Monday, May 20, 2013

So so good :)

Hey Family
It was SO great to talk to you guys last week. Dad, you said you hoped that it wouldn’t throw me off, and if anything it gave me such a boost. My Tagalog seemed to boost so much last week, and my companion and I had a lot of fun with it. A couple times people asked my companion if I knew how to speak Ilocano too, haha as if I know Tagalog. Fooled them ;) So like I told you over skype, my birthday was great, my companion is SO awesome and woke me up a little after midnight and I looked over and saw a cake with candles on top, and then on our little dvd player she showed me a little video her and some other missionaries put together of pictures from my mission so far and with little messages from other missionaries wishing me a happy birthday. On top of that my “little brothers” from my MTC district, all wrote in a card for me and gave it to me at one of our meetings. So nice, they even got the others from our MTC district in Olongapo to email messages as well. This last week has been really really good. So much rain and thunder, and the coolest lightning I’ve ever seen. I also got to see some cool Filipino things, like when someone dies, everyone gets together for about 5 nights and gambles. Not sure why ha. Then for a birthday party they always serve long noodles to symbolize a long life. They had hot dogs with marshmallows ha, hopefully you can see it all in the pictures. People like to feed us here. After another visit of ours this week, they brought out some pansit, and coconut water, and halo halo. As I was eating the pansit, I had a flashback of my anatomy class at BYU as I was able to clearly identify the parts of the heart that was sitting there on my plate. Haha, it was pretty small, and just to say I tried it, I took a tiny bite. It was like eating rubber, so I gave the rest to my companion. We had branch conference on Sunday and it was great, I was especially happy to see some of the less active Nanay’s we focused on visiting this last week. I am loving the people here. Also my companion and I are trying to be more obedient, and I can feel a difference in the way we study and teach. So awesome.
                I had probably my favorite personal study time one day this last week. I understand completely why we read the scriptures over and over- there is something new to learn every time.  Stories I’ve heard hundreds of times, are meaning much more to me now. This last week I spent time reading 1 Nephi 17 and 18, where the Lord commands Nephi to build a ship so that they can travel to the promised land. I compared this to what I’ve been asked to do right now- to preach the gospel in another language. Ch. 17, verse 51 shows Nehi’s faith- “And now, if the Lord has such great power, and has wrought so many miracles among the children of men, how is it that he cannot instruct me, that I should build a ship.” So even though it may seem like an impossible thing at times for me to learn Tagalog, and learn how to be a good missionary, I just have to remember that if I involve the Lord in this process He can help me to know how to do all of this. So my prayers have become way more specific and meaningful, and even more full of faith. To quote from one of my favorite primary songs : “Yes I know Heavenly Father loves me” :) I’m just so full of gratitude. I know this is the Lord’s work. I am SO happy to be here doing what I’m doing. I know the church is true, that Jesus Christ is our Savior, and that our Heavenly Father loves us so much and has a perfect plan for us. Life is good, so so good. I love you all, and hope you have a great week.

10 year old investigator Jerwin

these cute kids were selling these flower necklaces (sampaguita- national flower of the Philippines). 

We went to visit a less active, and her great grandaughter was having her barbie themed birthday party. ha they all joked that I was the barbie that came for the party. ha, so we were invited to join them, one of the ladies there (maybe 30yrs old) asked if she could take a picture of me, not me and her, just me haha, so she pulls out her cell phone and takes a picture of me, and says she wants to use it as her background. haha, oh my life. 

Sister Stabenow and the Birthday Girl!

In a Tricie!

Sister Stabenows apartment and the fruit they bought at the market .

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