Monday, June 24, 2013

Kagat Ng Lamok

June 24, 2013

Hello Family,

So I know you have all been dying to know (:P) I finally made the pumpkin pie last monday and it turned out great!  It was soo delicious.  I think I will have to make it again sometime. Thanks so much mom for the recipe and Kay for the money for the ingredients.  All 4 of us enjoyed a little bit at a time for days!

The weather has started to "cool down" a bit again and it is awesome.  It makes me really glad I will only be here one summer because it is so much hotter in the summer... which is hard to believe as you walk down the street sweating even in "burr months". haha. I am still enjoying the cold showers in the mornign but it is a shock on the mornings when we do laundry instead of running cause you are less hot to start with. 

So maybe something I can share this week is about how my mission is probably different from most missions in the states.  The Filipino people are very kind.  Many (not all, trust me) will welcome you into their homes. (Much more on Palawan than here, but still.) Almost no one we talk to gets super angry or slams a door in our faces. (Mostly because doors hear would break if slamed :) ) Some just walk away as we try and talk to them but most of them listen politely, expalin they are Catholic, take the pamphlet and nod instead of saying yes when we comit them to read it.  So generally the hard part is on the return apt when they hide or don't progress.  SO tracting is very different here and certainly not as discouraging.  Just don't want anyone to get the wrong idea of my sufferings. haha.  But I have felt the same pain.  There are nights when I talk to my companion and think about how Heavenly Father must just sit up in Heaven and shake His head or weep. Satan is clever and people are sooo human and weak.  I know that we can overcome all things with God but that it is easier to give in instead of overcome.  And so many of Heavenly Father's beautiful Spirit children have choosen to just give in. Or when you teach people and you just know Heavenly Father would bless them with unlimited blessings if they would just make the one little sacrifice for Heavenly Father but they just won't take that one little step.  It is so frustrating but when the frustration subsides there is just sorrow left for my poor brothers and sisters who are missing out on all the awesome gift our Father in Heaven wants to give them and is giving me.  And the only thing that makes it better is that it is all the more motivation to find those who will accept it.  So that THEY CAN enjoy the blessings and the joy.  I am honestly so grateful for the opportunity Heavenly Father has given me to feel this way. To better understand why Christ died for each individual and to get a tiny little taste of how much Heavenly Father must love me. And loves you. Beacuse I feel it for these people.  Right after they lie to your face and you know it, your heart still breaks for them.  I'm grateful for the pain and the love. So grateful for the perfect plan of our Father in Heaven that gives us the opportunity to return to Him if we chose! (Soory if that got a little rantish.  I don't have time to go back and check it. :) haha)

It is so wonderful when we can get a better grasp on the big picture.  As the Spirit shows it to your heart and mind, everything in life gets easier and wanting to share the gospel becomes more natural.  So study hard the gospel with the Spirit and live easy.

Love and miss you all!
Sister Hamm

P.S. Tell Jake to write me back.  Things here are great! My companion is awesome and we are seeing blessings from the Lord everyday. Have a great day! Love you so much.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Lots of Beautiful and a Little Bit of Pangit

June 17, 2013

Hello family,

So this has been a great week with lots of beautiful and a little bit of pangit. haha.  There is always so much I want to tell you throughout the week and then it is hard to remember it all.  Well first off I just want to thank you for raising me in the church, teaching me how to pray and making sure I knew that God was listening, for telling me stories from the Bible and the Book of Mormon and being married in the temple.  It certainly made all the difference in my life and I am so grateful for the many blessings I enjoy because of my great parents.

They do celebrate Father's day. Primary in the 2nd ward (the other sister's ward-- we aren't assigned to the same ward) made cute little ribbon medals and the primary in our ward made the shirt and tie cards. Cute, cute.

For independence day we didn't even seen any fireworks.  They apparently sometimes have them but it isn't a big thing for independence day.  So far it seems like the biggest holiday for them is New Years, closely followed by Christmas.  As far as I could tell for most people it was just a day off from work like Martin Luther King day or something.  But there were lots of people selling flags and some people put them on their cars.
Sometimes the Philipina sisters get packages from home but none of the ones I live with have yet. 

Our church building has air conditioning!! :)  Yay!  The floors are all tiled. No carpet. The weird part is our chapel actually doesn't have benches.  Our sacrament hall is just set up with chairs every week and then they take them down afterwards.  The windows have white bars on them.  The air conditioning isn't centralized so our recent convert has the job of turning them off and on with a remote depending on whether the room is being used or not.  This building has 2 floors.  So sacrament and relief society are upstairs and other classrooms and the bishops office is downstairs. There are palm trees on all the church grounds I've been to. :)  Yay.

