Friday, January 31, 2014

Adventures of Sister Elsmore 70


So finally made it home after a long 19 hours of flying and being trapped in Atlanta for the past day. O.o Just my luck that my flight took me to Atlanta for the Winter Storm. Heavenly Father truly has a wonderful sense of humor. ^_- On the Bright side I met some AWESOME people and I got to take part in the Largest Sleep Over of my life at the airport. SWEET!!!

I will write again tomorrow about experiences and such. Sorry I'm a bit wasted. HA HA HA! Just wanted to let y'all know that I'm safe and back again. :)

Love Ya'll! Praying for Ya'll! :)

Sister Elsmore (still not set apart yet. ^_^)

*She finally Arrived at DFW airport after long hour of waiting.  Her total hour of traveling time started from January 29th 3:30am (Philippines time) till January 30th 4:30pm (Texas, Central time).  She was physically tired but was in good spirit.  She was being a missionary at Atlanta Georgia Airport by talking to people and collected some business card of who are interested in the church.  We are surely happy to have her home!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Adventures of Sister Elsmore 69

Mandy Elsmore <>


1st off. Thank you so much for the prayers, encouragement and love. I have felt them particularly this week and I am very grateful for each and everyone of you. 

I have some sad, but at the same time perhaps happy news. I'm coming home next week. Yup, preparations are being made for me to fly out on Jan 29, 2014. After much pondering and prayer, I know that God wants me to come home. I've learned that he does not get illness for no reason, especially on a mission. I have received comfort in knowing that I've tried my best and gave EVER bit of energy that I have to this work. Its made me appreciate and love the gospel more. Without it, I could not have lasted this long. Now, he's told me that he's proud of me, and that I should/ need to take a rest. 

I'm a little sad, but at the same time, I know its the Lords work, and I will follow whatever he will have me to do. Even if it means coming home a little bit early. 

Anyway, I'm excited to see you all face to face. :) Know that I will give it my all this week!!! >_<

Anyway, enough of that already...
This past week has been quite eventful! 

Don't let the bed bugs bite....
So pretty much, bed bugs are like the second worst bug on this planet. 1st is ipis (cockroaches). Sister Pope and I were invaded by some and trust me. It was not a pleasant experience. T_T I have not washed so many clothes/ sheets/ curtains, by hand all at once in my ENTIRE life! (Have gained a stronger appreciation for laundry machines) I hope I NEVER go through that experience again. YUCK! GROSS!!! >~< However we did spray EVERYTHING with permithern and jumped on our mattresses several times to make sure we REALLY OBLITERATED all of them. We may have enjoyed it more than we should have. ^_-

Being in the Shoes of Lucifer
So at Zone Interviews, the AP (Assistants to President) said that they had a letter for us missionaries. They picked me to be the one that read it out loud (think its because I'm going home, but the APs, President, and my companion and kabahays are the only ones that know). I was the only one that knew who the letter was from. MUAH HA HA HA! So I had fun reading it, then announcing at the end "Sincerely, Satan."

It was interesting to act the part of Satan though. Gave me a whole different perspective. How sly and how deceptive he is. Giving encouragement and false justification for sin and for doing what WE want to do, because we deserve it or how following rules or being nice to companions we don't like is lame or not worth it. Feeding our desire to be pitied, be more annoyed/ angry, and lose the spirit. 
He's really smart.
But God is Smarter!
And he can NEVER win if we continue to listen to the lord, act in faith and keep our covenants. 

