Monday, June 2, 2014

The Transfer of Miracles

Goodness. This week.  I tell you what, this week was just incredible.  On
Wednesday after we emailed Sister Passey and I naturally went to Macdos,
because that is the only thing lacking in CarCar.  But it's good, maybe now
I will lose some of the millions of pounds I gained in Kamputhaw.  Oh
Macdos and your tempting cheeseburgers how could I ever say no to you.
After that we had to go to the hospital because Sister Passey had to get an
x ray to make sure she doesn't have TB in order to be allowed back into
America.  It was an adventure.  Filipino hospitals are a little different
than America.  But somehow it still had the exact same hospital smell
haha.  After that we went back to the mission office to write a note to the
AP's and we noticed that they had a huge package of candy.  We looked who
it was sent to and it was to a missionary who had already gone home.
Naturally we surveyed the goods and discovered purple hi chews.  I have no
remorse in saying that we each took a package of purple hi chews for
ourselves because they deserve it and the AP's get enough treats.  I regret
nothing.  Oh also while we were emailing last week, I look as the door of
the internethan opens up and one of my teachers from the MTC just walks
in.  Excuse me what?  Brother Pasikala just happened to be on vacation in
the Philippines for a humanitarian trip and walked into the internethan I
was in.  It is the weirdest thing ever to run into someone you know on the
other side of the world.   Then we got back on the bus for the two hour
trip back to CarCar.  Sister Passey is a trooper and had to stand for about
an hour of it because there were no seats.  I sat by a stranger and tried
so so hard to speak Visaya.  I did pretty well. The woman I was talking to
was pretty nice and even gave me language tips while I was attempting to
teach her about the Book of Mormon haha.  She gave us her number and said
we could come back that weekend though!  However, she lives in the other
sisters area.  We haven't recieved news on her yet, but it was still really
Thursday we woke up and jogged through the jungle as per usual. Seriously,
it is  my favorite thing ever.  I'd rather wake up early and go jogging and
adventure than sleep an extra half an hour.  Let's be real, I'm a
missionary. I'm going to be exhausted no matter what, I might as well
adventure.  Plus it's beautiful and wonderful and I feel more awake after a
good jog and a cold shower.  I couldn't walk for the first week we did it,
it took me 87 years to kneel for a prayer, but I am now getting thighs of
steel!  Take THAT Macdos.  On some real levels though, I have never sweat
so incredibly much as I do at 6:00 in the morning jogging through the
jungle.  What is this madness.  After that we had a Zone Training Meeting.
It's given to the missionary leadership by President Schmutz and then they
teach it to us.  It was so incredible.  It was all about Faith.  And how
Faith is Power.  It was truthfully an exact answer to some prayers that
I've been having lately.  Think about it though.  Faith is a literal,
physical power.  If we had the faith to do so, we could move mountains.
That isnt just a metaphorical thing, granted we each have metaphorical
mountains we need to move.  But God is a God of miracles, and if we had the
faith to do so, we could also have the power to do so.  I wish I could just
teach you all everything they taught us.  But alas, I cannot.  15 months
from now, eh?  I really adore the sisters I  serve with here in Carcar.
They are some of the best people I've ever met.  There is of course Sister
Passey, and then our STL Sister Forbush and a sister named Sister Littel.
They are all from Utah.  They are just incredible.  We were talking about
how on a mission you really band together.  Because once we go home, no one
will really understand what we did here or what we saw.  I can send you
picture after picture and write you the most detailed beautiful description
of it, but unless you were here, you'll never fully understand the people
we've met, the miracles we have seen and all that we've learned.  This
mission is really one that changes you forever.  And I know that these
sisters and I will be friends for a really long time.
Friday we really learned about how God has a divine timing for everything.
We got out the door and then ran to an appointment and they punted us.  So
we went to our next appointment and finished there early.  We walked down a
path, just a little ahead of schedule when we run into this adorable nanay
(nanay is a respectful term for mother, or just any elderly woman) who
starts speaking to us in perfect english.  Naturally I am in heaven.  Then
she tells us that she just moved here from Lahug.  AKA right where Sister
Passey and I were serving AND she is a less active woman.  How did we meet
this woman?  Seriously, I didn't believe in coincidences before, but I
surely don't now.  Her name is Jesusa, she's letting us come back to teach
her this week.  She's really special. Also I forgot to mention we went
jogging as per usual on Friday morning and we ran down to a river in the
jungle, there were tiny baby frogs the size of a pencil eraser, so we spent
the morning catching tiny tiny baby frogs.  They were adorable and I died.
