Sunday, October 23, 2016

2016-10-23 Interviews and Classes

Our mission is extremely blessed to be located on the far side of the Philippines from where typhoons usually come.  We only had some rain.  Other areas of the Philippines were hit quite hard, but according to the latest news we received from the Area Presidency, they are not aware of any loss of life and the missionaries are all safe.  Some of the members in affected areas have lost their homes, but they are grateful to have their families.  We have some missionaries serving in our mission whose families lost their homes. It is humbling to see them continue to serve faithfully despite this kind of difficulty in their family.  They are most grateful their families are ok.

All of our prayers need to be sent heavenward for all those around the world who suffer.  Each of us is so blessed.  May we each reach out to whoever we can and make someone's burden lighter today.

We are currently interviewing all of the missionaries.  What a blessing it is to meet with them and hear of their dedication to the Lord.  Where else in the world is their a group of young men and young women focused completely on bringing joy into the lives of the people around them?  It is an amazing thing to witness and to realize that throughout the world are many groups of missionaries just like these....dedicated to the Lord.

We got a couple of pictures at the last interviews.  While they do interviews, they also rotate through classes that help them with skills.  One of the skills they learned this time was helping new members learn how to find family names and prepare them to do the temple baptisms for their ancestors.  The temple is closed till the second week of November, so everyone is gearing up to keep it very busy once it opens again!

Another class was on communication  and the importance of listening for understanding.  We talked about how everyone has a different perspective even though they see the same thing or have a similar experience.  We had a fun time watching "The Blind Man and the Elephant" and having everyone tell us what they saw in this picture.

 We showed everyone this picture and asked them what they saw.  It was AMAZING to hear how many different things people saw.  Then we had them come up and try to help explain what they saw so that the rest of us could see it.  Some missionaries even posed to help us see what they were seeing.

We all tried very hard to see the perspective of each other.  Many time it took time, but it was so fun when someone would finally see it and you could hear them say, "Ohhhhhh!"  Sometimes, we never could see what they saw, but we understood they saw it differently, and they felt respected that we tried. 

It was a great learning experience for us to realize that our cultures, the ways we were raised, our past experiences, our education, our personalities, and the ways our brains work all affect the way we each see things.  We shared some real life experiences that helped us all realize that we need to:
1.  STOP  judging, reacting, lecturing, etc.
2.  LISTEN until we truly understand
3.  Go ahead and work together to solve the problem

It is a joy to work with these wonderful missionaries.  We pray that the lessons they learn on their mission will bless them not only in their apartments with their companions and kabahays,  but also with their investigators, the members and throughout their lives.