Tuesday, March 18, 2014

First week as a "Mom" in the field... :)‏

Phew... what a week.  :)  It's been so great and, yes, a little stressful.  So.... to back up a bit.  Last Wednesday I dropped Sister Sanders off at the transfer point and we had a very sad good-bye.  I miss her a lot but know I'll see her again, if not sometime during the next eight months, I definitely will after I return home.  I'll be traveling up north to visit her often.  :)

After dropping her off, I traveled to the mission home where I was happy to see Sister Alailima and Elder Tinsley who are training this transfer as well.  It was fun to spend almost that whole day in a "temporary companionship" with my companion from the MTC.  They didn't announce who are new companions were until the end of the day so we had lot's of time to make our guesses. :)  We  went to the American War Memorial for all of the people who fought here during World War ll.  It was an awesome experience and such a beautiful place.  It was there, inside this one building we went to, where Pres. Hinkley (that's embarrassing... can't spell his name...)  announced that the Philippines was open for missionary work and gave a dedicatory prayer.  It was so cool to be there, especially since the Bataan Death March was one of the only things I had ever heard about the Philippines before I received my mission call. 

After that, we went back to the mission home and they made the training announcements....  Looking around throughout the day, I'd realized that there weren't any native Filipino trainees, meaning, I would be helping my trainee learn how to speak the language too.  I had a gut feeling even before I was told I'd be training that my next comp. would be a polynesian, and sure enough, my anak, Sister Tomasi, is from Western Samoa.  :)  I love her to pieces by the way!!  She is so amazing and already is learning everything so quickly!  She was baptized a member of the church when she was 13 years old.  She has a strong testimony of the restoration of the gospel and such a big heart. 

The work is going great too!!  I was feeling pretty stressed up through Monday... training a trainee during the last week has made me very aware of just how NOT fluent I am at Tagalog and how much room for improvement there is in my teaching, but, I'm also learning to rely on the Lord and the Holy Ghost more to guide me in knowing what to say.  Yesterday was a good day of work... I just felt the words coming more easily and definitely the Lord's hand in all of it. 

Seriously... Sister Tomasi is picking up on everything so much quicker than I did.  Right now I'm encouraging her to contribute to the lessons as much as she can.  Right now it's mostly testimony, prayer, reading a scripture, or starting the lessons, but each day she's contributing more and I have total confidence in her that by the end of the transfer she'll be a pro.  :) 
I feel like this opportunity to train came at the perfect moment... I'm just hitting that peak, my half-way mark, coming up soon (you can't tell I'm looking forward to it at all... not like I keep mentioning it every week or anything ;P) and be a trainer is helping me to stay focused and get even more excited about the work. 

Yesterday really was an awesome day!  I was getting a little discouraged, because it was getting late and we'd only had two lessons so far but then, as we were walking back from getting punted at one of our appointments, some men called out to us, asking us if we knew some famous girl who supposedly was a Mormon and that led into an awesome OYM opportunity.  :)  These two men are super interested in religion and said they believe that all religions believe in the same God, but having different ways of getting to Him.  They said they are looking for the right way.  We talked to them a little bit about some of our basic beliefs and Sister Tomasi also had an amazing opportunity!  She mentioned to them that she was a convert and they asked her what made her decide that this was the right church.  She pulled out and held up a Book of Mormon and went on to share a beautiful testimony of the Book of Mormon.  I was ssssooooo proud of her and felt so blessed to be her companion.  :)  They are super interested to learn more and so we set up an appt. with them for this Saturday, which I'll be sure to email you all about next week.  :) 

Hope you all are doing well!!!  Take care and may God bless you!
Til next week!
Love, Sister Dickison
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