Monday, November 21, 2016

11-20-16 Kumusta po Family!

Kumusta po Family!

 Congratulations on the permanent job mom! That's super awesome and I still love the fact that you and dad are able to have lunch together often. That's definitely a huge blessing. And congratulations again Hali'a! You're getting so big and pretty! I miss that smirk of yours haha. Thanks for sending the pictures dad. I'm excited to skype you guys next month!!

 We had a great week this past week! So many blessings and progress going on. After my email last week we had a great Family Home Evening with that family where the brother came home early from his mission. His parents aren't members and his mom is usually too shy to speak with us when we visit. For some reason though she was very comfortable at the FHE and even shared some thoughts about our lesson! We haven't been able to visit them since then because of the distance of their house, but we'll check on them again this week. From Tuesday to Thursday we had some more great days of work and got a couple new investigators who already accepted the invitation to be baptized! One of them, Angel, is already progressing really quickly and is excited to be baptized on December 10. Only thing is the next transfer day is December 7 so there's a big chance that I'll transfer and not be able to witness her baptism along with Lloyds. Hopefully I can stay though! I have feeling the next few months are are going to be amazing. Also I'd like to spend Christmas with people I know haha. 

 The highlight of my week was definitely working with the Assistants. We went to Cauayan early Friday morning and spent the day with them. I got to work with Elder Saez. It was the coolest thing! Elder Saez is such a great missionary and after working with him it's even easier to sustain him as an assistant to the Mission President. Once we got to work we hit it hard. Through him I got a feeling of excitement to speak with strangers and share the gospel with everyone. And that feeling lasted throughout the whole day. Our lessons went really well and I learned & observed many things that I've already been able to apply to myself. Thanks to the Assistants Elder Gatus & I are more motivated than ever to overcome our fear of men and share the gospel with as many people as possible. We're both striving our very best to be exactly obedient and because of that it's so easy to feel the Spirit. We're expecting some miracles to happen for the rest of our time together. 

 Another thing that was really cool this week was a talk given by our Mission President's second counselor, President Capitulo. He gave an awesome talk in sacrament about upgrading ourselves. He connected it to the Nokia cellphone and the Samsung & Apple cellphones. 10 years ago Nokia was the most popular cellphone in the world. But because they didn't upgrade, Samsung & Apple surfaced past it, and now it's rare for anyone to have a Nokia now days. He said that being a member of the church isn't about going to church and doing the things we're supposed to. It's about doing more. Think about where you were five years ago. Were you only attending sacrament meeting? Only reading the scriptures once a week? How are you doing now? There are 4 types of members in the church he said: inactive members, less-active members, active members, and faithful members. Have we become better than we were 5 years ago? We shoud never be "steady" in the church. Something I liked that he said was that we can't be fully perfect while here on the earth, but we can be perfect at some things. We can be perfect in getting to church on time every Sunday, in reading the scriptures daily, etc. I was reading in 1 Nephi 15 today and the word "blindness" stood out to me in verse 24. I realized that Satan doesn't just blind us through justification of sin, but in making us think that we're doing enough as members. Let's evaluate ourselves, see what we can do better, then do it. 

 Know that everything is going so well here in Bambang. Our companionship only gets better and better and we're seeing more and more great things happen here. I love you guys! Have a great week :)

Mahal ko po kayo,
Elder Ishibashi

Ballesteros family! They'll definitely be one of the hardest families to say goodbye to when the time comes

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