What a week. But I actually want to spend a moment on something that happened last week. I forgot to include it then. We were watching the Sunday afternoon session of Conference, just us missionaries and the District President. It was a good conference, and at the end President Monson said something like, go home safely. Or I hope everyone makes it home safe. I can't remember exactly. Maybe it was even in the closing prayer.
Either way, after I heard that I jokingly turned to Elder Bragg (assigned in our zone) and said, "I hope he knows it's 20 months until I get home! He just asked me to be safe for a long time." Elder Brag goes home in two weeks. He jokingly said back, "God Speed, brother."
Yeah, the whole conversation was sort of a joke, but it was real and happened in real life and made me think. "God Speed". What does that even mean? How would Christ act the next 20 months to get Himself home safely? How should I act the next 20 months to achieve "God Speed"? Turns out I need a little change to get myself to "God Speed". To really fly and be as effective as I can here. Much I will have to do myself. The point I'm trying to make.. is that the time has arrived to be perfect. For me, for you, for everyone. We all need to acheive "God Speed". For me, it means focusing more on the people that are here. Finding out their specific needs, being patient, teaching with them in mind. I only have 20 months left. If you were wondering.. 565 days (including the one gained on the flight back home). That's not a very long time to invite people unto Christ. So for me, for you, for them, I am changed. I wrote on my wall a quote from Gordon B. Hinckley's father, "Forget yourself and go to work."
That was last week. This week, we continued to teach some awesome people, they continue to improve. A new family was referred to us this week, the Rellosa family. It's a dad, his 3 sons and daughter. The first visit, it was just Tatay Dennis and Princell (son-12). They started awkwardly on the otherside of the room as we introduced ourselves and our purpose. We talked with them about their family, Dennis's work, etc. We built trust. After every question asked, they leaned a little closer in to respond. When we told them we wanted to talk about God for just a few moments, they literally picked up their chairs and planted them no more than 2 feet away. We prayed and started teaching. We asked inspired questions, and because of their trust towards us, they opened up and we were able to teach to true concerns. I fear that sometimes missionaries get in the rut of just teaching lessons, not people. But experiences like that just affirm that we are teaching people, and they are ready to hear the message of Christ and the Restoration.
Pday was fun! We hiked at least 5 miles (uphill both ways) to these incredible falls. BBQ'd at the top, took a little nap, and raced down the mountain (in flip flops). Philippines, gotta love it.. PS Holy Week is upon us. Gonna be crazy!