Tuesday, March 22, 2016

March 22 - 1 Year Left

Tomorrow is my 1 year left mark in the mission! March 22! Wow, these last 6 months honestly feel like 1. Mission time is so weird!!!!!

Another great/strange/spiritually building week in the Philippines!

One of the biggest things I have grown from this week is my new calling - choir director. Elder Camiling was the choir director, and he personally volunteered my to replace him before he transferred. At first I was like, "Oh this will be a breeze". And yet, after the first practice I was ready to punch him for what he had done to me.

This choir is hard chore haha. And, we have our performance next week at the Branch Conference. I am the person who always would lead the music by signing my name in cursive in the air, and now I've had to learn to lead with both of my hands and all of the many tiny little symbols I need to do with my hands that mean different things to the choir. It's been good for me because it's helped me to grow a lot closer with the members. A lot of them don't realize that I am a 20 year old girl so completely out of her comfort zone in this other country of theirs. They see me as this American who they're very intimidated by. Hahaha, I'm sure the look on my face often through this choir experience has shown them how much I really have no idea what I am doing. The relief society has helped me a lot and we've been growing through this experience together.

The work continues on. We're finding people. Losing people. Trying to help people progress. It's hard. The mission had what everyones been calling the March Miracle to reach our baptisms that we goaled for, and we're not going to get even one. Our investigators are just not ready. And, 3 of them just disappeared and went who knows where. We're working hard, but all of the progression of course is in their hands and the Lords. 

Wow, I loved that article mom, about the missionaries being protected and watched over! That is so good!!! It's so true too. At least for me. I feel like this last month and a half or so has just been full of many trials for the missionaries around me and for me too. And yet, the work progresses on and somehow we all make it out okay haha. I'm doing better this week than I have the whole mission.

Part of it is because of my current district - Elder Batikare & Elder Thompson (zone leaders), Elder Gunn & Elder Fijardo, Sister Folau & Sister Estrera - you probably remember how close I was to my district in the MTC. This district isn't quite as close because we don't spend every hour together, but it's pretty close. They're all like my best friends and they crack me up. Friends and family are just so important. I'm so grateful I made it through those first 12 weeks because with my inability to speak the language it was the loneliest thing in the world. There's nothing like it I've ever experienced before. Thank heavens I'm over it!!!!!!

The mission is just amazing in how much it builds you. I'm gonna use all these experiences for the rest of my life.
Keep growing in the gospel everyone! And enjoying life. It is meant to be enjoyed. Appreciate the little things and you will realize how blessed you truly are.

Love you all. Thank you a thousand times over for all of the support you give me!

Love Sister Russon

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