My cousin Oliver was in Manila this past week for work and traveled to Talavera to see Dustin! The many miracles and tender mercies the Lord sends our way. We are truly blessed :) It is so neat that Oliver and Dustin were the ones to link our sides two sides of our families - they are both competitive athletes, and more importantly they both love the Lord! Thank you Oliver for reaching out and connecting with us!
I haven't listened to this week's recordings, so no report from those...
This has been an exciting week for me. I have really seen a lot of improvement in my Tagalog and also in my teaching ability. Or maybe the latter is just confidence, but regardless I am feeling better about it. I literally just had a light bulb go off in my head about the grammar and have made significant improvements and my sentences make a lot more sense to them. Ha they made sense to me before but now I understand MUCH better haha. Still have countless things to work on but it felt great to be able to get a key grammar rule down this week.
We also had a much better week in terms of teaching people. Our previous week we taught poorly I believe and only had 1 investigator attend church :( So this week we really focused on teaching short, powerful lessons. Where we don't try to go into as much depth about the topic but really testify and try to help them recognize the Spirit. We focused on commitments and following up. We are giving measurable commitments now and hopefully that yields some good results. However, the short, powerful lessons I believe worked as we had 5 investigators attend this week! So dramatic improvement :)
It is so great to watch people progress in the Gospel. We are having our first baptism this Saturday! His name is Anthony Acosta. He is 21 and has such strong faith. All he wants to do is follow Christ. He gave up coffee on the spot and drinks 'Milo' which is just a chocolate drink similar to Nesquick. Anyways, he is doing awesome and can't wait for him to join the Church. It is amazing to see people's willingness to change. Although some people have a really hard time, we can't give up on them. No matter what we need to always to try our best to see them as Christ does. He will never give up on us. He will always take us back with open arms. That is one thing I love about the Gospel. The knowledge that you have never gone too far. There is always a way back. We can all feel the weight of our burdens lifted. There is such a great power in the Atonement.
I met some crazy white guy here but I talk about it in the recordings so I won't go into much detail. But he believed that the world was owned by 13 people. He said that he moved from America to the Philippines 20 years ago just to avoid it! Crazy how mind washed people can get but he was 100% convinced. He was a nice guy though and it was really entertaining to listen to his theories of the world, and how the world began ad how it will end. Super fun :)
I am attaching some pics of my apartment. The front as I looked at it looks actually really nice!!! I was quite impressed because you can't really see the whole thing. But it looks like those hotels in Mexico! Then I took a picture from the back and it resembles a prison sort of...so it's great stuff :)
Anyways love you all! Super excited about the work out here and I am loving the work, people, and EVERYTHING (pretty much ;) ) about the mission. Love you all and thanks so much for the support. You are the best!!
|My cousin Oliver with Elder Watkins!|
|Front of Elder Watkins' apartment building|
|Back of apartment building...|
|Elder Watkins' feeling on top of the world...or dangling perilously from a high perch|