Sunday, January 15, 2017

January 15, 2017

Magandang Umaga, Tanghali, Hapon, o Gabi!

Hello Everyone! 
This week was another great week in the work. We found a lot of new investigators with high potential, but we also had a really sad experience.

First off, the good news. This week we decided to build up our investigator pool so we hit the pavement (or more properly, dirt) and spent a lot of time finding.  We went to a barangay called Racat, where we're pretty sure no missionaries had been for a long time.  In fact, everyone we talked to had never even seen the missionaries before, which is quite rare here in the Philippines.

We found 44 new investigators this week, and a majority had huge potential.  The two we found that we're almost certain will be baptized are Norma and Romi. They're both senior citizens and very concerned about religion. They have investigated many churches, but none of them had felt 'right'. Our first contact with them was awesome, Norma asked many questions and we shared a brief overview of the plan of salvation and gave her the plan of salvation pamphlet to read for our next visit and the Book of Mormon to help with her study. We visited her again and she had already read the entire pamphlet, and answered all of the questions in the back of the pamphlet after studying the answers in the Book of Mormon! This is the first time I've ever met someone who has seriously 'investigated' the church through such careful study! We then shared with them the purpose of the Book of Mormon and the First Vision. The Spirit was so strong that Elder Torion and I both cried as I shared the First Vision. We extended a baptismal date, but they said they wanted to investigate further before committing to anything. However, we know they will progress.

Now, for the sad stuff. Our two progressing investigators who were set to be baptized in two weeks moved. That's right, they moved to another area four hours away.  We shared with them one last time and gave our testimonies. I hope they continue to progress in their new area. We told them to seek out the missionaries and continue to go to church.  I never knew how much you could love someone who you've known for less than a month, but I felt true love for these two as they progressed in the gospel. I pray that they will eventually be baptized.

Now, Spiritual thought time!
This week I started the war chapters in Alma, and I was reading in chapter 46 about the division among the Nephites starting with Amalickiah. Amalickiah wanted to destroy the Church of those who believed in Christ. Those belonging to this church were called Christians, go figure ;). What really stuck out to me was what it says in verse 15 where it talks about how the people "took upon them, gladly, the name of Christ".
Sometimes, I feel like we are embarrassed about our faith. Sometimes we don't like to stand up for our standards or let them slack because others might think we're stiff or boring. However, we cannot think this way. Like the Christians among the Nephites, let us gladly take upon ourselves the name of our Savior and represent Him by our actions.  As members of His church, we bear His name. We follow His example. We strive to represent Him in word and in deed. 
Let us not be ashamed of our belief. Let us not lower our standards for any reason. Let us remember that we are to become what God expects us to become, not what the world expects us to become.

Mahal ko kayo!
-Elder Anderson 

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