Friday, March 13, 2015

Jan. 26, 2015 --- Chickens Perching While We're Preaching....

Hello Hello!!!

As always lot of funny things happened but here's the top three....
1) During every single lesson with Tatay Jun (a recent convert) when we ask him who should pray he points at me and just says "the Americano" and chuckles to himself every single time.  And when we read from the scriptures he always has me read it so I can practice my Tagalog.  Haha he a super funny and super cute old man!
2) THIS WAS ACTUALLY NOT FUNNY, JUST HORRIFYING: As we were walking, I thought a leaf fell on me, until it started crawling on my neck.  Then I tried to smack away whatever this HUGE bug was, but then it landed on my shirt and it was a COCKROACH!!!  The size of my thumb!  AH I wanted to cry!
3) Many people we teach have chickens and during the opening prayer of one of the lessons, one of the chickens named Ikay jumped up on my lap!!  Then during the lesson, Ikay jumped up on my foot and just perched there nestled up to my leg.  Haha the animals here are one of a kind.

I don't have my planner with me and I don't really remember what exactly happened this week but, yesterday was definitely one for the books!!!  Naturally, as with every Sunday mornings, we started out at church.  We have an investigator, Rovi, who we've been teaching for a couple weeks and always invite to church.  He never really gives a "real" answer about whether or not he'll come, but yesterday HE CAME!!  We were so excited!  And then, there's a 15-year-old girl, Jonabel, who we haven't even taught yet, we've just gave her a little overview about the Restoration of the Gospel, but she came to church too!  She's so absolutely the sweetest girl, always smiling, and interested in learning.  It was great having her come.  I think my favorite part though was when we took her to the Young Women's class.  Jonabel was a little shy and nervous about coming to a church where she didn't know anyone, but all of the young women were so inviting and excited to meet her.  Afterwards we were asking her how church went and when she told us about Young Women's she just told us she met a lot of really fun friends and is excited.  Young Women - you really do have such an influence, so make sure to use it for the best!! :)  I can't wait to really start teaching her!  

After church though wasn't as great for the looooooooooongest time.  The people we were going to teach were all sick or gone or had some kind of excuse for not listening.  Or the people we met on the street would refer us to the home of someone and when we went there the kids told us that the person was actually super it was just one of those blah kind of couple hours.  Plus, my bag was super heavy.  Which was really weird because I had the exact same stuff in it as any other day...I was so confused.  I was trying to think of what I had in there that was making it so heavy because I had all the same things as usual: planner, notebook, pens, Missionary Handbook, a couple of papers, my Book of Mormon, plus an Aklat ni Mormon to give away.  I was so confused why I was heavy and trying to think of something I could take out.  Then I realized what it was, Ang Aklat ni Mormon and I knew I needed to give it away real soon.  So Sister Bautista and I talked to the next person we saw.  Her name is Norma and she was super excited to talk to us.  Then her husband, Dan, came out and was very willing to talk too and had fun taking pictures of his wife and the American haha they invited us in and we taught them.  It was awesome!  The Spirit was SO strong.  They have such a desire to learn and had so many questions about the gospel and especially Ang Aklat ni Mormon.  Clearly, right before we met them, my bag got real heavy right then for a reason!! 

Honestly, I was absolutely for sure the day couldn't get any better than that moment.  It is such a blessing to have people who are so prepared put in right in our paths.  After leaving that lessons absolutely elated, we went to our next lesson which was with a man we met a couple weeks ago.  His name is Boyet, we met him on the street for maybe 20 seconds because he was in a hurry to get to a basketball game (contrary to the typical Filipino body type, he's pretty tall and looks like an NBA star), so we weren't sure about how interested he was,  if he'd be home, or where he even lived.  A bunch of little kids ran up to us for an "apir" (literally pronounced just like "up-here" and which is what they call high-fives) and started talking to us/asking us where we were going.  We told them we were going to Boyet's and if they knew where it was.  Apparently he's a super awesome guy in the neighborhood because all of the little kids knew exactly who we were talking about and led us straight to his house, plus, he was there!!  He was super willing to listen this time and invited us in to teach him and his daughter.  We noticed a picture of Jesus Christ on the wall, and realized it was actually a page from the pamphlet about the Restoration of the Gospel.  We asked him about the picture, if he's ever met with the missionaries, where he got it kind of a thing...he didn't even know where it was from.  The message of the Restoration has been in his house for years and he didn't even know it! ;)  As we taught him the Spirit again was so strong, so, so strong!!!  When Boyet was a kid, his dad read the Bible a lot especially with him so he was vary familiar with the Bible and it's teachings.  He also knows that his past religions don't even follow many of the teachings of the Bible.  During the lesson he had so many questions for us and right when we told him about the Book of Mormon he immediately asked us if he could get one!  Sister Bautista and I are beyond excited to continue teaching Boyet and his family (who one by one, joined in on the lesson until almost all of them were there listening)! !! :)

It is absolutely amazing and such an blessing being able to meet people who have been so prepared by the Lord to learn about the Gospel right now.  I am so grateful for the way that Heavenly Father guides each of our lives.  Everyday I love the Philippines more and more, especially as I see my purpose being fulfilled.  Some days can be long, or hard, even though I'm only at the start of my short 18 months as a full-time missionary, missionary work is the absolute most satisfying and fulfilling thing I have ever done in my life.  I am so grateful for the gospel being in my life.

I love you all....almost as much as I love the gospel ;)

Sister Marshal

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