Monday, May 24, 2010

Hello everyone,

Time is going by really fast; I can't believe this transfer will be over in a week. The work here is moving forward but of course we hit some bumps on the way. We have some great investigators that believe everything we say but they say they aren't sure if they would ever be baptized into the church, because they are Catholic and that’s the church of their parents. To me, that doesn't really matter if they know this is the true church of God. Satan really uses whatever he can to stop the progression of the Lord's children; it’s really sad when he succeeds. Despite the many attempts by Satan to stop this work, we have a lot of success.

I had a really good experience this week by following the spirit. We were at one of our regular appointments and were about to teach our planned lesson but as we talked to the mother, she told us that there is a "problem" in her family. We didn't know what kind of problem but as directed by the spirit, we decided she needed to hear another message but had no idea what to teach. I opened my Book of Mormon to a random page and read one verse to myself. It was the first verse I read but I felt it was exactly what they needed to hear. We read it with her and shared a brief message about putting our faith in the Lord and he will support us in all our trials. The mother was crying at the end of the lesson and I knew that the spirit had testified of the truthfulness of our message to her. The next day at church she stayed all three hours; something she had never done before.

I am so grateful for the spirit in our lives and for its influence and guidance to bless us and help us bless others.

Love, Elder Smith

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Hi everyone,

This week was really good; we had a baptism. It was an investigator who had been investigating for over a year but we finally got her ready for baptism and it was great. She will be a great member; she has a lot of faith. I got to work with the teaching assistants this week and it was good to see how they teach so that I can apply it to my own teachings and be a more effective missionary.

We went out finding in the mountains yesterday; it's really cool. The only sound out there was the wind and birds which is a LOT different than how it normally is here. No one was at their homes but before we left, a member came out of no where and started to help us. They took us to a friend's house and we had a really good lesson with them and we are really hoping for them to progress to baptism.

So something kind of funny this week: we were teaching a few days ago and I was teaching about how the spirit will testify to us through our feelings. I accidentally let the wrong word slip out; I wanted to tell them that their feelings would be "masaya" (happy) but I accidentally said "masama" (bad or wicked). My companion had to catch himself so he wouldn't laugh and luckily, I realized my mistake and corrected it. Tagalog is pretty fun sometimes :)

Well, I love you all and thank you for all your prayers.

Love, Elder Smith

Monday, May 10, 2010

Hey everyone,

It was great to call home and have a chance to talk to my family. I've got to keep this pretty short. Today we aren't allowed to work because of the elections here. I can't wait for the elections to be over! People drive around with huge speakers in their trucks playing loud music and yelling who you should vote for. It's been that way for a month now.

We had someone get baptized two weeks ago but he couldn't come to church to get confirmed because he got really sick. We went to his house on Sunday to make sure he was coming, but someone in his family had died so he said he wasn't coming which meant we would have had to re-baptize him. It's amazing how Satan tries to stop people from doing what's right. I bore my testimony to him and he decided to go for 15 minutes to get confirmed; we barely made it in time. After he was confirmed, we expected him to leave and go back to his family, but with tears in his eyes, he sat down next to us and said he wanted to stay. It's so amazing here and I love serving the Lord everyday and seeing how He blesses their lives.

Love, Elder Smith

Monday, May 3, 2010

Hello everyone :)

Ever since I got here we have been in a drought, but this week it finally started to rain as we are getting close to the rainy season. I think I saw more rain in one day than I see in a year back home. I went and got an umbrella but I was still soaking wet from my knees down, and people say that's not even bad... I love the Philippines :)

We were over at a recent convert's home this week when the mom started telling us about her feelings when we first came to her door. It was completely directed by the Lord that we went to their house at that time because the dad is only home for half a day every week; which means most of the time we wouldn't be able to go in and teach because there is no other male. However, we were directed by the Lord and we taught them. The mom told us that when we came and taught, she realized that we had something--a promise of happiness that she had been missing her whole life. I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to share this wonderful message everyday to these people that I love. Just the other day, I was inspired to give a scripture to a past investigator. We followed up with her to see if she had read it or not and as we talked to her about the scripture, it led us to find her concern and why she stopped investigating. She is now praying to find out if our message is true.

I love you all and you are in my prayers. Thank you for your prayers in my behalf in the Lord's work.

Love, Elder Smith