Monday, April 25, 2016

Transfer Week! Repeating Companions

This week has been sooo busy, and so fun, and so difficult.  It's been quite a week :)

On Wednesday we had our sisters conference, which was absolutely a blast!  We had workshops and all did exercise together and played was great :)  But Sister Consulta and I were the only ones who set up the tables the night before, and it was those big heavy metal/wood ones that all the churches have.  We loaded them in the elevator, dragged them out, set them up, arranged them...I think we both thought our backs were going to break by the time we were done lol.  It was hard to prepare and get ready for it, but it turned out so good and was so worth it :)
Tomorrow is the last day of this transfer, and Sister Consulta was called by President Revillo on Sunday informing her that she would be released as a Sister Training Leader and that he was calling her as a trainer, and that she was whitewashing.  She doesn't want to whitewash, but she's excited to transfer.  She's tired of being an STL haha.  Our Zone Leaders called this morning and told me that my new companion will be Sister Udarbe, my anak!!  I'm so excited that we get to be companions again; I didn't think that would ever happen.  It's going to be difficult to train a new STL, but it's nice that I already know that she's magaling (talented) so it's going to be ok :) 
I'm sad to see Sister Consulta transfer, though.  We've gotten close.  It's been an interesting transfer, with a lot of ups and downs.  I've learned a lot from her, and it's going to be hard to say goodbye.  I've had companions in the past that have been like my best friends, but Sister Consulta hasn't been like that.  She feels more like my sister.  I have never had a companion before that was more brutally, completely honest with me about all of my flaws, and the things I need to change.  She shows me when she's annoyed with me and she doesn't go out of her way to be gentle.  But that being said, I don't think I've ever had a transfer before that has helped me to grow so much.  Sister Consulta has been there to give me the feedback that really will help me to change and grow, and I am so grateful for that.  I'm still so far from perfect, but with her help I was able to at least progress to become more like my Savior :)  I'm going to miss her, but I'm also excited to be companions with Sister Udarbe again :)
You have never tested God's resources until you have attempted the impossible.  Christ has turned all our sunsets into dawn.--Clement of Alexandria
James 4:10  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
Have a good week!!  Love you all!!
Sister Pectol

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Inspired Companionship and Fishing Stories

This week has been a really really hot and sweaty week...just sayin'.  I'm pretty sure we literally sweat buckets.  It's just great.. 😛
But we had some real miracles this week :)  I'm so glad that Sister Udarbe is my companion again because not only do we get along super well, but she is also a miracle worker.  I was feeling really discouraged with our area and really losing hope, so Saturday I fasted for help for our area.  It's so hard to fast and go without water while walking around knocking on doors and talking to people in the street all afternoon, but it's so worth it--before I had even closed my fast I started feeling more positive about the area and we were able to find a lot of new people to teach.  Heavenly Father really listens to us when we do our part :)
I also learned this week that fishing experiences can actually be a really good way to get to know investigators :)  We taught a part member couple on Tuesday who fed us dinner after the lesson; sweet and sour fish.  Come to find out he's been to the states multiple times to visit his kids, and while there he's done some fishing.  It wasn't long before we were talking about striped bass and trout and all that stuff; it was great! It got me excited to get back out on a lake haha.
3 Nephi 9:22  Therefore, whoso repenteth and cometh unto me as a little child, him will I receive, for of such is the kingdom of God. Behold, for such I have laid down my life, and have taken it up again; therefore repent, and come unto me ye ends of the earth, and be saved.  I'm so happy that I get to be here and get to help the other children of my Heavenly Father come unto Him :)  #bestthingever
If all you know is what you see with your natural eyes and hear with yoyur natural ears, then you will not know very much.--President Boyd K. Packer
I love you all!!  Have an amazing week!!
Sister Pectol

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Nganga: We Can't Teach in English

This week has been another fantastic week here in PQCM.  And we had a baptism!!  I'm so happy :)  Joy was a miracle investigator for us.  One of our other progressing investigators all of a sudden dropped us, and later that afternoon we were at the church to get something.  We saw Joy sitting next to one of the recent converts in the ward, and out of the blue Sister Consulta started talking to her.  From there, Joy was almost instantly our most progressing investigator.  She would read the Book of Mormon and tell us what we learned, and even though we were in Mindoro the week of her baptismal interview and couldn't be there with her, when she replied to our text she told us that this was one of the greatest blessings she's received.  The baptism was amazing, and her testimony was so strong!   I love being here and being able to help Heavenly Father's children come unto Him!

