October 25, 2010

The perfect storm


Yay!!!!!! Congrats to Kiki and Curtis!!!!!!! I'm so happy, I was praying so hard for everything to turn out beautifully and it sounds like it did!! I even took a moment of silence at 7AM yesterday haha (i assumed that was the time of the ceremony) Man, I can't believe I wasn't there, it just doesn't seem real haha! It sounds like you are all just playing "house" over there! It's gonna be a shock to come home to all the changes (maybe even a pregnant sister ;) ) Good job with everything fam, way to make it to the end. I'm sure those 2 love birds really appreciate all the hard work that you put in to make it a special day. Gosh, I'm grateful and I wasn't even there! Nat sent me some pics and it looks so beautiful!!! Dad, you looked dang good in a tux!! And thanks for the wedding pics, they look so amazing! I love the dress and the sash and her hair....I'm just so happy and proud right now haha! Oh and thank Dr Frost for me too!! I even want to give him a big hug!!! I know the Lord is looking out for you guys, there is NO DOUBT!! Mom, I have always been impressed with your diligence in tithing paying, seriously, from the time i was young, i have always known you to pay tithing....thank you for the example!

So big news.....drum roll please.....I'm getting transferred!!! Whoa! We just got the transfer list today and its official, tomorrow morning I have to meet at the bus station and I'm being shipped out! Crazy, I'm going to have 2nd area!! Time just flies, very very quickly! I've been on my mission for about 5 months now, and during this next transfer I'll hit 6 months, yikes, then i only have 1 yr! Toooooo fast! So this new area i think is more country, well anything other than Laoag City i think will be more countryish, this was as ghetto city as you can get! haha, I'm excited buy nervous. I don't know what to expect and i am going to miss my investigators here like crazy!!!!! So sad!!! I HATE goodbyes! So next week, you'll get to hear about a new part of town, a new comp (cross your fingers for me!!) and I'm really really hoping that this helps with my language. As much as I loved having an American comp, it didn't help me progress very much in the language. So this will be good! And if it's far enough in the boondocks, I will most likely learn Ilocano too! Which is what most of the people speak here anyway. It's a lot harder though and it sounds funny! Another new adventure, the Lord never stops giving them! I love it!

Well, let me just tell you about the Perfect Storm

so we got up super early last Monday right, to prepare and all.....then we got to our apartment after running around like crazy all morning long (we opened up a couple stores and everything by just standing outside of them) and we kept asking people what the status was and no one could give us a straight answer and then the siren would go off every once in a while telling us what signal to prepare for (usually a super typhoon 3) So when we got to our apt, we grabbed some chairs and put them on our porch, got our goodies that we bought (of coarse) and just sat on our porch waiting....and waiting....and waiting....where in the world was it? We would get sudden bursts of wind and rain and the siren and then nothing. We cleaned our apt, painted our toenails, a member brought us some food (how nice!) and then we sat on the porch some more and waited.....then it started getting dark and still nothing was coming and we (not having access to tv or radio) didn't know what was going on! So we went out and saw one of our investigators and asked him and he was like oh its coming, its coming, you should stay inside...so we did....and guess what, nothing ever happened. It didn't even rain hard let alone longer than 5 minutes at a time! The weather was just beautiful and the sky of coarse looked incredible! The clouds were moving faster than i had ever seen them! So we wasted our pday on our porch. That's all! Haha, you know, it makes for a good story though, we had fun and have continued to laugh about it this week. 4:30 AM we woke up! I am grateful that it didn't hit for the sake of our investigators and members....it would've broke my heart!

Speaking of investigators....I LOVE our progressing ones!! I really wish I could express my love for them and why, but i could never put it into words. We don't teach the other two 9 year olds anymore, they weren't very interested after a while. But the one we baptized is so amazing! She goes to every activity, every conference, and she is just the best example to her family. Her dad came to church yesterday for the first time!!!!!!! Holy cow, I couldn't have been more happy!! He wants to get baptized and knows that he needs to go to church at least 4 times in a row before he can but the problem is that they are a very poor family and both mom and dad work everyday. We taught him about sacrifice this last week and how the lord will provide if he sacrifices. He is just so receptive to the gospel its awesome! He told us, if God wanted him to go to church, He would provide a way. And then all of us prayed very very hard that he wouldn't have work this last Sunday....and in he walked for church! That is my favorite family. They will make it to the temple one day, I just know it! He always tells us, teach my wife, teach my wife! But she is always so busy. They are just the humblest of families.

