texted Elder Presenta and Elder Tindoe to give them J4's information.

So fast forward to today.. Elder Presenta and Elder Tindoe texted to tell us they were able to contact J4 and that he is just awesome. So.. I guess the strange miracle I see in my hardship is the possible reason why we have to post pone R’s baptism. Maybe Heavenly Father made it so we would have to go talk to R2 at work so that we could find J4 and his cute family. AND! If things continue to go great with J4.. That could possibly really help R2 listen to us with an open heart because one of his buddies is coming unto Christ along with R.. I don’t know.. I just have a lot of hope for this situation. (:

11-26-16 (Saturday)
Today was great and all but I really don’t have much to say. We did meet/find Tatay A though. Honestly I just felt so much love for him the moment we started talking. Him and his wife are separated and all 5 of his kids live in Manilla. I asked him if his kids ever call him and he said no, “They could care less if I was dead or alive.” Needless to say he is a very lonely and depressed 62 year old man. But man.. As we were testifying about God’s love for him I just truly felt what I would consider Godlike love for Tatay.  But for real.. we should never feel alone. Ever. Our Father in Heaven AND Jesus Christ are ALWAYS there for us. I told Tatay that when he’s lonely he should just talk to God. I shared with him how I was struggling while in my training and that I was constantly praying and just talking/venting to Heavenly Father. I think he thought I was a little weird, but whatever! That was something that really helped me draw closer to God and find comfort when I felt really lonely.

Aaand.. Sister Deyro [Mission President’s wife] told me I have to get a chest x-ray on Monday because I’ve had my cough for over a month and still isn’t getting better after two different kinds of prescriptions. [prescriptions were for an antibiotic and a decongestant]   Weird.. I never in a million years would have thought or guessed I would need to go to the doctor for a cough let alone get an x-ray! ;D Especially because I am in no pain.. But I guess as weird as this all is, it is a bit concerning that my silly cough isn’t going away.

11-27-16 (Sunday)
I like Sundays, I really do. It’s just nice to sit down and actually listen to someone teach ME about the gospel instead of the other way around. (; The STLs [Sister Training Leaders] also came over tonight to come to our District meeting tomorrow and they brought me a pouch from Sister L! AHH! That just made my whole life! That really made me miss her a lot. I guess she’s still having problems with always getting in trouble with the police because people keep trying to take her property. Gahh! She doesn’t deserve this! I really hope I can see her again before I go home. [Sister L was one of Sister Fivas’ first baptisms in her first area in Aguilar]. 


What are most people afraid of in the Philippines? Ghosts and dogs. Dogs? Are they wild? Uhh.. I'm not sure. I'm sure a lot of them are though. Like.. There's always dogs and chickens running around the streets just living life. 

What options do they have for vocational or college education? I believe it's similar to what we have in America.. Just.. Not as good. (;

Describe your apartment. Uhh.. It's an apartment complex so it's on the second floor. It has one room and a big open space for our study desks and kitchen table. This kitchen is also in the same big space which consists of a sink. Haha. We do have a camping stove top thing we use to cook. There's also a bathroom and a little room to wash your laundry.