This week was my first whole week in Cabiao! And wow how amazing it has been! I have grown a lot and have taken on a lot of new responsibilities that I have never had before. Everything is different here! Modes of travel, culture, language, the food, (sometimes they eat with just their hands, yep it was weird! :) the bathroom (ah ya they don't use toilet paper here... a bucket and dipper), ya you get the picture! hahaha. You guys talked about a Ice bucket challenge? We are lucky enough to have a shower but many apartments have just a bucket and ladle! hahaha It has been a culture shock, but it has been amazing.
Last week I shared with you about finding joy in the journey, I have had to remind myself that a lot when I get frustrated with these differences and want to be perfect at the language already. The people are so loveable and are very hospitable. Its very common for investigators and less actives to provide a little snack and cola for us as we teach them in their humble tin dirt floor shacks. They are so excited to hear me speak Tagalog, even when it is bad. Sometimes when I am trying to teach them and help them feel the spirit and I finish teaching and they look at me and then at my companion and ask him what was it that I was trying to say, this is pretty frustrating. I am trying so hard to learn the language and have learned to find time to study. I wake up early so that I have more time studying the language, I know that God will recognize my hard work and efforts and will give me that extra help.
I also am trying to get myself familiar with the area which is really hard! there are no street signs here and neighborhoods are organized in Burungays. It is taking getting used to. The traffic here is crazy, basically no laws. I live in the Maligaya Burungay (which means happiness :))
My companion is so awesome! he is really patient with me and has helped me adjust to mission life.
On Thursday we visited a less active family who have had a hard time going to church. I shared a message about our savior and how we need to be like him, I sang If the Savior stood beside me to them. It was amazing how the spirit was brought into the room. I learned how effective it is to share my testimony through my gift of music. That family came to church this week! I am not sure if me singing to them helped but I know that they felt the spirit.
I am learning to trust in Jesus Christ more and in my own wisdom less. I know that it is only through him and his way we will find peace. I have seen little miracles in my life as I have allowed my will to be swallowed up in his. Missionary work is amazing. Sometimes I don't know what I am going to share with a recent convert or less active until it comes out of my mouth. I then think were did that come from? And then I thank God for the wonderful companionship of the Holy Ghost that fills in my gaps and my weakness. I love being a missionary. This time is not a two year get away! It is hard and it is work! Sometimes I want to give up, but then I remember why I came out here to this crazy place and remember how great the harvest and how great the reward of my labors will be in bring others to Christ. The motto of Angeles mission is: In the Angeles Mission we baptize and rescue! I am grateful for the opportunity to do that!
I love you all so much! I am grateful for your prayers and all of your support! I am striving to return with honor!
Mahal ko kayo,
|Me on a trike. too bad I couldn't really drive it, hahaha!|