Well, this week went by really fast/slow all at the same time. How is that possible? Well, that's missionary work for ya. You can never tell how fast the week goes by until it's actually ended. We had a really good week, though. We had a mission tour this week with Elder Teh, the Area President of the Philippines and General Authority, so that was really cool. We had a big event at the Cabanatuan City Stake Center from a couple of different zones around the East area of the mission. It was definitely awesome to hear from Elder Teh, President and Sister Martino, and other speakers. Elder Teh emphasized the importance of becoming a "Standard of Excellence" missionary, that we work as hard as we possibly can even when we are getting low weekly numbers. There are a lot of missionaries, sometimes myself included, who are part of the P.N.C. (Puwede Na Current), which means, "Good enough." He related this to the movie Finding Nemo from the part where the turtles are riding the E.A.C. to get to Sydney. All you have to do is let the current take you right to it without that much effort. As missionaries, we sometimes get stuck on this current. We'll think: "I'm getting a lot of baptisms this month, so I guess I can just sit and relax." Even though we'll return home honorably from our missions from riding this current, there will not a lot of growth or development that happened over the two years. Becoming a Standard of Excellence missionary is always working hard even when things are going great/bad. There are no excuses NOT to work as hard as we should.
|Bowling activity from last week|
After hearing that talk, it made me think about my personal performance lately. Sure, I've grown a TON since I've been in the mission field (language, teaching, studying, etc.), but there are probably a lot more that I could/should be doing. Sister Martino gave a really good talk as well from the 2012 January Liahona. Elder Cook of the Seventy gave an account of his mission experience trying to learn German in the MTC. He was struggling with the language, and everyone around him seemed like to be doing well. After he said a prayer in a closet while kneeling on a mop, he received a spiritual confirmation that the Lord did not call him to learn German, but to serve with all "[his] heart, might, mind, and strength." Instead of always looking sideways at everyone else and see how much better they were than him, he looked up to see how God thought he was doing. Satan loves when we look sideways, to put ourselves down and compare ourselves with other people. I definitely remember having this problem in the MTC as well, and even here in the mission field, where I often compare myself to other missionaries who are so much better than I was am the language. That's where Satan gets us. If he can convince us that we're no good or that we can't learn the language as fast as others, then we lose our focus and we WON'T be able to do that. In short, it was a great conference.
|Got Jordan's plaque up in the foyer this week. Nice.|
We did not teach as many lessons as we would have like to this week, but we have three investigators set for baptism next week through the Rescue Program, so there is success there. Jonas and Jarom Sta. Maria had their interviews on Friday, and their just the greatest kids. Elder Manalo, who did the interview, said that Jarom will definitely serve a mission in the future. He's a great kid - both of them are. They'll probably both serve missions in the future. They were so excited when they completed their baptismal interviews, even though they really didn't have anything to worry about. haha. Erick Padre had his interview on Saturday morning, and it's been a great blessing to bring this family, and also the Sta. Maria family, back to church. They've been less active for a couple of years, so it's just awesome to see them coming back. (Yay for the Rescue Program!) They'll be baptized this Saturday on the 18th. I'm going to baptize the kids and Elder Declaro is going to baptize Erick. The Palayan Elders (Zone Leaders) have two baptisms on that day, too. So we're going to have a combined super baptism. The picture will look really cool (haha).
We had a zone CSP (Community Service Project) here in Kalikid on Thursday. We met at the chapel in the morning to play some basketball first before our service project. We went to this school/gym thing (yeah, I don't know what to call it), and we made it deeper, because they're going to put a fish pond there. While we were working, about 20 kids saw us and ran to us (mostly because there were four white guys digging a hole near their school). Elder McCormack and I stopped working for a second and just talked to all of these kids. They, and mostly all of the kids here, were amazed that we could speak Tagalog to them and keep a conversation going. It's always fun to talk to the kids here.
Yes, I still have a cold or allergies right now, and I still have some cold medicine. I've been coughing for about a month, but it's not a problem. There are days when I feel good and days when I don't feel as good as the days that I felt good. But, nothing I can’t handle.
|Kelli and Royal united in the outside world for the first time|
Well I'm happy to hear that I have another nephew! Royal is a big boy (haha). Congrats Kelli, he's awesome! :) I can't wait to meet him when I come home! By then he'll be walking, talking, and adjusted to the sleeping only during the day thing (haha). Since Beckam and Royal are only about five months apart, they're probably going to become the next generation David and Cody. (He's a 9th day of the month birthday, too! That makes three in our Family! Steven, Royal, and me) How awesome!
|Royal gazing into his mommy's eyes|
We have a zone activity today at Dingalan. It's a city on the beach in our zone, so we're pretty excited today. I will be sure to send pictures later. Well. I hope I'm not forgetting anything, but if I am, sorry. Mahal na mahal ko kayo. Magaling kayo rin!
Elder Jordan “I’m an Uncle Again” Royal