Sister Rhea Walters

Sister Rhea Walters

Sunday, March 26, 2017

ET- means Endless Tears.

Just kidding it means Emergency Transfer. Those things are one of the hardest days I've experienced on my mission. I was in Bacnotan for 7 months and my whole heart was there, for the investigators we were preparing for baptism, my best friend companion, and that whole ward was my family, so the call on tuesday telling me to pack my bags because I would be leaving the next day..yeah it cut to the center. 

BUUTTT missions aren't about you right? The Lord humbled me with the reminder that those families were not my baptisms and it's not about if I get to see them, but they are the Lord's children. I am just an instrument. And now He needs me in Lingsat, San Fernando! 

I am training Sister Ormsby from Australia and she is adorable. Such a genuine and humble missionary. Being the Sister Training Leader here is busy but fun cause it's right with the mission president and his Assistants so we help new missionaries coming in, and anyone actually coming down stays in our house. 

It's weird t come from farmland, rice fields, to a city. Our house even has flushing toilets (well some of them) and a microwave! And get this, a washing machine!! I felt so out of place though at the nice houses just thinking of my old investigators probably hungry at the moment just cooking rice in their stick and shack homes. I think I am more comfortable there! 

The Ward is incredible though and so kind. I know I will learn a lot from them and grow in this last area! 

-Sister Bleak and I were Sister AP's for a week and traveled to all the zone conferences around the mission to sing and start teaching the musical devotional Jesus the Christ- Come Unto Him 
-HAZEL WAS BAPTIZED!! President let me go back to watch. She was so so filled with the spirit- she reached out to grab my hand while she was in the font and said a quick prayer to calm herself down. Then...well I'll tell you in the next part. But who knew that would happen when I just felt to talk to her while running on the beach?? 

Missionaries Can Laugh:
Hazel gets up to bear her testimony and she said she just starts with "I can't explain my feelings right now, so let us pray first." We all were a little shocked and almost chuckled but she gave the most heartfelt praise to her god over the pulpit. then proceeded to bear an incredible testimony of the change she has seen in her life because of this gospel. 

Philippines Culture:
Clothes aren't really a big many men just don't wear shirts and we even saw one at the store across the street buying groceries in his underwear. Oh man. We do have a specific rule though we can't teach a guy unless he has a shirt on. So that's kinda funny. 

Magpabinyag vs Magbinyag (To cause someone to baptize you vs To baptize someone) 

Spiritual Thought:
I love what my mom reminded my about how we need to Trust in God and "lean not unto thine own understanding" in Proverbs. I am constantly reminded on my mission that we need to be centered on Christ and His will. That is the only way we will overcome our trials and reach the potential the Lord has in store for us. 

Iyan lang :) 

they best kayong lahattt!!!

Sister Walters 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Obedience brings Miracles

Ahh too many amazing things happened this week but I don't have much time on the computer so I'll just sum it up 

-Lots and lots of more walking and battle wounds. I got burnt, and my companion got scratched by metal from walking home through a construction sight. Cool scars though. 

-Didn't pass out during fasting!! WOOT! AND Sunday was a day of miracles. We had 11 Investigators in our gospel doctrines class!! 
       -Hazel came with all her kids. She is still amazing. 
       - Sharie came in her cute new skirt and heels and wants to be baptized SO bad. She teaches US in the lesson. 
Exchanges with sister Hinautan! 

       - The new family we found Magbatoc showed up late but ALL of them and we about cried of joy. 

- This is how that happened, we focused on SERVICE this week. We fetched all Sister Hazel's water for her from this massive well and we got so dirty and wet and lots of people just stared as us Americans trying to juggle heavy buckets of water but Hazel is worth it. 
    - For Magbatoc we left a bag of "survival kit" things for him to follow Word of Wisdom, and we even left an alarm clock set for 7:00 am to make sure they wouldn't sleep in hahaha it worked!! 

This is the catch we think- DISTRICT PRAYER! We all wanted to be more obedient so now we have a district prayer over the phone at exactly 6:30 AM, we meet where our houses cross at 1:00 pm to make sure we are proselyting on time, and pray again at 10:30. Then on Sunday every single companionship had investigators at church and extended baptismal dates. 

You Know You're in the Philippines When:
You have to climb down a super safe ladder like this to walk to one of your areas. (picture below) 

Missionaries Can Laugh too:
We stopped for a second outside of our Italian investigator's house cause he was singing / moaning/ chanting really loud to himself and we were just listening- then maybe God reminded us to not waste time because a dog came up and peed on my leg. That got us moving. 

They have signs like this in the bathroom hahaha 

Masunurin- obedient (most adjectives start with "ma" so that gets confusing) 

Spiritual Thought:
God has been teaching me a lot about humility this week. It seems like everywhere I read, Book of Mormon or Jesus the Christ or anything, that's what sticks out. 
Christ teaches the parable of the dinner table and says guests should put themselves at the lowest set and then the master might move them higher, rather than them placing themselves at the head and having the master bring them down. 
He also mentions a king in the Bible that started to boast of the great blessings he had and "while the word was in his mouth" the Lord took it all. 
We need to constantly remember to Be humble. We see in the Book of Mormon that the recurring pride cycle starts with them being blessed and getting too prideful and forgetting the Lord their god. 
Humility is not disbelieving in ourselves or treating ourselves with disrespect or in an unloving way. But it is attributing all success and blessing to our Lord and Savior, knowing that without Him we are nothing, but WITH him we can do all things. And that confidence gives us courage, and that courage drives us to do what is right. 
It all comes from Him. 

Mahal ko kayooooo (mas lalo ang nanay ko) I love you all! Especially my mom* 
Sister Walters 
Falling asleep on Jeepney rides 

My companion sleeping...again :) We work hard I guess haha sleep is precious! 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

There's a First for Everything

Man this week was crazy.
 We worked our little hineys off not gonna lie and we saw lots of miracles and we saw lots of...other exciting experiences.

1- We walk and walk and WALK cause we are saving money so we can pay two people for our laundry cause they really need it. But my feet were getting SO hot and sore, then I realized my rubber shoes on the bottom were worn down to like socks haha oops. 
So tired you fall asleep during prayers. Go sister Dennis ;) 

2- Found 19 new investigators this week! Just from teaching in open groups and simple "Sali kayo!" (come join) to everyone that walked by. One of them was a couple that went and found their Book of Mormon from past lessons, remembered and believed everything, and accepted a IBD! (Baptismal Date) 

We got new name tags that have our mission on them 

3- Hazel is doing incredible. Her trials are just doubling and tripling but she is so. faithful. Finances are incredibly difficult and she cried being so touched about the promise of tithing. She needs a lot of prayers though for her baptism to continue this month. 
3- Shari came to church! The young women did and INCREDIBLE job offellowshippingg and she is so excited to learn. 
This cute sister is 16 but really excited to serve a mission and just got called as a primary teacher! 

On the other hand....
-My sweet companion got sick one night and was such a trooper cause still walked all the way home and I dutifully held her hair back if she had to throw up on the side of the road. 
-THEN my sweet companion again helped me when I passed out at the church. DON'T FREAK OUT MOM. We were fasting again cause our investigators need it, but with the heat and all the walking I think it got to me. I wanted to finish our fast so bad without drinking water cause we were so close but I got so flushed and hot and dizzy all the sudden and I went to the bathroom before leading the music, and luckily a member was behind me and caught me with I fell. I think I freaked my companion out and all our investigators cause she said my eyes like rolled back before I went limp then just ran into the room and said "Sister Walters Passed Out!" SO all the elders ran in and they made me go home and rest. But I didn't want to take time off so we taught Hazel at the church right after, and then went to an appointment with a new family that night (shh) 
Crazy! I've never passed out before! You experience a lot on the mission. 

*PS SHOUT OUT to Bacnotan ward for truly being a family. The sister that caught me set me up a bed of chairs and hymn book pillows and just stroked my hair like I was her own kid (she has a kid on a mission too) Then when we taught Hazel one by one the relief society sisters came in to comfort her and give her strength. SO amazing. 

You Know You're in the Philippines When....
Instead of getting annoyed at another group of people asking to take picture with you, you just make a bargain and say only if you can give them a pass along card ;) Go being white sisters. 

