Monday, September 23, 2013

Kamusta Kamusta!

So, this is it! My last P Day here at the MTC. I can't even believe it. It's been over one month of my 18 months as a missionary... It's so weird to think that I actually will be leaving this place, since I've been here for so long! It feels like home now! 

Ok this week has been really spiritually, physically, and emotionally draining. I have become best friends with these people in my district. Especially with my kasama ko, Sister Claralyn Burt. It's amazing how the gospel can bring you so close together in such a short amount of time. I honestly don't even know what to do without her... haha she's like my mom now. #seniorcomp (sorry mom just for a little bit. :) ) The elders in our district have been so faithful and worthy Priesthood holders. I'm so proud of these young men. They truly are going to work miracles in the Philippines. I'm so grateful for the Priesthood. How lucky we are to have such a wonderful authority from Heavenly Father here on earth, and that all of us can be blessed by it! Especially us women folk. So I guess what I'm trying to say is, thanks dad for always being a wonderful worthy Priesthood holder. It makes such a difference in our home. I just wanna hug you right now!!! 

Ok, well. This week, was like I said, the hardest. Mostly because we are dreading saying goodbye to each other, and we're done teaching our investigators... Sister Burt and I taught a final lesson to Christy and Marshall, and it was really sad because we had to break it to him that we were being transferred, but new mga misyonero would nagtuturo him. It was so sad!!! He just got a little teary eyed, and then we did. He is so great. I know that he is ready to be baptized, and his relationship with Christ has grown so much. It's been amazing to see this transformation that's come over him. And the best part is that I got a chance to be apart of his growth. And to think I will be doing the same thing in about 72 hours... It's so scary but exhilarating. The best part is that in his journal he wrote, "I love Sister Seastrand and Sister Burt because they invite me to come to Christ. They are really nice and love me for who I am." That made all of the stress, frustration, and all the effort into these lessons WORTH IT. All of it. All the nights I would pray about Marshall and all the nights I would feel frustrated with not being able to fully communicate my thoughts into Tagalog, were worth it. It taught me that it's really not in amount of words we use, but having the spirit be able to touch their heart and let them know of our love for them and for the gospel. That's what is important. It's hard to not know this language as much as I really want to or need to, but I know that through the pure love of Christ, they will understand me. Because that's a language we can ALL understand. That's the language that breaks the other barriers between us. 

We had in-field orientation yesterday all day, which was really cool and stressful at the same time. They basically just taught us how to work with the bishop and members of the ward, and to use our planners and set attainable goals. It really set in that I would be leaving and so it was kind of a bitter sweet day... 7 hours in one building can really make you think deeply about your mission and everything that is going to happen to you. 

We had a really devastating thing happen.Sister Beaumont, probably the CUTEST sister I have ever met hurt her thumb pretty badly during volleyball at gym time. She had the nurse at the Gym check it and she told her that it was just jammed. She wrapped it pretty loosely, and had her just put ice on it. After awhile, sister b could not even stand it, her thumb was causing her serious pain and she was sick from the pain. She went to the health clinic, and the x-rayed it and alas, it is broken in like 4 places, pretty badly. Yesterday they sent her to another hopsital to find out what to do since we're leaving in like 2 days, and not to mention she is the travel leader for 18 of us going to San Pablo. Poor girl.. anyways, she came back to in-field orientation and they told her that she has to go home and get surgery, and then fly straight to the Ppines. It will be a total of 10 WEEKS before she can go out. Soooo so hard. Our district just feels so terrible. But, for whatever reason, I know that Heavenly Father wants her to come closer to Him through this trial. She will such a great missionary. She is SUCH a champ. Seriously, the SWEETEST and most pure little angel on this earth. We'll pray and pray for her everyday. What a tough sister. #district16B4evs

The food here is KILLING ME hahaha SO gross.. I can't wait to have real food in my mission! I honestly can't believe how fast time has gone. I can't even wait for tomorrow because it'll be our last devotional. Sunday's are probably the BEST thing here. And P Day. Gonna miss em. Packing is a beast, and especially with no mom there to help... actually to do it all. I miss you for that momma S. I guess I will just throw it all in there and hope it's under 50 pounds...  

So, once again no other exciting news but hey, here's some spiritual thoughts and stuff since I am a missionary and always have one handy. This comes from my letter to my sister Amy but I want to say it again for everyone because it's so important. Really important, so LISTEN UP. Ok I was reading in Enos, and of course it's amazing, all of it, but there was something that stood out to me particularly. I think it's verse 15 or 16, but the Lord promises Enos that as long as we ask God for things we need through Faith in Jesus Christ's name, we will receive it. No matter what. The part that stands out to me the most: We can't just ask Heavenly Father to give us something, having faith in what we'll receive. We must have faith in CHRIST's name. Because it's through Jesus Christ that we can accomplish the Father's will. So, when we pray, we should pray in faith through Jesus Christ and His name. Heavenly Father just loves us so much. He is so merciful to us, and will always give us chances to come to Him. Next time you pray, pray in faith through Christ and see if something changes. It totally changed my prayers and how I look at prayer. 

Being a missionary is truly the hardest thing I will EVER do. It's work. It's HARD work. And it takes spiritual strength. But for some reason, I just look back on my life and the trials I faced in the last year, and it's just clear to me that Heavenly Father has prepared me to be here now. Every job, every trial, every distraction, EVERYTHING has led me to this point. It's just my life now. I cannot picture it any other way. It's the weirdest feeling, but I just KNOW that my life wasn't supposed to go any other way. This was the plan for me all along. I know that is true for all of us. We had a plan before we came to earth. And these Filipinos were part of my plan. 
Sometimes we're asked to do things that make us stretch and are hard. I can't tell you how many nights i've lied awake in my bed being scared to leave this country. But, I love those people. And most importantly I love Jesus Christ and His message. How can we not share it? It's perfect, and full of eternal joy and happiness. Share it with everyone because we have the best message the world could EVER hear. 
Paalam!! May ko patotoo tungkol ng ebanghelyo! Totoo po ang ebanghelyo. :)
Team Philippines>>>>
Until next week in my new home- 
xoxo, Sister Jennifer Seastrand

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