Friday, August 22, 2014

Twenty Two

*Cue Music*
"I don't know about you, but I'm feeling twenty two!"
Yes my friends, it is birthday week.  It was magical and wonderful and I am obviously wiser and older and very changed in the space of one week.  
This week was so wonderful.  It was a whirlwind.  On Wednesday we finished up emails and I decided I wanted to eat at Burgers and Beer again.  I ordered a delightfully giant cheeseburger.  It was a real life American cheeseburger with fries and a coke.  I was in complete and utter heaven.  We went to go grocery shopping and I found the two best birthday presents ever.  One, a pair of spandex pants with are you ready for this, THE AMERICAN FLAG all over them.  I bought them for 100 pesos and I regret nothing.  I now have two pairs of them.  Ya'll better watch out for when I get back home to America.  This patriotism cannot be contained.  Ashley told me to try to find something gold for my golden birthday, so I found some hideous gold sandals.  Hideous.  I bought them and wore them with such pride.  As we were walking out of the grocery store, I was putting something in a bag when a woman walked straight up to me.  Like, directly to my face and looked at me with such urgency.  She asked me if I was a missionary.  I told her yes.  She grinned from ear to ear and asked if we could teach her right there.  We had to go, so we tried talking to her for a minute.  She has a hard situation.  No phone, we can't go to her house, and we don't really have a way to contact her.  But she looked at me with so much urgency, so much intensity, and said she has been looking for mormon missionaries.  Her name is Ivy.  I bore my testimony as hard as I could to her, and begged her to come to church on Sunday.   There was something so different about this woman.  It was like she knew me, and I just couldn't get her out of my mind.  We have a woman in our branch who owns a salon, so I went there to get a pedicure for my birthday!  THey thought it was the funniest thing when I told them that you weren't allowed to turn 22 if you didn't have cute toes.  They laughed and laughed.  They love that mom and I have that tradition.  They bought me drinks, and bread for my footspa.  THey were so excited that I was doing that for my birthday. That dang woman worked hard on my poor ugly feet for an hour.  And they were glorious.  She also had some rockin gold nail polish that she put on them.  It was amazing.  And then for my birthday they gave me a huge bottle of lotion, so that my feet will stay cuter for longer.  I love these people so incredibly much.  That night after a lesson, I felt something hit my head.  I didn't think too much of it, until twenty minutes later someone looked at my head and screamed.  There was a giant centipede in my  hair just roaming around.  Awesome.  I'm glad it liked the jungle of my mane.  
Thursday:  We packed that morning and then went out and worked for two hours.  Some little girls braided my hair in the middle of a lesson.  It was so ugly.  I looked like Pippie Longstocking, and I kept my hair like that until we left that part of our area.  Sister Bateman could not keep a straight face for the life of her.  We went and grabbed out stuff and headed over to the port to get on the ferry.  We sat on the top deck of the ferry, at the back of the boat.  Right where mom and dad love to be.  We stayed up there in the sun the whole ride.  I cheated and opened my birthday presents and cards a little early.  I just wanted to open them as I crossed the ocean haha.  I love them.  Thank you so much.  The ring and the necklace and the cards were so so sweet.  We saw a ton of dolphins jumping in the ocean.  It was really incredibly picturesque.  We got to Cebu Island, and then got in a van for two hours to Cebu.  We got to the temple complex and it felt so good.  That place just feels like home.  The spirit there just lifts you.  We pile out, and Sister Tandiman (she was already there)  looked at me and just grinned and said "guess who is inside?"  I threw my camera at Sister Bateman and I sprinted inside and tackled Sister Anderson.  It was adorable.  We both cried.  It had been five months since we had seen each other.  We talked forever and just caught up.  It was so great to talk to someone who is at the same stage as me.  The little cutie somehow aquired Reeses for me for my birthday.  And!  While I was there I saw a ton of people from Kamputhaw, including Mikmik!  It was so so so good to see them.  They all just talked to me and died over me.  I can actually speak Visaya now.  They just kept telling me I looked so good and that I had such good language.  We had Macdos for dinner that night #blessed.  And we were able to sleep in a hotel! It had aircon! And I met a kid that lives in Cebu and he just got his mission call to Salt Lake City West.  AKA MAGNA.  He leaves next month.  I promised him I would take good care of his people if he took good care of mine.  I'll go visit him next year and speak Visaya with him and be in heaven.  
