Sister Rhea Walters

Sister Rhea Walters

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Adjusting to the Lowlands

So I have found that transfering to a new area after you were in your first for 6 months is not the easiest transition in the world but we need to be grateful for any trial in our life because we know that the Lord is just humbling us, bringing us low to shape us, and build us up again into the person or missionary he needs us to be. So you just have to find the blessings in everything :) Here are some highlights of this week! 
so I could prepare 
- 1st Workshop! Our zone leader asked me monday night what my workshop was for the next morning at zone training and I was so shocked, but my lovely companion woke up with me at 5 the next morning o I could prepare and although I was terrified to face a group of missionaries that have been in the field a lot longer than me...the spirit works miracles :) I'll talk more about that later! 
-I got to see my mom!! (Don't freak out) You call your trainer your mom (or dad) and she is in my zone now :) 
- Our ward had an activity called Family Day which was SO fun and was out in the street so a great opportunity to talk to the nonmembers that were just watching or passed by. 
- We went on splits with an RM in our ward and a less active! That was the second time I haven't been with missionary companion but it was really cool to learn from Sister Brooklyn for that day. And engaging less actives in teaching with the missionaries we found is SO helpful. Sister Cudiamat (became the comp of sister Barbante) did awesome and she was at church the next day! Just needed a little reminder of how great the gospel is :) 
-RUNNING ON THE BEACH is my favorite in the morning, even though all the dogs chase me and the people just kind of stare... 

Missionaries can Laugh Too:
Filipinos, no matter what age, get really into games. It was hilarious to watch the primary, youth, and relief society chase each other around trying to pop everyones balloons tied to their backs at our Family Day activity :) 

You Know You're in the Philippines when...
Your companion eats chicken noodle soup for breakfast even though it's like 500 degrees 

Ilocano / Tagalog / English
anya ti araramidem / ano ang ginagawa mo/ what are you doing?

Spiritual Thought:
Relying on the spirit is one of the biggest things I have learned on my mission. And not just listening to it but having enough trust and courage to follow the promptings. I had a couple ideas of what I would want to teach the zone in case I had to do a workshop (that means teaching a training session at a zone meeting) but the morning of I felt that I should teach on Christlike Attributes and how we need to develop them as a missionary. I left all my other plans behind and went with it, then was so shocked when Elder Smith (actually from Alta high school haha small world!) gave the first workshop and said it was on Christlike Attributes too! At first I got worried thinking I would give off a lame impresson of an STL when I like repeated his workshop but actually they fit together perfectly. That must have been what we needed to be reminded of as a zone. In following up with the sisters on sunday night I found out the christlike attributes sheet we started using have helped their companionship inventory, their kabahay (other missionaries in their house) and their work. As I have evaluated myself as well I found that qualities I thought were strengths are actually weaknesses and I have SO much work to do in becoming like Christ. I know it can seem overwhelming to be "perfect" but I also know it is a commandment. God gives no commandments "unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them to accomplish the thing which he commandeth them" Christ taught the manner of men we ought to be and it is even as HE is. I know if we learn grace by grace, step by step, and day by day, because that's how Jesus Christ himself learned, we truly can become like our older brother in our thoughts. words, actions, and desires. The Christlike attributes are the most valuable thing we can obtain in this life to prepare for the eternity. 

Mahal ko kayong lahat!!! 

Sister Walters 

September 18, 2016 Welcome to the HEAT (And occasional Typhoons!)

Drum roll please....yes it's true i survived my first transfer to a new area. It's pretty much like a whole different country here- it is HOT (I am in heaven), when there is a typhoon it's at night so its all good, they speak a lanuage called Ilocano, and the branch just barely makes a ward haha but they are so SO strong. The bishop's main focus in missionary work so the members are awesome to work with us, and my companion is the BEST her name is Sister Barbante! I may have about a foot on her but I can still count on her to kill the massive spiders. 

Something I have learned from her already is how to ask questions. She doesn't just start speaking as soon as she has an idea but asks these incredible questions until we've reached the real concern of the investigator..then she gives me the "turn and look/raise the eyebrows" which means it's my turn to pick up the train, thanks a lot sister barbante hahah :) Just kidding the spirit is AMAZING how you can barely know someone and you already are on the exact same train of thought because we aren't really the ones talking, but the Spirit. 

