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Somehow, two years have passed. And Dallin will be flying back to the states on March 26th. It has been quite the adventure! I will encourage him to add his own summary when he gets back...(Living the good life in the Philippines, Quezon City North Mission. Entered the MTC in Provo on April 4, 2012. Flew to the Philippines on Sunday, May 13, 2012. What a great adventure! And what an honor to serve the good people of the Pines!)

Monday, October 22, 2012

10-22-12 If the boot fits....

This one time, I was talking to this family in my current ward. And one of the daughters told me that she has been putting a lot of thought to the subject and has finally come to the conclusion that I have severe mental issues. That pretty much sums up the story of my mission probably. 

Hello everyone!!! How is life? I will now take the liberty of assuming that you answered in a positive and happy manner. To which I would say; that is so good. I'm glad to hear that. What have you been up to? At this point, I'm guessing you say something that is considered something fun. In reply I say; awesome! That's sooo cool! Sometime, we will totally do that together. It'll be sweet!! But now, I've got to burst your little happy bubble. Cuz my week has been better and all y'all will never have this same fun that I'm having with me. But some of you will get to do the same things and some of you have already done them. We just won't enjoy doing them together. Sad day. But not really! It's still good!!

First!! As usual. Thanks to the Mama and Papa Mac for the letters I got this week. Those were wonderful!! Thank you for keeping me with a constant supply of reading. You are wonderful!!!

Ok. Let's talk about my week a little bit. So back in the beginning of the week, my zone had our zone interviews with President Sperry. Let me tell you, he is a wonderful man!! I'll be honest. Back in the day, you tell me I've got an interview, I wouldn't be super excited. But interviews are wonderful things! It is nice to have a good chance to talk with your mission president. So those were wonderful. Plus we ordered pizza. Skipped the rice. Woohoo!!

I did exchanges again with Elder Broadhead. My companion is the district leader and they are the only other elders in our district, so when we do exchanges, we go with them. Elder Broadhead is the man. He is not even done with training yet. But he lays down the law like he's been here for over a year. It's wonderful. Neither of us are wonderful at Tagalog. I think I mention this every time. But we still always manage to have a wonderful day with great lessons. On this particular day, we ran out of scheduled people by about 4. That leaves us 5 hours to improvise. We had a lot of people cancel on us. So we just went where the Spirit took us. We talked to tons of random people. Mostly kids. People always told me talk to kids. They will help you improve your language. But at the start, I couldn't understand them or say anything to them, so I figured that was a load of worthless advice. Come to find out, once you can speak a little and understand just a bit, talking to kids really does help!! They are the best! I have been talking to loads of kids as of late. It is a great time!! They like talking to a white guy. And it's even better if it's two white guys!! So with Broadhead as my companion, we struck gold. People of all ages call out or yell weird things at us a lot. It's kind of something you just have to get used to. But we tried something new. Every time a kid would say something to us, we'd stop and talk to them. At first they are always shocked and a little shy. But then, when they see you just want to talk to them, and in Tagalog, they get excited. Once you stop, a group starts forming. We get about 30 kids within 5 minutes, every time we stop. And they will just talk to you forever. The best part is this; it is a sneaky way to talk to adults. Kc, if you talk to an older person, they will be quick to tell you they are busy or they don't have time or they aren't interested cuz they are Catholic or something. But if you talk to kids, they can't help but listen. They don't feel like they are being attacked by the white people. So they listen. So we talk to kids. We tell them who we are and why we are here and what we are doing. We tell them how our message will help them and their families and we tell them where our church is. We tell them we would be happy to talk with their families. And we tell them we will be walking that day every day so they can talk to us any time they like. The adults always listen. I'm hoping it will be a tactic that will start to pay off. Anyway, on exchanges with Elder Broadhead, we talked to tons of kids. We probably stopped and talked to about 6 groups of them. We actually got a lesson with an inactive family that Elder Doria and I have been unable to teach since we got here. We also ran into a random member that we've seen at church but never visited. We were definitely lead by the Spirit in what we said and where we went all day. It was a great day. 

Also, kind of on the same subject of kids. Yesterday, Elder Doria and I got punted on our final appointment. On the way back to the main street, we ran into a group of kids and started talking to them. Elder Doria says that even he was impressed with how much my Tagalog has improved. I'm still terrible. But it's nice to hear from someone that you're improving at something. Makes you feel good. 