Friday:  MY BIRTHDAY.  It was  such a good day.  I woke up to the sound of the city.  Jeepneys and taxis.  It felt good to be home.  Kamputhaw just feels  like home.  I had a hot shower that morning.  As in, my skin was melting off of my body and I was in bliss and didn't even kind of care.  It was in and of itself, the best brithday present.  I got out of the shower and all the sisters in our room started singing to me.  We got out the door, and I navigated us all through the city and rocked that big city jeepney life.  Man, I love the city.  We got to the conference and I just clung to Sister Anderson.  We were inseperable all day long haha.  We had delicious lunch.  Sister Tandiman and Sister Minguez surprised me with a birthday cupcake and they sang to me during lunch. And then Kamputhaw ward had totally decorated the ward announcement board for my birthday.  I cannot believe how much those people love me.  I was only there for six weeks, and that was months ago.  And I barely spoke the language.  But they love me, and my heavens I love them.  And then in runs Mikmik!  She is holding this delicious chocolate cake.  She took her lunch break to come visit me on mybirthday and give me cake.  Once more, I love these people.  We finished up, they shipped us back off to Negros.  We got off the bus, and of course, I had birthday dinner at Macdos.  All the elders gathered around me (about twenty of them)  in a very crowded Macdos and started singing happy birthday at the top of their lungs and got everyone in the restaraunt to join in.  It was basically every seven year olds dream.  We ate by the play place.  We headed back to Negros and we all sat at the top of the boat in the back at sunset.  It was so pictureesque.  I just talked to all of these wonderful people and looked at the sky, the stars, the ocean, I was with people from all over the world.  The Philippines, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, and all over America.  It was not at all how I thought I would spend my 22nd birthday, but I would change it.  I was with some wonderful wonderful people.  I will admit, I missed Tonna calling me at the crack of dawn singing, and my mom singing happy birthday backwards, but it was such a wonderful birthday.  I will always hold 22 real close to my heart.  
Saturday:  Back to work!  We walked up to the house of one of the men we are teaching, and he was just sitting in front of his house reading his Basahon ni Mormon.  My heart was so full.  Also, while we were walking around I heard that dang song from Witches Night Out "you  can do magic" and I was furious.  And then I heard another one of the songs that always plays in October.  No thank you.  That music brings me instant stress hahaha.  
Sunday:  Sister Bateman and I were standing outside of the chapel, and I turn around just to see Ivy come walking in the doors.  I don't know how that happened.  But she came.  She sat next to me in sacrament, asked me millions of questions, and loved it.  I don't know what is going to happen with this woman, bt she ismighty miraculous.  In the Philippines it's a tradition to eat sweet spaghetti for any celebration.  Especially birthdays.  So we made sunday dinner and had spaghetti.  And then it was a brownout so we ate by candle light.  We're fancy, it's fine.  
Monday:  We got up at 5:30 (!!!!!)  and went and played ultimate frisbee with the branch.  I'm not a morning person.  I'm not a frisbee person.  But alas, sometiems there are random sacrifices on a mission haha.  Sister Bateman and I are known as the American Sister here, because we are the only Americans in our District.  And as we were walking the other day, this random man on a trike just looked at us and started singing "Hey sister go sister flow sister "  you know, that song by Christina Aguillera?  We cried from laughter.  
Tuesday:  I was able to go on splits.  I went and worked with Sister Tandiman.  I love that little Indonesian.  It was such a good day.  I learned so much.  She's a really good missionary. She's really bold.  And it helped me to  catch a vision of what I want to accomplish. I had this cool moment where I was discouraged with my language.  I just feel like I haven't been progressing much with the language, and sometiems I still can't understand people, and it's still really hard.  Language study can be really hard, and I don't know how to study and learn this langage sometimes.  And then I remembered how my great grandma beyer learned english.  By reading the book of mormon in english.  So that's what I'll do.  I'm going to trust that if it worked for her, it can work for me.  And I'm just going to read the book of mormon in visaya and trust in the promises.  It was such a great week.  I can't believe I'm 22 and in the Philippines.  I don't know when any of this happened.  I think back to a year ago, and I never would have guessed I would be here now.  A year ago, I was not even thinking about a mission yet haha.  Life happens fast.  I'm really excited for what 22 has in store for me.  This year is going to be one of the best ones yet.  I love you all so much.  Thank you for making my birthday so special.  Thank you for the endless love and support.  I love you.  

Sister Carlee Beyer

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

2 Corinthains 5:7

Welcome to the very last email of 21 year old Sister Beyer.  Next time you hear from me I will obviously be older and wiser and very different.  Seriously though I had so many emails today wishing me a happy birthday.  I printed them all off and will read them later.  But thank you so much.  I love you all.  And I cannot begin to tell you how much the support means to me.  
So last wednesday, we had to wake up early to do our laba.  We wash it by hand, it is quite the process, and I had an american, and indonesian, and an american teaching me how to laba.  I'm absolutely hopeless.  I think it's better if I just pay someone to do it.  Seriously, I'm horrble at laba.  We had a big zone activity that day, and we played ultimate frisbee (can there be a more "utah mormon" activity?  the answer is no, there can not)  I'm not a huge ultimate frisbee fan, and the elders were gettin a little crazy over the game, so I just went and hung out with Elder and Sister Anderson.  They packed snacks.  I think I chose the better option here.  That night I witnessed the most horrifying thing I have yet to see in the Philippines.  We go out onto our back "patio" where we cook all of our food and I just see Sister Bateman's eyes go really big and to go back inside.  I asked her why and she just says go inside and get sister Minguez! Now, Sister Minguez is Filipina, so I knew this was serious business.  And then I see it.  The death spider.  This thing was a BEAST.  I kid you not, it was the size of my hand.  I scream and run for cover. I grab  my huge flashlight to further inspect it, and alas, I see that the situation can indeed get worse.  It was an eggsack filled with millions of tiny spiders that will soon grow to be beasts as well.  okay, at this point I basically just accepted defeat and booked a plane ticket home.  So we start trying to figure out what we're going to do.  We can't just smash it, because all the eggs will run out.  But we surely cannot let it live, it is in our "kitchen" and way too close to entering our home.  So thus starts a ridiculous half an hour procedure of the four of us attempting to kill the spider.  I filmed the whole thing.  We safely killed the spider, and all of it's future dispensations.  I truly do not like spiders.  
Thursday:  It was  just a normal day.  But I love it.  I really like San Carlos.  And I really like Sister Bateman.  It is really easy to be her companion.  It just comes pretty effortlessly for us.  We get along really well, and we laugh a lot.  She's 20, from Idaho, and she heads home this December.  Her visaya is DREAMY.  I want her Visaya.  It hasn't rained since I got here, which I am absolutely stoked on.  But it's pretty dang hot.  It's usually about 90 degrees in our room every night.  I'm back to the good old ghetto aircon of strapping frozen water bottles to myself.  That night Sister Minguez and Sister Tandiman came home and told us they have a special treat for us.   They bust out all these tiny crabs.  So I sit down with Sister Minguez and she is showing me how to eat said tiny crabs.  You eat the claws, I'm thinking, okay, this is great, totally normal.  Then she has me crack open the middle, take the top portion off and eat the rest.  Shell and all.  I just looked at this adorable tiny Filipina who was so excited to have me eat this, and I asked, wait, even the shell?  And she goes, "IT'S FOOD LAGI!"  Which means like, "obviously"  so, Sister Minguez and I sat down for half an hour and ate tiny crabs and rice, with our hands, shells and all.  I didn't even die.  
Friday:  We met a man who just moved here from Tacloban.  He told us about his experience in Yolanda.  He grabbed his two little girls (both under the age of five) and carried them both as they ran from the water to the top of a hill.  This man is incredible.  He just moved into the branch, and he played such a beautiful piano arrangement on Sunday.  While we were teaching this week along the beach, five wild turkeys just ran through where we were sitting.  One of them almots jumped on me.  I didn't know turkeys existed here.  I don't know why I'm eating tuna and eggs when turkey is available!  I demand a sandwich!  Also, as we were walking there were some little kids playing basketball, they passed me the ball, I took all my courage and prayed that it would work.  I made a perfect three pointer swish!  Everyone freaked out over the American who had mad game (It was pure luck).  Everyone is obsessed with basketball here, and if they know you're from Utah they immediately say "Utah Jazz!  Karl Malone!"  So when I made my three pointer I told them all I was Karl Malone.  It was a grand old time.  So then as we were walking around, we both just got kind of tired, it was hot, and we got a little discouraged.  So I decided that we needed a bevarage.  (thank you mom)  So I stop at a tindahan to get a coke.  We start up conversation with this 60 something year old man.  His name is Boy.  We see that he has a jar of knottsberry farm jam, so we start talking about that.  Then, we mention we are missionaries, and he picks up a pamphlet that he keeps on his desk from missionaries from a few months ago!  He just has a restoration pamphlet!  And then he says I have a question.  He turns it over, and points to the picture of the book of mormon on the back and says "do you have this book?  I would like to read it"  I DIED.  I immediately pulled my Basahon ni Mormon out of my bag and gave it to him.  Sometimes, you just need a beverage for reasons unknown, and then you find wonderful prepared people.  The Bacolod missionaries talked to him, but they didn't teach him.  We went back and taught him later, he read well into 1st Nephi.  He is so smart.  And he really understands it all.  This man is golden.  
