Sunday, January 31, 2016

Emergency Transfer??! New Calling and New Area

This has been another great week, although
 very insane.  I received an unexpected call from President Revillo telling me that I was being emergency transferred to Antipolo and that he was calling me as a Sister Training Leader, with Sister Liguayan as my companion.  I was completely shocked, and it was so hard to leave Morong!!  I was really stressed to be called as an STL--not only do we do regular missionary work in our own area, but we also do exchanges with all the other sisters in our route and work in their area, and set an example in finding, teaching, planning, and obedience.  The STLs are the ones that do the workshops when there's missionary conferences, and if there is a sisters companionship that is having issues we're the ones they call to help them fix the problem.  So I was really freaking out my first day or two.  And I had my first exchange the day after I got here!  It's been a roller coaster of a week, but I am settling in and I am really excited to see what the rest of the transfer will bring me :)

We had a really exciting Saturday and Sunday here.  Saturday we were able to do a one day mission with the ward missionaries and a couple of the young men here.  All 4 of us sisters split, so I got to work with a couple of the members here.  We tracted the whole three hours, so it was kind of fun to watch them getting rejected over and over again.  That sounds mean, but sometimes that's what a missionary experiences everyday, so you've just gotta laugh and go along with it ;)  But we were able to find a couple of people that were willing to listen, so we set return appointments with them.  It was so fun to see how excited they were, and Sunday was just a continuation of it.  It was combined Sunday School, and it was missionary theme, so the four of us sisters were in charge.  Almost the entire ward was there, so we split them into big groups and had them practice giving pass-along cards.  It was so fun to see how excited they got, and was such a testimony to me of how easy it is for members to be involved in missionary work!

The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it.  --Moliere.  Sometimes the big obstacles we face seem absolutely unbeatable.  But we are never given anything that we can't handle, and when we finally can make it through, we'll be able to see how much we've truly grown.
2 Corinthians 5:7  For we walk by faith, not by sight.
Love and miss you all!  XOXO
Sister Pectol

Christmas finally made it to her!  Yay!  Nothing like getting more stuff to carry along on an unexpected transfer.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Happy 20th Birthday!!!! #feelingseriouslyold

Hello everyone!!
Once again, I had an amazing week here in PQCM.  For one thing, I had my 20th birthday!!  I FEEL SO STINKIN' OLD.  I seriously think I was having arthritis a couple of days ago 😲 Lol but it was a good day.  Because it was zone training, the zone leaders surprised me with a birthday cake that everyone got to eat after the workshop.  Then me and Sister Cuales went and got another one from Goldilocks.  Our first appointment that afternoon was at our recent converts, so after our lesson they all sang happy birthday to me X) it was fun.  One of our family traditions is that we have Mickey Mouse pancakes for breakfast on our birthday.  Well, we were in a bit of a rush that morning, so no pancakes, but I got them the next morning.  I'm pretty sure that it was technically still my birthday in America, so it was ok XD  I just felt like I got an extended celebration lol.

And we got another surprise the next day when the Sister Training Leaders came to do exchanges!! We were surprised to see them this early in the transfer, but it was fun to be able to work with them.  I got to work with Sister Tea, and we had a great day together.  We were able to find some new people to teach and contact a referral from a member, so it was good.  And I always learn so much from exchanges, so it was awesome to have that.
And I continue to see miracles in myself and in this area.  One of the things that we have been working on is trying to find new investigators to teach.  It's rare that we get member referrals here, so we spend a lot of time walking, knocking on doors and talking to people on the street.  It's actually sometimes really hard to do that.  Sometimes it's easy to feel really shy and to feel scared, but me and Sister Cuales have both been trying to work on that, and to be more bold in opening our mouths.  And as we've done so, we've really seen the miracles.  We've been able to find so many more people to teach, and it's such a testimony to me of the fact that Heavenly Father always blesses us when we try to keep His commandments.
Deeds, not words--and becoming, not describing--are dominant in true discipleship.  We can't just say that we're disciples of Christ.  If we really want to be disciples, we have to put our words into action.  Sometimes it's really hard, but I'm really learning that when we do, we can truly see His hand in our lives.
Psalm 27:1  The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
Love you all!!
XOXO  Sister Payton Pectol

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Attitude Changes, Rejections, and Miracles

Hi everyone!!
Sorry, I'm saying it again, but this has been another absolutely fantastic week here in PQCM!  I've seen a lot of changes in myself and miracles in our area, and I am constantly amazed.
We spent a lot of time trying to find new investigators this week, and we actually had one of the branch missionaries working with us on Friday.  We spent that whole afternoon tracting with her...and the whole afternoon getting rejected.  Well, at least she's experiencing the full range of missionary life lol.  It makes me laugh sometimes the way that Heavenly Father works with us.  Fortunately I have a companion who also has a sense of humor, so even though we got rejected most of the day we just joked around with each other about it.  But I've learned that sometimes Heavenly Father doesn't bless us immediately for our efforts.  We only found a couple of new investigatorsFriday afternoon.  But then on Saturday, we were tracting again in a different part of our area, and we found so many people that were willing to listen to our message!!  Most of our new investigators this past week are from our efforts on Saturday.  I really do believe that Heavenly Father was just letting us prove to Him that even if we got rejected, we would still work hard.
I have also been blessed to see some big changes within myself as well.  Sometimes it's really easy to get discouraged, and even though I'm not a negative person, sometimes when we get rejected it makes me feel like it doesn't do any good to try.  But I keep finding extra little bits of motivation and hope that I didn't know I had, and it's helping me to truly give my all to Heavenly Father.  And the cool thing is, when we give our all to Him, He gives His all to us.
D&C 50:13-14  Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question--unto what were ye ordained?  To preach my gospel by the Spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth.
When you were set apart by priesthood authority, you received the right and privilege to represent the Lord...Honor Christ's name by your actions.  This comes from my personal study this morning in Preach My Gospel.  I love being a missionary!! 
I love you all and hope you have a great week!!
Sister Pectol

Monday, January 11, 2016

No Transfer!! Piggy Investigators and the Joys of Missionary Life

Hello everyone!!
I say this every time, but this was another great week in PQCM!!  It is transfer week, but I am thrilled to say that I will still be here in Morong with Sister Cuales as my companion!  Woooo!! 