There's a funny thing that happens when you serve a mission. Before you serve, and maybe after, perhaps this will sound familiar to you all. You're in Sunday School and the teacher asks a non-rhetorical question and says that you can't give the SMA's for an answer. Don't tell me to read my scriptures, go to church and pray. It's the same thing on the mission. No one wants to hear the SMA's. For real. But I've come to realize something. The SMA's really are the answer to almost any problem!! If you will do those things every day with some real intent, you will be set!! You will take care of some major problems in your life. But no one wants those answers as the answers to their problem. It's just like the bible story of Naaman. He goes to Elijah, wanting to be healed of leprosy. Elijah tells him to submerge himself in the Jordan River seven times. Naaman doesn't want to do it. His servant points out that if Elijah had asked him to do some great thing, he would have done it. But because of the simpleness of what was required, he wouldn't do it. It is the same way for us. We will be teaching someone. They have a problem in their life that they want us to help them with. The first thing I will ask them is if they are going to church, reading their scriptures and saying their prayers. Chances are, they aren't doing one or more of those things. When someone has a problem, my first advice is always to do their SMA's. They always seem a little put out that my answer is the SMA's. "Really? That's it?" They are disappointed! Seriously, that is all you have to do!! It's so easy!! If you just do that, you will take care of so many problems!! Your desire to sin will almost completely bounce ship! The SMA's are the SMA's for a reason. It's a reason that the answer is always one of those things. Heavenly Father gave us those tools to protect us and to help us come closer to Him. If we will do those things, which we are commanded to do, we will be blessed. It's a true story. 

Another fun fact for all of you. The Atonement is real. It's definitely something that I have needed in my own life and it's something that everyone else needs too. I love being able to teach people about the Atonement and how it is something they need in their lives. We all make mistakes and sin. Siyempre, kc, tao lang. Your mistakes bring guilt. Your heart gets heavy. I know the feeling. But that's what makes the Atonement such a beautiful gift in our lives. With the Atonement, we can all change. And that's something that people sometimes overlook when they think about repentance. Repentance brings change. You have to change as a person. When you change, when you repent, when you fully use the Atonement in your life, your guilt and your pain and the heaviness in your heart is all swept away. I've seen that here in the Philippines time and time again. We find people that are weighed down with sins. Life is hard and sad and full of remorse. And then we get to introduce the Atonement. As people truly use the Atonement, you get to watch the weight get taken away. They get a light in their eyes and they become happy!! Like with the story of Alma and the sons of Mosiah (my favorite people) who were the vilest of sinners. Alma says his soul was wracked with endless torment? Or maybe the pains of Hell. Or maybe both. But then, he talks about becoming a new creature. And the wonderful peace and joy that comes with it. And of course, with the change that he made, he and the sons of mosiah became the greatest missionaries of all time!! The power of the Atonement is real. It helps people to give up their sins and to be able to forgive others for their sins. I promise it. I know it. 

Anyway. It's been a lovely week. I hope you all enjoy my email, full of me being a little on the preachy side. Sensya na. But, I love you all! Thanks for everything!!

Much love, 

Elder Christensen

P.S. I seriously didn't take out my camera this week. So no pics. SOORRRY!!

Pics for "Didn't your mother..."

10-15-12 Didn't Your Mother Ever Tell You Not To Play With Your Food??

Ok, I must admit. I thought of the subject line for this email about the day after my last email. Here's the story. So I'm sitting with Elder Doria, eating lunch. I'm having a special flavored tuna. For some reason, I started making it into shapes. Not that I get bored during meals, but...well maybe. So it happened. And I thought to myself, "Hey, I could take a picture of this one, sculpted bit of rice and have a subject line for next week". I know, that's weird. But it happened. But then, after every bite, some other shape presented itself and I just kept taking pics. I think my mission is driving me crazy. 

Anyway. It's been a short week since the last email. So with not many days, it was already unlikely that a ton would go down. And then, we took two days off of work for conference. So our short week got super short. And therefore, this email will be super short. But on the bright side, we have a very long week ahead of us, so you can look forward to a completely insane, partially deranged, very long email next week! Cheers!

Before I get into the few fun details I have and forget all about it, Happy Birthday to my friend Brenna! 

