The city is so empty during Holy week. The traffic is usually bumper to bumper 24/7 but during Holy Week its an absolute ghost town. We were all quite shocked at how empty it could get. Not a single person car or anything in sight haha. It was crazy only a few homeless people there were even hundreds of less homeless people on the streets haha.
But its pretty crazy what happens in the other places of my areas. On Thursday and Friday people walked around whipping themselves on the back and there are drops of blood everywhere on peoples houses and cars and streets. We made sure we were not in that part of the area at the time they do that, and in the other barangay they crucified a couple people. They really try to reenact the atonement here, so we were in the city to not be around that.
It was a pretty amazing week this week and we got to teach a lot. We worked our tales off to teach people even though it was so empty. One thing I learned this week is the power of a testimony and being sincere and transparent. When talking to people just letting them know why your there and what your plans are for them. Its so important that you be as transparent as possible so people can make a clear decision in their lives. Let them know the blessings and what its going to take and so and so forth. Many people when you show up at their door will shew you away but if you teach them right there some simple truths of the gospel and how it can change their life and what our plan is for them they open up. The spirit touches their heart and they say... well when can you come back. and then we set an appointment or teach more while we are there.
I also focused my studies this week on the atonement and it was pretty amazing:) It is amazing the divine help from the atonement that we can receive, even just simply waking up in the morning can become a joy if we remember that Christ atoned for us and gives us the strength to live another day. We need not settle for living a normal every day mundane life, if we constantly keep our mindset on what the atonement makes us and our faith in Him, all those little things we do every day become a joy and a great light in our lives. As we recognize the little decisions that we have to make every day and then trusting the atonement and grace that we can be better than we are, and always choosing the better of all those little decisions we will become like the Savior and become so happy and everything in life will become a joy and a wonderful experience. We never need to be sad or bitter or mean, the Savior atoned for us and made it possible for us to choose the better always. There will be sad moments where we do mourn but our mourning will be accompanied by comfort, as we continually choose the right.
Love, Elder Blackham