I became DL on Saturday. Apparently my teachers have been speaking very well of me to President Trask so they changed the DL position to put me in haha which I guess doesn't happen that often here. Later that day we were watching some devotionals by David a Bednar, which are always cool to watch now that I've met him haha. Afterwards we got up to bare our testimonies. I always try to be the first one to get up because I think it's easier that way haha. He talked about the importance of women in the church so I got up and bore my testimony about you. I testified that I wouldn't be here without you, literally because you packed all of my stuff and woke me up to leave haha, and because without your constant love I surely would not have a testimony and I would not be able to serve these people in the Philippines. After I sat down with tears in my eyes. The next like 15 testimonies were all about their moms and how much they loved and missed them it was amazing! I'm so glad that I have you in my life and I cant wait to see you again.
Nov 16 I saw two cockroaches today, making it three for my entire life hahaha they were huge! I also had a really good talk with Peterson on how we are examples to our families, it all started because of my crazy dream. I dreamed that I was in a movie theater and I sat down to watch a movie. The theater was empty except for me. When it started, the screen was split exactly in half, one side was playing my future if I had gone on a mission and simultaneously on the right side, was my life if I hadn't gone. It stayed normal on both sides for a bit. I was actually happier on the side where I hadn't served for awhile but then something crazy happened. On the side where I hadn't served, I eventually fell away from the church. And because they didn't have the example they needed, Shelby, Caden and Coby didn't serve missions either and they all fell away, by the end of the dream, our family was torn apart. On the serving side, I had a great mission and when I returned home there was unexplainable happiness. Caden, Shelby, and Coby all served very successful missions around the world and our family was closer than ever. I talked to Peterson about it and he said that if his brother hadn't served he doesn't think that he would have. I am really glad that I get to be the first and oldest.
Nov 18 We went proselytizing today! We all loaded up into a van, and drove for an hour deep into Quezon City.
I don't think that I understood poverty until that drive. As I looked out the window and as the air burnt my throat to breathe, I looked out at houses that could barely be classified as houses. Imagine a building was just demolished, and then people just like picked up the garbage and made cities out of it! That is what it was like. Their towns literally looked like a dump, with little holes everywhere with people inside. When we arrived at the chapel, we all split up and went with some infield missionaries to help them teach and to learn how it really is out there. I was with Elder Salo, he is really cool but doesn't speak much English so we mainly spoke Tagalog. To get the the less actives house that we were teaching, we first had to ride in a tricycle. Look them up on google, they are pretty much just metal versions of those baby carriers that go on the back of bicycles except a little bit smaller! We had to like get into a little ball just to fit in hahah. We then road a Jeepne,
which are old WW2 Jeeps that have been stretched and then painted all crazy and they kind of act as taxi bus things. Once we got near to her house, we walked down this dirt road, which was infested by at least 30 or 40 stray rabies dogs, not even exaggerating on the number. And a ton of little kids were like squatting in circles holding sticks and just like hitting the ground it was soooo weird! We walked down this alley way and then up a lot of old crumbling concrete steps to this less active's house. One was of her house was a chicken coop, the other three were a bamboo frame wrapped in an old ripped up tarp. Her floor was dirt and rocks, she had one old gross lawn chair and a log. We sat down and taught her about obedience, with chickens and dogs walking around our feet hahaha. She was really cool but it was pretty hard to understand her, I prayed and bore my testimony, Tagalog-lang. After we taught her we just walked around looking for someone to teach, I felt like a rock star because everyone, especially the kids, almost with out exception are like :"Hi, what's you name?" "Are you from the US?" "Do you want to play with us?" And its so cool because if you answer them and ask for their name and stuff, like an expression of pure joy comes over their faces! It's amazing.
We kept walking down this jungle path thing and through like all of these old ruins that people lived in until we came upon a guy with no shirt carving wood infront of his house. I guess his job was to sell eggs from his chickens and to carve these flowers out of wood and sell them. We introduced ourselves and asked if we could share a message. He said Sure! So we all sat down on these logs and his like 8 children came out. We taught him the restoration. It was awesome I was able to teach some of the lesson, testify and pray all in Tagalog, because the adults don't really speak English only the kids. He asked if I was getting paid to be here and I said I was here to teach because I loved the people, he couldn't understand that. We got a return appointment and Elder Salo is going back to teach him in a couple days.
It was a crazy experience and I can't wait to do it every day!! hahahaha
Cole leaves the MTC on December 2nd.
If you'd like to send him a Christmas card send it to....
Philippines Manila Mission
Elder Cole Zesiger
PO Box 1997
1200 Makati City, Metro Manila