Saturday:  We went to a part of our area kind of by the ocean, apparently the tide comes up really high every day, and it gets up to your ankles in the streets.  We had some men come over trying to talk to us.  We could not for the life of us figure out what they were trying to say.  These shirtless men kept hunchingover and hitting their backs.  Finally it all clicked.  Basically, these shirtless men were trying to act out in charades that they would give us a piggy back ride.  Um SIRS.  No thank you.  Very kind of them, but we passed.  You know, shirtless men,carrying americans in skirts through the water on their backs just didn't seem like the best idea.  There is this adorable little girl of a member who is terrified of me.  She is three.  She adores Sister Bateman, but is so scared of me.  She literally runs.  So I talked to her the other day as she is hiding behind her mom and I ask her if she is scared of me.  She says yes.  I ask her if it is because I'm tall.  She says no, it's because I'm a bayot.  OKAY. Let me just tell you what a bayot is.  It's a gay man who is a cross dresser.  There are two kindsof bayots.  The kind that is oddly gorgeous and looks like Beyonce and J-Lo, and the relatively ugly kind that just walk around in girls clothing.  What one do you think the child would be afraid of?  Sister Bateman laughed for hours.  I have no idea why the child would think that about me, but she truly truly believes it.  My heavens, send help.  We taught a wonderful family that night, and the mom of the family was telling us all that she needed us to do.  And then she says 'you don't have mothers here!  I have to be your mother!"  She called us a trike so we didn't have to walk home in the dark.  These people are so dang sweet.  
Sunday:  Such a good day.  Some solid people came to church,  Sister Bateman and I ran relief society.  So many tender mercies.  After sacrament meeting, I felt someone touch my hair, and there were ten girls gathered around me playing with my hair because it is blond and curly.  This happens way more than you would think.  
Monday:  We went out and taught Teabing, she  gave me a huge seashell for my birthday.  We had District Meeting and Sister Anderson made real honest to goodness chocolate chip cookies. I was in complete bliss.  
Tuesday:  Yesterday was ridiculous.  So many random things happened.  I'll sum it up like this, I was sitting in the front of a trike, I got out, and the trike immediately fell back, and three Filipina's screamed.  Aka, I'm a fat American.  We walked on the beach, and I stepped in something foul and unmentionable and had to wash my shoes in a well, and then Sister Bateman told me that I was not at all Fab.  I told her I'm the most fab person to ever wash yuck off of my shoes in a well.  Also, not once, but twice yesterday, I got attacked by a swarm of red ants.  My legs are eaten alive.  And lastly, I sneezed 23 times yesterday.  We literally counted.  It was quite the day.  I guess I'm sending off 21 right haha.  
This week should be a really good week.  We get on the ferry for Cebu tomorrow and I should get to see Sister Anderson tomorrow!  I'[m so excited.  I'm totally out of time, but I do have a scripture that I want to share that I love.  2 Corinthians 5:7.  I'll expound more next week.  But take it for what it's worth.  I love you all so much.

Love, Sister Carlee Beyer

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Walk on Water or Drown

There is a phrase in the Philippines that basically encompasses my entire life right now.  If anyone is ever stressed or any medical problem occurs, it is just blamed on high blood.  Well, let me just say that I have high blood right now!  high blood ko!  Because I have so much I want to write in this email, and I'm staring at the countdown clock.  I make no promises that this email will be gramatically beautiful, but hopefully I'll be able to  convey the things I want to talk about this week.  Also, I realized that even though I'm not in Carcar, I'm still in San CARlos.  Yeah, I did that.  
