Monday, June 2, 2014

Week 34

Zone P-Day at The Gardens
I think I've felt a little pat on the back from Heavenly Father this week. Like a friendly celestial hand from Heaven just patted my shoulder. We get so jealous of other missionaries--sometimes we forget who we should look to: God. We should remember that reaching goals and doing good things helps us learn the ways of God. And reaching goals reminds us why we do the things we do. A good missionary once told me, "Sister Seastrand, don't look around you. Just look up." She is wise. And indeed, looking up takes humility.

Sister Baguio and I are setting goals, and reaching them. We're building up our teaching pool and finding how surprisingly intertwined our investigators are to the church. Each person we've taught this week has had some kind of contact with the church. And this week, we went to find another lost member named Bong De Asis. 

And we found him. And we started teaching the whole family. POTENTIAL COMPLETED FAMILY! Nothing gets me more excited than looking at a family that hasn't had the chance to hear the gospel for their family, and being the one to be the messenger.

Speaking of being a messenger, I've thought a lot about the word, "sheaves." At first all I could think of is wheat or some kind of grain.... And as I studied in the Book of Mormon and the Doctrine and Covenants, it talks about sheaves and what the Lord means by the word "sheaves." As everyone around us has been having baptisms the entire week, I was tempted to think that sheaves is only baptism. But then I thought about all the tiny little grains and seeds on a sheave. How intricate and delicate they must be. And how the Lord tells us in the Book of Mormon how we obtain these sheaves: Faithfulness. Whenever I go out to work each day, I look around me at all the possible sheaves that I can return home with. And the promise of the Lord is that if we are diligent, we will gather sheaves. 

And then I thought about all the people I've taught in the past 10 months of my mission. And I have a lot of sheaves. A lot of intricate, delicate experiences of teaching that have helped ME in MY path to Heavenly Father. We're all on the path back to God. And we can all help each other while obtaining sheaves on our backs. Just a thought.

Not the month, but our investigator, June. Having struggles with faith lately. Don't we all, though? Sometimes I ask myself while teaching him, Who am I to tell him to have faith enough to find a new house and job in this difficult way of living? Sometimes I think God wants us to teach certain people so we can learn certain lessons. And gain another sheave on our back. It's not always easy to be chastened by God. And it's especially not always easy to see others be chastened by Him. But the blessing is that He knows how to chasten us. He chastens us in each experience, each day. 

This week we were lucky to teach a wonderful man named Willmar. He's a guard at the bank the we always go to for our missionary support. Also, the husband of a 10 year less active woman named Jennifer. This is (yet again) another potential Completed Family. To find potential families to be completed is something we've fasted and prayed for. The opportunity to see his willingness and humility to listen to our message was something I needed this week. I have great faith in him that he will seek the truth.

I hope I never leave Santa Cruz. This week is the worst part and best part of a mission: TRANSFERS. I literally don't know what I'm going to do without my best friend and partner in the work, Sister Eden Baguio. We've laughed together, cried together, had every kind of awkward moment together. But somehow I feel that things will be OK. Who knows. Maybe I'll be the one transferred. Yikes!  Maybe I'll stay. Yikes! The Lord knows each missionary and what He wants for each area from them. I'm definitely loving this area, but I know there's still more to my mission than Santa Cruz and Sister Baguio. How grateful I am this week and I'm definitely counting my blessings. 

Sister Seastrand

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