Sunday, August 2, 2015

2nd Week MTC: " Look Outward, not Inward"


We had our first Sunday here in the MTC last week and it was SO AMAZING!! We were so tired because we had to wake up at 8 am for church, but it was still really cool! It was in Tagalog and English. The nerve wracking part about church is that they require all of us to prepare a talk and during sacrament meeting they randomly call people up to share their prepared (or not) talks. Scary right? I know.

The highlight of the evening was when we took a Temple Walk with our Zone under perfect weather conditions!  We found a nice shady spot under a tree and we were able to just sit, kick our shoes off and relax--which was so nice because we finally had the opportunity to really get to know one another in our district. We have eight elders and four sisters in our district and we sure love our Elders (brothers). This past week has been such a bonding moment for all of us! We all come from different backgrounds and are so excited to be here in the MTC and are motivated by the same purpose: to serve the Lord and the people of the Philippines. Some of the most amazing people I've ever met! Everyone is so funny and we all just click.  Everyone is sooooooo good looking! Haha. (oops did I just say that).  I'm trying to send pics...sorry. 

After the Temple Walk, we were able to go to choir practice as a district. It was so fun! It's not like you just go and sing. The choir director teaches us all concepts of the gospel which was so enjoyable!! I miss singing. I feel like I haven't been able to sing in a very long time. Which is sad, but I'm still on the search for an opportunity. Remember when I said my companion and I are total opposites? WE ARE. But luckily we get along well.  We support each other in our interests. She's super sporty, so I give her the chance to do her thing during Gym Time (I didn't like gym time in the beginning, but I like it now. #volleyball) and she's so sweet enough to let me do my time in choir (singing is not her thing, but it's okay. I still take her along, and she's nice about it).  I sure love and appreciate her.

At night, we were able to attend a devotional which was so cool! I love devotional! The speaker is a member in the quorum of the seventy and he was amazing!  Anyways, he talked about the Missionary Handbook, and how to be  "EXACTLY OBEDIENT". It was awesome, I wish I had my notes to remember everything he said. 

My FAVORITE PART was probably after devotional, we were able to stay for a movie. It was of a talk given by Elder Bednar and it was INCREDIBLE and so inspiring! His whole talk was for the missionaries and how we all need to recognize our purpose as a missionary and how we in our lives are always worrying about ourselves and sometimes are very selfish. It's true tho! He compared the "natural man" to the cookie monster--"I WANT COOKIE NOW. ME, ME, ME." and advised us to be like the Savior. Who even at the cruelest and darkest of times, still turned outward to others. He then told us to do as the Savior and to not TURN IN TO THE NATURAL MAN, but to TURN OUT TO OTHERS. Which I have now realized my first week here in the MTC, that we are to "Invite Others to Come Unto Christ". I felt my whole week was built upon this concept and I love it!!!. Bottomline, "serve more", "whine less" and "TURN OUT TO OTHERS".  As we serve others and invite them to come unto Christ, we too find ourselves drawing nearer unto Christ as well.

I miss you all so much!  My comp and I will be teaching Relief Society tomorrow and I am so pumped for it!  I have never taught a church lesson in my life.  Wish us luck.  It's about the Book of Mormon.  It's funny but I wasn't much of a reader of the BOM, but here, things just CLICK. I'm loving it! I think I have finally received my testimony of the BOM. Yay!!!! 

Oh! Mom and Dad, I've seen so many people here!  So many of my BYU friends, High School friends and family members. I love seeing them!  Makes me feel all good inside! I saw Elder Mannaseh Rarotoga yesterday and I wanted to cry because I couldn't hug him. OH well. I'll be strong. 

Well, just wanted to let you all know I have never prayed so much or have felt the spirit like this in my whole life like I've felt in the MTC. I've learned to rely solely on Heavenly Father. It's wonderful this thing called a "MISSION". It's super duper hard and I finally broke down in the temple today because I miss ALL of you so much, but know that I am fine. Wish me luck on the language.  It is still kicking my butt--but my comp and I are working hard and are trying our best to learn it so that we may be able to better share this beautiful gospel with the people in Cavite! Working hard all the while!  Elder L. Brown emailed me too! He had Brother Kaka as a teacher and my same Branch Pres! So that's fun. 

I'm going to try to write a letter this upcoming week as well. My comp is PRO at it.  KEEP WRITING ME ON DEARELDER.COM because they print out those letters and give it to us that way I can read them again and again.   I LOVE IT!! You all can write me as much as you want too! Spread the word. It only lasts while I'm in the MTC though. I feel like I have so much to say, but so little time. Send my love to everyone.  Gotta run.   I'll update you all soon! 

MAHAL KITA!!(: Can't wait to here from you all again. MUAH!!!!

-Sister Alapa

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