Wednesday.  Firstly, can I tell you my diet is so different in the Philippines.  Let me tell you what I have eaten in the past week.  tuna and eggs over rice.  Literally scrambled eggs with a can of tuna in it on rice with ketchup. yum.  Sardines and ketchup on rice.  not so yum.  And fish jerky.  dried fish, just like beef jerky.  Surprisingly very yum.  Last wednesday I attacked the fridge, I feel like it is the most neglected part of every missionary home.  It's kind of my trade mark now.  And I got two packages last week!  One from Lakeridge 12th ward activity days.  Can someone tell them thank you for me?  It had a ton of treats and toys and a fun scripture chase for me and my companion.  We loved it!  Its nice to get some love from the old ward.  :)  And I got my birthday package from my family.  I took out my new five year journal (WHICH I LOVE.  SERIOUSLY THANK YOU) and the new pictures of the nephews and then realized it was my birthday package.  So i gave it to the STL' s to keep until my birthday because if I open it now I will be a sad sad missionary on my birthday.  But I hung up the pictures of the monsters on my wall.  When the heck did they get so big!  They are so dang cute though.  I just walk into my room and feel so at home look at their cute little faces.  We ate a place called Burgers and Beer last week (I know, the name sounds bad, but it was the middle of the afternoon no one was there, and no it isn't a bar.  It's a lovely restaraunt)  it's owned by a man from California.  They sell Mexican food!  I haven't had mexican food in months!  And are you ready for this? I ate cheese.  Real life cheese.  I haven't had cheese in months!   He flies to guam to buy cheese for his restaraunt.  As I was talking to him and was in absolute bliss over the cheese situation, I mentioned that the main thing I missed from home was dairy.  And how much I love milk.  The man turns around, opens the fridge and pours me a huge glass of milk.  Real honest to goodness cows milk.  He gets it from San Fransisco!  I cannot begin to tell you the amount of bliss I felt in the span of a one hour lunch.  
Thursday:  We had our zone training meeting.  They started and openeed up with some announcements.  We are having a huge conference on Cebu this month.  All of the missionaries on Negros Island  will travel over to the mission office and have a huge conference with a member of the area seventy.  Which is so huge!  We are so lucky to be able to do this.  And then they tell us the date that this will be happening.  AUGUST 22ND.  I died.  I get to go to Cebu, see so many missionaries who I love, see the temple, see the mission president, listen to an area seventy speak AND I get to see Sister Anderson!  I haven't seen that girl since we got off the plane here five months ago.  I cannot even tell you how excited I am.  It's going to be such a good birthday!  That day was really good, we had a 70 year old member work with us that day.  Her name is Veloria, she is so sassy.  We taught a woman named Teabing, who is also 70 and about as sassy as can be.  And I got slapped a lot.  If nanay's like you, they slap you.  If they think you're funny, they slap you.  And if they think you are gwapa, you get slapped.  It's a loving thing.  I sat in between the two of them during a lesson and I just got slapped repeatedly hahaha.  We taught a sweet sweet man named Modesto, who is in a wheel chair with only one leg.  We taught him for the very first time and started to sing, and he just sobbed.  He loved the lesson, and in the closing prayer he just sobbed and thanked Heavenly Father for us.  We were teaching a lesson later that night, and I had showed a picture of me and mom in front of the temple.  After I finished talking about it, and Sister Bateman was teaching, I looked down at the picture for a minute and Veloria leaned over and asked if I missed my mom.  I smiled and said "only a little bit, because I've got you as my mom here, right?"  Thank heavens the lesson was over, because this woman yelled I kid you not, yelled "EXACTO!" and then grabbed my face with both of her hands and kissed my face.  I love these people.  
Thursday night I nearly perished.  The world combined against me in the worst way.  I do not know what I did to deserve this, but I rolled over in my sleep and stretched a little bit.  And then I somehow got a death charley horse, not in one leg, but in two.  Both of mycalves were on fire.  I had a charley horse in both calves and I was utterly sure I was going to have to succumb to death.  I literally was screaming.  Pray that nothing ever happens in our apartment, becasue Sister Bateman literally slept through my screaming.  