And then we have a 13 year old boy we committed to baptism after our 3rd lesson....he is golden, we love him to death! At then at the same time, we have lost some awesome investigators. One girl who was investigating with her dad, both had baptism dates but the dad didn't want to marry the mom and they lived together so he just started hiding from us and the daughter who has a testimony, started shying away too.....come to find out they both joined this other church. How does that happen? We also had this one lady who struggled to find out the truth of this gospel and once she did we all knew it! It was so awesome to hear her tell us that she knows its all true, Joseph Smith, the book of Mormon, this church and then we asked her to be baptized and she straight up said no. What?! I guess her family really doesn't want her to be a member, no support from anyone and she's afraid. She said that is her final answer. No matter what we said could change her answer. That was heartbreaking. She is right there, and she knows.....one day, at least we planted the seed. And she has the Book of Mormon, she is in the Lord's hands now. As far as that other guy who read the whole chapter and was excited for the book of Mormon, we've asked him to be baptized but he has issues in the past that he can't get over and he's afraid to go to church but he knows its true. We are just trying to move forward and hope that he catches the vision. But we think he has a fat crush on me....haha, he is 35 and he always looks at me when he talks and this last visit he had my book of Mormon, and i always carry a pic of our fam and he saw it and couldn't stop staring at it and when sis Estrada tried talking to him, he was like in a daze, it was borderline creepy. So, we don't know what's gonna happen with him!

Other than that, things are going so amazing here! The Lord has blessed us SO MUCH I can't even describe it! We don't even feel like new missionaries trying to make it in the missionary world anymore. We have really tried taking into action all of our trainings on teaching by the spirit, teaching to needs, and asking inspired questions....it has opened the door to incredible things! I don't even know how missonary work could be done any other way! The Spirit is the teacher and testifier, there is nothing more to it, you cannot get into the hearts of God's children any other way. He is the only one who knows their needs and concerns so why try and teach them by yourself?! You simply can't do it. All throughout the scriptures it talks about the missionaries and prophets discerning the thoughts of those they are teaching and talking to.. and that is what opens the hearts of those people. The Spirit is the only way you could ever discern the feelings and thoughts of another. Go ahead and teach about a loving Heavenly Father, a Savior, an eternal family....other religions can claim that too....so what makes ours so different?? We have the gift of the Holy Ghost, we have the true power of God that was restored through a living prophet. These people need to FEEL that, not just hear it and when you are a true instrument in God's hands, you will invite the Spirit into their lives. Then they will know that this is the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. Plain and simple.
And God even promises the missionaries that if we are worthy, we will have that power and authority. That's all there is to it! I LOVE being a missionary, I can't say that enough!

We had stake conference yesterday and it was all in English (i don't know why they do that, more than 1/2 the people don't fully understand it all) but i was able to get something out of it! Our bishop's wife spoke on not getting discouraged my favorite line from a personal story she told was "well, let's start again, God is with us" What happens when we fall short or make a mistake? I'll tell you one thing, that is not a win for Satan....that is a minor bump in the road that gives you something to push off from when you get up to keep going! He does not win until we let him put the cords of discouragement around our necks. And how he loves to bind us chains and cords. Start again, keep going, it's not impossible, no matter how many times we mess up our Father is right there to support us and forgive us. He will brush us off and comfort us. Again with the scriptures, He always, always tells His children "nevertheless, my arm of mercy is stretched out still" We are never too deep to be saved by His mercy. It reaches to the very depths of our souls, and we will always be led back into the light. I can testify of that with every part of my body. The healing power of the Savior is REAL and it's for you and me.

Thank you all for your love and support, I can't ever say that enough :) I love you all so so so much! And Bishop, thank you for the encouraging words!! You are an awesome bishop for the pioneer ward--we would be lost without you! Even me, 7000 miles away from home!

Lahat ng pagmamahal ko,
Sis Carroll

No comments: