Thursday, March 27, 2014

March 24, 2014

My week was another great one!   I went from mountain to city to farms and huts haha. It was sweet. I was in Cogeo, Pasig, Malaya, and Tanay this week, All of it was awesome and I wish I could share everything. One thing that happened in Cogeo, someone wanted to debate with us and test out knowledge and bible bash.  These are some of my favorite because I never lose, ha ha ha. I do not debate with them I just simply testify of Christ and that we are true followers of Him. I told them that Christ doesn't like to debate because it is contentious. I testified that all we simply do is what Christ did and that is also what we teach, and that if we don't do what He did,  we can't expect to get back to heaven like He did. It's always so amazing to me that whenever you bring things back to Jesus Christ, they always get so quiet and there becomes no more debate. Then after that they accepted to be taught. That is what I mean by I always win, because I don't really do anything, I just talk about Christ and let the Spirit do the rest:) 

The spirit really does it all to be honest, the best teacher is the one who figures out the language of the spirit. What principles and what things consistently bring that feeling and to listen with your ears and heart and see with your ears and your heart so that you will know what to say. If your only desire is to truly help those you are teaching and love them then you will always know what to say:) I love the gospel so much and I know it's true. I know everyone wants to know it's true. 

I had an experience this week and I actually have this experience a lot when we share with someone who looks like he/she doesn't want to know anything about the gospel at all.  That is when I hand them that list of questions I carry around and then they ask how they can get rid of sin, or what happens after they die and want us to come back and answer it. It happens all the time, I have never had anyone read that list and not pick a question they wanted to know. So it's like proven, everyone wants to know:) 

Elder Blackham

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

March 17, 2014

Sorry I wasn't wearing green today. They don't celebrate St. Patricks day here. But after you said that I put some green on and started pinching everyone in the office, haha.

This week was transfer week so it was really busy and we were only able to go on exchanges with one set of Elders and that was in Antipolo 2nd ward. It was way cool as always going out and preaching the truth and repentance amongst God's children:)

This time we found this grandma and grandson that was in his twenties and they allowed us to share with them. We found out that His Father has recently died and the grandma was afraid to die, so it was the perfect set up to teach the Plan of Salvation to them. I love doing that so much, giving peace and hope for those who really desire something to hope in:) It's the greatest feeling, and they both accepted it happily and wanted us to come back as soon as we could so that was sweet.

Then we had stake conference which was really cool too. My mission president is so awesome and is trying to speak in all the stake conferences and getting all the members fired up to do missionary work. Then we went out and worked again and the appointment fell through so we went finding again and we found one family who yelled out to us and so happened to be that the Father was a member but not the others so we were able to teach them and its so cool how the Lord just provides so many people to teach. The field really is white already to harvest and this really is the time that the Lord is hastening His work in preparation for His coming. 

Then after that it was late and we should be heading home, but then I felt a prompting that someone up the street wanted to know the gospel. After searching around and paying attention to my feelings, we found a nice house with the door open and I felt that that was the one. So we called to the person inside(in the Phillipines they don't knock or use doorbells, visitors just yell in to the house they are at to let the family know someone is at the door) to come out and talk. The man yelled back that he was busy. I pretended I didn't here his answer, ha ha ha,  and asked his name and introduced ourselves. He said he is not interested and then I bore my testimony and taught a little bit about what we teach and asked him if he ever wondered why we are here and what our purpose is. After I bore my testimony he said he really wanted to know about that and then said  he really was busy at that moment and made an appointment for us to come back on Tuesday at 7 pm. He said thank you and gladly took the plan of salvation pamphlet and said he would read it. Woot woot:) Miracles:) .

Persistence is so important because it shows the importance of whatever it is you are trying to help them understand. Whenever anyone says they are busy I always bear testimony that this is worth their time and that this is the most important thing they can be doing right now. It shows also that we had faith that that was the person that wanted to hear the gospel. I truly believe and know with all my heart that there is not a single person who doesn't want to know this gospel. Because they already accepted the Plan in the pre-mortal life. They already accepted it and I am sure they were planning on getting it again before they came to earth. I know that they want it even when they don't know that they want it. In being persistent you can almost always be able to reveal or find the hidden desire within their souls through testimony and questions and promised blessings. I would have  to say 80 or 90 percent of people say they are busy and reject at first but after bearing testimony and asking follow up questions; over 50 percent of that 90 percent that reject it seems to open up and let us in or else they set appointments and eventually share. Its so cool:) Because you get to show how much you love the gospel and know it will help them when doing so. I had a blast over there in Antipolo 2nd.  

