Monday, May 26, 2014

Week 33

It's summer now in America! Whoo! To answer your question yes we're having rain lately. I've woken up many times with rain the night before. That's nice! It's cooling down a little when it rains. Summer is coming to an end here, and we're heading into the rainy season--not quite yet typhoon season, but rain is definitely here. It's still really hot and I'm so glad summer is winding down. It's too hot! I'm tired of sweating all the time...haha...but then it will be more humid when it rains. Man, the weather here is just interesting. This week I've been alright. It's been pretty mellow. I'm feeling a little down on myself with the work lately. I've been out now for almost 10 months. WOW--that's fast! I think I'm getting too comfortable with my area. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or bad thing. We're struggling with baptisms, but I got a blessing yesterday that helped. I know if I am obedient and consecrate myself to the work I will be blessed. I'm trying to overcome these emotional challenges, but it's hard. I really feel like I'm not helping anyone right now. But then I remember Lionila--she is so sweet. She came to church this week and she was wearing a beautiful flowery combination of skirt and shirt. I just love her. We always laugh together. She's like me--a joker :) haha. Missionary work is always up and down. Our area is doing alright. We're trying to help our ward mission leader fulfill his calling. He's struggling a little bit. Everyone around us is having baptisms and that's stressing me out. But I just try not to compare myself to anyone but me and do my best every day. It's a hard thing. Missions are not easy. But I know my testimony is growing.

So we have Elder Craig Christensen coming to our mission tomorrow... that's exciting. (Also, I saw that Pres Uchtdorf visited the MTC! WHAT?! HE'S MY FAVORITE! Man, those lucky people. :-(  Oh well.)  We'll be in San Pablo for half the day. I love going there. It's so big and fun and clean. :) Speaking of clean, I literally smell like a pond every day. It's not that fun. But hey. I won't be here forever. :) Also, transfers are coming up. I'm not sure if Sister Baguio will be transferred or not. I hope not. We really laugh together and struggle together. I love her a lot. She is so sweet. And I love teaching her English. 

I'm trying to get as much sleep as possible. I tripped to other day while running with Sister Reed---it was the WORST! I think it happened mostly because I'm so tired when I exercise. But I'm trying to exercise and follow the schedule exactly. It's hard! But I do my best.

Basically I just love all of our investigators right now. Old and new. Building up the teaching pool is not easy work but rewarding. I think it's rewarding for several reasons. It builds diligence, and not to mention fervent, prayers. We've got a couple of new investigators: Michelle, RJ, and June.

FIRST: Michelle is 24 years old. She is a cute girl and is a working as a maid for a member in the ward. She's from Batangas, which is 5 minutes from my first area. Coincidence? I think NOT. We were teaching the Tope family about the doctrine of sharing the gospel, and at the end of the video we shared, we asked them who they knew that they could invite to hear the message. Sister Tope looks to her right and points to Michelle, "Siya." It was pretty great because normally this doesn't happen--We got a referral right on the SPOT! We got to know her a little bit, and invited her to church. She's come 2 times now and feels so happy at church. I really hope things are going to work out with her. She's got GREAT potential. And she looked really happy when we taught her how to pray. AND she told us that she would definitely read and pray!

SECOND: RJ, who is the husband of Sister Marsha. We found Marsha while trying to find her sister who was a member, back then. (So many people have gotten lost and gone inactive) We started teaching Marsha without her husband, since he wouldn't really talk to us. Then when we went back this week to teach Marsha, she was asleep. EXCEPT her husband was just walking around in the heat...sort of working on starting some home-cooked meal. (Also, this guy is SO extremely quiet. Literally cannot hear him.) However, super nice. We start teaching him, and find out he's had some contact with the church, friends, been to church, etc. Perfect set up. I really felt the spirit strong in that lesson. Hopefully we can complete this family. I have SO much faith in them. 

THIRD: June. I just love the guy. He's making some big, big changes in his life, and we can see his big desire to change. He's probably the smartest investigator I've taught. "So brother June, how was your reading in Alma 42?" Then basically he just teaches us everything about the plan of salvation and how we can be redeemed/saved. He's come to church 3 times now. YAY. Working his way to baptism next month.

Just through these three wonderful people I've learned a lot about my testimony. I know that Heavenly Father wants me to teach these people. He wants me here to help them, especially with some deep intense problems that they all have. At times I wonder if I can really teach them the way Heavenly Father would. This week I read in Helaman 3:35. The Atonement is the foundation of the reason we can become clean and theHoly Ghost is the way we feel clean. I'm so grateful for the quietness of the Holy Ghost. I feel it in the everyday things. Whether we're riding in the trikes, laughing at funny stupid things that happen, talking about awkward lessons, funny things that our hilarious recent converts say. I feel it. I feel the quietness in my heart. And then I know that what I'm doing is a good thing. That's what I want all of our investigators to feel. They will feel it and know what they're doing is a good thing.

Diligence, fervent prayer, and self-inventory. I guess it's safe to say these three things have helped us to find some new people to help this week. Helping more people come unto Christ is daunting, but when we have the spirit to teach us, we find more people than we ever would on our own. When I get stressed about what I'm learning, I just have faith in my Savior. I know he's right there telling me to keep going, even when it's hard. I'm learning that diligence starts even when you're tired. And trust me, I'm a tired sister! :-) Here's to a great week with some new investigators. I love you so much!!! Talk to you next week!

Sister Seastrand

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