So yesterday marked the end of 19 months and that leaves me now with 5 to go:/ It is weird to think how quick everything is going! It seems like my time here in San Nicolas has been very brief and all summed up in just a few words—busy kaayo!
This past week was same old same old. We went on 2 exchanges with Elders in my zone last week - Elder Mora and Elder Murdock. When I worked with Elder Mora I met this RMP (returned mission president). He was a mission president in the Tacloban mission in 96-99. He was awesome! He told me about how he has about 15 people who he is working with to refer to the Elders. If only I had one of those in my area! We call them an Amulek member - someone who continues to work and help out the missionaries. My time with Elder Murdock was rather simple and good:). Working with other Americans is a bit different because all of a sudden everyone thinks that you don’t speak Cebuano, yet I have been here for 2 months and have talked with many of these people. Oh and all the girls go gaga when we walk by. It has its ups and downs haha.
Investigators are still investigating. We have a tatay, Rico, who came to church for his 3rd time. He is doing very well! We also have a sister, Analyn. She lives in her born again church which makes going to church a bit difficult but she already tells us that she is receiving answers to her prayers that this message we bring is true. We also received a referral from my MTC comp, nga si Elder Gali. This part member family goes to church in Kamputaw (the Temple area) and the husband and oldest son are members and those two live in Elder Gali’s area. The wife and eldest daughter are great and since they live in my area so guess who gets to teach them? I see no issue coming from them and expect that they will progress very well! We also have a few new investigators from that house (cuz they live in a school boarding house) that we will start teaching. Also we got us a new recent convert that moved in. I've never really talked to anyone who is "high" but boy is it weird! He relapsed right after his baptism and has only been falling ever since. He is fun!
Other than confiscating horror movies, helping fighting companionships, and uplifting the stressed, all is good here:). We have a super busy next week! We have a Zone Conference this Friday in which Sister Bonnie Oscarson will attend. We have MLC this Monday and Tuesday which means ZTM on Thursday and transfers the following Thursday! The time is going and I ain't so sure where! I have only 3 transfers left:( Time to stop running and start flying!
One last thought, I have been pondering a bit about what Abinadi said to King Noah and his Priests. A selection of verses that has caught my attention is in Mosiah 14:2-5. It hints that the Saviors suffering was more than just in Gethsemane and on the cross but that a large part of it was simply His whole life. He was the kid pushed in the lockers at school. He was the kid who was called ugly or fat or whatever the insult may be (Hey Joe!) (vs 2). He was the kid who when walking down the streets all the people turned from Him and want nothing to do with Him. Left alone to suffer and probably spent most of his time in suffering alone. (vs 3). Mocked and "esteemed... stricken, smitten of God" (vs 4) as if to say He was cursed by a god and that assumed because of the trials that He faced. And because of all that He felt in his mortal life, he can really understand what we go through, not just because some super suffering hit him at one period of his life, but he can comfort us through our trials because He himself lived it. These verses tie in well with Alma 7:11-13. See also 1 Nephi 11:31-34; 19:9, D&C 19:16-19, and 3 Nephi 9:13-14.
The Savior is misunderstood by most people in the world. He is as 1 Nephi 19:9 states "[judged]...to be a thing of naught" or as translated in Cebuano "[gihukom]... nga usa ka butang nga walay bili" (judged to be a thing of no worth). It really takes time to understand who He was but as 3 Nephi 9:14 states, His arms are open to all who come unto Him. I myself have seen His hand in my life these past 19 months. I cannot really express all that I have felt. For the past 2 weeks whenever I even talk about a simple thing about the Savior to investigators I always get a bit teary. I know He is there, He lives and loves me. He is our God, sent to earth to save us and all we need to do is follow the promise given by Alma in Alma 32:28. Take a small seed of faith and try His word. If you don't cast it out, He will grow it until you can say like me that you know He lives as well. 1 Samuel 3:9 - "speak Lord, they servant heareth!" I wish that we would all at least try the promise.
I am still glad to hear that everyone is still safe. I wish the best for everyone back at home! I love you all and can't wait to see you here at the end of the school year!