We had something called MLC this week which was SO fun, it stands for Missionary Leaders Correlation. All the sister trainer leaders and zone leaders go to the mission home and work with our president on goals for the mission. President Bangal is the perfect balance of having light moments (he is so makulit (playful like a kid) but also knows how to crack down some rules and set standards. He showed a video on 212 degree attitude- i'll talk more about that later :) 

Missionaries can Laugh Too:
 Watching the President of our mission trying to imitate the "karate kick" as fast as he can during our games at MLC was one of the funniest things I have seen here hahaha filipinos definitely know how to have fun and are good at laughing :) 

You Know You're in the Philippines When...
The whole sacrament meeting the children in the seats behind me stroked and played with my right arm just to see what white skin feels like. That was a new experience. 

Ilocano Word of the Day...
Maiimbug na bigat means Magandang Umaga which means Good Morning :) 

Spiritual Thought:
The video President showed us about the 212 attitude is something he wants us to take back to our zones. It talks about how at 211 degrees water is hot but at 212 degrees water boils. Boiling water creates steam. And steam can fuel an engine of a freight train. It is all about that little extra effort. Sometimes as missionaries and at members of this church we can slip into a comfortable routine of life. We are being obedient most of the time, we get blessings most of the time, we think of the savior most of the time, but is there more we can do? That little extra effort to be exactly obedient, or focus a little more in church, prepare yourself a little better to take the sacrament, don't miss a day reading your scriptures, reach out your comfort zone to share the gospel, sacrifice a little of your time and wants to serve someone else...THATS where the water boils. And THATS where we really start progressing. There's a scripture in Romans (sorry I know I am missionary yet but I haven't yet memorized the whole bible..still working on that) that talks about us being heirs of God. If his plan is for us to truly become like him, LIKE a God, do we think we can become that in this short life by trying only half-hazardly, or procrastinating the day of our repentance? There's just simply not enough time and too great of an opportunity to miss, to reach our full divine potential. 
My mission is so SO short it scares me, but I know if I always pray fervently with my whole heart as it says in Moroni 7:48, He will help me try my best. I encourage you all to think about that extra degree that you can give to the Lord this week. Just see where your engine will go :) 

Love you all!!! 
Sister Rhea Walters

(These are still pictures from saying goodbye to the last area, next week I'll get some pictures of the beach, yest we run on the beach :) ) 

Monday, September 12, 2016

Transfer and Highlights!

Well, missions get good at getting your heart all soft and full of love and then ripping them out when you've got to say goodbye...okay so that was super cheesy pero ang balita ay (the news is) I am transferring from my first area!!!
  - I will be going "sa baba" to the lowlands, and the area is called Bacnotan! I will have the opportunity to be the follow up trainer someone who came with me trainee Sister Berry, and also serve as an STL. I don't know how or why but the Lord loves to send curveballs I guess and I will just do the best I can! (Although extra prayers wouldn't hurt for me to have some sort of a clue how to do that haha :) 
  - Saying goodbye to this ward was tougher than I thought, I really have made some best friends here! And the Pascuas are like family. Their life is so hard right now and I want to just give them to world but I hope and pray they hold one to the one thing we were able to give them, and that's the gospel. Mom we are coming back for their family sealing in the temple just so you know :) 

-New Investigators!! I LOVE teaching first lessons and just seeing who the Lord has prepared. We started teaching the future son in law of a member (his fiance is less active) He thought he was baptized a while ago it must have been a different church...that was a funny set of questions haha but after our first lesson he read the chapter we left in the Book of Mormon, said he feels it, wants to be baptized and is wants to come to church with his fiance to reactivate her too. Let me just say the spirit and the Book of Mormon are SO. MAGALING. (that means really skillfull) 

Tagalog Word of the Day:

- Pagmamahal or Pag-Ibig means Love 

Missionaries can Laugh Too:
- Sister Berry hates one of my cheesy EFY songs that I play ALL the time because I need music going, so naturally I sing it all the time just to test her patience. It's a good thing she is super nice and just laughs at my horrible efy singing ;) 

You Know you're in the Philippines When...
- It is heart breaking when there are beggars on the side of the street anywhere BUT at least here they don't just hold up a sign asking for money, they usually sit on a speaker and have a microphone and just sing their hearts out. It's pretty awesome. I'll let ya'll know when I hear one in tune too ;) 