Companionship Unity
So Sister Pope is probably one of the Greatest people on this planet. She is just SO DANG GOOD!!! Really, she does so much for me I don't even know how to start. ^_^ We enjoy supporting each other in the work. For example. Sister Pope was going to give the closing prayer starts....
Ama po namin na sa lang-----ACHOOOOOO!!!! 
She and the family we were with were laughing so hard that she could not continue to pray, so I prayed for her. ^_^
But really, its nice to have a companion that no matter where you on in the lesson, you can back each other up because you have enough trust and love for each other. Unified in the work and with the Spirit. ^_^ 

Lead in all things
We got a referral from the office and the address was just a street. So we went to the street and started asking around if they knew the person we were looking for. None knew her. THE STREET WAS HUGE!!!! We did not even get to walk to the end of it. O.o This one mother, Gie, very nice by the way, said we should ask this one family because they know a lot of people. She sent us with her 8 year old son Yoyong to the house. The couple, Leopoldo and Prezy were SUPER nice! Gave us a few more suggestions how to find the person, and after talking with them a bit, they let us into their house. Leopoldo has been in a car accident 2 time. Has had near death experiences but loves the Lord with all his heart. Says he has a fear of the Lord and knows the power of prayer. ^_^ Even though he can hardly walk anymore. He's lost his job because of his lame leg. He still has a positive attitude about life. He knows when to laugh and when to be serious. ^_^ Spirit was SO strong during that lesson as we testified of Gods love for us and the blessings which come through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. :) Said, "Sisters, probably, it was not a accident that you came here. I think God sent you here to me and my wife so that we could learn more the Word of God."
They were both excited to learn more about Mormons and over and over again through the lesson thanked us for being there.
There truly are people out there searching for the truth and being prepared by God.
We just have to pray for missionary experiences, search for them, and act in faith that God will lead us to them. ^_^

I need a HERO!
Talked with MaryGrace, a former investigator. She is still interested, just SUPER busy with her thesis for Psychology. They are doing a study to help boost peoples confidence. There are a lot of people out there, especially teenagers and young adults who have a inferiority complex due to the media. They always compare themselves to unrealistic idols. O.o They work with teens and help them gain a new hero or role model in their lives and help them gain self worth and confidence. It was a interesting conversation, one where Sister Pope and I could relate a lot to. Our work a missionaries is a lot similar. Its amazing to see the growth and change in a person as they gain confidence and self worth as they gain a testimony that God, is their Heavenly Father and they are literally their Spiritual Children. Through following commandments, they feel the spirit and satisfaction in their lives. They become hungry to follow more of Gods commandments and they accept Jesus Christ as their savior and feel the miracle of change in their lives as they use the healing balm of the atonement.  Its Amazing Process. Stressful at times yes, but so rewarding to see. ^_^ Jesus Christ is the Ultimate Hero!

So Grateful to be a missionary. Grateful for the Atonement and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know the church is true. God lives! Jesus Christ, His son Lives! And because of this, life is beautiful. ^_^

Love you all! Praying for Each of you!

Sister Elsmore

PS: Not sure if this is my last letter or not.... Hmm.... Weird thought.... 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Adventures of Sister Elsmore 68

Mandy Elsmore <>


Ok. For those of you that have been following my blog and have connection to my parents, you are probably all wondering. WHAT HAPPENED TO SISTER ELSMORE? IS SHE OK? IS SHE GOING TO DIE?!!!! 

Well, let me put you all at peace. For those of you that have not known, I've been really sick for over 2 months with fiery muscle pains all over my arms and legs which causes sleep deprivation, made me lose 15lbs, and makes it difficult to march around the hills of San Isidro sometimes or the stairs in my house. Sometimes I literally crawl up the stairs. Also, I have frequent colds and lose my voice. So yah, I sound like a 12 year old boy going through puberty. Man I look and sound pathetic!!!! HA HA HA! 

Finally got some tests done yesterday. Urine and blood test at St. Lukes in Global City (which is like the 4 best hospital in the world apparently... ITS HUGE!!!!) Found out that I have no virus. (Dengue fever, Chikungunya fever from Mosquito Bite)YES!!! 
Doctor, "So, do you walk around a lot?"
Sister Pope and I look at each other then start laughing.

Doctor said the muscle pains are probably because I've been walking around a lot and such, which sometimes happens to people. Especially those that were overweight in the past (weird, because I have never experienced being overweight before... but oh well...) She prescribed vitamin B and some muscle relaxants along with Ibuprofen or Tylenol that I'm to take for the next 5 days. If things don't improve, I have to try another one. 

The frequent "colds" and irritation of the throat are from a allergic reaction to the smog here in the Philippines. I have this weird natural oils spray stuff called Kamillosan M spray solution which is "minty fresh" (its tastes......interesting......O.o) Then have some other pill for cough I have. I take them for the next 3 days. 

I think President and Sister Revillo will still want me to come home at the end of this month. They started making preparations for it on Monday. So, not sure what is going on if I'm going home or not. I told president that I would go home, but now that I know that I have no virus, I'm having second thoughts. Hmm.... Well good thing interviews are tomorrow. Figure things out. :) Just because the muscle pains have been really bad. I still work everyday. Just like 1 day out of every week, usually P-day I have to rest at home. T_T

We will see how the medication goes these next 5 days. If no improvements, then I have to try another one that will make me really drowsy. Which doesn't really do well with me and missionary work. O.o

Just know I'm still alive and I feel all of your prayers so THANK YOU!!! ^_^
Its just weird that I'm being affected by this all at the END of my mission. Oh well... Must be a good reason for it all somehow...

Well, being sick it lame, but meh... what can you do? (shrug) 
Pray, Read Scriptures, Focus on serving others. 
Makes all the difference of receiving your daily spiritual bread. Especially on days where you lie there and your not sure you have the strength or the desire to move on. But, somehow you do. From the Lord, he really does give you the strength you need to do for whatever he requires of you. Just enough to get through the day. Its a amazing feeling. :) 

Anyway, enough of that. 
This past week was AWESOME with the lessons! 

Priesthood Power:
We have been teaching our male investigators about the priesthood and they have been receiving priesthood blessings to get over their addictions and illnesses. They gained a powerful desire to receive the priesthood for their families and are starting to progress more. Its amazing the power of the priesthood and the inspiration it gives to men of the church. To be better, not just for themselves but for others. The priesthood is the ultimate power of service and turns boys into princes of peace (forgive the cheesy comparison, but its reference to a scripture: 
Alma 13:18- Like Melchizedek, the priesthood gives the ability for men of the church to give peace to those they serve around them.

Men need the priesthood and their families as much as families need fathers and brothers with the priesthood. 

Is this true? 
Taught Philip (24yrs old) and Mark (18yrs) on Sunday. There next door neighbors and good friends. ^_^ Was a AWESOME lesson. Philip after reading the pamphlet was like, this is really basic information. So he checked out and read up on the church history and everything he could about Mormons. So he had a lot of questions about Joseph Smith. 
Mark,"Who's this Joseph Smith?"
Philip,"You would know if you have done the reading! ;)"
HA HA HA!!!! X)
Anyway, we taught them about the Restoration and they had a lot of questions but were very respectful and receptive of our beliefs. The members that were with us, bore their testimonies and conversion stories. 
Me,"So, do you want to know for yourself if Joseph Smith is a true prophet?"
Mark,"Well yah. We understand what each others beliefs are now, but we know that your not trying to force your religion on us. :) We are adults. There comes a time when you have to know for yourself what it right and wrong. I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS swarming in my head!!! 
But how do I know for myself?"
Sister Pope talked about prayer and I gave them a Book of Mormon. Asked them if they would pray to know for themselves if Joseph Smith was a true prophet. They both emphatically said,"YES!!!" HA HA HA! 

There are a lot of amazing people out there. Searching for truth and understanding. Of others, themselves, and of God. So grateful I get to meet so many Amazing people and see the miracle of the Holy Ghost working through them as they sincerely search for truth. ^_^ 

Love Ya'll! Praying for Ya'll! 
Sister Elsmore ^_-

Monday, January 6, 2014

Adventures of Sister Elsmore 67

Mandy Elsmore <>


To start, going to answer some questions:

   Did you wear any Polk a dots?
Nope ^_^ Unfortunately don't have any.

   Does it have to be certain color Polk a dots?
There is no specific color for polka dots that you have to wear on New Years. In Philippines, nothing is REALLY standardized. 

