Sunday, August 11, 2013

Mahal ko ang Tagapagligtas ko...and that's why I'm here.

Hey Everybody!

"I can smile!"
So this week…crazy stuff! Tuesday was a pretty normal day, though I started to become frustrated with the language then. I realized something though. Even though I can’t really speak this language, I can smile! And I have a goofy smile, so when I smile at people they always smile back, I suspect because they’re laughing inside at this American who is happy for no apparent reason! So until I can speak this language, I’ll stick to smiling! 

Wednesday we had our district meeting, which went great! After our district meeting we went out to this barangay, which is just like a neighborhood or borough, which was a bunch of rice fields with a house every kilometer or so. AND IT WAS SO HOT. I cannot remember a time when I was sweatier than that. It was crazy. We were teaching this one less active where we were sitting in the shade, and when we finished the lesson after about 25 minutes of not moving I was still SO HOT. Oh my gosh, but it was all good! We were proclaiming the word after all! Later it finally cooled off, but we kept getting punted so we walked most of that day. 

Thursday was the complete opposite, where it rained like nothing I have ever experienced before. We only taught one lesson that whole day, and we had to take shelter for a while under the roof of a less active member. We eventually went out, but got turned away. I was drenched, despite using an umbrella…we left that barangay a little bit earlier because we ran out of people to teach there. 

That night we went to a less active’s house that is close to us.  They are middle class so they speak some English. The mom felt like attacking our doctrine a little bit and kept saying that the gospel was that Jesus is the Christ. She was right in a sense, but would not budge from that. I felt inspired to say something, but I didn’t know how to say part of it in Tagalog.  I started bearing testimony, then looking at the mom I said, “Mahal ko ang Tagapagligtas ko,” which means “I love my Savior,” then, in English I said, “And that’s why I’m here.”
The spirit was strong there, and I knew that it had touched her. My companion finished the lesson with conviction, and we left. It was the first time I felt like a real asset out here in the mission field.

 Friday zone leaders went on exchanges, so I got to know Elder Roberts, native of Rexburg, a bit. He told me all sorts of crazy Angeles mission stories, which got me excited and a bit worried. We straight up had a hard day on Friday, without much success. We got turned away a lot, and the lessons we did teach to less actives they didn’t really feel it. 

Saturday we got some new investigators! One is a girl my age, going to college, and studying marketing of all things! That was a great way to strike up a conversation (Thanks Dad!) After a nice conversation, we had a great discussion about the restoration and prophets. She has a great knowledge of the Bible, and she was very engaged in the lesson. I am very excited to continue teaching her. Sunday was good, and we got another new investigator! He has been to church a couple of times with a friend, and I got to commit him to baptism! YEEE-AAAHHHH! I was so psyched! The rest of the day was good with the lessons we taught, but that was definitely the highlight! And that takes us to now!

And now for some things that don’t really have a place:

I am too big for this country! I constantly have to duck and squeeze through things, and my shirts get fairly dirty because of it.

The phrase “ants in your pants” is a bit too literal here, and I’ll leave it at that!

People here have a different conception of decency. For example, one of our new investigators just started nursing her baby during the lesson. Yup, right in front of us. Yeah…Another time, when we were helping a member move, there was about a nine year old boy just standing outside his house stark naked, just watching. Alright! Something I’ll have to get used to! But it’s all good!

I’m growing a lot and learning a lot, and trying to be the best missionary I can. And at the end of the day if you can say you tried your best to invite others to come unto Christ and you tried your very best to be a good missionary, you can go to bed with a smile on your face. My goal is just to do what I can, and try to figure out how to do more every day, and that keeps me busy and happy! 

I love you all, I miss you all, but I don’t want to come home anytime soon!

--Elder Christensen

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