Called to Serve

Called to Serve

Tuesday, August 18, 2015


August 18, 2015

What can I say? Where do I begin? Lets start with Manila.

We arrived at midnight here and everybody in my group of traveling missionaries was dead tired - haha. The city smells very weird. The food is...rice - haha. The Manila Temple, which is right across the street from the MTC, is very BEAUTIFUL! We did not do a session there because it is under construction but we got to walk around and it is gorgeous! We then woke up at 3:00 a.m on the 12th to fly to Cebu. I talked with this catholic guy and this non-religious girl the entire flight and we had a great talk. I was not able to discuss much about the church because they were devout to their own religion but I was able to make two friends:) The missionary purpose is "Invite others to come unto Christ". Even though I wasn't able to convert them or even get in a lesson, I was able to extend the invitation to come unto Christ which is mas importante! 

I met President McCurdy and his wife. They are very nice people and remind me a lot of uncle Brent - haha! I feel as if I was able to connect easily with the president and that our relationship will extend far beyond our missions (not just because he lives in Twin Falls XD). On my birthday, the day we arrived in Cebu, we got to go through the Cebu Temple! We got to do a session and what can I say? What a blessing to do so on my birthday! 

I was assigned my new kauban, Elder Noprada, at the Presidents house which is RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET FROM THE TEMPLE! He is very nice and as dedicated to the work as I am:). He is a Filipino from Manila and he has been out a year. He sings very well. We were then assigned to our area, Toboso, which is 30 minutes away from the furthest mission from the mission home on the island of Negros. It took us 9 hours to travel to our house and I was VERY tired and a little sick. We have to drive to Escelante (the furthest mission) to do our shopping, have our zone meetings, drive the sisters to places (me and akong companion don't drive but we drive with the ZL). Me and my companion walk EVERYWHERE! oh and take the bus if there is one . 

Last night we witnessed a tender mercy of the Lord. It gets dark here (night time dark) around 6:30. We were walking home at 8 and we were 4 miles out from our home. The buses had stopped coming and no cars we up and about. We had began our walk home when a light came from behind us. A caravan was coming. We waved our hands hoping there would be a bus or jeepney. A truck stopped and offered us a ride. We got in the bed and was able to see who had offered us a ride. It was a caravan of the Filipino Army! We rode home with the Filipino soldiers... Of all things to help us after a very long day and to save us from over an hour walk through the bukid (jungle/ forest/ wilderness etc) was the army. Interesting. 

Speaking of the army, when we were in Manila, we got to go to the American WW2 cemetery there. There were, to take a guess, about 10000 graves there and it was all very well kept. I found a couple graves of Medal of Honor recipients. What a great honor to receive. 

We hardly eat here. We are out and about A LOT (I wonder why?). I'm not hungry BTW... The food is, to say the least, plain. We don't eat a whole lot and nor do the people here eat a lot. I have taught many lessons in a bamboo house; one room, no water, no bathroom, no kitchen- just a fire pit outside, and this is the condition of just about everybody I have taught. I have already been here for one week and the lessons of humility, gratitude, and selflessness have been made manifest to me. Many people live here and the have NOTHING! yet are happy with their families. I never really understood how third world the Philippines really is!

We as Americans and first world people truly do not understand what we have been blessed with. To take a WARM SHOWER is a blessing! To have a toilet that flushes and (sad to say) to NOT have to use a pail of water and a hand to "clean yourself" is a blessing from God himself to us. To have an oven to bake bread, a pillow to sleep with and, for here, a fan to blow while you sleep are things the people here in my mission do not have that sadly even I have taken for granted. We have to specially buy the water that I drink as well. I have yet to meet one investigator whose teeth aren't rotting out of their head. To meet a family who doesn't share a single bed, a father whose job ISN'T to drive the pedicabs and transport people --- these people have what a first world person would consider to be NOTHING, yet they are happy with what they have, they do not complain about a thing, and their families are happy. The Filipino families consist of more than just the bana ug asawa and their kids. Friends are a huge part in families here and they are respected as such.

I have learned so much from one week here. Hopefully over the next 22 months I have left I can implement these humble Christlike attributes into my life so that when I return home I can be very thankful for what I have and never complain about any living condition I may live in. Trailer parks in the middle of nowhere America are more blessed than what I am currently living in and the conditions of those whom I serve, yet I see what is important. Families, your friends, your religion, protection from the elements- these are all things that matter most in our lives. As you, my family, continue on your lives just remember this, worldly things have NO priority over the Godly things. 

In my house we have many lizards roaming around. They eat the bugs that never seem to leave! We have a gecko in our house which is very loud, mouse in the kitchen and roosters EVERYWHERE! The Filipinos love cock fights. It smells funky here but hey? that's alright:) Every morning I go outside to the water well, draw up buckets of water, carry them into my house and bathroom and dump them on me. This is how I shower here. Same thing for the use of the restroom --get water and dump it down the toilet to flush. A very fun process haha. 

I love it here and the people are very nice. I can tell that this is going to be the best two years of my life! I wish the best for you all! You don't need to worry about me here on my mission, like I promised in my farewell talk "Bind me not to the pasture, chain me not to the plow. Set me free to find my calling and I'll return to you somehow". I promise that I will return safely! 

Never take anything for granted and love everybody that you see! When you lose yourself in the service of others you are able to forget your own pain and be able to bless the lives of others. Strive to serve because this is the best anti-depressant that I have found! I know this to be true.

I love you all!  
-Elder Morris

(This is a picture of my area! Very bukid right? A very convenient thing I have and a lot of people here have are the handkerchiefs to wipe away your  sweat! I sweat more than anything else that comes out haha (ewww!) 
I love you mom, dad, Hannah, Nick, Regan! I wish the best for you!)

No comments:

Post a Comment