Thursday, June 25, 2015

Destination: Naga

Before I begin, let me start by saying HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAD. I wish I could be there, but alas, I'm on the other side of the world. I hope it's the best and I hope you and mom do something super fun. 

Now friends and family, hello again. I don't know where to begin with this post. I never do. It's incredible how fast time flies here. I absolutely cannot believe that it has already been over a month since I left home. It feels like I just got to the airport last night. Anyway it's so nice to hear from all of you as you email me and update me on how you're doing. It makes me miss you all so much but drives me to push myself every day. All of your encouragement means the world to me.

This week has been an interesting week. Let me start with my experience proselyting in Makati, a part of the Manila mission. I went on exchanges with two other missionaries, Elder Laurel and Elder Cruz, 14 months in the field and 23 months in the field, respectively. We had planned four appointments and four back up appointments for the day. We walked up, down, around, through, and just about any other preposition you can think of, in tight spaces to get to our appointments. It was hot, I was sweaty, and was essentially an exhausted, human waterfall. After all that intensive walking, only one answered the door and allowed us in. Everyone else was either asleep or gone. So imagine that for a second. 2 hours straight of walking through humid, dank, hot air and only one appointment. I asked the elders how often that heppened. They said, "Every day. Every day it's like this." And that made me think... Holy smokes this is going to be hard. This is going to be so challenging. But let me tell you. I loved it. Despite the lack of people, I loved being there. It was so fulfilling. 

At the MTC I encountered a completely different challenge. My responsibility here as the zone leader is to make sure that all the other missionaries are doing what they are supposed to and that they don't get into any bad situations that would jeaporadize their missions. Anyway, on Wednesday night, we had gym at 8 pm. Two elders were getting a bit too physical and competitive as they played a game of basketball. At 9 pm gym ended and we all went to our residence rooms. One of the elders, a tall, built Samoan, was so fueled after the game that he put his fist on the other elder's face to intimidate him or something. It scared the living heck out of me. I'm tiny. I didn't know what to do. But I just stood up, split the two up and talked it through and everything worked out. The point of me telling you this story is this. We all get caught up in things and can get easily frustrated. I can tell you that this has happened to me multiple times here. I would get caught up in my own brain, thinking that I'm inadequate or not good enough. But then something clicked. In my head I thought "Get over yourself. This isn't about you." Right when that thought came across my mind, I realized that I shouldn't worry about how "well" I'm doing. It was never about that It's about how much I love the people here and how much I'm willing to do for them. Through faith in the Lord and remembering my purpose here as a missionary, I know things will work out. They always do. 

I know that's not a very exciting story, but that's all I have for this week. I'm still so happy to be here. I leave for Naga on Wednesday and couldn't be more pumped. Please give my dad a big hug if you see him and tell him happy birthday. And if you see my mom, please give her an even bigger hug. For what reason? Eh. I just love my mom a lot. I love you all a lot actually. I keep you all in my prayers and continue to hope for the best in everything that you do. Thank you for all your emails. It's so nice to hear about all your experiences at home. The next time you hear from me, I'll be in Naga! So get ready for that. Mahal ko kayo! 

-Elder Bondoc

1 comment:

  1. Elder Bondoc ('Doy), you have grown so much in so many ways in just such a short time. We are glad that you are appreciating and enjoying your missionary life in spite of the many challenges you are facing. You are in our prayers daily. Take care. We love you and Happy 4th of July.
    Tita Elna and Family