In my studies I was reading Jacob 5 and it hit me so hard that this is that time in verses 70-72 that now is that time and we are laboring with our might in the vineyard and this just really really is the time when the Lord is hastening his work and we really need to give our all to get the blessings in verse75:) I know this is true and I love this work;) 

Love, Elder Blackham  

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Pictures (cont.)

Here are some more pictures. I only know the story of one of the pictures and I'll post Elder Blackham's commentary on how he got the stitches.

This is from the March 11, 2013 letter if you want to go read the entire story. Elder Blackham was trying to show his Filipino companion how to do a cross over (a basketball maneuver) in their apartment, which is super small. They ended up bumping heads really hard. His companion got a knot on his head and Elder Blackham got stitches because of the spot that he got hit. 

March 10, 2014

Ang aking Minamahal na Ina,

Things here are going spectacular. I am so grateful for being here really its like indescribably amazing:) Worked in Marikina 2,3,4,5 and Quezon City 5, and Binangonan (these are all wards and areas with missionaries). It was so much fun!!

Miracles always happen whenever you are on exchanges like, always. One experience was we were teaching someone and then someone walks up to the house and says, "I have so many problems" then I said, "That's great, would you like to join us and find out how to overcome those problem and be happy?" Then they joined and she asked if Christ understood her and we shared Alma 7:11-12 and said that He understands her perfectly and it was amazing:) 

Then we were going to go teach a recent convert when we saw a group of teenagers and told them to join the lesson and promised them it would be amazing and they would love it; and they joined us!  It was so so  cool. I have never seen a group of teenagers so attentive and sincerely asking questions like that before. There was about 10 of them and they all looked like wayward souls, if you know what I mean, and it was so great to promise them and teach them about how they are loved so much and that God provides a way to be happy in life and the real kind of happiness that comes from nothing else than doing His will. We taught that disobedience to God brings us away from Him, and they really wanted to know their purpose in life and it was just really strong spirit. I felt this great love for them so much and it was such a cool personal experience for me, I so badly wanted all of them to discover this. 

We also ran into a family that I used to teach in Angono and they moved but they still want to be taught and it wasn't coincidence we passed by them and they recognized me. So cool!

In Quezon City 5 we taught a sister who just lost her baby and wanted to know about the Plan of Salvation, and I just want to testify to everyone that this is true and that miracles do happen, and that these things are not accident or coincidence!  I have seen it and felt it and I still can't and won't ever be able to describe the simplicity and the beauty of this the restored church of Jesus Christ in these Latter days. Its so simple. Christ came to earth and taught us that we must have faith in him, and that we must repent of our sins. Then He himself was baptized by immersion by someone holding authority; then He received the Holy Ghost and then He endured to the end. Then after everything He returned to our Father in Heaven. SO if we do what He did then simply by default we will make it back too. Because it's already been done and He already made it, the path is surely proven to work haha. But we can't expect to go to heaven by doing things other  than what He did or taught or by any other way. Because Christ showed us the way and it is simple and is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Any ways this is amazing:) 

Love Elder Blackham

Friday, March 7, 2014

March 3, 2014

I am glad you enjoy the mission pictures that I sent. I am sure you are thinking, like finally!! But yes you did finally get them and I'm taking more that are so awesome:) 

As far as dinners, usually my companion and I buy packaged food or food on the go. Or eat at calendarias, (those are like little homemade fast food restaurants where you just pick an ulam and they give it to you on the spot) Ulam- anything that you put on rice, usually like  bicole express or chicken adobo, I like gulay too to stay healthy. So you can look those up on google to find out what we eat here:) 

I am so grateful for being a servant of the Lord. Oh how grateful I am for being here in the Philippines Quezon City Mission serving the Lord. There just really is nothing better than this. This week we went Quezon City4, Sampaloc, Tanay, and Bagong Batay.  Sampaloc and Tanay are so far away haha. It's like going from our house in Surprise all the way in Flagstaff, but oh it is so beautiful out there. They are the raw country or province of the Philippines. I took some .cool pictures. 