Spiritual Thought:

This week I have continued my study of the savior in personal study and am learning so much about the true meaning of HUMILITY. In Mosiah 4 King Benjamin has given me an incredible and impactful reminder to never forget that all good things come from God. We can never forget "[our] own nothingness" and start to rely on ourselves more than God. Any sort of pride is what slips into disobedience, homesickness, laziness, contention, everything. It is the seed of all evil and Satan's favorite tool. The only antidote is complete submissiveness through humility towards our father in heaven and our Savior Jesus Christ. Just as I was forgetting the true meaning of humility at the close of my training, thinking I had a good handle on things, the calling of a trainer brought me right back down where I needed to me. I saw the Lord work miracles out of my weaknesses but then we grow comfortable again, I saw that a little in myself coming to the close in training Sister Berry. I am once again thrown down to the depths of humility (sorry that's a little cheezy) in this calling as an STL and a follow up trainer. I know in myself I do not have the skills this people and missionaries need but I do have a desire to serve the Lord with all I have. I trust in the promise "If ye have desires to serve God, ye are called to the work.'" And I know this is an incredible opportunity to serve, love, and learn from so many more missionaries. 


Tuesday, September 6, 2016


- There is such a thing as WARD FHE here! Oh my gulay (that means vegetable) I love the Filipino people. Ward FHE was so much fun to sing, hear spiritual thoughts on family, and play lots of games, and then all share in a simple meal with whatever the families could provide. This really just feels like home now (no offense mom, I still love home but I am definitely not coming back any earlier than I have to hahaha) The investigator family we have been teaching was able to come and it was so amazing to see the members bond and laugh with them too. It's like watching your child have friends at the playground your heart just melts you love them so much.
- Mission President Bangal came and did a training with us out of the blue on Wednesday and then took our zone to Jollibee (like McDonalds) so that was super rad 
- We think our water filter we installed is working... 
-Fast Sunday was again a highlight because our lovely recent convert got up and bore the strongest testimony again, even though she had a couple experiences after her confirmation that really tested her faith again. It's amazing how your body can be so hungry but your spirit so full (okay super cheezy but hey I'm a missionary) 
-We had a "1/2 Day Mission" with the ward and I went on splits with two of my fav members (first time without a missionary companion felt SO weird) 
- Our phone broke so we weren’t able to text the Elders when we got home. We thought not really a big deal but both our district leader and then 2 minutes later our STLS showed up at our house to make sure we were safe. We felt 1) way bad because they had to taxi all the way over at 10 at night 2) so special and loved because they cared that much and 3) super embarrassed because we were already in our pj's ready for bed

Tagalog Phrase of the Day:
Ano pong pinagkakaabalahan mo? (It basically means what are you doing right now like working or going to college like that) 

Missionaries can Laugh Too:
The ward enjoyed mine and Sister Berry's competitiveness in our relay race at the FHE (don't worry Walters fam, I won) hahaha maybe they thought missionaries were spiritual robots too :) 

You Know You're in the Philippines When...
One kind of different member that everyone stills loves makes harry potter jokes over the pulpit because he looks JUST like him. He even pulled out some harry potter glasses while bearing his testimony about the ghosts in his room he is trying to get over. Man I love it here :) 

Spiritual Thought:

This week a blessing that we saw from obedience was diligence with the Lord's time even when no one is watching. There was a night where every single one of our appointments got canceled and we had to drop by the house around 7 to use the CR and we were close by. There definitely was the temptation to stay home because we only had about an hour and a half-ish to teach and no scheduled appointments. But instead of giving in just because no one would know, we made our stop short and got back out working just walking, praying the spirit would guide us. We thought of trying a less active we haven't been able to meet and ended up meeting her neighbor who usually isn't home at that time but had gotten home from work earlier than usual. At first she wanted to shut the door but after offering to just introduce ourselves, we got talking, asked her about her life, and pretty soon we were inside with her talking and talking over Milo, and we left her a pamphlet which she told us she began reading that night. The Lord and his spirit WANT to guide us but nothing will ever happen if we just wait for inspiration. We preach "by the way" and that's how the spirit works as well, we just have to move our feet and be willing to open our mouth. And the truth is really that exact obedience is the only way the Lord can work with his children. (Alma 56, Stripling Warriors) 

Love ya all!!