Friday was a good day too.  I was able to lead weekly planning, and slowly but surely I'm learning the area and the people.  We had a meeting with the elders, and to spice it up, we decided to sing angels we have heard on high and oh come all ye faithful.  Welcome to the thrilling life of a misionary.  We went out to a for part of our area, and had so many people we needed to teach and visit, but we had a meeting later and only had a little bit of time.  Seriously this was such a miracle, we sat down with two of our recent converts, and then over walks another recent convert and sits down, we sing a song, and then a less active walks over.  We say the opening prayer, and then our investigator shows up with his basahon ni mormon in hand.  I have no idea how that happened, they don't even live by each other! But it was everyone that we needed to teach.  They all just showed up, and we were able to teach all of them, and it was exactly what they needed to hear.  Tender mercies for sure.  
Saturday was a really good day.  I really love the sisters I live with.  They're really great.  We have a routine every morning where one of us cooks a ton of toast, and boils water to make energen (it's like an oatmeal drink) and everymorning we ask "what's your flavor?"  because there are three options.  It sounds kind of lame, but I love it.  We all just take shifts eating and showering and cooking and talking, and I love everymorning the question "what's your flavor".  We went out and taught this family for the first time.  They were just an fte that we found.  We walked in and found out his wife is a member.  We sat down and he looked us in the eyes and said, "i've been praying for a way to take my famiy to the temple.  can you help me?"  YES.  I about fell off my stool.  His name is Paul.  HIs wife is a less active, and she is ready to come back, and he wants to get baptized.  He asked us if we could teach them how to do family home evening, and hep them get to the temple.  Yes, yes we can.  Saturday was our District Conference.  It's like Stake Conference, except we aren't a stake yet.  President and Sister McCurdy were there.  My heavens I love them.  Sister McCurdy is such a trooper.  She is afraid of flying, of the ocean, and of driving along mountains.  Aka, her entire life for the next three years.  But she does it and she just relys on the Lord for help.  President McCurdy still calls me Sister Beyers.  Sister McCurdy got up and had all the missionaries stand and said "brotehrs and sisters, you have the army of helaman around you right now"  Ican't tell you how amazing that felt.  
Sunday:  President McCurdy asked us to do a mission wide fast, he said that he felt like we all needed a little boost, and that the mission was feeling a little heavy for some of us, so we did a mission wide fast for our mission.  It was a really great experience, and truthfully, I needed it.  I just needed that little boost.  
Monday:  Some of the elders decided to steal my family picture and pass it around.  They all decided that we are a gwapa family.  #obviously.  That night the STL's had splits, which meant a companionship came and stayed at our house.  They walked in and said "Sister Beyer!  We met someone who knows you!"  Remember that woman I FTE'd for 45 minutse on the ferry ride over here?  They found her, and she remembered my name and is letting them teach her!  
Tuesday: my six month mark.  How the heck did I ever get to six months?  We taught a picturesque lesson sitting on benches on the beach looking at the ocean.  And I realized man oh man I love my mission.  The spirit was strong, and it just felt so dang right.  Elder and Sister Anderson (who I completely adore) invited us over for dinner, not knowing it was my six month mark.  We ate potato cheese soup and homemade bread and brownies and ice cream.  Complete with root beer.  Sometimes dreams come true.  
Alright, I have such a smalla mount of time, but I want to talk about some things I've been thinking about.  There is a poster hanging on our wall in our apartment that says "walk on water" this is a new area to our mission and there was and isso much work to be done.  We are pioneers in this area and i'monly the fourth sister to come here, including the origginal two.  When you transfer, you sign the poster.  I had randomly been thinking a lot about this poster, and as I was on the back of a motor the other day, I came up with the thought "walk on water or drown" .  District meeting happened to be on faith.  They shared the story of Peter walking on water from Matthew 14:22-31.  In verse 24 it says that the ship was in the midst of the sea being tossed with the waves.  in verse 26 it wasy that the aposteles saw jesus walking on the water and they were afraid!  but in verse 27 jesus straightaway spake unto them saying be of good cheer, it is i, be not afriad.  Once again, jesus is right in our midst, telling us not only not to fear, but to be of good cheer.  in verses 28 and 29 peter walks on the water, jesus christ invites him to come and walk with him on the water.  But in verse 30 Peter saw the wind  and he was afraid.  He began to sink and cried Lord save me!  In verse 31 IMMEDIATELY Jesus stretched forth his hand and caught him and said "o thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt"  Peter was invited by the Savior to walk on water with him, but he doubted!  he chose to see the wind in front of him instead of the Savior in front of him.  Maybe I'm being a little sentimental because it's my six month mark, but this all felt so relatable.  I feel like this encompasses so much of what I've learned in the last six months.  
