We became a trio on December 7th, and so this last week, I've been focusing on training my anak, Sister St. Gelais, from Arizona (she's 1/4thfilipino), and killing (not literally guys...) my going-home companion, Sister Swanson from Utah. She's going home on the 28th, so we're going to have her for Christmas but be all alone for the New Year - I'm going to miss her so much! She and I get along really well - we can be sassy with each other, so you know we're always having really good laughs. Especially this last week.
On Monday, our homeless investigator, Jhun Tempongko, got us each of us a carrot cake with creme cheese toppings as our Christmas gift! We asked him to give the prayer for our lesson, and during his prayer, he expressed sincere thanks to God for allowing us, as his missionaries, and this gospel to make a difference in his life. He promised God, although he knows that we'll be leaving soon, he would continue to stay steadfast in the truth of this gospel. His conversion continues to amaze me - he's already half way through the book of Mormon! I can't wait to watch him be baptized.
Then on tuesday, we were teaching our cute, old, deaf recent convert, Sister Prima. Right after we closed the lesson, they got us food, and I turned to my anak and midway through our conversation, she got crazy eyed and straight up smacks me on the back of the head! And at this point i'm in shock - obviously I have no idea why she keeps smacking me, and I'm laughing and confused all at once, and I look up at Sister Swanson and she's not helping at all!!! Just dying of laughter screaming THAT THERE IS A COCKROACH IN MY HAIR. YES THAT IS CORRECT. THERE WAS A NICE BIG COCKROACH USING MY HEAD AS A NICE PLACE TO LAY ITS NASTY EGGS.
This last week has been really different - being a trainer is A LOT of pressure some days, especially with the thought of my co-trainer, Sister Swanson, heading back to America. But I'm grateful for the opportunity to train at the same time my sister is being trained. If I ever struggle, I just think of my cousin JJ's advice "to think of them as your siblings" and it makes it a lot easier to love them! My little anak is actually making tons of progress, and it makes me really proud of her. She really takes what I say to heart, and then works on it, so I'm grateful for her willingness to improve, and I continue to learn from her daily.
I'm grateful for this mission, for the opportunity to serve Filipino people, and especially grateful this Christmas season, to be able to remember all that Christ gave for my salvation. I hope, for each of us, we will extend kindness to all around us and remember that He never complained, and neither should we. "If you give of your money, you give much. Give of your time, and you'll give more. But if you give yourself, you give all."
I challenge each of you to give yourselves to God, by serving your fellowman. #lighttheworld
I love you and miss you all!