Monday, January 27, 2014

Week 16

The theme of the week: "Let go and grow."

We taught two really great lessons where the spirit was just in abundance and literally I wanted to cry the whole time. Lucky Pera, one of our investigators has really had some rough times keeping his commitments the past few lessons. We tried to talk to him about it to see what his concern was. And then he told us all these crazy things about God that he's learning about in theology class. But then I couldn't even listen to half of it because all I could think was, "Well there's your first mistake, Lucky! THEOLOGY IS RUINING YOU." He had some really great "questions of the soul" that we he just opened up to us right off the bat. Which never happens, by the way...sometimes our lessons with people turn into a game of not just 20 questions, but 100, trying to get to the root of their concerns. It almost feels like investigators do it just for fun because they like to give us a rough time. It'd be nice if they could just tell us their problems so we could help them, but then where would the fun be in that as a missionary? But Lucky definitely is not a typical investigator. He has probably no idea who God even is... but he knows who Christ is which is a good start.

We taught him the Restoration and committed him to pray about it. Did he keep the commitment? No. We went back and decided to teach more about prayer, again committing him to pray. Did he keep the commitment? No--and he didn't even want to. We went back and taught him the Plan of Salvation. Let's just say that during this lesson I felt the Spirit light up the little bamboo hut we were sitting in. I've never felt so strongly about the Plan of Salvation before, probably ever in my life. This plan is so perfect, and there's so much good that comes from knowing it.

Something crazy that happened this week: My anak (companion) got her camera stolen in the computer shop...but we got it back...although we had to pay 500 pesos to get it back from the hoodlum child that stole it. Good thing we had a member with us to help work it out cause Americans don't really speak that well in Tagalog when trying to negotiate for getting their personal belongings back. But all is well here in San Jose.

A chance to serve
The theme for this week: "Let go and grow." My companion shared this with me during  companion study and it pierced me to the very core. She actually said, "Sometimes we just have to let go so that we can grow." It must have been something I needed to hear because it brought a small flood of spiritual thoughts: Why is it that we sometimes set boundaries for ourselves when the Atonement of Christ is eternal? No matter what mistakes we have made or who we've been, why can't we just let go and grow? I think that letting go and growing requires us to remove those fences around ourselves and let Christ help us become more than we were. We can be anything we want with Christ in our lives. My next thought: "Why didn't I learn this concept sooner?" Missions really do so much for you. Even though this is the hardest thing in my life so far, it is definitely the best. I'm finding you're always happy when working in the vineyard of the Lord. Is it hard? YES. Does it always go the way you plan? NO. Is it the best experience of your life? YES. I would never trade anything for this time I have to let go and grow and become better. GO TEAM PHILIPPINES!

Sister Seastrand

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