Monday, September 23, 2013

Kamusta po kayo everyone!

This week has been soooso great. IT ALWAYS IS. I don't know how it works, but no matter what happens, you always seem to learn something new. 

Ok BIG news. I have received my flight plans! Wahoo!! I will be flying from SLC to LA, then LA to Japan, then Japan to Manila. We will stay the night, and take a big bus the next morning to San Pablo! Yahoooooo. #teamphilippines. There are about 17 elders and sisters in our travel group, so that should be exciting. One big group and army of Helaman!

So, Theres not much to tell again.... SORRY. But, there is ONE thing that was definitely the highlight of my week. We taught our investigator Marshall. We were feeling pretty good but we still couldn't understand why he was struggling so much with the Atonement. He really didn't understand why we had to be baptized if "the Atonement makes everything clean" We really wanted him to just understand everything we did, and at first planning for the lesson was really stressful because we didn't know what to say to him. It was one of those times when ya just have to leave it to God and say, "I've done my best, so you take care of it."
We got in the lesson, and I don't know HOW this happened, but everything I said I just... said. It wasn't me at all. Every question he asked me I just quickly answered and I knew what to say to him. I knew how to help him understand the importance of baptism, and it was AMAZING. I have never experienced it in my life before! It was so cool to be an instrument in God's hands. I couldn't even believe it. Sister Burt and I were a dream team. We taught him, answered all of his questions and the spirit was so strong. At the end of the lesson, I started bearing my testimony of baptism, and even though my tagalog was TERRIBLE, I just let it flow because I didn't want the spirit to leave. I started to cry and told him, "Marshall, God loves you. He won't leave you alone in this decision to be baptized, and he will help you. We love you and we will help you prepare for baptism." 
His eyes got pretty glisteny, and the spirit was like DESTROYING us. It was so powerful! We committed him to be baptized on November 1st. :) What a guy. The best part is, when he read a scripture about the holy ghost cleansing us by fire when we receive it, he thought that baptism was by fire and not water. HAHA  we were like NOOOO it's by water.. don't worry. baptism by IMMERSION of H20. 

Other than that, the MTC has been good. It's starting to come down to the wire, since I only have about 2 weeks left. We got two new districts so our zone is HUGE but sadly, none of them are going to San Pablo. They are so cute. They work so hard and still have a deer in the headlights look on their face. But i love them #newbies #gottaloveem

This email will be pretty short.. sorry again. It's just so mundane here! So My teacher brother Mauzy, is AMAZING. But he said something in class the other day that struck me. He said, "We can convince everyone to join the church but that wouldn't make us different from any other church. We want them to come to Christ and believe in him because they felt the spirit. Not because we sold it to them through our words." OK Seriously I loved that. It's so true! The spirit is the MOST important part of this work, and actually it's the way we learn about God. It's the feelings that we get when we learn about Him and His perfect son Jesus Christ. As a missionary, I am so amazed at how when I teach, I see my investigator as God sees them and how they can become. But at the same time, I see myself the way God sees me and how I can become. When we give our hearts to Him, he molds them and makes us more than we could ever be by ourselves. My challenge for you, reader, is that you pray and ask God to help you do that. Ask Him to help you feel the spirit more in your life, and serve. I PROMISE if you do this, you will watch yourself become the person that you were meant to be, from the start. God has created you. He knows you, and knows everything you need. So why not ask Him? 

I'm so grateful to be a missionary. The privilege of being one is far greater than anything I could be doing right now. I have realized how much God has guided me to get to this point in my life and everything that I have experienced, good and bad, every job I've had, every person I have met and learned from, and every good day has gotten me here. Because God knows where we can learn and grow the best, and for me, that's here. In the MTC, learning and growing my testimony, and on my mission that I will shortly be serving in two weeks in the Philippines. The world needs this gospel.. They need it more than ever before, and I litcherally want to spread it to every single SOUL in that country. But missionary tag or not, we can ALL wear the name of Christ in our hearts and serve those around us. MEMEBERS ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF MISSIONARY WORK. Holy cowwwww seriously. They are the ones that help us find the ones that are lost. 

Whether or not you have heard the gospel before, or are inactive, God doesn't care. He loves you no MATTER the circumstance or choices you make. I feel that love more and more that he has for his children every day. His love is infinite, and all we have to do is choose Him and His way. Because it truly is the way to salvation and eternal life of happiness and joy that we can have FOR EVERR. (Sandlot reference)

I can't wait to get out to the Philippines. I'm SO lucky to be serving those incredible people. It's the best thing I have ever done. 
Here's some of my testimony in Tagalog:

May ko po tungkol sa ebanghelyo. May ko po tungkol sa pagbabayad-sala ni Jesucristo. Alam ko po na totoo ang aklat ni mormon, at ng pamamagitan sa pananampalatay si Jesucristo naramdaman po tayo kapayapaan. Si pangalan ni Jesucristo, amen. 

Ok everyone better read that cause it took me like 5 mins to type. #champion

Until next week, 

Paalam! Maganda hapon! Mahal kita po tayo. :)
xoxo, Sister Seastrand

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