February 17, 2014

Life As A Real Missionary...Part #29

Magandang umago po para sa akin! magandang gabi sa inyo lahat!

Kumusta pamilya thomas? Man, do I have a lot to report, I don't even know where to start. first of all, I have to say........

I THINK I HAVE STARTED TO FIGURE THIS ALL OUT. Something amazing happened this week, a miracle of sorts. It has changed everything. Let me just tell you this lovely story.

So, after days of tears and prayers, I finally received a very strong prompting to ask my DL for a blessing.  I hesitated because, well, I didn't want to be "one of those sisters."  Ha, but this I finally did and he of course accepted willingly. He had no idea why, or anything. So, last Wednesday, after district meeting, he gave me a blessing and it was the most powerful blessing I can remember experiencing. First of all, my DL, Elder Cash will totally be an apostle one day. So that factor was helpful, because he was so in tune with the Spirit when he gave me the blessing.  When he began the blessing and called out my name, tears immediately flowed (because I am a boob).I was filled with love from my Father in Heaven, it was as if His arms were around me.  As the blessing went on I was told that my Heavenly Father was pleased with me. Then the blessing continued to talk about events that have occurred throughout my life, and in my mission.Elder Cash had no idea about what I went through at the beginning of my mission, he had no knowledge of my illness! But, the Lord spoke through him to me and let me know that I have been tested in many ways; for the benefit of others and for my own growth. I was told that I needed to endure and to stop expecting more from myself than He is expecting. I was promised that if I would endure and have faith in Him and in myself, the blessings would come. He told me that everything I have experienced thus far in my life, and on my mission is preparation for an important mission I will fulfill at a later time and that He wanted me to continue to learn and teach and build His kingdom in the Philippines. I was told that there was still ONE person in the Philippines that could only be converted through my love and Spirit.  I need to continue to prepare, learn, and move forward. Then he closed by assuring me again that He loved me, He is always there, and that He was pleased with my efforts so far.

I can't even describe to you the feelings that flooded my entire soul. The tears wouldn't stop. My whole body was literally shaking the whole time! Even Elder Cash said his whole body had been shaking and that he had never performed a more powerful blessing. He thanked me for giving him the opportunity to do so. I didn't have the words to thank him in return.  I am grateful for his worthiness and for being in tune with the Spirit.  It was absolutely amazing. So, I have chosen to heed my Heavenly Father's counsel and move forward in faith.  No surprise, but everything has changed. Everything has become much more clear. Things I worried about before have been put to rest. Lessons this week have been powerful, and even if those we are teaching haven't chosen the Gospel yet, small miracles have been taking place everyday.  AND our numbers increased drastically! It has been amazing. I can't even explain how my heart has changed. I realized my heart was hardened against the healing power of the Atonement. I was condemning myself because I was convinced I did not deserve to be forgiven or loved. But, the Lord literally spoke to me and that is something I cannot deny. My spirits are lifted and the work is good.

This morning I woke up and the first thought I had was, "I love being a missionary."

I feel wonderful. Thank you family, for all your prayers, words of encouragement, research, uplifting letters, prayers and tears on my behalf.

All these people say I am "influencing them," But really, it is the Lord. He is the one changing people.  He is the one who makes us stronger and better.

The work is going forward in Tarlac, slowly, but surely. Brother OCampo really wants to be baptized!  Guess what, he says he knows the Law Of Chastity is true and he will follow it! That lesson was awesome.  The bishop came with us when we taught him that lesson and he shared his strong testimony of the Law of Chastity and how his life  and the lives of many members have been changed and better because of the blessings of the Law of Chastity.  Brother OCampo wants those blessings he agrees that the Lord's plan is true and he wants to have the gospel in his life. He can't wait till he can start coming to church. We are working on that.  Pray that the man he takes care of feels better soon so that he can have his schedule changed and he can attend church! He is really excited for his baptism date of March 22. He has it written and starred on his mini calendar!

There are some really stubborn less active members in this area, however, I feel more equipped now with power from on high. HA! Plus, I am just as stubborn as any offended less active member of the church and so I don't quit. they try to win or at least make me give up, but we all know that just isn't possible. (;

My prayer is that the work can continue to roll on in this area. I  hope that whatever seeds we plant will someday be harvested. I hope that all these wonderful people will realize that the Lord loves them and
what the gospel has to offer them. The Atonement is available to all of us. There are no conditions, requirements, or applications. It is there always for everyone. I know that if we turn to Him, He will take care of us. This I know to be true. He is my Savior, my Redeemer, and the head of this great and true Church. Life is good. The mission is fantastic.

To all of this I testify.

I love you all! Hannah looked beautiful in her dress! Bowen is such a stud. hahaha! Courtney is awesome. I have been praying everyday for her! I know that she will be blessed with all that she desires scholastically! I have full confidence in her.

i love you all!

Mahal ko kayo lahat!

-Sister Thomas

These are the beautiful people that I am blessed to serve!  This is the Loaquin family.  They have the cutest kids ever!  I love this family!

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