Friday we had our Mission Leadership Council, and halfway through we stopped so that we could go give service at a rest home.  It was so fun!  We sang and played games with all the lolos and lolas (grandpas and grandmas) and shared short messages with them.  There was one old lola that could still play the piano a million miles an hour, even though she's now stooped over with age.  It was neat to see the missionaries split off and group around each person; I think that they felt loved, and the change of pace was maybe a good thing to get for them.  #idon'twannagetold

We also contacted a media referral yesterday who's name is Joshua.  He lived in one of our areas that is just condos, and when he walked into the waiting area and started speaking fluent English both me and Sister Consulta could feel the nosebleed coming on.  We're speaking English in the apartment, but as we were planning for our lesson with him later we agreed that it's going to be hard for us to teach in English.  But he can understand Tagalog, which is nice.  I haven't lost any English so far, but I only know how to teach in Tagalog lol.  There's a Tagalog word "nganga" which basically describes when someone has no idea what's going on and is just sitting there with their mouth hanging open.  When Joshua asked for a Book of Mormon almost before we introduced ourselves and then started talking with us about when we could actually teach him, I think nganga was a very good description for both of us haha.  We were surprised by how excited he was and by how much he already seemed to know about the church.  It's going to be an interesting lesson later :)

Isaiah 50:7 For the Lord God will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.

"No matter where we live and what our circumstances are, it is essential that our preeminent identity is as a child of God."--Donald L. Hallstrom.  The longer I'm here the more I learn that no matter where we are or what we're doing, all of us are children of God, and He loves us more that we could ever know, and is always ready for us to come to Him.  I'm so grateful for the conference messages that we got to hear this weekend; I know that we really do have a living prophet on the earth and I sustain him with all my heart.  I know that no matter what we've done with our lives we can always use the Savior's Atonement to repent and change, and I know that this truly is the work of the Lord, and that there is no greater work we could do than to share the gospel of Jesus Christ to our brothers and sisters.

Love you all!!
Sister Pectol

P.S.  Groups of kids like this one is what almost always happens if we stand in one place for too long.  I was on exchanges in another area, and while we were waiting for the other sisters to come meet us the kids grouped around us, rubbing my freckles, touching my hair, and trying to convince me to speak English.  The sister I was with knew most of them, so she helped us get everyone grouped for a picture :)

Monday, April 4, 2016

A Week in Mindoro! Beaches, Exchanges, and Airplane Miracles

I don't have a lot of time today but just wanted to let you know that this week was AWESOME.  We spent it in Mindoro and did exchanges with the 3 sets of sisters there.  It was so beautiful!  I got tons of pictures, but unfortunately I don't have my card reader with me so next week na lang ang pictures.  We had a bit of a miracle with our flight this morning.  We were actually supposed to fly out yesterday morning, but there was a power out in the Manila airport so the flight got cancelled.  We were only on the waiting list this morning, and if we wouldn't have made it we would have had to take about a 15 hour land trip to get back here.  We were numbers 4 and 5 on the waiting list, and there were just enough spots for us to get on :)  Heavenly Father really does take care of us.
I had the neatest experiences this week while we were doing exchanges.  When we do exchanges with a companionship, I will work with one sister and Sister Consulta will work with her companion, and at the end of the day we have personal evaluations and companionship evaluations.  One of the sisters I worked with in the mission is a previous STL and is more senior than I am, but the other two were still fairly new in the mission.  I felt the Spirit there in all of our evaluations, but especially with the new sisters.  They were both struggling with things that I really struggled with when I was new, and as I talked to them about the things that I had learned in my mission and about the change and the growth that I have experienced, I could see that they were touched.  They are both amazing sisters, and as with all my exchanges, I think I learned more from them than they did from me.  But as I was sharing with them about my experiences and struggles in the mission, I felt the Spirit witness to me that I was given this calling because there's something that I can give to the sisters to help them.  I've questioned multiple times if this calling was really inspired, because I am so imperfect and I feel like the sisters do way more for me than I do for them.  But as I talked with those amazing women I felt the witness of the Spirit that even though I am so imperfect there is still something I can do to help.  It was such a witness to me that when we are trying to do what the Savior would do to help one of God's children, He will be here with us :)

Our high responsibility is to become women who follow the Savior, nurture with inspiration, and live truth fearlessly. As we ask Father in Heaven to make us builders of His kingdom, His power will flow into us and we will know how to nurture, ultimately becoming like our heavenly parents.  --Neill F. Marriott
Alma 38:2  And now, my son, I trust that I shall have great joy in you, because of your steadiness and your faithfulness unto God; for as you have commenced in your youth to look to the Lord your God, even so I hope that you will continue in keeping his commandments; for blessed is he that endureth to the end.

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