From: Mandy Elsmore <email@example.com>
Date: May 6, 2013 5:34:34 AM CDT
I'm a little more tired right now than normal so, I apologize if the following letter doesn't make much sense. HA HA HA.
Went on a Zone Activity earlier. Went to the top of a mountain, the hike was like the Y in Provo Utah. IT WAS AWESOME! Philippines is gorgeous. Flew kites at the top of the mountain. So much fun! I'm surprized I never thought of doing something like this before. It was prefect up there flying kites.
On Sunday went to Bishop Soridarios and got to cook for them. Bishop had a emergency to go to, so he asked me if I wanted to make a dish for him. ^_^ I don't know what its called, but its with bitter melon (tastes exactly what it sounds like) with scrambled eggs, garlic, onions, and tomatoes. He told me how to cook it, then rushed off to the rescue of a member. (its hard being a bishop. I have a lot more appreciation for what they do for the ward. Thank your bishop next time you see them. :D) Jun, his son, 15 or 16 years old was there helping me cook. Told me stories from their Youth Camping trip and their many adventures. Like star gazing, cleaning a river, saving fruit bats tangled in netting, bird watching, etc... It reminded me of my little brother James. HA HA HA! I loved listening to his stories. New discoveries and desires to learn more. Camping is such a great way to gain appreciation for the earth, see the miracles of God's creations, and learn how to work. Teenagers are great. Great eager minds who are just starting to learn and understand themselves and the world around them. Conversations with them are fun, seeing new perspectives through their eyes.
Met another Excellent Member. Sister Cruz. She's a return missionary who you can see that she really loved her mission and let it change her. She said that before her mission, she was super shy. But worked hard at her weakness and now is very loving and and enjoys talking and befriending everyone. She's getting her Masters in teaching those with disabilities, with a emphasis on children (I forgot what its called). She's a example to me of someone who loves people, not matter what circumstances they are from. Her brother is mentally retarded. Mentally 9 years old. Her patience and love towards him is amazing. Also, she surrounds herself with people of intellectual thinking. Professors of science, art, music, language, etc... She loves music and is very talented at the Piano. Something that I've learned from her is she uses her talents to serve others and invite the spirit into peoples lives. Through her actions, you can see and feel she truely loves each individual she serves. She's kind to say the least. I'm very blessed to know her and serve with her in the Cainta 2nd Ward.
I'm learning more how to "bridle my passions" like the Advice Alma gives to his son Shiblon in Alma 38:12. To have a balance with stress but still be bold and loving, continuing to try my best everyday. But, when things don't go right, not to let it overwhelm me. Its still a struggle sometimes, but I feel like a weight has been lifted. Finally, letting the atonement work in my life. Repenting everyday. Changing Everyday. Learning how to forgive a little more everyday. Becoming more understanding, patient, loving. Hopefully more Christlike. The work is great. Life is great! Learning a lot more about myself and my relationship with others, especially my companion.
Love Ya'll Lots!