Monday, August 11, 2014

Tiwala at Pag-asa

Happy Monday!
    Once again I would like to apologize for how all over the place last email was. Let's hope this week makes a little more sense. I have more pictures I want to send though! So it may be a few less words than usual haha. The title this week is tiwala at pag-asa. This means trust and hope. To me, these are mostly just beautiful words that have beautiful meaning. But the longer I am here, the more I realize just how important it is for us to develop hope and trust especially in missionary work.
     So this was another great week here in Burnham! Sad to say, it was probably my last full week here. Transfers will be this week Thursday and I really feel like it's my time to go. Which is sayang (too bad) because I am really getting along with Sister Nott and I really love this area. But I would be excited to go to a new place and get to know new people. Also I am ready to get back down to the lowlands! Baguio is so beautiful and is truly a unique experience, but I'm ready to go back down :)
     In this week Sister Nott and I found many new investigators including a family! It's all really exciting and we will see how quickly they will begin to progress. As missionaries, we are told to BRT when we first meet people. This means build a relationship of trust. It's funny trying to build a relationship with complete strangers. Especially as a missionary in a place like the Philippines. There are sooo many different religions here that having missionaries in your home isn't too unique or weird. This makes it nice and easier to be accepted into a home. But then, getting the people to take us serious is where it gets hard. They usually sit us down and then offer us a mirianda. That's what Philippinoes use to describe a snack but sometimes is like a full on meal. But the typical mirianda consists of soft drinks and crackers or biscuits of some sort. Then they will just chat and chat with you like there's no tomorrow haha. They love talking to foreigners as well so that's a plus for Sister Nott and I.
     But how do we slip in that we are missionaries of the true, restored Church of Jesus Christ and we want to share this beautiful and essential message in order to give them the happiness that they deserve in this life and in the life to come? I am still not sure the best way to do this. But I can testify that no matter how hard we try to convince them that we are different, or that we are the only people sharing the fullness of the truth, our words will be empty unless we have the companionship of the spirit. I may have shared this before but I remember in a talk given to us in the MTC. The speaker quoted the saying, "a fish is the last one to know it's wet". He said that missionaries can sometimes be like that with the spirit. We can be so fully surrounded and engulfed in the spirit that sometimes we forget that we even have it. Why are missionaries so lucky to have the spirit with them on such a regular basis? I realized the answer to this question yesterday at church in our lesson about sacrifice.
     Brother Tom, our gospel principles teacher taught us about how key sacrifice is to being worthy of anything spiritual. The reason we fast is to become more sensitive to the spirit. The reason we are asked to give 24 hours to the Lord on Sunday by keeping the Sabbath day holy is to help us remain worthy of the spirit each week. Day after day as members of this church we are asked to make sacrifices. I wonder how willing we are to make them. But if we think about being asked to sacrifice as an invitation to be more sensitive to the spirit and have it's companionship more fully, I would hope we would become more willing to make such sacrifices. Lastly, making sacrifices will build our trust and hope in Christ and His great sacrifice He made for all of us. It's funny how if you think enough about any principle of this gospel, it may seem hard or pointless at first. But in the end it always is for our benefit. My invitation to you all is to try harder this week to attain trust and hope in our Savior Jesus Christ. As you do so, see if you are quicker to make sacrifices, or feel a stronger sense of the spirit with you. It will happen! :)
      Besides these things I've learned this week, Sister Nott and I had a great time visiting with our investigators and less actives. Not anything huge happened though so if it's alright I'll just send some pictures! I love you all! This weeks email was a little different but I hope you get something out of it. Take care and have a great week.
Sister Sawada

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