Tuesday, June 25, 2013

June 23 -- Lots of Good Things Happening in San Nicolas 1

This has really been a great week. Lots of good things are happening here in San Nicolas 1. We had a really good recent convert move into the ward recently, and I'm really excited that he's here because I can really see how much potential he has to help the ward. He is really excited about the gospel, and about being active in the church. His mother has a baptismal date. They are both really excited to share the gospel.

Also, one of our investigators attended Relief Society for the first time yesterday. She usually goes home after Sunday School because she is the one who does everything around the house, and she has to cook breakfast for her children, but she just stayed for the whole time yesterday, and I think she enjoyed it. We always have really good lessons in Relief Society in this ward, so I love it when the investigators come to Relief Society.

I am so happy to be a missionary here! I know it's one of the best decisions I have ever made. It is HARD. But it is the best experience ever. I know the gospel is true. I KNOW IT! I just want everyone in the whole world to understand that the gospel is the only way to be happy, and that if we turn our life over to the Lord, He will make it better than we could ever make it on our own.

Love, Sister Boekweg

June 16 -- Raining Super Hard

This has been a great week! The other day it started raining super hard, probably almost harder than I've ever seen it rain. We were walking on the road at that time, and we got soaked. We found shelter in a tindahan (store), and we had to stay there until is slowed down, so we talked to some people who were standing there too. Maybe the Lord knew they needed to meet missionaries. Who knows?

Last Saturday I had an exchange with one of the new American sisters. I like doing exchanges with new American sisters. I especially like helping them with their Tagalog, and also with their adjustment to the culture and everything.

One of our investigators has had some big health challenges. Yesterday, we felt like we should share with him about how much God loves him. It was raining really hard, so we scooted really close so he could hear us. We shared D&C 18:10, and Moses 1:39, and we shared that the reason God has still allowed him to be alive right now is because He wants to give him eternal life, and so he is giving him a chance to accept the gospel and be baptized. He felt the spirit, and when I asked him if he will prepare to be baptized he said yes! I'm so happy. I am so thankful for the spirit.

Yesterday we taught Sister M. and Brother D. We taught them about how the gospel will bless their family. They just had a baby, so they are already thinking right now how they will raise her and help her to become a good person, so we used that, and we taught how blessed their daughter will be to grow up in the church. Brother D. felt the spirit as we shared Mosiah 4:14-15. They both want us to continue teaching them. I am so happy because they are so receptive, and I really feel like we can help them to become an Eternal family.

Well, I'd like to say more, but my time is about up, so I'll just say how grateful I am to have such a wonderful family. The more I see families here on my mission that are not happy and that do not live according to the gospel, the more I appreciate so much having grown up in the church with righteous parents.

Sister Boekweg

June 9 -- Observations On My Mission

I've had some observations while I've been here in the mission:

1) I've discovered why people grow so much on missions. It's because when you go on a mission, you basically start at the "baby" stage, and then you go through the preschool, elementary, high school, college, etc. etc. etc. stage. I'll tell you what I mean by that. Being a missionary is so much different than what we're used to before we go on a mission. The expectation is so much higher. So when you come in as a new missionary, you really are like a baby, compared to where you will be at when your mission is done. I feel like right now I'm maybe at the high school senior stage. I remember at the beginning of my mission, and how much different I was back then, and I really feel grateful for how much I've changed.

2) I've discovered the magic of enthusiasm. Before, when I first met someone to try to share the gospel, I was kind of just quiet and basically tiptoe-ing trying to get them to accept to learn about the gospel, because I wasn't sure how they were going to react. But I just recently learned how much power there is in showing enthusiasm. If I go up to someone and act super excited to meet them and super excited to share the gospel with them, they have a totally different reaction. They are so much more receptive. I've found out how effective it is to say, "excited talaga po kami na makilala po kayo! At excited po kami na makapagbahagi sa inyo ang tungkol sa ebanghelyo ni Jesucristo dahil gusto namin ibahagi yung kasiyahan na meron po sa pamiliya po namin dahil sa ebanghelyo!" Translation:  We are really excited to meet you! And we are excited to be able to share with you about the gospel of Jesus Christ because we want to share the happiness that there is in our family because of the gospel.

Sister Boekweg

June 2 -- Leadership Training

Today I have to go to Laoag for a leadership training. There are so many sisters coming in that they have made leadership assignment for sisters.

It's been really fun to have another American in the apartment because she asks me for help with her Tagalog, and it makes me feel smart, and it makes me realize how much Tagalog I know. It's great.

Life is good. The gospel is true. Just keep living the gospel and striving to do whatever the Lord asks because it really is the only way to be happy. This life is not a time to be relaxing in our comfort zone. If we're not being stretched, we're not doing life right. We really are here to grow, and growing is never comfortable. That's one of the things I'm learning here in the mission.

Sister Boekweg