Elder Oaks visited the Philippines a few weeks ago and he said something like that the Philippines is the land of smiles and trials, and I came across that quote again today on lds.org. I just thought it was so true and appropriate for these people here, that no matter what trials or struggles they are encountering, they always have a smile on their face! We have a lot to learn from them about being thankful and having an attitude of gratitude when things get hard.
Speaking of being thankful...I'm thankful for a wonderful mission president who reminded us that tomorrow is Thanksgiving! I almost forgot!
In the spirit of Thanksgiving (and because email time is cut short today- we have a zone activity) here are the things I'm thankful for this week...
1. I'm thankful that I was able to go to Frances' wedding. She is a member and the mom of Julia (our recent convert). I'm also thankful to know that someday I will be married in the temple for time and all eternity.
2. I'm thankful for wonderful members here in Bacong (the Guia family) that took time out of their schedule to take us to the beach in Dauin. It was so much fun and we took tons of pictures. I'm thankful that they are also having me over for dinner on Friday (my 15 month mark on my mission).
3. I'm thankful that when it seems like all of our investigators are hiding from us, that one starts to make a lot of progress. Her name is Elena and she has quite a story. She is the single mom of 5 little boys under age 9. She also only can see out of one eye due to a gasoline explosion when she was a little girl that took the life of her mom and two sisters. I'm thankful for her faith and perseverance despite her trials and I'm thankful she'll be baptized on December 13th.
4. I'm thankful that we were able to find 7 new investigators this week that all seem to have the potential to progress.
5. I'm thankful for my companion Sister McCann. I LOVE HER! We are such great friends and I'm thankful she is my first companion from Utah and that I'll get to see her all the time after the mission. I'm also thankful for all of the companions I have had and the things I have learned from them.
6. I'm thankful that I've been on my mission for 15 months on Thursday, and that I have learned that true happiness is found in losing yourself in the service of others.
7. I'm thankful for the chance I have to have 2 mission presidents. I love President and Sister Schmutz as well as President and Sister McCurdy with all of my heart.
8. I'm so thankful I was able to train 2 new missionaries and learn from them and in turn be trained all over again myself. It was a really humbling experience and I will always have a special place for Sister De Jesus and Sister Primero in my heart.
9. I'm so thankful for the Philippines, and the lives these people live that are so simple, so carefree. I'm so thankful that I've learned to be a much more relaxed and HAPPY person here!
I'm just happy, and thankful. Even though the people here don't celebrate Thanksgiving, it's important to always have an attitude of gratitude in our hearts and my heart is full this day! I love you all and wish you all the happiest Thanksgiving ever. Thank you for everything.
Love, Sister Harris
Lazada Family FHE
Mae & Raquel
straight hair for wedding
Cartwheel on the beach
Reyshawn recent convert
Elena a new investigator
Julia's Mom Francis, Married
Julia's Sister Erica
Missionary Jump Jump
Dinner? Not. Just a goat
Fun at the beach
The wedding of Francis & James
Our badges in the sand