Just before heading to the MTC, #1's friend had a family move in with them. It just so happens that that family was from the Philippines.
Random? Okay, yah, I agree.
Wait….It gets better.
They were living with this friend's family until they could find a place of their own, and they did….In our ward boundaries (for those who may not know, a "ward" is an LDS congregation. What ward you are in is determined by where you live). At one point, I had heard that our ward has the smallest geographical boundaries in the state of Oregon. Whether that's still true or not, I don't know, but for them to just happen to find a place in our small boundaries?….Yah, random.
Then, okay, maybe not so random….I am made the wife's visiting teacher (in the LDS church, a visiting teacher is assigned to each woman to check in and make sure everything's good for the family. It's kind of like an assignment to be someone's friend. Strange? Yah, okay, but you really do end up being friends, and it's a lovely thing). So, you kind of get the picture of what my assignment is here. Well, my assignment has turned into a joy.
I have to admit, the first time I visited with her, I was nervous. We had chatted back and forth on Facebook a few times, but I really didn't have any experience with her, and I had to take #7 with me.
From the moment she opened her door, it became SUCH a SWEET visit. She even embraced my lively and wiggly four-year-old in her kindness. I couldn't wait to go and be with her again. I am grateful that I was the one who was chosen for this assignment. She has become my good friend.
The other night was her birthday. I went to take her a little something. The Warden waited in the car while #6 and I ran it in to her.
This woman invited us in and sat us down and fed us spaghetti. Not like American spaghetti or Italian spaghetti, but Filipino spaghetti. It was SO DELICIOUS!
We left with a big bowl full for the Warden. She had to share.
Knowing what I know now, is it any wonder #1 loves who she serves?
Yesterday we got word that #1 has been transferred to a new city. I received a letter stating the facts of her transfer. I want to share a line from that letter.
We were told where she will be serving and that it is a wonderful place, and then it goes on to say this:
"…The people are loving and kind, and you will also find the people to be hospitable….The members there are supportive with regards to missionary work and they are always excited to work with the Missionaries and involve themselves to the work."
These are the kind of people my daughter rubs shoulders with, and these are the kind of people I now rub shoulders with as well.
Can you see how this is not random? This is a small part of a much bigger picture. This is my life now. It's so different from what it once was.
There is one more significant detail to this story…..
Before you send a child to a foreign country, people tell you about the culture, the food, other little details. You don't really know what to expect.
So, in my first email to #1 after she arrived in the Philippines, I asked her about the food. Her response?…
"Sister E made spaghetti for us! Oh it was the best spaghetti I've ever eaten. reminded me of home."
Funny our parallel lives on opposite sides of the globe. Best spaghetti I've ever eaten. Reminded me of her.
People said there would be great blessings for sending #1 on a mission. I just had no idea.
Maybe you begin to agree with me….None of this is random.