Monday, December 23, 2013

Nasa 'yo na ang lahat

I hope you are all having amazing holidays! I miss you all :)

I am just going to start right with the highlight of our week...we finished teaching the lessons with Ninoy yesterday, reviewed the baptismal questions and helped him bear his first testimony. Such a special experience. Then he headed to the baptismal interview and he passed. He is so excited and has been waiting so long. We are so excited for him! This Saturday he will be baptized by his twin brother, Toni, the one who introduced us to him. Teaching Ninoy and seeing the joy he has found makes it all worth it. The trials and challenges, hard days and dissapoitments, all of it is worth it for the people you do find who are ready. As he bore his testimony for the first time he started strong by telling us all he had learned and knew to be true. Then he suddenly covered his face and said he didn't want to cry. He left his face covered and told us how grateful he was for his brothers example and for helping him find the church. He told us that this is what he had hoped for as a kid was a group of people that would help him find the truth and this is it. I am just so happy for him! He is definitely what you call a golden investigator. I have learned for him what it means to have a desire to learn. He studies and searches the assignments  we give him and the ones we don't. He writes down questions and does everything that is asked of him.

We also had a less-active sister return to activity this week. She hasn't been less-active for very long she just kind of lost sight of things for awhile. I've told you about her before. Her name is Sister Laude and I love her so much! I will never forget the Sunday I saw her walk into sacrament meeting and see has been there religiously ever since even though she has to walk and then ride a tricycle and jeepney all while hauling her two young and totally wild grandkids. Last week we were sitting in our district meeting and I saw her out the window. I went outside to see if she was okay and she said she was here to renew her temple recommend. I just broke in the biggest smile and sqeezed her. We had never talked to her about her temple recommend but it was amazing to me that as she started obeying on commandment everything just followed. This past week she was able to go to the temple again. Something she hadn't done for a year. We are so excited for her. The one downer is she wasn't at church on Sunday...

I love this work, especially at Christmas time. It has been so weird. It really doesn't feel like Christmas for me, its just so different. Different country, no family, etc. But I have been able to come closer to the Savior. I have tried to focus all of my study on the Savior and do all I can to make it special since I will only have one Christmas as a missionary. I decided to try and think about what I can give Him as a gift this Christmas. I have been thinking of so many different things I could do and work on for Him but last night, at the Christmas Devotional rebroadcast, I was stuck by what President Monson said. He asked the very question I had been pondering, "What can we give Him?" He answered by saying our hearts, giving Him a tender and loving heart. I want to do all I can to better seal my heart for His courts on high this Christmas as His missionary. I know that He lives and we can find no greater source real and lasting joy.

I love you all!!

Love always,
Sister Porter

Filipino Fun Fact:

First of all I would like to say these fun facts are now Filipina approved. I don't know how because I haven't told anyone my first name but some of the girls from our English Class searched me online and found the blog Brenna posts these on. One of them came up to me after class and said that she agreed with all my facts haha. [Salamat sa approval nyo, Joyce at Analyn, kung binabasa nyo ito.]

I think I might have already shared this but people no matter what mode of transportation someone has the make use of every free space. In the jeepneys no matter how full they are the drivers will yell out, "Isa pa!" or "One more!" Someone else will get in and when they see about and inch between you and the person next to you they will just turn around and start backing into the seat so you have to choice but to try and make room haha they basically end up sitting on your lap. Same rule applies to motorcycles, tricycles and anything with wheels. Last night I saw a family drive past me on their motorcycle including-- Mom, Dad, Big Brother, Toddler and Baby (in Mom's arms). I also see people go past on their bicycles with someone sitting on the handlebars (like we used to do on Randi's bike as kids) or on the cross bar but the kicker is the it is usually done with two men...haha so weird but I love it.

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