The Days I Feel Like a Real Missionary

My Favorite Sisters Ever-The Girls of Our District
Looking back at this week, there are so many times where I stop and think, "goodness, I am such a missionary."  It's kind of ridiculous, pathetic, and totally awesome at the same time:). 
  • I get hymns stuck in my head ALL day, my favorite is Count Your Blessings (SO ANNOYING)
  • watching 17 miracles in the gym for the fourth of July was THE BEST SUPRISE EVER and make my whole week.  I never say that about church movies.
  • I cry.
  • I cringe when people touch me.  I think it's just the automatic missionary response
  • I use my free time to memorize the first vision in Tagalog while on the bikes in the gym... 
  • I get all the missionary jokes now.  They're all true
  • Our whole district got freaked out when we saw a couple holding hands inside the MTC.  I didn't even know how to handle myself.  WHAT DO I DO WITH MY HANDS???!! 
Okay, well maybe I convinced you now that I will most likely come home as one of THOSE awkward missionaries.  I don't doubt that anymore...  NOOOOOOOO

Our Apartment at the MTC
So, this week.  Pretty much my mind was spiritually blown.  Just blown to pieces (another reason I'm a missionary is that now all I want to write home about is spiritual things I learned).  First, the beginning of the week I took a step back and kind of thought to myself, "What if this whole thing is a waste, what if I'm really not supposed to be on a mission, what if the prophet decides to tell everyone the church isn't true anymore..." And on and on.  It was pathetic and awful.  That night though I told Heavenly Father that I wasn't going to worry about any of that.  I was going to give 100% and have as much faith as I could because I do know that this what I should be doing.  And I know this church is true.  I promised Heavenly Father that I would trust him and always follow Him.  Then on Sunday, every single devotional, meeting, and talk was on relying on the Spirit, remembering to be converted daily, and true conversion.  I know Heavenly Father answered my prayers and erased any doubts I had.  My favorite was the RS devotional Sunday morning.  Sheri Dew spoke, NO BIG DEAL!!  She's my new hero, she's not married, the president of Deseret Book, on the US women's board, the list goes on and on.  She rocks my world.  So, she talked about true and daily conversion.  Some of my notes:
  • The Lord will not force you to learn.  You must authorize the Spirit to teach you.  You authorize teaching by doing the basics.  Pray, scriptures, and going to the temple
  • Questions are good as long as they are asked in an environment of faith
  • Conversion to the gospel requires immersion in the spirit, the words of the prophets (best done on a mission, greatest opportunity)
  • 4 things to learn while on a mission: Who you are (D&C 138; Abraham 3), understand who the Savior is and learn all spectrums of the atonement, learn how to recieve revelation, learn God's power and the keys of the priesthood
It seriously was the fastest, most complete answer to my prayers ever.  But I know that that answer came after faith, after committing to Heavenly Father.

First Day in the MTC with my Companion Sister Hess
Then every Sunday night, all the missionaries get to go pick a movie of past MTC devotionals to watch.  We went to Characters of Christ by David A. Bednar (which everyone said will change you lives), and it has completely changed my life.  If there is anything you do this week, watch that devotional.  DO IT!  Also, mom can you send me a copy of it????  Please please please?  Elder Bednar talks about how Christ always turned outward instead of inward, to help people instead of himself.  He says very bluntly, that this mission is not about us.  It is not about the letters we get each week, how we learn the language compared to everyone else, or how we feel every day.  This mission is not my mission.  I am just a servant of the Lord's, helping Him find His children and bring them back to Him.  The lessons we teach to our investigators are His lessons.  THIS IS HIS WORK.  When things are hard or we might have a situation to complain about, turn outward to help others.  When Jesus was suffering for the sins of the whole world, for every sin ever committed, the hardest thing a human has ever gone though, he came out to his apostles sleeping.  He was not angry, upset, maybe disappointed, but compassionate.  Not only did this happen 3 times, but the same night, he had His apostle betray Him.  After all of this, he turned outward.  He healed a guard's ear.  He prayed for the people mocking Him while He was on the cross, He took care of his mother right before He died.  It goes on and on.  I really can't explain how awesome this devotional is, please please read it.  And also send me a copy so I don't have to go every Sunday to hear it.

A little more detail about this week.  We got two investigators, Joseph and Mary Ann.  Joseph is just one of the those stubborn, hard investigators that I try to love.  Mary Ann is a mom whose husband works and is never home.  I love her like I love our family.  I want so badly for her to have the knowledge that I have about eternal familes.  I want her to understand that Heavenly Father loves her.  I think of you, mom, every time we teach her.  I am so excited to love the people of the Philippines (also because they'll actually be real investigators). 

Sister Hellewell and 
Sister Waldrom from my Letter
Two districts in our zone left on Monday for the Philippines.  Shout out to Sister Waldrom and Sister Hellewell.  They were the best friends, biggest allies, and greatest teachers to me while they were here.  I miss them and their disctricts so much.  The funny part is that Sis Waldrom and I had two classes at BYU togther but never really hung out outside of class but I guess Heavenly Father knew how good of friends we would be and gave us a second change here at the MTC.  Also Sister Hellewell is the most christlike person I have ever met.  The first night and for the next week until she left, she spent every night in our room talking to us, giving me advice, and sharing ridiculously awesome stories.  It's been hard this week without them.  It amazing who Heavenly Father puts in your life and how He knows what will help you the most.  Sister Hellewell and I are going to try to be in the same ward/building/apartment when we both get back (it's gettin serious in 'ere).  I miss them.  Also we have the best zone in the MTC.  Most of them are Tongan.  And really loud.  We rock dis MTC hard core.
Temple Day!

Funny story for the week:  Sister Hess and I were taking a nap on Wednesday.  The lights were out, we had just finished our lesson and were exhausted.  Five minutes into our nap, I sat up really quickly and alarmed.  "Sister Hess, we forgot to commit our investigor to read the Book of Mormon today!!!!"  Yep, I wake up from naps scared now because I forgot to ask MaryAnn to read the BoM for next time.  Intense missionary status achieved.

Oh and since I haven't done this yet (and it seems like the cliche thing to do), my testimony-

Alam ko po na totoo ng Ang Simbahan ni Jesucristo ng mga Banal sa mga Huling Araw.  Alam ko po na nagbayad-sala ang Jesucristo para sa amin at nagmamahal any Diyos at si Jesucristo ng amin.  Alam ko po na sobrang mahalaga ng Ang aklat ni Mormon.  May propeta ngayon sa Thomas S. Monson at alam ko po na gumagabay ang siya simbahan.

Mahal Kita!!!!!