That night as we were sleeping there was a parade.  At three o clock in the
morning.  I am not lying.  I am not exaggerating.  It was three in the
morning, and there was a parade complete with a drum line and brass
instruments.  I was so tired I just looked to see what time it was,
groggily stared out our window to see how long the procession was, and then
fell immediately back asleep. Missions really teach you how to sleep haha.
Saturday I decided to do a special fast for my language.  I really want to
be able to learn this language and teach people in a way that they will
take me seriously.  Sister Passey is wonderful and joined me.  We didn't
want to be recklas, so we decided to not go joggin that morning.  It was a
sad morning indeed.  But I realized something really cool on Saturday.  My
feet haven't hurt once since being in the Philippines.  For those of you
who don't know why this is a big deal, I have really really bad feet.  And
have gone to doctors on multiple occassions and been given all sorts of
insoles and who knows what else.  If I work a double at Texas Roadhouse I
go home in tears and wake up in the middle of the night with my feet just
throbbing, even though I have special overly expensive shoes that are
supposed to make it better.  Well, here I am, walking through the jungle
and up mountains all day every single day in tiny rubber flats, and my feet
don't hurt.  Tender mercies and miracles for sure.  So as we are sitting
down to teach some of our investigators they look over at me and say
"CARLEE NICOLE BEYER" I about fell off my stool I was so shocked.  Who even
knows how, but they searched me on Facebook and then called me by my full
name.  I felt like I was in so much trouble.  I don't get called that
anymore.  Freaking facebook.  As we were walking to get ready to go home,
we passed a little road where we had gone down last week and met a woman.
We just FTE'd her, which just kind of means talked to her and tried to see
if we could come back to teach her.  As we passed the road we looked down
it and just kind of said, oh, we should go and try to talk to Rose again
just to see.  As we were getting out to the main road, all the sudden Rose
shows up on her hoblehoble.  She had CHASED US DOWN to ask us when we were
coming back.  Naturally we were beyond thrilled.  We promised her we would
come back on Sunday.  We didn't really think she was that interested in us
the first time.  But she chased us down!  That night we broke the fast and
both drank a liter and a half of water and way too many treats as well as a
huge dinner feast and then we laid on the floor and just talked about life
and it was fabulous.  One thing I love about Sister Passey and I is that we
are such good friends.  We are up late and we are up early and we just work
so hard.  We push each other and we just go.  It's a really great feeling.
We really have a great friendship.
Now comes Sunday.  Sunday was such an incredible day.  We started it off by
going to Church and Marivic (one of our investigators.  She is set for
baptism next week!  :)  )  wasn't there.  We were both devastated.  We both
just prayed so hard that she would be able to come.  Not five minutes into
sacrament meeting, in walks Marivic looking as beautiful as ever with her
two little kids in hand.  She loved church.  I don't know that I've ever
experienced happiness quite like that.  Being a missionary is really cool.
Sunday was crazy because we had so many appointments we were just running
all day long.  We got on a choppy (a motorcycle with a side cab) and headed
out to Rose's house.  It's really far from the rest of our area.  We got
out to her house and were "knocking on her door" (okay, you don't knock
here.  I'll explain another time) and she just wasn't there.  We were
really bummed because we went out there and there wasn't really anyone else
out there for us to go to at that moment.  Well a woman who lives by there
went and "ayo'd" at her door and then told us that she was probably up the
mountain in her other house.  WHAT!  Miracles!  So we hiked up the mountain
and found her waiting for us up at her house.  She greeted up will the
biggest smile I've ever seen, sweet potatos, seaweed, and coke.  I was in
heaven.  We talked to her and taught her a beautiful lesson.  The spirit
was so strong.  She told us that she chased us down because from the moment
she saw us she knew something was different about us, and she couldn't get
our faces out of her mind.  She knew that she had to listen to us and talk
to us.  She knew she had to know what we had that was different.  WHAT.
She said that she wants to join this church, and she knows that we are
messengers sent from God to save her and to help her.  Seriously, how did
any of this even happen?  It was incredible.  I left just feeling on cloud
nine.  Then we went to teach a nanay named Linda Rachu.  Her son is a
member, and her daughter is less active but the rest of her family aren't
members.  We had such a great lesson with her.  We've taught her once
before, and she just said that she felt really good.  Well when we walked
in to her house, this sixty something year old nanay ran and hugged us and
nearly cried.  She said that she couldn't stop thinking about us.  She told
us that from the moment after we left her first lesson she knew, and I
quote, "That you are the ones who are going to teach me the truth.  And
that this is the plan of God".  She said that she just kept dreaming of our
faces and knew that she had to talk to us and learn what we wanted to teach
her.  She basically begged us to come to church, because she thought you
couldn't go if you weren't a member.  She told us that she barely knows us,
but she loves us like we are her children.  She was so sad when she heard
that Sister Passey was going home, and she thought I was going home too.