But that's not the important part. the important part is that we really found some amazing people to teach out there. We were talking to everyone. It's so so so so important to understand your investigator, that should be your first goal as you begin teaching. We had to teach that  a lot this last week. We taught lessons to less actives and I have found the best success with less actives is simply loving them, like the prodigal son and His Father. Just put aside the fact that they are less active, I tell them "I don't care how long it has been since you have been to church. Sure maybe you should have been coming to church, but that's in the past, you can always start being active right now, and the Lord would love you just as much for it and you will be blessed more than you can imagine, I love you and the Lord loves you and you can do it, I promise:)." I talk about concerns and help them resolve it . You just got to be willing to do whatever it takes to help them know they are important and you are willing to work with them and that they are worth working with, and with their weaknesses and help them overcome them instead of just teaching why we need to go to church.  I find that the same works with correcting missionaries. Instead of treating them like they are broken or disobedient, I just say very similar, "I don't care what you have done in the past, you can obey today and I promise you will feel the difference in your life. It's as simple as that but, with the spirit, whatever you say will be effective. Sometimes we need to do this to ourselves when we are discouraged or whatever, to say, oh well it doesn't matter what went wrong yesterday or however far back and choose to be good this day. And day by day you will be better:) There are just so many good experiences and learning that happened this week and I wish I had time to share them all with you. 

Elder Blackham

Thursday, March 6, 2014


Elder Blackham recently sent a bunch of pictures (over 100). There are too many to put on one post so I'll be posting only some of them at a time. None of them had any explanation to them but here are the first ten

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

February 24, 2014

This week I was in Quezon City 2nd area and Signal Village and Taguig, I learned so much this week. I cannot tell you how much a blessing trying to memorize a scripture every 2 or three days helps. I mean, the starting point of our faith, doubts, choices, actions and who we are is all in our thoughts and mind.  If I am always trying to memorize a scripture it is like thats what becomes my thoughts and faith and who I am when I am just sitting on a jeep-nee or when I wake up. To be carnally minded really is death and to be spiritually minded really is life eternal.

I went on exchanges  with my trainee that I trained a long time ago and he is training right now and I went with them. It was so much fun. I am so proud of them:) I love to just be the best I can be in every area I go to. I can honestly say that the Lord is helping me become the missionary I have always wanted to become:) I swear I learn way more than the Elders I go on exchanges with. It just blows my mind how white the field really is and how it is so ready to be harvested. There is not a single exchange that I have ever went on where we didn't find new people who wanted to hear the gospel that day. There just simply is no greater work than the work of the Lord. 

I learned a lot more this week about how having a broken heart and a contrite spirit helps you grow so much and is the way that the soil of learning reaches its fertile peak. In Mosiah 4:11-12 the promised blessings of remembering how much we need God and to repent and always doing that is growing in the knowledge of the Glory of Him that created us which is light and truth. That's so cool. Always rejoice, always be filled with the love of God and always retain a remission of your sins. That scripture always blows my mind. So I decided to memorize it so that it would become a part of me. 

The talk about being accepted of the Lord by Elder Kopischke just helps so much as I account to the Lord and strengthen my relationship with Him. As I right all my covenants every Sunday before I take the sacrament it just becomes such a precious and holy time for me as I account and repent and work to fulfill my covenants every week. As I do this I always receive new revelation on what I can do better and in what ways the Lord is pleased with me.  It is like my own little personal time with the Savior and I treasure it so much. 

Well anyways, that was my week. I love sharing the gospel and the people we taught were so amazing. We taught a new family in Signal and it was such an amazing experience and we found another entire family searching for the truth:) The spirit was so strong and I am just so glad I invited them to hear the gospel. They were able to hear it for the first time and feel it in their hearts. wow if only how I can describe how that feels:) 
ELder Blackham