Monday, April 28, 2014

Snake Invasion, Service and Singing in the Rain :)

 Doing service on the beach.
Hello all!

What a week! So much happened this week, I don't know if I can get it all out, but I'll do my best.  :)

Okay, so maybe "invasion" is a bit of an exaggeration, but we did find two baby snakes in our apartment this week and one of them was on the COUNTERTOP!... we're not sure how that happened, but we just hope the mama snake doesn't come and eat us for killing her two babies...

The rain POURED on us on Friday. We were walking and walking and walking and no one was home or they were asleep or their houses were flooding and they didn't want to be taught. So I told Sister Lapura that we had to sing :) We sang hymn after hymn after hymn as we walked through the ankle deep flooded streets, trying to avoid getting splashed by the passing tricycles. We were soaking wet for the whole day, first from our sweat and then from the pelting rain, but as we walked and sang, we just laughed :) Singing hymns is a really great way to turn cloudy rainy days into sunny ones! And one thing I realized this week is that even the rain comes from heaven. We may not always enjoy it, but remember challenges help us grow!

We had a great branch conference yesterday and all of our investigators with a baptismal date came to church! Brothers Arcenio and Ronell and Sister Delia were all there! What a happy day when investigators come to church! They are all working on word of wisdom problems, but have strong desires to stop and we know Heavenly father will help them :) We are seeing miracles in their progression towards baptism!

  Dugupan Zone passing out water.
We had the opportunity to do two community service projects this week. The first was on Tuesday at the Dagupan Bangus Festival (a type of fish- sooo goood!). We served with the Dagupan Stake members handing out water to the dancers in the parade. The parade was probably one of the coolest things I've seen (culturally) in my life! The ornate, colorful traditional costumes were so amazing and the traditional dances and the drums were so cool. I couldn't stop beaming as we handed out cup after cup of water. The service project took on a new meaning to me when I realized about halfway through that there were a lot of parallels to missionary work. As missionaries, our job, our purpose, our goal, is to invite others to receive salvation by partaking of the living waters of the gospel of Jesus Christ. They are thirsty and hot and need the saving waters of the gospel and the ordinances associate with it, but they don't always realize it. I noticed as we handed out water, some of the people readily took the water. Some even came under our tent and asked to fill their water bottles. Others didn't want the water, despite the heat and their full- body costumes. We see this every day in our work as missionaries. The elected souls want more and are thirsty to know more and partake of the living waters of Christ's gospel. Others,  not so ready. They may not realize that they are thirsty until they partake of the waters. But our job is just to offer it to them. It's clean, it's refreshing, and it's free. We just have to partake of it. And it's the only way to be happy in this live and achieve exaltation :) I am so blessed to be able to offer people this saving, living water every day! :)

That's all for this week!

Mahal ko kayo :)

Sister Gustafson

 Dagupan Bangus Festival 

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