Monday, October 13, 2014

12 October 2014 - Still excited

This is me super excited in the wind outside of the Jessa house. 
This is called lichon (spelling? baboy.)
This is the pinoy FAVORITE
of all foods and we as a stake partook and enjoyed.

This is a pinahan or a pineapple farm in my area.
 I always thought pineapples grew from trees. False. haha

    I'm sorry my message this week is not super exciting or long! AH!
     Part of the reason why this week is not a CRAZY exciting story telling week is because I had to take these pills three times a day every day this week and they made my body go numbish and heavy and I always wanted to throw up and I could not sleep and it made my pee literally brown.... so this week was very much a test of enduring because it's from amoebas inside and she said no matter how sick you get KEEP TAKING the PILLS!! So I did and blah! It was not fun! I'm done now. I finished taking them on Saturday. I'm just glad it's over but I feel bad the week was not as awesome as I would have wanted.
     But we made it through. We got to go on exchanges this week which was an absolute blast! I got to meet new people and form new friendships and teach investigators that had burning questions. That's my FAVORITE part of teaching in the field is when investigators have sincere questions and we answer them through the Book of Mormon and you see that light come into their faces and it makes them want to ask more questions and see what else the book of Mormon can do for them. It's the BEST feeling in the world!
     Of course general conference was fantastic.
     I'm not slacking. It's more like I guess I expected to Want to get a bajillion lessons in every day and all of a sudden start screaming the message on buses and all that jazz... but I don't. I just want to keep doing what I am doing and be with the people I love here and help them understand and help my companion be ready and confident to train. It's hard to explain.
     Mom, I told my house mates about that time we went to watch Twilight in the theater and you fell off your seat because you freaked out..... how many years later and I STILL died rolling of laughter on the floor just thinking about it hahaha. Oh I love you.

     This is Roberto again and he is sooo excited to be baptized. We taught him about the LOC (Law of Chastity) this week and the WOW (Word of Wisdom) and he smoked before and sometimes drinks on occasion and drinks coffee every day but he said he would give it up and he knew it was the right thing to do. Then we went on to teach about the LOC knowing well that he has a girlfriend right now but unsure of "how close they are" so we were just bold and told him the word of the Lord and were not ashamed of it. He immediately came out and confessed that he had a homo-sexual relationship before but he said that he knew it was a heavy sin and stopped. He really WANTS to keep the commandments of God. We were only able to teach him this last Tuesday but he still came to General conference all by himself, happy and smiling and so glad to be there. I love this kid so much! He has such a heart of gold.
     Elmer is the other guy we are teaching and we were not able to get to teach him as much this week too, and so we have to move his baptismal date back. He was sooo upset. We told him he would just join baptisms with Roberto and he was not happy about that at all. Way too far away. It was so amazing to see these two men have such a desire to change and to follow God and to learn and obey. I love these men and its so easy to see their unlimited potential that awaits them
     This little girl is Marianne... the picture you see is exactly how she is in ALL the lessons to everyone! She hardly speaks so we have learned much patience and we were THRILLED when she passed her interview yesterday and will be baptized on Saturday! woot woot! That's the only picture I have of her because she is soooooo shy. Really that's the reality of our lessons with her so I thought I would share a piece of reality, haha.
Marianne is super shy.

     Sister Kim is also getting baptized with her this Saturday and I should be able to make it.
     We finally started teaching Jessa who is the only member in her family who is not a member yet. All of her family are recent converts and have been praying for her to except the Gospel. She is 14 years old and it's been sooo rough trying to teach her because she is super shy. She likes the church but she was INC or Iglesia ni Cristo which is a HUGE church here .... you might have heard of him ... the founder was a MORMON general authority and went apostate obviously. Well they have churches EVERYWHERE here and she liked it and was baptized in their church, which her parents were not happy about at all! But she started going to both our church and INC and then.... their members started making fun of her for going to both churches... so we have been playing hide and seek for a while and she just does not want to get made fun of even though she wants to be baptized now with her family. Crazy life!

     One of my favorite new investigators this week is Pedro. He is a 74 year old widower who lives with his daughter and grandchildren. We just met him on the street and he wanted to speak English because he is a retired seaman and so he knows English. He knows Cebuano but mostly speaks Tagalog. He was the first investigator that I have had on the mission who understood what his belief was as a Catholic. He had an understanding and faith but was open to our message. It was sooo crazy to watch the beauty of the message at the beginning as we taught him. He had questions and wanted to understand. By the time we got to explaining Joseph Smith though... there was this ...its hard to explain but he couldn't open his heart to see the truth. He could accept some. He said he truly believed that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, but accepting what Jesus Christ answered - that no true church was on the face of the earth - was out of his reach. It was soo interesting to watch the spirit work in him. He is good. He is sweet and he plans on coming to church and we are excited for him to eventually understand and find the truth for himself. I love missionary work!
     General Conference was great!
A few more fun parts of the Philippines. 

     I loved conference! Even though Holland's talk was unexpected and not normally something that would cause my heart to burn, my experiences here in the Philippines put so much more meaning and love behind his message and I lost it during his message. I too have NO IDEA what it is like to be poor and I am humbled that I have been called to preach and share this message with those many thousands here who are. I love these people with everything that I am. I wish I was better at expressing that love all the time, but I am trying. These people have changed my life for good.
     Mom, I do not know exactly what is happening next Monday so don't wait up for me huh? I might be on at normal time I might not get on at all. I'm not sure.
     Next week I will be in Tacloban on Monday and Tuesday, Wednesday in Manila and Thursday I will leaving in the morning and get home in the morning on Thursday. First time in my life I get to go back in time! MAGIC!! Well Dad, Mom, I love you both so much! You should be getting a letter here soon let me know if you get it. I love you, thank you for being there for me always! One more week in the WORK OF THE LORD! I'm excited and happy! Take care! All My Love!
Sister Sarah Ralph

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