I leave in less than 2 weeks! It has gone by soooo fast (and yet it seems like an eternity haha) but these next 2 weeks are going to fly.
Tomorrow I am hosting! Which means I get to help all the new sister missionaries on their worst day ever! Yay! I’m actually way excited. I know at least two sisters (one including my friend Amy from BYU going to a different mission in the Philippines) coming tomorrow. This Friday we get our travel plans! Then one last temple trip next Tuesday and one last P-day and then the next Monday (22nd) I’ll be flying!
So my Kasama has been having knee problems so yesterday we left campus again to go to the doctor. I had to wait in the waiting area for quite some time but I brought stuff to study so it was alright. Anyways it is so cool being in the outside world! We also had to leave again today for another appointment. But anyways, being a missionary is normal here because everyone is a missionary. Well in the outside world, everyone notices missionaries and we had lots of people ask us where we were going and things like that. Well yesterday while I was waiting, there was this 8 year old girl who broke her arm (I told her about Claire breaking her leg). She had these sticky notes and she starting writing notes back and forth to me haha. She asked where I was from, how old I was, what my favorite colors were, how many siblings I have, if I was mered (married) and if I have a boyfriend haha. So that was cute. I also talked to her mom who had been to the Philippines and she said it was hotter than Hawaii by far. She said it was the absolute worst heat she had ever felt but she said she loved the people and she said it was so pretty. So yeah, that was fun.
Alright so conference! Of course it was awesome! And it’s neat cuz you all already know what was talked about. So we didn’t have any class on Saturday. We watched both sessions, and then the Elders watched priesthood and sisters watched the young women’s broadcast. Sunday we watched both sessions and then had our usual Sunday night devo and then we watched another recorded devo. So I actually don’t have my notes with me (sorry!) but I’ll try to just highlight my favorite parts. I loved how Elaine S. Dalton said we need help our daughters, or just others I think, step out of the world and into God’s kingdom. Her whole talk was great in both general conference and in the YW broadcast. I think Henry B. Eyring’s talk was maybe my favorite because I felt like it really applied to some of the questions I had. I love the scripture he shared in D&C 88:65 and then I really liked how he said that if we want those around us to draw closer to our Heavenly Father, we need to do that first ourselves. I think that can especially be applied to missionaries because we need to first convert ourselves before we can convert others. Of course all the missionary talks were great! Catching the wave by Russell M. Nelson and painting a tag on our hearts by Neil L. Andersen. Oh and when Andersen said something about the Provo MTC bulging, everyone started laughing because it is so true and we have all seen it!! So neat to actually be at the MTC during conference. And we watched it in the big devotional room so there were thousands watching it together. Anyways, there was a lot about missionary work (of course I loved that) and a lot about families. Oh and also obedience which still being a new missionary, I am not perfect at but am trying to be more exactly obedient every day. I’m sure I’ll learn that lesson more out in the field. I hope everyone else enjoyed conference! Remember to continue studying and reading those talks for the next 6 months!
So what you guys weren’t able to hear that I got to listen to Sunday night was so great! First of all, we didn’t have a normal speaker at the devo like we usually do. We had the BYU group, Vocal Point come sing! They sounded soooo good and it was neat to see them perform. Two years ago they were on the show “Sing off” and they almost won so they are way good. And they made it really spiritual by talking in between songs and telling spiritually experiences. Then for the recorded devotional, we watched one by Elder Holland. It was about why a mission should be hard and how we can teach with power and authority. He said if a mission isn’t hard then we aren’t doing it right. I have definitely felt that already, but I also have felt so much strength and growth in myself that I am thankful for the things I have already gone through. I know the trials and blessings I’ve already seen are just a taste of what I’ll see in the mission so I can’t wait! My favorite quote that Elder Holland said though was when he answered as best as he could why missions are so hard. He said, “It wasn’t easy for Him, so why would it be easy for us.” And that can be applied to just life in general. Sometimes, especially when we are living right, we expect things to be perfect or easy. Well even when we are trying hard to live righteously, we still have to endure trials of our faith. The blessings do come, even if it isn’t in this life. But Christ went through so much for us. He has given us everything and I think reflecting on His sacrifice can help strengthen us during trials. Oh and I loved Uchtdorf’s talk about our journey. He said that we had enough faith to leave the comfort of our Father’s presence, to come down to earth so that we can grow and become more like Him. That made me think about me serving a mission. I left the comforts of my life back home to come here. And although I will grow during this experience, it is not for me. It is for all the people I will teach in the Philippines. I can’t wait
Sister Jaycee Taylor
P.S. Oh! I forgot to tell you I finished memorizing the first vision in Tagalog today! Whoowhoo!