   Are Cockroaches a common thing? Do you have them in your Apartment.
Yes. They are ALL OVER! Yup they are in our Apartment sometimes. In fact, I killed one last night at 2AM, had to whack at it 3 times before it finally died. O.o Pretty sure it was a zombie ipis...

You might be wondering, why was Sister Elsmore up at 2AM? Well, I'm sick with the trunky virus. T_T Just a really bad cold. Nothing to worry about though. I'm still kicking and killing ipis. ^_-

Oh, and I'm having weird dreams again and sleep talking more often. (not sure if its because of my Trunky virus) My favorite dream was that I was a balut gourmet chief. Did not think that my mind could think of so many different ways to prepare balut. O.o ^_-

SO, I was text ting and walking (not a good idea by the way) and my companion, Sister Pope was in front of me. A tricycle was coming to the left of us, to my companion steps to the right and I follow her; however, what I failed to see was that there was a gutter to the right of us. My companion stepped on the covered part, but I fell straight into the 3 ft deep gutter with nasty trash filled water and I don't want to know what else (side note, I've always wondered what it would be like to fall in one of these gutters. Now I know). O.o miraculously, with my excellent falling abilities I only got a bruise on my knee and my legs were only muddy. none on my skirt. YES!!!! Super Blessing! My companion and I have had a good laugh about it this whole week. ^_^ 

Miracle of Life and Trials

So yesterday we were teaching one of my favorite investigators, Elmer Flores. He is 42 years old and has been separated from his wife and 2 kids for 3 years now. He's super funny and really receptive to the gospel. He has a drinking problem and smoking addiction, but since we have been teaching him, little by little he has been striving to stop drinking and smoking. Instead of every day, he only drinks on occasion with friends, and usually only a few shots now. We have not even taught him about the Word of Wisdom yet. Its just awesome the change that naturally happens in people when they let the spirit work through them. ^_^

Anyway, we were teaching him part of the plan of salvation about the creation and Adam and Eve. At first he thought it was a bad thing that Adam and Eve ate the fruit because of sin and bad things came upon the earth. But after answering his questions from his reading in 2 Nephi 2, he was like. OK, never-mind, it was a good thing they ate the fruit so we could come here. We also talked about verse 15 opposition in all things.

Just made me think how trials, the purpose for them is for us to show our love and devotion to God. To learn the good from the bad. To acquire more Christ-like attributes from them if we let them work through us. 

If we have felt offended, we have the opportunity to learn compassion and incorporate mercy into our hearts.
If we have felt hungry, we learn self mastery of body and mind
If we have doubts or fears, we learn to have faith
If we experience weakness, failure, or humiliation, we learn to be more humble
And so many other things learned through life's challenges...

It just all depends on our outlook on life. There is always a silver lining. Always something good we can learn from all situations and circumstances. Makes me think that I need to be more grateful for trials in life. Rather than questioning God, or murmuring, think, OK Lord, What do you want me to learn from this. What would ye have me do? Then muster up what little courage that I have and take the next step forward. 

Doesn't mean we always have to be smiling. We are human, and life is hard sometimes. Its OK to feel hurt, afraid, anger, to be unmotivated, etc.... What matters is what do we do about these feelings and experiences. Do we let them consume us, or do we decide to change them with the Atonement of Jesus Christ, learn, grow, and move on with life, drawing a little bit closer to heaven. 

Desire starts in the mind. We choose we want to do it. Then our heart follows. 

Elmer is evidence of this. He told us last night that he wants to change. He has decided whatever it takes he will change. Little by little step by step. He wants to devote his life to God. Because he has faith that his life will be better with the gospel and following Christ. And one day return to live with him. 
It was AWESOME to hear his desires, see his change of heart.
He will be baptized on March 1. ^_^
He is willing to do whatever it takes to be worthy.

Well thanks for the letters. Sorry I wrote a novel again. Thanks for the Prayers! Support! Love! I feel them everyday. ^_^

Love Y'all! Praying for Y'all,
Sister Elsmore ^_-