So. We did have a few days to work since last time I wrote. We had several referrals to follow up on in our area. And so we did. Imagine that. Two of those referrals have turned out to be exciting and quite promising. Both referrals are families. Both have been very receptive. But the one family is particularly cool!! The sister explained that she has been looking for a religion and a bible to read. For some reason, she has been unable to obtain one. When we gave her the Book of Mormon, she got way excited! She decided this was the reason she didn't have a bible yet, so she would be able to read the Book of Mormon. She also told us that she loves to read and that she will get to work on it. That is amazing!! Half the problem out here is getting people to read!! Even if they are excited about the gospel, no one wants to read. It's like they are afraid of contracting a serious disease! It's nuts! But this lady is ready to go! So we are really excited there. But if I'm honest, that's really all of the cool news with work. But we have had a few great lessons with both families. 

We also had conference this week!!! Woohoo!! I was already excited for conference because, well obviously, it's conference. But then, we heard about the age changes for missionaries last week and I was double excited. Let me rephrase that. Stoked. I was completely stoked. But man, besides the age change, no one said anything!! I had nooo idea just how good conference was going to be!! It was so ridiculously good!! Every single talk was just, man. Incredible. I loved conference. But it is different here. I enclosed a picture. On saturday, when the meeting started, we had all the missionaries in the zone and two other people. Iyan lang. It was crazy. By later on, the room filled in a little. Maybe 40 people. And then, for priesthood session, only about 30 people. For sunday, there was more people. For the first session. And then most the people left. I admit, I was a little bewildered. I think people don't understand that all the sessions are different. Sad day though. But I was loving it. Also, a great part of conference for me. When the second session ended sunday, all of the sudden, it switched to the BYU football game!!! No joke!! Here in the Philippines, I got to see Bronco Mendenhall and my Cougs!! I was stoked! We didn't see any action at all. They only showed Bronco standing on the sideline and then the teams lined up before the people in charge caught it and turned the whole thing off. But it was still sweet!! 

After conference yesterday, we had an activity with the missionaries in our district. We did a guided tour of the three kingdoms of glory for families. Mostly LA families or investigators. It was well set up and was a cool experience. I would love to go into my feelings and comments on that, but I admit, I'm out of time and need to bounce. 

I also walked past a pig getting roasted on the side of the road. Got y'all a pic of that. Then, I finally took a pic of my Jaywalking ticket and included that. And then a pic with a LA families child that loves me. We teach them a lot. Hahahahahaha!!! Oh man!! In fact, this is the kid from the cheese grater story from a few weeks back. Fun fact, just in case you were interested. 

Anyway. I think that is it for me. Not tons of stuff because we didn't have tons of days. But even in the few days we had, the work is progressing. Exciting things are happening here. Being a missionary is the best thing in the world. Everyone that now has the wonderful chance of serving a mission opened up to you, I recommend going if at all possible. I've said it before. But I'll say it again. Being able to help people change their lives for the better is incredible. Missionaries got talked way up in conference. I don't have my notes with me. But it could have been Elder Perry. Missionaries are the solvers of all problems!! But no joke! That's what we do!! I love it! It is wonderful to bring the blessings of the gospel into people's lives and especially for families. Everyone needs the gospel. Even if they don't know it. 

That's it for me. Gotta be heading. But I love you all. Keep it real this week. Ponder conference. Eat a piece of cheesecake. 

Much love, 

Elder Christensen 


Pics for Where's the food...

10-10-12 Where's the food?

Ok. So. This may have been a less interesting week. Again. It almost makes a man throw on a quick frowny face. But the key word here would be almost. I in fact, did not throw on a frowny face. Cuz that will cause wrinkles. Plus it makes you look ugly. And it could become permanent if you hold it too long. Or at least, that's what they say. 

But this week, the work got held up a little. Of course, the work is constantly being held up by unknown forces!! This week, it came in the form of sickness. Turned out to be pretty much district wide. But we did finally get over it. And some good things did happen. But before I get there, I have a few shout outs to throw down. Hard core. In the paint.

I got some letters this week! I did celebrate. Possibly a happy dance. And there may have been unintelligible screaming. But let us not focus there. The letters came from my Aunt Dawnette and the Mama Mac. Thank you very very much for getting letters to me!!! 

