Well, this week was my first transfer! and I have been transferred from Tuguegarao to Ilagan! Ilagan is a lot closer to Cauayan. it’s also colder than it was in Tugue, but I suppose my ‘chilly nights’ would probably be welcomed in the states. Still not quite jacket weather most of the time, but I could get away with wearing a sweater if I wanted to.
My new companion is Sis Jensen!! she is WONDERFUL! I love her so much already! I am her follow-up trainer. She is American and just finished her 12 week training, so I am two cycles ahead of her. Her Tagalog is still coming along and I definitely remember struggling the same way she is now, but I know she will improve so fast. She is a wonderful missionary and wonderful at teaching the gospel because she always teaches from her heart. the people here love her, and are amazing, and I feel so blessed to be in this area, with this companion, and in this ward! the members love to help with missionary work, and the ward missionaries go visit less-actives every Sunday. I think it does wonders in reactivating the less actives.
the Lord is so merciful in His blessings. I was kinda nervous about follow-up training an American, because that means my Tagalog and my understanding is the bulk of the lesson and the getting to know people. but the gift of tongues is real in every sense, and in the past few days alone, I have been amazed at how well I can understand and communicate with people. I haven’t had a question I haven’t been able to answer or understand. I’m starting to see the horizon of true fluency and thinking that I might actually be able to get there, and that is a great feeling.
The ward members were nervous when they first met me because they all thought I was brand new, and were worried they wouldn’t be able to communicate with us, but once they learned I can speak the language, they were okay, and they are all really great.
I love my new area and I am so excited to be here. it’s actually very similar to my last area (which is funny because there are very few city areas like this in our whole mission) but just a lot smaller of an area, which is really nice.
I now live in an apartment with two other sisters, and so that is a whole new experience, but I am really enjoying it.
I made a not so great decision the other day and I’ve been feeling kind of chastened because of it for a few days. However, I have been learning more that even when we make mistakes, the Lord chastens us to help us be happier, and to become better. with the beginning of a new cycle, in a new area, with a new companion, the Lord highlights all sorts of new weaknesses, and I know those will be the ones I will focus on for the next couple months. I am happy to know the Lord still wants me to continue improving and doesn’t just leave me at ‘pretty good.’ I feel Ether 12:27 every day here in the mission field, and it’s with that that I think some of the biggest miracles occur.
I love you so much!
The following are excerpts from letters between Amber’s Mom and Amber:
Hey sweetie! I can’t wait to read your letter this week. I am also hoping that you are feeling better and that the rashes have all gone. Also if you google higad, there are a lot of accounts on what to do about these caterpillar attacks. They actually call them attacks. If you don’t have tape to get the hairs out, the internet said you could use candle wax or anything that you can put on and peel off like rubber cement or facial mask or nail polish. After you wash with soap and water, don’t touch as you just spread the irritation. You can also use ammonia or oil to soothe the irritation.
I did the candle wax thing for the caterpillar-ness…it hurt like craaazyyyyy, but the next day it wasn’t itchy anymore, so it worked. it just hurt super bad, because the rashes covered half my back by then. they’re gone now, though, since the candle wax thing, so all is well!