Monday, April 22, 2013

A week in the life

This week has been awesome!  Many many spiritual experiences!  Thank you for all the pictures!  They all looked really great!  Its crazy to think that I have been out as long as I have.  As a missionary, everyday is set.  You know what you will do when you wake up and you know when you will go to bed.  The people and experiences in the middle change from day to day but for the most part you study, you teach, and then analyze.  I really enjoyed dad's observation about not being in a hurry.  The savior always knew where he needed to be and the appropriate time for everything.  We also can know those things if we follow the spirit.  This week I have really started to better understand how important following the spirit really is.  Elder Daluz and I were talking earlier this week and he said something to the effect of, "following the spirit is super easy."  I wanted to disagree with him but then I thought about it...  If we are worthy and open to promptings we will feel the spirit.  That is a promise from our Heavenly Father.  And if we have decided to act upon every prompting we receive then we will be guided in every aspect of our lives, whether we are missionaries or members.  Lauren I really liked that quote you shared. " it's important that we know the church is true but it's more important that we are true to the gospel!"  I'm going to use that.  :)    I really do know that this gospel is true!  I have no doubt anymore.  I have struggled with doubts for a very long time but in my experience as a missionary, if you are really trying to be obedient and progress your testimony then those doubts become irrelevant.  This gospel is true and if we are true to it, we are promised untold blessings in this life and the life to come.  Mom, I also liked what you said about how you know that your family is a blessing.  I also know that.  I miss you all so much(the good kind of missing, not homesick).  Our family is really the greatest, yeah we have disagreements sometimes but we all know that the love that we have for each other will never diminish or wane.  

Thank you for the recipes.  We don't have an oven.  We do have a gas stovetop.  That is where we do most of our cooking.  We have a microwave and a fridge/freezer.  We also have a toaster oven.  The apartment we live in is one of the nicest in the mission.  It's a house, it is a pretty big house for the Philippines (3 bedrooms).  It definitely isn't the same living conditions as the U.S. but its how the people live here in the Philippines so that is how I am going to live for the next few months. 

Grandma:  There aren't many Filipino delicacies.  Adobo and fish are typically what we eat.  (I do eat fish every so often).  I don't really like it yet but I eat it.  I do know if I already told you this.  If I did sorry.  Balut is really good.  It really just tastes like crunchy chicken.  I get one every once in a while.  Blood soup is also pretty popular.  Its called Dinuguan here, It essentially just means blood.  It is also pretty good.  It kind of tastes like bbq.  
Dad: I audibly laughed when I read your story about the 15% project.  That's not the first time that you have seen something that needed to be done years before it actually happened.  Good luck!

We only have two full weeks left in this cycle then either Elder Daluz or I will get transferred.  We should know whats going to happen by next Wednesday.  Other than that not much has changed.  We are still working hard to finish training and to be able to find and teach.  Echague really is a great area.  I feel that I have adjusted and am learning new stuff everyday.  

Last funny story!  Elder Oyardo and Daluz wanted to play ping-pong this morning (ping-pong is a sport here... haha)  And Elder Smith needed a haircut so we went to the barber.  They also do straight-razor shaves so I figured why not.  I would like to preface this by saying 99.9% of Filipinos cannot grow facial hair.  So he laid me back and the shaving cream was essentially just scented water... He then proceeded to shave my face.  It wasn't the most pleasant experience and he missed like three separate areas.  But now I can say I have had a straight-razor shave from a Filipino barber.  :)

Well that is essentially my week in review.  I love you all and hope you will have a most fantastic week.

Love,

Elder Cousin 

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