A quick answer to my Aunt. Sinabi niya; I served with a Bret Broadhead and his son Jeff was headed to your mission. Tapos, nagtanong siya; is this the Elder Broadhead you speak of? Yes, yes indeed it is! One and the same!! And, Elder Broadhead is a champ! But we'll get to that later. 

One funny note for my mother and possibly my family and possibly my Aunt Fran. I was looking through my Tagalog dictionary this week. They have phrases for anything you can imagine. But try this one on. Palisan - female water buffalo. Yes. It's true. 

Ok, we will pretty much fast forward through most of the week until Saturday. We had several referrals that turned into investigators. That has been so very nice!! I think we got 9 new investigators this week! Now, that's only 2 or 3 families, but still! 9 new investigators is bombin!! I'm super excited about that!! It's good to have work coming to us finally!! 

Now we will move to Sunday. No conference for us this last week, because we get it this weekend. So I was in sacrament meeting and the bishop announced the age change for missionaries. WHATTTTT????!!!! This is craziness and madness, but in I mean that in only the very best of ways!! I'm super excited about it. It could bring a lot of changes to folks back home. My bro could be serving the same time as me and lots of my homies that are not serving anytime soon can now be serving very soon. I'll be interested to see what happens!! It's an exciting announcement!! 

Now, it was our fast sunday. One of my favorite parts of fast sunday here, is that we often get invited to the mission home for dinner since we are in President and Sister Sperry's ward. This Fast Sunday was no exception. We got invited to the mission home. Ahhh. It was a miracle. I do love eating there. It's always super American. At walang kanin. Hallelujah. This week was homemade mashed potatoes and pork chops. Now, the potatoes had me thinking of a movie quote. I was thinking of using it for the subject line of my email. As I was sitting there, pondering this funny quote, Sister Sperry says, "These mashed potatoes are sooo creamy!" I laughed sooo hard!! And I was alone. No one else knew it. But she and I had a good laugh together. And the fact that I had just been thinking about it made it that much better. It was exceedingly pleasing. 

After dinner, Elder Doria and I walked to our area. As we were passing our supermarket, Elder Doria said, "Elder, they're drifting!!" I didn't know how he could hear the difference from the drifting cars and regular traffic. It all sounds the same to me. But we looked over a little ledge into the parking lot of the supermarket, and sure enough, there was a course set up and cars were drifting through it, trying to get the best time. I got you some pics, but you really need the video to understand. But that'll have to wait for about 18 months cuz I haven't figured out how to send videos. But it was a fun experience. 

Yesterday, Elder Broadhead and I went on exchanges. It was super super awesome as usual. We taught out 3 very spiritual lessons. This man lays down the law. He's fairly new. Newer than me anyway. Not even finished training. But the man is a beast of a missionary. Whenever we teach, even though our Tagalog is not killer, we have awesome lessons with cool experiences!! It was an awesome day! Although I admit, we have funny times a lot too. Last time, we had the cheese grater story. This time, there was a child being a bit of a beast and his mom sarcastically said to us in English that she would just have to sell him or leave him somewhere. The kid knew enough English to totally pick up on what she said and he threw a fit! He was bawling and throwing a tantrum and the whole show. It was weird again. But funny once again. Haha, he did not think the joke was funny. But, I did. 

And then today, we got up super early to go to the temple. It was a good experience. I love the temple. We are lucky to be able to go every transfer. Anyway. So that's how our day has gone. I do like P-days. And temple days. And mission days. It's a good call. So, to all the lovely folk out there thinking that this change in age for missionaries is the best thing ever; it is!! Go on a mission!! It's the best thing in the world!! Even if you have a slightly off week. Or two. Or three. You will still be the happiest person in the world (along with the other 60,000 missionaries) because you are doing the Lord's work and helping people change their lives! And it's incredible! So get those papers in! 

This is all for me folks. Sorry the email is slightly lacking. But I will make up for it with a killer one next week. Sana. I love you all. Have a wonderful week. Talk to you Monday!!!

Much love, 

Elder Christensen 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Pics for That Right There Is What We Call A Whole Lot Of Nothing

10/1/12 That Right There Is What We Call A Whole Lot Of Nothing

Hey hey hey my homies and peeps and all the people wearing purple unicorn socks!! I love you all tons!! Thanks for all the supporting and loving and caring and thinking and praying and reading and siguro writing and...everything else that you all do!! That's what missionaries need most! And we love it!! 


