My beloved family, friends, and fellow servants,
Another cycle is going to pass next week. There have been a flurry of calls around the mission for the transfers. Missionaries panicked. Thoughts of new areas and new companions rushed to our minds. Throbbing hearts in despair for a different environment. We waited. Nothing came. I’m not transferred. And finally, a companion that ends up being with me for more than 6 weeks.
The Lord has blessed me with another opportunity to serve His children in Tanauan for 6 more weeks. As the cycle ends this week, I found myself pondering on my labours for the past weeks and evaluating and devising ways by which I can improve as the Lord’s full-time missionary.
Sister Cleo, I appreciate the pictures you have shared with me in your e-mails. Truly it is a sight to behold to see all of you, my families and friends, spending quality time together despite of my absence. It gives me a peaceful assurance that things still have not changed back home—that someday when I depart for home I could still feel that same loving environment which I have grown to miss in my mission.
Mom, my heart felt a familiar trickle when I saw you wearing that ugly mask. However, I could see your smile lighting up behind that apparatus. Thank you for the news informing me that my dear father has not relapsed on his keeping of the Word of Wisdom (which he is not aware of following). Dad, I know that you will fully realize God’s plan for you as you understand why we need to take care of our bodies and why He has given us the health code.
On Saturday last week, we were blessed to have President David L. Beck and Elder Ian S. Ardern visit our mission at the San Pablo Stake Center in Laguna. One of the counsels that struck me the most, given by Elder Arden, was the admonition, “Awake and arise and break the shackles of your teenage years!”
Alarmed missionaries, including me, snickered at the penetrating admonition. At the same time I was reminded of the words the Apostle Paul penned to the Corinthian saints: “When I was child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” (1 Cor. 13:11)
The urgency behind the words of both of these disciples of modern and of old encourages me to be more fully consecrated as His chosen missionary in the present time. Everything of the past has to be placed on the altar of sacrifice.
Likewise I propose the same challenge to my family and friends back home. Strive to be better in being the Lord’s disciples. As soon as we entered the waters of baptism, we begin to take unto ourselves the responsibility to bring His name wherever we go and to honor the covenants we have made with our Father in Heaven.
As the Lord’s full-time emissary, I exhort you with all my heart and soul, that each of you would magnify and fulfill and live the covenants and promises we have made. I can promise you that great blessings will come and flow into your lives, that there would no room enough to receive it.