Sister Rhea Walters

Sister Rhea Walters

Monday, April 4, 2016

First Week in the Mission Field

Magandang Umaga sa Lahat!! (Beautiful morning to Everyone!) 

This week was my first official week in the mission. There is so much to say (and so many pictures, I know that's all you really want lol) but I will keep it as short as I can haha! So..drumroll please...I have been assigned to the Baguio City area (that may seem obvious as my mission is Baguio, Philippines but you don't always serve IN Baguio) My area is called Burnham 1B! My trainer is Sister Dariano and she is seriously just the cutest, funniest, happiest, little Pinoy!
After you get your trainer and your area you just go straight to work! This is our schedule every day: wake up, pray, pray, exercise, get ready, breakfast, pray, study alone, pray, study together, pray, study language, pray, eat lunch, leave the house and walk walk walk walk testifying of Christ along the way to appointments, teach lessons, walk, (from like 1 to 8) then come home, pray, plan, pray, eat dinner if you are awake enough, then pray, pray, and go to sleep. So basically my life is pray, walk, and testify of Christ. It's honestly the best life ever. 
Baguio has lots of hills and steps!

Now about my area- the land is SO different, peoples houses come out of nowhere and the living conditions are just so crazy. I am beyond grateful for every little part of my house at home. Especially the bathrooms and the space. Everything is very crowded here. The toilet paper thing is true, there is none so you bring your own. Bucket showers really aren't that bad, kind of relaxing actually.
We had like literally no food in our apartment so the granola bars I brought are saving my life. The food here is...very interesting. I'm surprised I haven't gotten sick yet because I didn't even know fish like this existed or that you could cook them this way (or not cook them). 
The language is coming along good!! It is easy to get discouraged if you let it but you just can't dwell on all your mistakes and weaknesses. I just laugh and continue to try my best. You learn SO fast in the field! People are SO surprised when they hear me speak Tagalog, it's hilarious hahaha. Philippinos are SO SO funny, they just laugh and smile all the time! They call me sister Barbie hahaha, not because I am anything special, but anyone with white skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes is a Barbie. 
Also....highlight of the week is I extended the baptismal invite on a first lesson to a new investigator of ours!! SHE SAID YES!! Coolest feeling when you are speaking a different language, in a different country, under the shade of a sheet of tin for a house, but the spirit is so strong and still exactly the same. 

You Know You're in the Philippines When...
The little kids ask you in their adorable Tagalog if you colored your eyes with a crayon and have fake hair :) 

Missionaries Can Laugh Too... 
Companions can wear matching clothes and cucumber masks, very bonding!
Our two lotions side by side
So I found a cockroach in our apartment and that was pretty nasty so I did that little bug dance people do when you feel like the bug is crawling on you even when it's like 10 feet away. My kasama thought it was sooo funny because that was just so normal! Then I during our planning we here the garbage that's weird and not okay...can I found out my Kasama didn't kill the bug she just put it in the garbage! Hahahah so after I found it in the trash still moving my bug dance came out again and Sister Dariano was just dying hahaha. So many things are different here.

Tagalog Word of The Day- 
Pagpapakumbaba- Humility 

Spiritual Thought- 
Our ward may be tiny, (as in relief society was 11 people, my kasama and I were 10 and 11), the people may not be able to decorate the tables with fancy flowers and table clothes, we don't have nice white boards to write on and videos to show, or lamenated pass outs, PERO, this church is exactly the same. Everywhere you go. And that is because we all are worshiping the same God. We are all using the same atonement of our brother Jesus Christ every day, to become better people. And we all feel the same companionship, promptings, comfort, and power of the Holy Ghost when we are worthy of it and are witnessing of Jesus Christ. I just want to bear my testimony of the Holy Ghost and how grateful I am for it. The Holy Ghost is what I felt during sacrament meeting when I understood maybe only 60% of what was being said. The Holy Ghost is what enabled me to bear my testimony on Sunday and in every lesson, and have the people feel the message they need to hear. The Holy Ghost is what Jessica felt (new investigator) when we huddled in her little house and told her as she listened to our message the gospel would improve her life, and she would grow closer to Jesus Christ, desiring to follow his example and be baptized, The Holy Ghost is what ignited her smile as she proudly said yes and asked if she could receive her own Book of Mormon and come to church. Brothers and Sisters we NEED the Holy Ghost in our life. God has a plan and a path for each and every one of us. He has given us a map which is the Doctrine of Christ but we need a guide to ensure us happiness, peace, confidence that we are going the right way, and signals of danger. The only way we can become who God intends and needs us to be is by following the promtings of the Holy Ghost. Pray for it's guidance every day. Remain worthy of it's companionship. Study how you can be the house of the Holy Ghost at all times and set goals for you self to be more sensitive to it's promptings. I promise the Holy Ghost will tell you all things that you should do. Your life and every aspect of it will gain a new light. I know without it I could do nothing as a missionary here in the Philippines. I know that with it, I can be an instrument of the Lord in causing miracles to work in the hearts of these people. Ito ay patotoo ko, sa pangalan ni Jesucriso, ang ating tagapagligtas, amen. 

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