Monday, May 4, 2015

"Leave it all in the pool"

So the time is just flying by and I’ve started a bad habit of not writing anything down in my journal until Sunday or Monday.  But here we go!  Monday we had our crazy reports to do so we were in the computer shop for over 3 hours…Oh well!  It’s my last one!  Afterwards, we taught our eternagators, Nora and Allan, and had a really good lesson based around Ether 12:27.  We also taught Jess about receiving a calling and he’s totally ready.  Tuesday everything just worked!  We had two boys preparing to for missions, Moy and Ark, work with us!  We taught a new investigator, May who seemed to have a lot of promise!  We also stopped by Matthew and of course, he’s still awesome.  We taught Ligaya, who is our goal for June!  She’s progressing really well.  We taught Nanay Lolita, ate a quick dinner, and then went way out to Aguso.  There we taught Michelle, a less active, who we are now fairly certain was high on weed. It was really weird to say to least.  We visited with Harvey and Lorry again, but the highlight was when we visited the Odrial  family.  They shared with us why they became less active, and their youngest, Leah, hasn’t been baptized.  We set a date with her for June and they’re excited to come back to church!  

Wednesday we had district meeting.  Having Sister Penales and Elder Dejino there made it feel like déjà vu! 
Sister Penales, Elder Dejino and Elder C were also in a district together in Tarlac a year ago!
District pic
 In the afternoon we had good work again visiting our new investigator Kirby then Anthony, who is still awesome but hesitant, and Daisy, who is still so determined to be baptized!  She’s so golden and SO prepared.  After that we met up with Matthew and went over to the Smiths for dinner. We shared about fasting and we’re all fasting this Sunday that he’ll be able to be baptized, and that his life will get better and hopefully that he’ll get back to America.  And with the Smith family he had a good support system.  Lastly, we shared with our good buddy Al about being true at all times, because he’s going to work abroad next week. 

Thursday was weird.  I had the hardest time focusing on anything.  The entire day was weird, too!  We taught Brother Puno in the morning and he argued that not going to church isn’t a sin (we shared James 4:17).  We got super-ultra-mega punted in the afternoon, but we ended up teaching Evlo, who is one funny little less active kid.  We decided to go finding and we found an elderly Iglesia couple, and the man listened but the lady was inside fuming, so we made an early exit.  We then went to our investigators Crisylyn and Roger, but they weren’t home.  As we were walking away, we saw them at the end of the street, but they got shy and turned back.  Elder Nalumen suggested that we go around the block to run into them on accident.  We caught them and my companion was so funny, acting like nothing happened!  Well, we taught them and it was good!  I’m grateful Elder Nalumen is my companion because he knows how to have fun even in less than enjoyable situations.  We taught the WHOLE Victorio family as well!  The mom, dad and everyone!  We gave them The Family: A Proclamation to the World and challenged them to read it as a family. 
Friday was exchanges and Elder Van Tassell was my companion. He was in my zone back in Bongabon Zone and he’s now a new district leader!  He’s a great guy with a solid desire to serve.  I like him a lot! 
We taught Ligaya, who opened up to us about how she had been wronged by others before, but we were able to show her how living the gospel gives us peace and guidance and strength to forgive.  That was one of the better lessons of my mission.  We taught Matthew, and we had a hard time speaking English!  We brought along Al, and we taught Teresa AND she fed us dinner!  We taught Kirby, but it looks like he’s going to go back to Iglesia ni Cristo..Dang.  We stopped by Queendee and explained the Intro from the Book of Mormon, because she didn’t read, but she still has a lot of promise!  We taught Al himself last about seeking first the kingdom of God, as he left for Manila on Saturday then he flies to Kuwait on Sunday.  I’ll miss him.  But Friday was good.  It was a bit crazy, but we worked it out!

Saturday we exchanged back, then took care of some stuff for the zone. We taught Anthony, who had some concerns about the Apostasy, but we finally committed him to ask God if it’s true, come to church next week, and he finally accepted a baptismal goal date, sa June!  We taught Daisy the gospel of Jesus Christ and the Word of Wisdom.  But there’s a little problem there.   Sol, who referred her and takes her to church, is super offended by some members in Ward 4, so they’ve transferred their records to Ward 2.  So for now, Daisy’s going to church in Ward 2, which isn’t a problem now, but it might be when it comes to baptism and staying active in this church.  We’ll work it out.  We taught Sister Puno and her son, Rod, which was nice.  We showed the Restoration DVD to the Ferrer family…it really didn’t have much effect unfortunately.  They just said, “It’s possible God appeared to him.” 

Sunday!  Lots of people came to church!  Lorry, Sister Puno and even Sister Michelle came!  The Odrial family, along with our little investigator Leah, came.  And Matthew was there a half an hour early!  Daisy couldn’t get money from the ATM on Saturday, so she didn’t have money to get to church, but it’s ok!  She’s still on track for baptism on the 30th!  In the afternoon we visited one of the young men, Angelo, who’s been inviting us to come and teach his aunt.  They live super far away, but we scheduled it in.  They weren’t too terribly interested, but they’ll have us back next week!  Afterwards it was the monthly meeting with all the bishops in the stake, and boy did they have a lot of questions for us!  But it was alright.  Afterwards we went on splits and I worked with Bro. Isaiah, who leaves on his mission in July!  He’ll be a great missionary.  We taught Matthew then the Victorio family.  All in all it was a really good week!  Oh, and I forgot to say that I got Mom’s package!  Thanks a ton!  We’ve all but finished off the Starburst (Elder Nalumen’s a big fan).  As far as insights, I’ll attach a part from my departure questionnaire, where it’s the advice I would give to all new and old missionaries. 

Alright, this is it, one month.  All out sprint.  It’s like Dad used to say before my swim meets, to just leave it all in the pool.  I’m excited.  This is going to be the greatest month of my mission!

-Elder Christensen

His answer to the question, “What few words of advice would you share with the new arriving missionaries that would help them be successful in their mission?”,   from his departure questionnaire:

 “Just keep swimming.”  (1 Nephi 4:6-7)  Keep going!  God will help you!

“With great power comes great responsibility.”  (D&C 82:3)  You are a super hero now! 

Be obedient.  “Live long and prosper!”  (Alma 37:13)

OYM people!  On buses, trikes, jeepneys, on the street, and everywhere!  “Just do it.”

Love everyone, especially your companions.  “Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know which one you’re going to get.”  So why not love them all!  (Moroni 7:46-48)

Don’t bible bash!  “Apply this two word sermon: Stop it.”  (3 Nephi 11:29)

However magaling you are or aren’t, let your mission change you, and let the Lord, through His atonement “Fix You”.  (2 Cor. 5:17)

Never, ever forget that you’re “On Top of the World”, that you’re living the dream!  (D&C 58:16, D&C 45:62)

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