May 27, 2014

Life As A Real Missionary...Part #42

Dear Family, I am! Don't worry, I survived transfer week. At the transfer announcement last wednesday I was told I would be going to Mabalacat which is in the Angeles Zone! I was pretty excited about that. There is a lot of American influence in Angeles because of the air force base. Mabalacat is pretty far from Angeles City, but the influence is still pretty strong. I was told my new companion would be Sister Ponitini. I was a little nervous about that, I knew her from Camiling Zone. She is from Tonga and is a bit legendary in the mission (not always for good reasons). I was trying to go into it with a postitive attitude. I was so sad to say goodbye to Sister Peralta. Oh my, we have gotten so close and I just love her. But, guess what? Sister Peralta is training! That makes me a lola (grandma)! Haha! I am so proud. (:

On Thursday all the missionaries met in Tarlac for transfers. President Martino found me and pulled me aside.  He informed me that i had a "special calling" this transfer. Apparently my new companion has had problems her WHOLE mission (she goes home in august)!  She is still a junior companion and President Martino wants me to teach her so she can become a senior companion before she finishes her mission.  She has obedience issues, doesn't like to work, argues with all her companions, and so on.  She doesn't have the most positive attitude but she really wants to finish her mission.  President said that I was put with her to help her. I am supposed to help her enjoy the mission, not just endure it.  I need to help her understand the importance of obedience as well. He said he feels like my peacemaker qualities will influence her.

Great. Aaaaaahhhh!

Anyway, that has put some stress and worry on me. Since I have been in my new area things have been okay. Except we have probably argued about stupid little things every single day. Uggghhh, so much for being a peacemaker. I miss my sweet Anak, Sister Peralta. Sister Ponitini really is a sweet, fun person like all the islanders are, just really stubborn! It is ALWAYS her way, even if her way is not by the mission rules.  I,  however, will not put up with that. So, she is not always my biggest fan. Sunday morning the alarm went off at 6:30 AM and I rolled out of bed and prayed. When I was done, it was about 6:45 AM and my companion was still asleep, she hadn't even moved. So, I did what I was told to do and tried to wake her up. Gently at first, but she wouldn't respond so I shook her a little bit trying to get her up. Anyway, she FREAKED out. She screamed at me and told me to "shut my freaking mouth or she would punch me in the face." That was awesome!  I seriously was so mad. I have not been that quick to anger my entire mission. UGH! so, instead of getting her out of bed (I thought of you, mom, at camp at how you would loudly sing us out of bed), I sweat her out! I took the electric fan out of the bedroom and put it by my desk while I studied.  I also turned on the bedroom light and made a lot of noise.  Hahaha! About ten minutes later she came out of the room, glared at me, then started getting ready. needless to say, the rest of the day was rough. BUT, last night we sat down and talked about it. We agreed we both have things to work on and we both need to be more patient.  She thanked me for pushing her to be obedient and she admitted she had weaknessess to work on. SO, hopefully we will see some improvement. Please, pray for me. I need the ability to love like never before. God has let me know that I have to just completely forget myself and help her.  She needs to feel loved.  Soooo, please pray that my heart will be softened and I can be humble. I can tell I am going to learn a lot from this transfer.

This transfer is actually only four weeks long (President Martino told me to just remember that I can do anything for FOUR weeks, haha).  The new mission president will come in at the end of the month, so we will have a transfer right before that. then the next one will be 8 weeks long. so, yeah, I can do anything for four weeks!  Most likely I will learn a lot in four weeks!  :)

But on a more positive note, I have to tell you that I LOVE THIS ARE!  All the challenges of my last area, so far, do no exist here. The ward is amazing and they are all SO kind. Nobody made a single mean comment about anyone yesterday at church. It was awesome. All the auxilaries function properly. All three hours of church had classes with prepared teachers! The bishop is great. He met with us and introduced himself. He told us he expects us to work hard and in return he promised aid from the ward.  He said the members are so great at helping the missionaries.  It feels nice! The members are all so supportive and they have worked with us already! I love them all so much and I am so happy to be serving them.

The area itself is also wonderful. In just four days, we have seen SO many miracles. Oh my goodness! We have found new investigators for baptism dates already set in June. There are some recent convert families that we are teaching and they are just incredible. One of the families is going to be sealed next month and Sister Ponitini wants to go.  That means I get to go too! WOO HOO! If President Martino approves it, we will be going to the temple on June 6. I am so happy! I want to go so badly!!

That is my report for the week. I know this will be a challenge but I am full of excitement for this next three and a half weeks (but who is counting).  I know that through obedience and faith, God works miracles through us. We are the conduit for the light. That is something I have learned here. The light is Christ. We are the conduit through which the light can travel and shine. However, the light becomes tainted and dimmed if we are disobedient or unworthy. Obedience and repentance are what cleanse us on the inside so that the light of Christ can shine forth on the outside and touch the lives of others. I am truly blessed to be a missionary. There is absolutely nothing else I would rather be doing in my life.  As hard as a mission can be it is also one of the greatest things.  I can not believe how much learning God has stuffed into my life in just a few short months. How grateful I am for every struggle, every lesson, every joy, and every moment of it!

I am happy to hear everyone is doing well. I love the updates mom. Haha! I love knowing that my friends and family back home are happy and doing well. I pray for you all daily. I pray for your happiness and that you will always be guided in all of your decisions in life. I seriously love you so much!  Words cannot express how grateful I have become for all the things you have done and continue to do for me. Thank you! I love you! (:

I hope you all have an amazing week!

Mahal Kita!

-Sister Thomas

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