We have received our flight plans for the Philippines! We leave next Wednesday. Rumors are that all the travel time put together will be about 31 hours including layovers and what not. It's going to be the best! So much time to study, get to know missionaries and get ahead on sleeping for the next 16 1/2 months while also catching up for the past month and a half.
Ever since Elder Oaks came last week I've come to realize more than ever how vital obedience is. I made a goal to become more exactly obedient last week and have stuck to it. At first it was rather difficult. I was getting really discouraged. For example I made such an effort to be in my room by 9:30 and ended up getting back at 9:31. Then the very next day the same exact thing happened. It was honestly kind of hilarious but at the time mostly frustrating. Then as the days went on and I continued trying and praying for help and it got easier! In fact, yesterday I was in my room by 9:29! Not only is it getting easier but I can see the blessings that are resulting from my obedience. I am getting closer with my district, I am happier, I am more receptive to the Holy Ghost and best of all the language is coming faster than ever! One of my teachers even stopped me after class to compliment me specifically on the language. Ah how cool is that! I am so so so thankful for the gift of tongues. We are capable of really amazing things when we turn ourselves over to God.
Some short stories
-At lunch I saw all these missionaries eating the best chips of all time, cheddar ruffles. But when I went up to get my food I saw no more bags. So I asked an employee if there was a secret stash anywhere and then he went to a box behind him and proceeded to give me not one, but TWO bags.
-We had a really good lesson with our investigator Miguel on the Word of Wisdom. The spirit was so strong and it was the best we'd ever worked together as a companionship.
-Not only did our Tuesday night devotional speaker have a fantastic British accent, but he also had some fantastic thoughts to share. His central message was around the fact that we have to choose to enjoy our experience if we want to enjoy it. He also mentioned how amazing it is that we are giving the opportunity to people to have a new beginning as well as gaining a new one for ourselves with every transfer to a new area, every new companion and even every time we repent. My goodness, repentance is such a gift
It really is the final countdown. I will likely be emailing again on Wednesday. The time after that I will be in the Philippines! I love this gospel and I am so grateful to have this opportunity!