When I told her I was here for a long time, she jumped out of her chair and
hugged me and made me promise that I would continue to come back and teach
her, and read the book of mormon with her and help her get baptized.  Um,
yes.  Yes I will.  We went to a dinner appointment that night and I ate a
lot of liver of a certain unknown creature.  I would not recommend it.  But
I can now say I'm officially a missionary.  I'm learning how to eat food
and just not even think about it.  When in doubt eat rice.  Lots and lots
of rice.  After dinner they went and climed a coconut tree and got a
coconut for us, cut it open right there and had us drink it.  It was so
perfect and fun and I loved it so much.  Seriously, the most delicious
perfect thing ever.  We went home and laid on the kitchen floor as there
wasa huge rainstorm outside and just talked about how amazing it is to be
missionaries.  These people are amazing.  We are seeing miracles.  We are
so tired, but it is so worth it.  Neither of us have ever been so happy in
our entire lives.  This is what it's all about.
Monday we were able to hunt down the Lana family.  Their story is really
cool because as I was getting ready to leave Kamputhaw, I met this random
girl who came up to me and started talking to me because i was a
missionary.   Come to find out she is sisxteen and less active but wants to
go back to church.  Her name is Michelle.  Well we went back the night
before I left and I told her I was headed to Carcar.  She tells me that she
is from Carcar, and to please go and teach her family and help them
reactivate.  WHAT.  Seriously, try to tell me coincidences exist and I will
dispute it to the death.  God's hand is in everything.  Well, we went on a
hunt for these people.  They are in our area!  We taught them and it was so
special.  It's going to take some work, but we're willing to do it.  God
didn't deliver us these people just to fail.  There were eleven children in
the lesson.  Eleven.  The children here are so beautiful.  They all just
flock wherever we go and listen so intently.  Sister Passey and I always
open the lesson by singing I am a Child of God.  The kids need to know Who
they are and where they come from.  They memorize it pretty dang fast too.
It's really incredible.
Yesterday we mixed up our jogging and decided to jog through the city.  We
ended up in the City Plaza.  Why do we love jogging so much?  We always get
the best looks from people.  Also Sister Passey and I have an experiment
going to figure out if there are more dogs, or cats, or children in the
Philippines.  Truly it's up in the air.  There are millions of all of the
above.  We passed a house yesterday that had FOURTEEN DOGS.  Send help.
I'll update you next week.  Also I love that we get to ride through the
bukid on a motorcycle wearing skirts.  Life is real good.  As we were
teaching a lesson last night to a woman we had just met, she looked at me
and told me how hard her life was.  And truly, it is.  She said that she
felt lost and didn't know what to do.  And then she looked at me, and I'll
never forget her eyes as she looked at me and said "Why is life so hard?
What can I do?  Will you help me?"  And in that moment I felt so inadequate
as a missionary.  I felt so inadequtae as a kid from Utah who can't even
speak this language and I don't even have real life experience?  How could
I ever help this woman.  I realized that this isn't a game.  This is real
life.  These are real, beautiful, wonderful people.  These are people with
real lives and real souls.  And I'm the one who gets to help them.  This is
serious, this is their salvation.  I felt really small and inadequate.  I
knelt my head to say a prayer and ask for help on what I should say and how
I could even say it.  I looked down and say my nametag on my chest and I
saw my name next to the name of Jesus Christ.  It was really an incredible
experience.  This mission is incredible.  And I'm really happy.  Sunday was
easily one of the best days of my entire life.  This is the transfer of
miracles. We see so many miracles every single day, and let's be real, the
fact that we even got to serve together is a miracle.  I am so blessed to
be able to serve with Sister Passey because I know that so many of these
miracles are a direct result of her sacrifice and dilligence for the last
sixteen months.  I want my mission to always feel like this.  I want to
make sure I always work this hard, so I can see miracles like this my whole
mission.  Man, life is good.  I'm sorry I can't send pictures this week.
I'm out of time.  I literally have a countdown clock until the computer
shuts off.  I'll try really hard to send LOTS next week.  I love you all so
much. Love, Carlee

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