Kumusta!? Alam niyo ba na kayo ang pinakamagandang pamilia sa buong mundo? Namimiss ko kayo araw araw. How are you?! It's been a great week here in the Philippines (every week is great). I'm glad to hear that all is well for you guys. 75 miles? I'm impressed mom and dad. I've got some pretty amazing parents. I'm excited to be able to ride in the Best Dam Bike ride next year. Speaking of which, Bob, can you do me a huge favor and put together some sort of work out plan for me? These are my resources: Jump rope, perfect pushup, exercise bands, yoga mat and a rock solid body. That would be awesome if you could send me something. I miss organized exercise. Well I guess I’ll go ahead and dive into this past week. It's been pretty epic.
I'll start with one of my favorite men (no homo). King Magalig. Seriously, he's the man. We taught him a couple times this last week and he is just loving the gospel. One of those lessons was the word of wisdom. He's been a smoker for numerous years. At one point he was smoking a pack a day. We had a great lesson and by the end of the lesson he was excitedly telling us how he truly wants to stop. We created a plan and he's well on his way. He even reported in our last lesson that he's been teaching all of his coworkers about the Word of Wisdom. He's so prepared. King told us this last week that his house feels different whenever we're there. Gumagaan daw ang pakiramdam niya. It makes him happier and changes his attitude throughout the rest of the day. He works at a Mexican Restaurant that Elder Diamse and I are hittin up later today. Partly to say hi to King and partly because I love Mexican food more than words can describe. It'll be an adventure.
Went on exchanges this past week with a new missionary in our zone. It was way fun. Reminded me of my first area and the great/frustrating experiences that come with being a new missionary. It's amazing how much you grow and learn over the years. Quite crazy.
We had our first flood of the year!! The raining season is upon us! As we were walking to an appointment, all of the sudden the windows of heaven were opened and "the rain came tumbling down. The rain came down and the floods came up." We took cover in a member’s house while the streets around us began to become rapid moving rivers. The gross thing about the floods is they occur when the sewers reach their maximum capacity. As a result, the water from the sewers brings other undesirable substances. The water is literally black. Not only that, but it also causes the cockroaches to flee to the surface. Gross. It was an adventure. The first of many.
Had a cool experience the other day. In our nightly planning, we were inspired to plan a visit to one of our members we don't visit too often. The next day when we visited him, he expressed to us that he was praying that we would visit him and was even thinking about calling to ask us to come share with him. He was going through some hard times and we were really able to help him out. Really goes to show that Heavenly Father is conscious of all of his children and leads us to those that need our help. When I say "us" I’m not only talking about his missionaries. Every single one of us has been given the opportunity to care for our brothers and sisters around us and should strive to recognize any prompting to offer a helping hand. Random thoughts about members, friends, family members, or neighbors are actually not random at all. They are divine promptings leading us to those in need. Follow them. If you question whether they are from the spirit, just act to find out. If they cause you to do something good, don't hesitate. One of my favorite quotes from conference: "Tomorrow you might not remember the nice things you said today, but the receiver might cherish them for a lifetime." Don't pass up the opportunity.
Elder Diamse went on a referral chase that resulted in a man that is prepared for the gospel. It all started with an OYM. He wasn't interested. He told us to visit his friend. We did. His friend wasn't interested. His friend then told us to visit a man down the street. We did. He was prepared. He's a young father and is looking for direction in his life. We'll be giving it to him.
We have an investigator who is just a great lady. Her name is Elsi. We love her and she loves us. She told us that every time that she sees us she gets super excited. She told us that she sometimes sees us as she's looking out her window. She always says a little prayer that we'll come back and visit her. I just love her. When we knock on the gate, she comes out with the biggest smile on her face and sometimes skips to the door. Gotta love not only being a missionary, but also a friend.
That about wraps up this week. I sure love being a missionary. There are moments where it's extremely difficult to continue. However, the enabling power of the atonement always takes over and you find motivation where you thought there was none. The times when it gets the hardest are the times it's the most worth it. One may might say it's like a 75-mile bike ride. Sometimes we're faced with a steep hill and we feel like we can't push any further. Right after we've put in our very last effort, we feel a hand on our back that gives us the extra strength to continue climbing till we reach the top. We then realize that we're never riding alone. I love you guys.