So. If I'm completely honest. Actually, two things. First. I'm on drugs. I don't know that you can properly use that as an excuse, for after all, it's only ibuprofen. And only two at that. But also, there is a fever. Put them together; craziness. Now factor in the most important factor; rice. And then, as a side note, remember the man, who is currently wrapped in a straight jacket and is therefore speaking this message aloud for another to type! That might factor in. But I wouldn't count on it. I'd blame the rice. Ok, after that long rant. The second thing I'm going to be honest about is the reason for the subject line. This week = not super full of anything super important. But there was stuff. Just, not the most important. If I'm honest again (with all of these times I'm stating that for a moment I'll be honest, it's got to make you wonder how much a lie!!), it was rather like being back in high school with a lot of drama and dramatic things and time wasted as a result. For all of you in high school; don't give in. I know EVERYONE is doing it, but it's not all it's cracked up to be. Drama is a waste of your time, so avoid it like the plague!! And the flu. And chicken pox. And colds. Those'll get ya. And as a side note, before y'all throw accusations of any kind, no, it has nothing to do with my companion. We are super good. I love that man! Other things though...not as much. 


But we won't go into details there. It really wasn't such a downer week. I'm actually in quite a good mood! But then again, you may refer to the above paragraph and see that there could be caused by sinister or random things. But really it's not been bad. Just tiring. But good, nonetheless. Before I type another letter!!!! Halt!! Just so I don't keep my streak alive of forgetting to announce such things; I will not be emailing or reading email or thinking about email next Monday. Next week is our temple week and therefore, and THEREFORE, I will be forced to give you a RAISE!!! And then, I will email you all on Wednesday. Ok. Sidenote and killing of the streak is over. Back to business. Ok. Here we go. We had a cool, surprise visit from our area presidency!! It was lovely!! And so good! And spiritual. And I learned a lot of things. Man, I can improve!! But it was good. And enlightening. Elder Neilsen was our man of action. He is sooo cool! I loved what he had for us. It's so cool to have people that are super spiritual give you insights. Usually, it's stuff you never would have considered. This was definitely like that. And on a completely serious note, it was awesome!! 


We also had temple tour. It rained, so most people didn't come. Maybe 30 missionaries. Tops. Thank you, that ball parked number was brought to you by our wonderful Elder Broadhead!! No but seriously, he is probably one of my favorite missionaries in the field. No joke. No lie. In fact, there was a little lie there. I was trying not to hurt feelings. But lets be honest. He really is the best. He's way cool. When he comes home someday, you all will love the guy!! But back to the temple tour, it was nuts. I think I have mentioned it before. For some reason here, when it rains, it is a free day all around. You wouldn't believe it!! You'd think they'd be used to it by now!! But it was still a good temple tour. Gotta love having investigators and less actives at the temple. It gives them a real visual to put in their heads as a goal of where they want to get to. That's our plan! 


At the same time this week, something else happened. I don't know what time I'm referring to, but I'm sure it was the same time as something. We got word that one of our sisters is transferring. Check this. To....INDIA!!!! Say what? Definitely the biggest transfer I've ever heard of. But she is from there. And word on the street (which if you directly translate into Tagalog; turns out, it doesn't mean the same thing. At all. But just, quite literally, a word on the street. Like STOP. Or SCHOOL ZONE. Or maybe PLEASE DO US ALL A FAVOR AND GO FASTER PLEASE. Go figure.) is that they just opened up the two missions in India to sister missionaries and they need trainers. So our beloved Sis. Bathula is out of here! On the 11th. Crazy times. And she will only be using English. But man, it's pretty cool too!  


DUDE!! Random jump to yesterday cuz I just thought about it. For real, no joke, I saw a breath war!! Yes!! Three kids on the pew in front of me just started going at it. I didn't know it was popular, but apparently...it is. When I was a boy, there was no such thing as breath wars. Ah, how the world is changing. Kids today. 


Also yesterday, we went early early in the morning to a baptism at the other elder's church. Funny story. They started filling the font yesterday. But there church had some maintenance deal go down and their water got shut off. Only about 4 inches of water in the font. We goofed with it forever. But nothing. So, we moved the baptisms to our church, after our meetings were over. That was wonderful. One of the men being baptized is a man that I taught with Elder Broadhead. He is soooo cool! So super willing and ready for the gospel. That comes from prayer everyone. We pray to have people prepared. Word is, people at home pray for people to be prepared. I just want to say, it really works. It happens. The Lord helps things happen in people's lives to prepare them for the gospel. 


