Wednesday, February 24, 2016

 "Sapang Palay... Exactly what I expected the Philippines to be like"

I realized that I haven't been very fair with sending a letter for the blog much, but I'm sorry. I have 2 hours at a computer cafe and have many people to write personally which I feel is very important. I also haven't been fair in sharing what my area is like here in the Philippines. It is called Sapang Palay and its the province area, so i guess you could say more ghetto than the city. It is beautiful here. The amount of trees and plants its crazy and such a beautiful sight to see. This area is exactly what I expected the Philippines to be like. A whole lot of walking up and down, we are in a mountain region where as the city you are on flat ground for most part, to explain how much we walk bot of my big toe toe nails have fallen off, but they have grown back remarkably fast which is nice. Our house is very nice. A lot of the houses here are mad of sticks cardboard and tarps, whatever they can find basically. So we are blessed to have a nice 3 bedroom with kitchen shower and bathroom. Toilet paper exists but there id no point, there is no flushing in almost all the places? homes i have been to. We use a bucket of water and a tavo which is a nice big scooper and use your left hand to wipe along with water from the scoop. its actually a lot more easy and efficient than using toilet paper having to wipe multiple times other than a one and done kinda thing, and probably cleaner. We walk about 5 mins down the main road and have an area called sampol, its a bunch of little markets set up as well as a couple grocery stores and bunch of random crap but some cool things too. fruits veggies meats you name it we got it, we have a drug store and very nice, expensive but useful when sick. Anytime we go through sampol it is a struggle because of the amount of people and there are still jeeps and buses that try to squeeze thru. I am very surprised I haven't been hit by a vehicle, mostly trikes here which is motorcycle with side car, but there have been countless close calls which has helped become aware at all times, haha its a great time.

President Nelson from the the Quorum of the twelve visited and spoke with our mission. I forgot to bring my notes but let me tell ya, did i learn something from him and his wife. You can feel the spirit as President Nelson speaks, His talk was simple yet so profound. One principal I took from his talk was missionaries can do hard things. There have been many times in the past where apostles and prophets

have been tested and have completed what was asked of them in true faith and courage. We as missionaries can do hard things, we have Scriptures to let us know of that. It was reassuring hearing it from President Nelson, something about it coming from him really sticks with a person, I noticed missionaries changed on the bus ride home from the bus ride there, as well as my self. This work isn't easy but its exactly what the Lord wants from us. TO SERVE, when we serve others only then will we find ourselves when we are looking for others to help and serve.

This time here has been the time of my life. I am so happy to be here doing what we are doing, I have never felt so much happiness doing anything in my life. This mission is a testimony builder to me in so many ways. My invitation to you is to look for others to serve. I know many of you already do but sometimes we get to lazy or tired when people truly need help. Be yourself, have fun we have this life here for a reason, use it to your full ability, Find God, invite him into your life and he will be there and so happy that you have done so. I love you all and thank you for the love and support thru email. These emails I read bring smiles to my faces seeing others grow in this time while I'm here truly makes me happy.

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