It is really starting to get hot here, and I mean hot. March and April are supposed to be the worst, so I am really looking forward to that.I figured out the Ether Moroni thing when I was reading in Ether (I think that was the one I was reading at the time). It seemed like Moroni talked for a long time about how he was supposed to be the one to translate the Jaredite plates etc. and so I couldn't help but wonder why he talked about it for so long. It then hit me how similar their situations really were, and how that must have been the reason, di ba? (right?)
It is great to see Elder Snyder a lot. We are really good friends now. He is a really good missionary.. His companion is a Filipino. There are definitely a lot of different churches here, but I haven't really run into many Muslims.
I am glad to hear that everyone liked the pics :) and that everyone agrees that I have lost weight. Elder Snyder and I were looking at old pics today and he said the same thing. It must be true. Rats and spiders are definitely very yucky.
The only fruits that I have seen growing around are coconuts and bananas, but I don't really see bananas that often. I know that kids like to find sugar cane and eat that (or rather suck out all of the sugar). That is pretty good stuff actually. (My guess is that that doesn't count as fruit though.) We usually just buy fruit from the palengke (sp) (market). You can get just about any kind of fruit: apples, oranges, pineapple, coconut, mango, calamansi, all the regulars... I also walk past countless ricefields every day too.
I really liked the thoughts you shared from your RS lesson. It really is true that if we put Heavenly Father first, then we will love him, and therefore keep his commandments. The John 14:15 scripture kind of puts a reverse spin on 1 Nephi 11:17. We know that He gives us commandments because he loves us, and we should show our love back to him by keeping them.
I have kind of a neat story about how everything worked out with a lady who was a referral. We planned on just going over to her house to meet her for the first time and share a message about the restoration of the gospel. When we got to her house, she had about seven of her friends there to listen to our message too. It was really amazing that she was willing to invite a bunch of her friends to listen to us. I think that really is the power of working with members. People are so much more likely to trust or even just to be comfortable with the missionaries when they have a friend there that they trust. I'm not really sure how much all of her friends will progress. I have hope for some of them, but I really have a lot of hope for the referral herself. She really likes what we have shared with her so far, and is going to continue to let us teach her. I am really excited to see how this works out.
Elder Benjamin Merrill