I did make a fool of myself this week in one of our lessons though.  We randomly tracted a house trying to find new investigators, and they let us in to teach a short message.  The guys name was something like Buboy, so since I was the one praying and they'd complimented me on my language I was trying to be nice and clear in my Tagalog to try to help them feel the spirit.  Well, it was going great, until I said "Please bless brother Baboy".  For those of you who don't know, baboy means pig....oops.  Lesson learned?  Don't compliment the foreign missionaries on their language skills, because if you do, they will accidentally call you a pig in the prayer hahaha.
I also had the coolest experiences in church on Sunday.  One of our focuses here to help the district become a stake is on less active priesthood holders.  One of the families we've been focusing on is a great family, and everyone except the dad is super active.  He's a tricycle driver, and he always tells us that he doesn't come to church because that's a time that he makes most of his money, and the money that he makes goes directly to buy food for the next day.  In one of our lessons, we made him the promise that if he would at least come to sacrament meeting, he would still have enough money, because he would have Heavenly Father helping him as well.  And he came!!  It literally made my day.  But it's so true that when we put Heavenly Father first and obey His commandments, He will help us with our needs.

The other experience was when I passed the sacrament over to our recently baptized couple.  As I watched them partake of the sacrament, I felt the Spirit testify to me so strongly how important that was.  Because they've now made those baptismal covenants with God, they have His promise that as long as they are worthy they will always have His spirit with them.  And as they were eating the sacrament, I felt so strongly that they were exactly where they needed to be, and that by doing those things they will continue to feel that spirit with them always.

We become most ourselves when we are most true to God and to one another.  I really do know that if we truly lose ourselves in the service of God and of others we will find our best selves, and we will be even better than we ever thought we could be.
Revelation 3:20  Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
I love you all!! Have a great week!!
Sister Pectol

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Happy New Year!! Surprise Kisses and Apartment Struggles

Happy 2016 everyone!!  

I can't believe it's already here; time is going by so fast!!  Our new year's celebration was definitely different than it has been in previous years, but it was still lots of fun.  We had an early curfew again, so we had a FHE as kabahays.  As part of it we talked about one of our most spiritual experiences here on the mission, so it was really cool.  We got to see a couple of fireworks before we went to bed, but it was so noisy that we woke back up before midnight.  Everyone buys fireworks here, and they have these plastic trumpet things that are SO LOUD.  We did our new years countdown, then went out to the veranda and watched fireworks.  It was so pretty!!  We literally had a panoramic view of a sky full of fireworks.  It literally only took about 5 minutes before there was so much smoke we couldn't even breathe lol.  But it was fun :)

And I had a very unexpected experience happen this week...I got kissed!!  Not something I was expecting to happen on my mission lol.  We were visiting our old investigators that just got baptized, and the husband was telling us how grateful he was for us for teaching him the gospel, and when I shook hands goodbye with him he said "Let me kiss you."  I responded with something really intelligent like "Wut", and then he planted one right on my cheek!  It was kind of cute, but completely caught me off guard hahaha.  It's fun to find those people that you come to love and that come to love you as though they're your family.

Even though I love it here in Morong, there are definitely some disadvantages to our apartment.  For one thing, because we're up on a hill, everyday at lunch time we don't have water.  Literally, nothing.  Sometimes it's strong in the morning and in the evening, but usually it's pretty wimpy.  It takes a really looong time for the buckets to fill up so we can take a shower haha.  And our gas ran out on new years day, and because it was still the holiday, the shop was closed so we couldn't order a new tank!!  Luckily some of the members brought us food so even though we couldn't cook we managed to survive the water and gas shortage.  Sometimes life just makes me giggle :)

I Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

"It does not matter what our personal struggles are—whether they are disease or prolonged loneliness or suffering the temptations and tests of the adversary—the Good Shepherd is there. He calls us by name and says, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.""  --Elder Hugo Montoya

We had a really cool teaching experience this past week when we were visiting one of our less active families.  It's  a couple that has been inactive for years, and it was our first time to be able to teach them.  We spent a lot of time getting to know them and trying to understand their concerns.  It was my turn to give the message, so I was trying to think of a good scripture to share to them that would help them.  I ended up opening to Alma 7:11-13, which is about the Atonement of Jesus Christ and is one of my favorite scriptures.  We told them that because Jesus suffered all that He did, He understands us perfectly.  Because of the Atonement, we always have someone that we can lean on.  Because of the Atonement, no matter where we've been or what we've done, we can return and change.  We can be our best selves, and we can feel His love again.  As we shared that, I could see tears in the eyes of the wife, and the husband was obviously feeling it as well.  The Spirit was so strong, and I know that they were able to feel the love that the Savior has for them.  They didn't come to church on Sunday, but I know that we at least helped them to feel the Spirit and to feel that they are important to Heavenly Father.  I really didn't know what we should share to them, so I'm so grateful that we were listening to the Spirit and were able to find the right scripture for them.  I love being a missionary and being able to help people feel Heavenly Father's love for them!

I love you all!!  Have a fantastic week!!
Sister Payton Pectol