I started thinking about how the story starts out.  It doesn't start out as a gloriously sunny day, no, the ship wasin the midst of the sea being tossed with waves.  It would be too easy if it was a glassy lake.  Life is the hills.  And just like that story, the only way out is through, and more than anything it is through the savior.  One of my favorite scriptures is 2nephi 4:19-20.  It says the word preserved, during the week of miracles in the MTC we talked a lot about how sometiems God calms the storm, and sometimes God calms the child, preserves the child, and strengthens the child.  It's usually the latter.  In Ether six there are some great scriptures, my favorite is verse 8.  It says that  the wind did never cease to blow them toward the promised land.  
The wind is our trials!  But it'll never stop.  Our trials are pushing us towards our promised land and to become.  Peter was standing walking on the water with the lord and he chose to see the wind instead.  He chose to make it a fear building experience rather than a faith building experience.  
I feel like the last six months I've learned so much.  I'm on this mission and Jesus Christ is inviting me to walk with him.  Ihope that Ican build my faith.  Because faith is power!  And Jusus Christ is in our midst telling us to be of good cheer and not to fear.  And so we do it.  We look to the savior, and we just be strong and do it.  And we do it right.  I want  to run hard for the next year.  Iwatn to do it right.  I want to not only walk on water, but run on it.  I hope that Christ won't have to say to me "o ye of little faith".  In the end there are two options.  You can either walk on water, or you can drown.  Are you going to build your faith of build your fear?  I can do hard things!  I have done some dang hard things in the last six months, and I'll to do hard things.  Why?  Because great things await.  I believe in Christ, so come what may.  
I love you all so much.  I will talk to you real soon.

Sister Carlee Beyer

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

D&C 45:62

You can take Carcar out of Carcar but you can't take Carcar out of Carcar.  I don't really know what that means.  It's supposed to be poetic and deep and meaningful.  Obviously, I failed.  Take it for what it's worth.  I tried for days to come up with sometthing better than that haha.  
Wednesday!  My last day in Carcar.  It was nuts.  We went to a huge shoe outlet where they have this GIANT shoe and bought some hand made leather sandals.  Carcar is known for their handmade shoes.  Also chicarron, which is deep fried pig skin.  I stuck with the sandals.  But they are perfect and I looove them.  We went to Gaisanos to have siomai and zagut gulaman one last time.  As we were half way through eating a ton of food, we get a text from Nanay Naveo inviting us over to a spaghetti party that she is throwing me because I'm leaving.  The invitation was for one hour.  We were so full, but we went to the spaghetti party and ate way too much food and nearly perished from the sheer amount of spaghetti.  I love that dang family.  It was hard to say goodbye.  Sister Littell and Sister Ramos came to pick me up and I said goodbye to my companion, and the sisters I live with and my perfect blue house and we loaded up all my stuff and headed up to say goodbye to Linda.  It was hard.  There were tears, and hugs, and lots of "see you soons"  I love that woman so so endlessly.  We were trying to figure out how we were going to get all three of us, and all of my stuff in one trike to Sibonga without it costing us a fortune.  And lo and behold a tender mercy of the heavens, Brother Repollo showed up on his chappy, and was willing to give us a ride to Sibonga.  We dropped off my stuff and were able to teach that night in Sibonga.  I love worknig with Sister Littell.  She is such a good missionary.  That night her and I accidentally stayed up until nearly two am talking about life.  I really love that girl.  We just talked about the mission, things we have gone through, our lives before and how we have changed.  I think we both really needed it.  It'll be hard to not see that dang girl every week.  I really love her, and we are just so similar.  She is one of my absolute best friends here in the mission.  