Speaking of Elder Broadhead, we had exchanges again. We were back in his area. I love working with that guy. We put out some sweet lessons. And even though neither of us are great at Tagalog, we don't have a hard time communicating. That is the gift of tongues in action. We taught about Jesus Christ and The Atonement to a 9 year old girl. She was following fine and seemed to understand everything just fine. She answered all our questions with no problems. It's wonderful! She had a friend there that called me a bakla. Eegh. Hopefully it can't rub off on you. We also got offered coffee, which we were very tactfully and politely able to decline. It was sweet! We taught an older man that speaks nothing but straight and pretty fast Tagalog. We had a wonderful lesson with him. The blessings of the Lord are just all over the mission. Some times you forget and have to look around. But they are there. They are always there. The Lord blesses His servants as they do all they can. There's a scripture about that. Can't name the exact chapter off the top of my head (but with the way this email has gone and the state of mind I'm currently in, is that any surprise??), but it's about the vineyard and the laborers. Near the end, before the last work time in the vineyard, or actually during. Whatever. The verse says that the laborers labored with diligence and being obedient to the commandments of their Lord in all things. And as such, He was there with them. Something to that effect. It's so true. He is with us as we work if we do all we can to keep His commandments and work as hard as we can. 


Today was a good P-day. We had lots of places to be. We ran off to this place called Eco Park. It's pretty cool. Feels like Jurassic Park. I've got some pics of that.  I also included a picture of a cool sign there. It reminded me of Alice in Wonderland? And a pic of a cool sunset I saw a few days ago. Then, we went to Wawa. Tis a dam that I went to back in my first or second transfer. We've been getting some good rain, especially last night and as such, the water was soooo high! It was awesome!! I got some pictures there. And there is a super sketchy bridge that is falling apart. But you have to walk on it. Perfect for Fili's but for fat Americans?? Sketchy. We also went to the mall for about 20 minutes to grab some much needed material. Then email. Which, as a matter of fact, is where I am. RIGHT NOW!! You'd never have guessed! 


Anyway, the moral of the story is don't be involved in drama. Look for the hand of the Lord in all you do. He's there. Especially if you keep all of the commandments. And don't walk on sketchy bridges. 


I love you all very very much! Keep it real and don't take ibuprofen or eat rice!! 


Much love, 


Elder Christensen


Pics for "Alas, Earwax"

9/24/12 Alas, Earwax

I like to think that I keep my ears pretty darn clean. Especially as a representative of the Lord, it's important to keep your appearance looking sharp. But this last Sunday, the child of the day sitting on the bench with us (I found out his name is Jerom after he wrote it over and over again all over my planner) dug his finger deep into my ear. After nearly pulling out my eardrum, he pulled forth his finger and alas, the smallest crumb was visible. I now know that I can dig deeper and be a cleaner missionary! We always have ways to improve. Sometimes we find out in ways we don't expect. Delicious. 

So first, I'll get on with the interesting stories from the week. Probably mostly just the fun stuff. So, back on some day, I had exchanges with Elder Broadhead again. We worked in my area this time. So we went to one family that we go to a lot. They were gold. It's a mom and son, and the grandma lives with them. The son is kind of a demon. All the time. He is wild and loves to hang on me. Every time I leave that lesson, I look like I've been mugged. My hair is a mess, my shirt is pulled out, wrinkled and has footprints on it. And my pants are always dirty. This last time, he even ripped the little part on the back of the tie that holds the extra. And he's loud. Anywho. Demon. But as usual, the parents do nothing here. So he carries on, regardless of what I say with my limited Tagalog. But this last time, oh how the tides changed!! The Lolo started going nuts on this kid!! It was really awkward. For all y'all becoming parents out there, save the major discipline for after people leave. She started smacking him all over the place! It was awkward! Elder Broadhead and I didn't know what to do. I said, "Elder, this is weird. What do we do?" He said, "I don't know! Oh man, you aren't going to believe it, Nanay just pulled out the cheese grater!!" No joke, I turn around, the lady is going nuts with the thing on the kid's face! She was smacking him all over the place! It was bad. But she stopped. But momma had stepped out for a sec. When she got back, he did something else, and she grabs a big old metal spoon! And it all starts over!! She was smacking the kid all over the place!! We didn't know what to do!! It finally ends and he eventually stops crying. It was all awkwardly silent forever. But then the lesson carries on. And he was quiet and good from that moment on. So I don't know if this is a blessing or what. It was terrible at the moment, but man, looking back, all I can say is Karma. I hope that doesn't make me a terrible missionary. But the kid had it coming. It was all well deserved. Just built up over the last few weeks. Anywho. Crazy day. Moving on!!

