The weeks go by fast but the days have a way of dragging their feet. My companion says it’s because I'm counting the days, but that doesn’t really factor in as I don’t know what number I'm supposed to be on right now. I've never been very good with numbers… anyways we got punted (had appointments that fell through) so we did a lot of finding this week. Like 60+ finding… which is fun to say but it's killer on the feet and the shoulder. I got to weigh my bag today and apparently it's about 5 kilos. That’s heavy. And it's just sitting on my shoulder all day because we can't seem to get a sit-down teaching appointment. But it's all good, its a vocational hazard.
I’ve got a few fun stories for this week one about Honey Rose, Michaella, and one about Edita. So Honey Rose is just taking off! She is reading and praying and had a rather interesting question. So before I get to her question I should explain at the beginning of every lesson we always ask how they enjoyed their reading and if they have anything they learned or wanted to share. There are two usual responses:
Investigator “Oh yeah I read, I learned a lot.”
Missionaries: “What would you like to share out of what you learned?”
Investigator: *suddenly gets shy and has nothing to say
Investigator: “I'm too busy, I didn’t read.”
Missionaries: *begin to read with them where the assignment was for them to read and explain we are not here to push our religion down their throat but if they want to know if what we are saying is true they have to try it out themselves. *
However, this is how it went with Sister Honey Rose:
Missionaries: “How was your reading?”
Honey Rose: “Great! I'm on page 12!”
Missionaries: That is awesome!! Do you have anything you’d like to share, or do you have any questions?
Honey Rose: …actually I do. Why did Nephi kill Laban?
Bam. Sister Banham looked over to me (Honey Rose was flipping to the verse where Nephi beheads Laban) and the look basically said “awe heck to the yeah” which was how I was feeling. We went on to tell her about how God had commanded him to do so to ensure that they had the scriptures- which turned into an incredible discussion about the scriptures. She even said “When I feel bad I just go and read and I feel so calm.” That is the spirit! So you can imagine the lesson was just incredible. We actually ended up teaching about The Word of Wisdom (how we are to take care of our bodies by eating healthfully, and not using certain things such as alcohol, cigarettes, coffee, tea, and harmful and illegal drugs.) She was surprised we included coffee with alcohol and illegal drugs but said “I used to just drink hot milk in the morning- I think I’ll just do that now.” She felt the spirit in the lesson and was immediately able to choose what she wanted. She may experience some withdrawal but she is very determined to follow the commandments of God. She just amazes me.
Then there is Michaella, when she told us about her reading she went on and on about what she learned and how she applied it in her life already and the blessings she has already seen. And she had a big karate tournament planned for Sunday and her mother was arguing with her trying to get her to go but she bore her testimony to her mother that no matter what she was going to go to church because of the feelings she had there and she prayed about her choice to go to church and on Sunday morning as she was dressed and heading out the door to go to church she got a text from her sparing teacher saying the tournament had been moved! When she told us about it she cried saying how she knows this church is true. It was a super powerful lesson, and she is teaching us more than we are teaching her! *see attached picture. She is just awesome.
Editha also amazes me. She is a bit older and is hard for her to read but she reads every day and she said at first reading caused her a slight headache but now it's easier and she feels like she is being strengthened. She is good friends with a part-member part non-member family that we are teaching/activating and she had planned to ride with them since they have a car (having a car in the Philippines is an extreme luxury) but that family went down to Manila and so she walked about ½ a kilometer before she was able to catch a trycee to get to church. She said she enjoyed the talks and recognized a not of people- I believe she listed off 3 names, and is excited to come back! She is awesome and I hope we will be able to teach her grandson who sometimes ‘steals the book of Mormon and reads all night.’
Over all it's just that once you start reading the Book of Mormon and really try you will receive the blessings. I don’t convert, I just try my best to get people to read.
I should also mention that we had a fun time… yeah so we walked up to one of our investigators we have been teaching for a week or so and he just straight up said “This will probably be the last time you come here.”
“I was listening to the radio and this guy said Mormons weren’t true and I felt enlightened so I don’t want to listen to you anymore.” We bore our testimony of Joseph Smith and invited him to keep reading from the Book of Mormon and he said he would. THEN we ran into him again later that day and he said “I keep thinking about what I said and I can't get this bad feeling to go away- so I guess you can keep teaching me.” Then he just smiled.
So life is just all hekkledy-peggledy and I have tons of other things I’d like to say but I’m flat out of time.
From the sister who can't think of a way to sign off