Missionaries Can Laugh Too...
Hazel is THE funniest person I know. She was worried about us walking home in the dark (I'll attach a picture of how dark our walk home is)
so she got up and taught us Karate. (picture attached and video as well)

Mag-ayuno = To Fast 
This fruit is called Gayubano and is SO good

Spiritual Thought...
This week I have been reading about Korihor and Alma and can I just say Alma is a straight up stud? He is so firm in his testimony and declares his witness of Christ so boldly that you know Heavenly Father is with Him. I also have been studying about dedication to Christ by reading Jesus the Christ. People asked to follow him and Christ denied none but expressed the requirements saying "Any man who puts his shoulder to the plow and looks back is not fit for the kingdom of God" or something like that ( I don't have it memorized sorry). Man that will get you. Whenever we have the chance to testify of Him I love how everything gets quieter, no matter where we are, and those investigators eyes are locked on ours hanging on every word as the Spirit guides us. Here on the mission I can honestly say I know my Savior Jesus Christ lives. I know he is the Messiah and even Jehova, predestined to come and be our older brother, exemplar, and redeemer. I know He defied the grave and was resurrected so that we ALL will be taken up to the judgement seat of God. I bear witness of the truthfulness and fullness of the gospel that as we exercise faith unto repentance, be baptized by proper authority of God, receive and remain worthy of the Holy Ghost, and never deny this while enduring to the end...we can see Him again, embrace Him, and ultimately live and reign with Him. Even in eternal families. 
Write down your testimony of the Savior. Pray for opportunities to defend it, share it, live it. It is the most important thing we can do in this life. I say these things in His sacred name, our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen. 

Sister Walters 

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Blessed on Blessed

Zone Activity at the beach early Pday Morning. Good thing we will be getting more sisters in our zone! 
Soooo this was an awesome week and I have once again been taught by our investigators about the true meaning of faith, humility, and the power of the Holy Ghost 

-Sister Hazel (the one I met while running on the beach and has three kids) was progressing SO great for her baptism (sana last saturday) and then Satan just gets super magaling and throws all these trials. Her husband crashed their tryke and now they have no source of income, she can't work as a mom of three little children, and is just grateful for any food we can bring her, and we will be fetching her water from the well for every time we go because it's really hard while she carries her baby. You would think that would be the point she would quit but instead she invited her sick parents to read the Book of Mormon because it will heal them and promises that she will always come to church. The ward has been awesome and offered to help out a ton too. "O women, there has not been so great of faith in all the Nephites" - just like what Ammon said to the wife of King Lamoni. Please pray for her. 
- Brother Villanueva will get the priesthood this week and we will now be focusing on their grandchild Carl who is 16 so hopefully he can join them in the waters of baptism! (And so he can go to their Youth Conference in Bulakan haha that's what the bishop's wife told us) 
- We had some awesome first lessons with people this week where they would just glow as they smiled, rubbed the goose bumps of their arms because they were feeling the holy ghost, wanted to learn the entire first lesson in one sitting, and accepted a baptismal invite. I love finding new people!! So grateful for the spirit. We couldn't do anything with out it. 
-My companion is Sister Dennis from Wyoming and we both thought we were going to get a filipina companion but here we are! And she is INCREDIBLE. We click super well and I am learning a lot from here about happiness, hard work, broader perspective, and love for the gospel. 
New companion, Sister Dennis from Wyoming

She is AMAZING!!!

Salads because no more filipinas in the house 

-So I had finally come to terms with this new calling of being the CLS instead of a sister training leader anymore because we the only two sisters in our zone...and then the AP called and said they will be realigning the zones and calling me as STL that will be interesting balancing those two callings. BUT I love those sisters a ton and am know that the Lord will help me. I really love teaching Tagalog! 
When you walk all the way home will fasting and pass out on the floor 

Missionaries Can Laugh Too:
The relief society women got into a little bit of a quarrel about a church topic and it got kind of awkward and then my favorite sister raises her voice and says really sharply- Lets just leave it to the prophets okay? And Tagalog please? The sister missionaries don't understand Ilocano." hahahaha we DIED. I love her. 
My favorite YSA, the Abenojars!! 

You Know You're in the Philippines When:
As you are riding in a tryke little children run and follow you our stick their hand out so they can touch you as you pass by like you're a celebrity. 
My FAV is this huge group of children in this one neighborhood that see us coming from across the street and start sprinting and screaming SISTER WALTTTEEERRR and they all carry their book of mormons with them :) 
This is a fruit called Chico it's soooo good (like a mix between papaya and pumpkin flavor) 

Tagalog Word of the Day
Madalal- talkative. They say I am very madaldal haha oops 

Spiritual Thought:
"Steadfast and immoveable" is what our bishop mentioned in his testimony. He said he hopes that his testimony is gold because no matter how you bent or twist it it is still gold and will never give up it's purity. I know that as we stand fast clinging to the rod of iron even when the mists get darker, that THAT's when we will truly see how faithful we are to our Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ, and his gospel. That's when we can show our unchanging faith and I know He will shower blessings on us that we couldn't have received any other way. 

Mahal ko kayong Lahat!
Sister Walters