Monday, August 29, 2016

I have a dream...

This week marks the anniversary of MLK's "I Have a Dream" speech. Speaking of dreams, one of my favorite "dream stories" that I've read in the scriptures is that of King Nebuchadnezzar in the book of Daniel. In his dream, he sees a stone cut out of a mountain without hands. We learn that this is meant to symbolize missionary work and the restoration of God's church in this time on earth. It's been very special to me to be a part of establishing His kingdom here in the Philippines. There is a true power in bringing forth the fullness of the gospel unto others. Just this last week in following up with some new investigators, they kept telling us over and over again how they had this warm feeling when they saw us by their gate that strongly influenced them to let us in. Apparently, normally they run and hide when they see people like us, but the Holy Ghost touched them in such a way that they recognized we had something different and important to share that would bless their lives. My dream is that all people will open their hearts and minds and even if it starts with a desire to believe, allow the restored gospel to work inside of them and follow Christ's example, even through baptism. As the saying goes, "Dreams really can come true!"

Word of the Week: kagila-gilalas -- marvelous Ex: A kagila-gilalas work is about to come forth unto the children of men!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Best Instant Lunch Ever

There have been certain times in my life where amidst the craziness and confusion around me, I ask myself, "How did I get here???" This week, while finding, we approached a house with a tall gate and even though we expected to be rejected, we shouted "tao po!" anyway. Suddenly, a nanay bursts out of the door wearing a silky, pink bathrobe and excitedly calls out to us and says "come on in!" Surprised,we entered into her house and she quickly prepared some beverage for us (I think it was cranberry juice?) and introduced herself as Nanay Zeny. We found out that she married an American in the Navy, but that her husband died some years ago, so now she lives in her house with her brother. As I was contemplating this and listening to the loud ABBA remixes she was playing in the background, she announces that we will eat lunch and sits us down to her table with an environmentalist themed tablecloth. As if she was expecting company, she pulled out heaps of food from the fridge and within 5 minutes, we were feasting on omelette (with real cheese!), meatloaf and beef roast. Yes that is correct. Real beef. It was amazing. Throughout the course of the meal, Nanay Zeny seemed to take it upon herself to give us marriage advice. Basically, she said the only way to know if a guy truly loves you is to play hard-to-get. Apparently it worked for her! We were able to sneak in a lesson with her and she told us how when she looked out at the gate, it seemed as if two angels were standing there. She felt prompted to let us in as fast as possible. I'll leave this story with a final thought. God really does prepare people for us to teach and with whom to share the gospel. We just have to be willing to stand at the gate and call to them to let us in. :)

Word of the Week: mataray -- snobbish (for a woman) Ex: Sister Morgan is NOT a mataray person haha 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Flood the Streets...

...with the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ!  Even though the actual streets were flooded with water due to three different typhoons, the work continues to move on! Despite the rain, we were able to have a couple different miracles this week. On one day, we were trying to find a man who we had talked to and placed a copy of the Book of Mormon. We had a general address given, but unfortunately, after asking several nearby people where his house was, we still had no clear idea where he actually lived. As we passed this house I saw a Nanay and I suddenly had this thought to go talk to her. While we talked I found out that she knew where the man we had been trying to find lived. Apparently he has a nickname which everyone else knows and only Nanay is familiar with his real name. I'm grateful for that prompting from the Holy Ghost. Even though the man wasn't home at that time, his wife informed us that he had been avidly reading the Book of Mormon and has a desire to join the Church.I know that there is a real power in that Book. I promise you that if you read it sincerely, you will know the truth of the Church and the gospel. As the rainy season will continue with even greater forces, so too should the Book of Mormon and its message flood the entire earth until all receive the opportunity to read it. 

Monday, August 8, 2016

Every cloud has a spiritual lining!

I love the clouds here! I don't know if I've already said that before, but it's going to be one of the things I miss when I go home. Once one of the typhoons comes through, the clouds afterwards are very majestic and dynamic. This scenario was somewhat similar to our week. Since transfer day, Sister Grant and I experienced being punted many times and even some of our progressing investigators were struggling. After church was finished, our week seemed pretty difficult so far. However, when we went out to work we were able to find two new families who were sincerely interested in our message.  I’ve realized each time we endure trials, it’s usually because God is preparing us to receive blessings greater than that of the hardship. I know that our ability to endure joyfully will help us become more like our loving Heavenly Father, creator of all of us...and the clouds! 

Word of the Week: ulap --- cloud Ex: That ulap over there looks like a fish!

Monday, August 1, 2016

Am I My Brother's Robber?

Our branch mission leader told us how a couple weeks ago, he was assigned to give a talk in church entitled, "Am I My Brother's Robber?" Confused, he asked if it was supposed to be "keeper" instead of "robber," but indeed that was the real topic. Well, anyway, a couple days later my companion and I were arriving to our apartment and as I unlocked the gate, I saw this teenage boy jump out from behind and dart away. I shouted at him and an old tatay from across the street tried to grab him, but the thief got away. Fortunately, because the dead bolt on our door was locked, he was unable to get in. Of course, as a missionary, it did make me think about this incident in spiritual terms. When a person is gaining a testimony of the gospel, that is a precious thing that Satan would gladly try to destroy and take away. However if we lock the dead bolt on our testimony by doubting our doubts before we doubt our faith and following His commandments, when the robbers do come, they can not access that which is most valuable above all worldly possessions. Hopefully the thief won't come again, but I'm thankful that despite this incident, we continue to have miracles in this area!