My family, can I tell you, I have already seen the fruits of our so recent re-energized diligence in the work. It is so absolutely beautiful.
Last week, Elder Madsen and I met a woman and her two daughters while we were tracting in a random area. We weren't able to teach them because we didn't have any males with us, but they assured us that when we came back the next time, their son would be home. Last weekend, we had been out in the beating sun all day sweating nicely (you almost begin to miss that after sitting in air con so much) and once the night came, we trudged on ward in our search for people to teach. We got to this family (Paglinawan family) and the son wasn't home so yet again, we were not able to teach. As we walked back to the road, we looked up at the dark night sky, lightened slightly by the quarter moon, and Elder Madsen humorously made the comment, "The moon smiles upon us." Even though we didn't have all the success we could have that day, we still know that God saw our efforts and diligence and he was pleased with us. The rattling off story does indeed get better than this! We were able to bring a member couple to the Paglinawan family on Friday and they so happily let us in. Sister told us why she was so insistent on us teaching her before, and why she was so sad that we couldn't. So remember, when Elder Madsen and I first met them, we had no clue what was going to happen that afternoon. We simply picked a street to walk down, put our trust in God, and went for it happily as ever. Meanwhile, Sister had been very distraught. She had been so confused and felt torn over the different religions around her. It got to the point to where she had no where else to go, but to God. She begin to pray that God would help her. Specifically, she prayed for God to send someone to her who would show her to the truth. At the very moment she ended her prayer.... "Tao po!" We were knocking on her door. (you don't actually knock her, you just say "tao po" to say that there are people outside). Is this not miraculous? ...More updates there next week.
Other highlights of the week: Got to go on exchanges with Elder Todd! (he was my last companion before I got transferred from Tabaco). On Saturday, the Nelsons (couple missionaries who help with self-reliance) invited us to go to Bulan with them. This is the very south point of our mission. We got to help a little with translating and it was really an over all wonderful day! Learning more and more about working and becoming self-reliant is becoming a more and more prevalent topic around Elder Madsen and I right now. I figure, the harder I work now, the more I'll be blessed in the future (and currently as well). Let's see, what else... we planned some things. And that's about it!
I loved this week. It's only getting better. It was good from the start, a year and a half later, I'm sure you can imagine how wonderful it is now! Hope your week was just as report worthy as mine!
Love, Elder Shane Brown
1. "The moon smiles upon us."
2. They put the Batman action figure in a Spiderman case... Only in the Philippines.