So this week I have been reading Joseph Smith history a little bit each day.  For anyone who hasn't read it within the last month I highly recommend it.  I am loving every bit.  I have learned a lot from the example of Joseph Smith with how he handled things and the experiences he had.  One thing that really struck me is when he receives the plates he is told by the angel Moroni that if he loses the plates because of carelessness or lack of effort he will be held accountable, but if he does his best to protect the plates they would be safe.  Here we see the promise that Heavenly Father has given to all of us, "if we give and do our very best, God will make up for the rest."  He knows we aren't perfect. He knows we all have weaknesses. Heavenly Father never requires of us things we can't do.  What He does require is our very best effort.  He has promised to make up for the rest. If we feel we are not good enough for a certain calling, we do our best and He qualifies us.  He literally makes up for our weaknesses.  It is so beautiful.  It is the same with the atonement.  As we do our best not to sin and to follow His commandments, God gives us His son's sacrifice to make up the difference.  But we are still required to do our very best.  I know that as we give our best, Heavenly Father will make everything work together for our good. Nothing is impossible when we do our best and have God's help.

Have a great week. Smile for there are at least a million reasons to do so.

Sister Hamm

Monday, June 10, 2013


June 10, 2013

Hello Family,

So thanks so much for the packages!  You know me so well.  My companion also loves school supplies so we have been having a good time with all the sticky notes, and tape, and pens and pencils.  Thanks so much!!  Also thanks for the clothes.  I have already worn some of them. (I was going to send pictures but the computer doesn't want to work right. next time)  It is so nice to have some new outfits!  And to replace a couple worn out shirts. Also thank you for the food.  You know me too well. haha.  That was the best brand of cheese and PB crackers.  Everyone in my apartment loves the chicks and bunnies now and we each have one after lunch everyday. haha. The only thing that didn't make it whole is the reeses eggs.  They are a melted block now that I enjoy very much a little at a time with a spoon. haha.  Just know I felt your love for me through the package and am slowly savoring all of it!  You are the best. We started reading the ensigns today too and can't wait to share the friends with the mga bata (kids) here.

This week has been great.  We had a wonderful family let us in and listen and it was just a very exciting moment. It was a moment when you remember just how important this work is.You realize how much this family has and how much they still don't have.  They were a beautiful family of 8, all their children are girls.  We could feel the love in their home and can't wait to share more with them about eternal families and all the blessings they can enjoy!

So answering some questions.... I have lived in 2 apts so far and both times we have had 2 companionships there.  I love it and don't want to go to an apartment with just me and my companion. haha. There are graduations here and they seem pretty big deal, just like in the states. It is a little different here because you start college when you are 16. It's so weird to visit these 16 year olds who have already picked the course they will graduate in and hopefully find a job doing.  I haven't really seen any pinatas but they do have these lattice work squares with prizes hanging on each cross work.  Then they move it up and down like a pinata and people try to grab the prizes.  More effective than it sounds.  There independence day is June 12 so maybe we will get some fireworks then. :)  We saw them on Christmas and New Years as well.

Well, I love you so much!!!  Miss you lots but am also having a great time here.  Sister R and I get along really well and I am already weary of transfer day because I want to stay here! :)  Haha.  Enjoy your week! Don't take anything for granted!


Sister Hamm

Monday, June 3, 2013


June 3, 2013


So this week was really good. We had one really hard day when there was pretty much not a single person home and lets just say it was really hot and we were really tired but we persevered and the week overall went great.

Let see-- highlights.  First one of our ward missionaries (male) we were in a lesson just chatting before we started the lesson and somehow height came up.  And it come up how he is short and he said, "of course, if I was tall you wouldn't be able to see my beautiful face as well.  There is a purpose." So in my opinion it was funnier in Tagalog but I definitely laughed out loud and I was like, I am totally gonna have to use that... of course it will have to be when I get back since here I'm not short. haha.

Something else that has been a repetitive this week is "Prevention is Key".  Seriously, when it comes to spirituality and cleaning apartments this is so true. :)  With spirituality we learn that we really do have to do the little daily things that keep our testimony strong.  We all have those times when our fire may be a little dim or our faith a little wavering but if we walk away from the things that help us and just figure it will work itself out, that little fire will die. We have to constantly be working at our faith.  Also with sin, preventing situations in which will be tempted helps so much to prevent sin.  And finally cleaning.... if you do the lite cleaning every day or week it is so much easier than dealing with old, smelly, built up things.... Yea, we deep cleaned the apt this morning and lets just say we fought with the iced over freezer for over an hour! If you are waiting on a written letter... that may be one of the reasons you don't get one soon. :/ sorry. haha.

I have also been thinking this week (and every week) about faith. I feel like my whole mission, every time we go to teach a lesson on faith I feel like I need a better lesson plan.  I am always wondering what we need to cover because it is in my mind either a very simple topic or a very huge topic.  I used to think faith was simply testimony.  I have faith that Jesus Christ is our Savior, I have faith that Heavenly Father hears my prayers, I have faith that through Christ's atonement and our efforts we can be able to return to live with God.  But I realized while that is faith, faith is so much more.  It is having faith that God will fulfill His promises. It is a perfect hope that all things in life will work together for our good. It is unconditional trust in Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ and their power over all things!  And there is so much we must do to increase our faith and learn to walk in the dark following the faint light of Christ at the end of the tunnel.  Faith is so important and yet it just comes down to trusting.  We just have to learn how to let ourselves trust Him. Have a great week!  Love you all and miss you!

Sister Hamm