Thursday I woke up and had to repack AGAIN.  I dislike packing.  We had to get my stuff to the bus stop.  I have way too much stuff.  We had one suitcase ON TOP of a chappy, and I was literally clinging to another on the back of a motor.  The man just balanced my suitcase on the motor and i was clinging to it for dear life!  All was well, we got to the bus stop and I had to say goodbye to Sister Littell.  I hate goodbyes.  And then I found out that my companions for the day...are elders.  Send help!  My companions were two elders.  We rode two busses, and then got to the dock and lo and behold MORE ELDERS.  I was with about ten elders, I was the only sister.  We sat on the dock for about an hour and I just looked out at the ocean and wrote in my journal.  I also got a sweet sunburn along the way.  We got on the ferry and crossed the big blue!  It was about a two hour ride.  Two hours being the only sister can be a little long.  You can only talk to elders for so long.  So I went and sat along the rail and talked to this 60 year old woman for about 45 minutes.  We talked about the church, and I got to really practice my visaya.  And then alas, we made it to Negros!  My new kingdom.  Sister Bateman and I saw each other (fun fact, we were in the same district my first transfer in Carcar, so we know each other pretty well) and we ran to each other and hugged each other.  it was picturesque, it was movie worthy.  We went home to drop off my luggage and they made a big sign and hung it on the door welcoming me.  Cuties.  We taught some lessons and she showed me around a bit.  We taught a lesson in a nipa hut that overlooks the ocean.  Literally, the ocaen was under us.  I don't really know why yet, but it just feels like this is exactly where I'm supposed to be.  
Friday:  I unpacked AGAIN and then met the sisters we live with.  I get to live with the Sister Training Leaders AGAIN.  (dreams).  I live with Sister Tandiman (from Indonesia) and Sister Minguez (Filipina).  They are both such amazing sisters.  They are both kind of legends in the mission.  So I get to learn so much from them.  The trikes here are HUGE.  They fit about 10 people in them.  They are so confusing.  I'll have to take a picture.  We went out to a far place in our area called Guadalupe.  We drove through sugar cane fields for miles.  Just as far as the eye can see are sugar can fields.  I feel like I'm in a totally different mission.  It is nothing like Cebu island.  That night there was a brown out.  Which just means a power outage.  It happens a lot here.  So we planned by candle light.  And then I remembered that rad flashlight dad bought me.  That thing is so freaking bright!  I sent it up in the middle of our room adn it was like a lamp!  The only downside of the brownout, was no electric fan.  It was so dang hot thta night to sleep.  Seriously, 95 degrees.  It was unreal!  
Saturday:  I set up "my area" at my desk. All my quotes and pictures, it's officially home now.  I also got all sorts of crafty like dad, and figured out a way to hang my slippers from Linda on my wall.  The walls are concrete.  I may have sewn duct tape to the back of my slippers and then taped them to the wall, it was such a process, totally worth it.  We taught all day along the ocean.  It isn't gorgeous beaches, but it's the ocean.  I can hear the waves and see the ocean and so I have no complaints.  I love it.  Also, we ride around in Trisikads all the time.   They are like little rickshaws on bikes.  Just like, a bicycle.  
Sunday:  Another brown out!  Restoration pamphlets make the very best fans.  We are a branch out here, so we aren't quite a ward yet.  It's a little different, but it' good.  Our apartment is nice, but it's different.  We cook outside.  I'm back to the good old bucket showers.  And I get to hand wash my laba again.  :)  The joys of life haha.  
Monday:  Happy Birthday Mom!  We had our district meeting and there are only four sisters in our whole zone, and only three americans!  Totally different to me.  My District Leader is Elder Smiler, he was my district leader in Carcar too!  Three transfers now we've been together.  He gives such good workshops though.  We went to lunch and a place called "Moms"  I thought that was fitting.  And in honor of your birthday, I ordered a buko (coconut) shake.  It's crazy, because during district meeting they had all the older missionaries teach the new missionaries.  And they had ME teach some new missionaries.  What.  When did I stop being new in the mission?  Life happens fast!
Tuesday:  Not a lot happened.  We just taught a lot of lessons, and I tried to figure out the new area and remember all the people.  We came home last night and I had to grab something out of one of my suitcases and I found gummy candy from Ashley from the MTC.  We took it out and feasted upon it.  Such a lucky treasure.  
So it's been a crazy week.  I read this scripture as I was leaving Carcar and it just struck me.  It's simple, but I believe it.  I know I'm supposed to be here in San Carlos.  There is so much work to be done.  I feel like I'm just going to change and grow so dang much.  I love that I get to be up here in this uncharted land.  This is so new to our mission!  And I really feel like this scripture just sums up the next year of my life.  I have no idea what is going to happen. Where I will live, who I'll live with, or what miracles I'll see.  But I know one thing.  Great things await.  It almost feels like an adventure novel doesn't it?  Sometiems my mission feels like an adventure novel.  I love you all so much.  Stay strong.  I believe in Christ, so come what may, right?  

Love, Sister Carlee Beyer