Same day, Elder Broadhead and I run up into a Born Again pastor. At first, the guy is seeming to have a fun speaking Tagalog with a couple Americans. But then he gets a little challenging about our beliefs. Elder Broadhead here, has a wonderful talent for memorizing scriptures and has done a lot of hard work to build up a proper library in his head. So he had a lot of scriptures to politely back up our beliefs. Then the guy turned to the book of mormon. He didn't know what it was at all. So we gave him the low down on that. The guy agreed to read it and ask Heavenly Father if it is true. He said he respects us for what we are doing. Preaching the gospel. We parted as friends. It was way sweet!! 

That night, we got back together with our comps. It turns out, even though he's been here, Elder Broadhead's companion, Elder Hathcock, has never had balut. So it was a first time for both of them. It was my second time. We all got up together and had some balut. It was not bad at all. It was much more enjoyable than the first time. We bought one extra so we could dissect it. After we ate of course. Dude, I'm glad we did. You just don't want to know all of what's going on in there. It was disgusting!! I took some sweet pics. I'll see how many I can send your way. But the great secret of Balut is that it tastes like a funky hard boiled egg! It just.....isn't. Ha, no, it's definitely not. 

The next day, we had a service project as a district. It was for the same people as a few weeks ago, with the nasty cloth stuff. We were going to be doing flooring, daw. Turns out when we got there, they weren't ready. So we got roped back into the yucky cloth stuff!!! It was a trap!! Not as bad this week though. We took all the bags we filled last time and moved them out. They were still all wet and muddy and stinky and gross. And HEAVY!!! Surprise; wet bags of cloth can do a number on an old man. But we have a ballin' district. So it was still a good time!! And, as a fun thought, we found another huge spider!! Pretty much the same as that big nasty one I sent a while back. We were taking a good look at it and one of the sisters stepped through the doorway without looking and stepped right on it. Shame. Poor little guy. 

Later on in the week, we had a service project as a zone. Also the same as way back when. They gave us some itak's and let us go at the weeds. It was still the best thing in the world! Elder Broadhead and I were pretty much clearing a safari. I was living back in the good old days of when I was 5. There were bad guys all over the place and I was slaying them. Ah, the fun you can have with a good imagination. Good times. But this time, the weeds fought back. There were these sneaky ones with miny thorns on them. We didn't even notice for the first hour. But later on, we started noticing they were all up in our skin and starting to burn. Man! My arm scratches made me look like a depressed cutter!! It was madness!! But it was still a way good time!!

It was a wonderful week!! We had some good lessons and FHE's. We had a referral that has turned into a new investigator! It's a part member family. The mom and two kids are members but the dad isn't. He is very accepting though. But he has a job all up in the way of sunday. But we are excited to see where this can go!! It'll be great! We've had some fun trying our luck at street contacting. The gospel is the best thing in the world. It's amazing to watch the gospel bless the lives of those that are willing to let it happen. We get into a routine in our lives. I have my own. I know first hand about how hard it can be to make changes to the way we live. Even if it's just something small. Sometimes we just aren't comfortable with changes. It can be as small as the music we listen to. Or the fact that our favorite type of noodle soup has tea extract. Or the fact that we aren't used to reading the Book of Mormon every day. Or maybe we aren't used to attending church every day. But these really are just small things. And when we are willing to change ourselves, to align ourselves with the will of our Father in Heaven, we truly are blessed. Ha, oh if we could only see the enormous blessings we receive for giving up the small things!! It is possible. It is do-able. We just have to remember what is truly important. Anywho. That's my rant of the week. Make the small and simple changes!! 

Anywho, my time is coming to a close here. I gotta be bouncing. Lots of work to do tonight!!! Thanks for all the support!! Have a wonderful week!!

Much love, 

Elder Christensen



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