Friday, July 30, 2010
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
But other stuff that happened: we had a sweet class on prayer and the restoration. We learned how as missionaries, we can really improve our prayers and how to get answers to them. there's a scripture in d and c that talks about pondering what you should do, then taking it to the lord and asking him if it be right. That way it shows we took initiative to think about what we're supposed to do and the lord can just give us more direction through a yes or no answer kind of thing (i want to say its in d and c 9?). But that was really cool and then we started talking about the restoration. At this point we had taught it for about 2 weeks so we knew our stuff and could really invite the spirit into our lessons and things. BUT we talked about all that we have because of it, and it made that testimony of the restoration sooo much more powerful. Essentially, the atonement works because of the restoration, families are eternal beacuse of it, and ultimately we can go and live in our father's fpresence at the end of this life for eternity. Literally everything that we have today, direction to our lives, a meaning and purpose, good standards, is because of the restoration. What a blessing it is we have to share that with someone else! It made me really want to actually share it with someone else, but also, it made me really want someone to receive it because i KNOW how much it has changed my life, and it could be the same feeling for someone else. I was talking with someone a long time ago and they said, ah man i'm gonna feel bad for you when you get doors slammed in your face and stuffl like that ha. And i thought, "yeah that would be kind of depressing if that happened all the time". But after this lesson i thoughut, don't feel bad for me, feel bad for them because they just missed out on an opportunity that could literally change the REST of the their life! It made me feel so sad for those that are missing out on this and that choose to reject it time and time again. If only they could feel the power that is in that lesson, they would know just like i do, the truthfulness of the events of joseph smith's life. so yeah the night was great! We went to the TRC on friday and taught somebody. First we had to do door contacting and we talked to a guy (in the trc) for 15 mins in SPANISH! It was kind of slow but we kept talking the whole time and really felt good about it. Then we left that door and went to the next one where we taught the first lesson again. We seriously NAILED IT! It was such a powerful message and we did a really good job of tying the investigators' concerns into the lesson and make it apply to them. We asked a ton of questions and just got her thinking a bunch. We also transitioned really smoothly which was beating us up for a while cause its much harder to do that with 3 people. It felt like i could stop talking mid thought, and one of my comps would pick it right up, we were all listening really well. It was actualyl really funnny because the week before we had a made a bunch of goals to improve on for this week in the TRC and we were totally not thinking about them before we taught but had practiced them all week. So when we reviewed our experience this week, we found that we met all of our goals just by practicing it a ton, but we also didn't think about meeting a bunch of goals (to measure our success), we just focused on the investigator and it was awesome!
We had another cool devocional on sunday night. It was Dallin H. Oaks (an apostle) daughter. And he was there too! She was a violin player and was amazing. The whole time i was wishing that TYler was there to see her beacuse i've never seen anyone in person at least, that was this good. She would talk, and then play a song, then talk, then play. The format of her performance was incredible too. I just loved the way she would bear her testimony about personal things, and then would play a song that would just confirm that testimony and let everyone in the audience feel that power. I'm not kidding i have never felt the spirit so strongly! It was like a wave that just covered me, my eyes started swelling up with tears and i just felt so amazing! she played a bunch of powerful songs too like "be still my soul, i now that my redeemer lives, he is the christ...and a few more". They were so powerful and on one, she told about how her mom had died of cancer and yet, she felt so comforted by the savior through his atonement. It made me think of you and how lucky I am to have you still here. It made me feel so close to you even though i'm way out here. I just have such a strong testimony that families are forever! and that is such a blessing. It made me think of the times that you had, and the feelings that you must've felt going throuhgh chemo and all the drama of your cancer, and it was just a powerful testimony to me that even though i wasn't always there, the savior was, and he knows exactly how all of us feel when we are down, when we are sad. It is such a comforting feeling to know that. Especially as i struggle and learn here at the mtc.
I don't have much time left but i think i got to most of what i wanted to say. i heard a quote this week that some of you have probably heard before but: A missionary is someone who leaves their family for a time, so that others can be with their families for eternity." I loved that quote and it is so true. I love what i'm doing, and it gets hard and tedious sometimes but i know that This is the true gospel. Why would i give up 2 years of my life to the lord, if i didn't know that what i was doing was true! I love you all soo much and miss you a ton. There were a few nights and days where i just wished i could be with you all playing at sand harbor, or rubbing rock beach, or just laughing and playing video games i dont know haha. But i think about you all and have been praying for you. I said a few prayers for jimmy and his DAT so i hope it went well!!!! and i got ellen's letters which are crazy! It makes me want to stay here a little bit longer ;) I hope everyone is doing well, i'd love to hear from tyler and zach and mom and dad, letter are always soo fun to get !!!!! I'm glad boys world is going well with daniel and emily. i gotta go! i love you guys so much and keep praying for me. And pray especially for those that don't have this gospel!
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Ahh every journal entry i write starts out with "today was a day full of ups and downs" ha! Each day has iits positives and negatives, i've just been trying to sort through them all. Ive gained testimony too that sunday falls on the best day of the week. SLowly i get more discouraged or frustrated as the week goes on and on saturday i just get testy and frustrated so easily hahah and then sunday rolls around. It's like the best day of the week cause there's always something to boost my spirits and rejuvenate me for the next week.
Real quick i just wanna say thanks for the emails mom and dad but please please please, use DEAR ELDER. that way i can read them before i start writing to everyone and it won't cut out of my 30 mins. The thoughts were erally nice though and it's great to hear how everyone is doing. I'm glad the boys got some old friends to come hang out with them in anderw and yuta. I love those guys, tha must've been a ton of fun!
This past week we worked really hard on the first discussion. We've been cranking pretty hard on it and it is so draining! It's not even a physical demand it's just all the studying and focusing and spirituality of it that wears me down. Causer every time we teach it, even if we're practicing on other missionaries, we want to make it REAL and invite that spirit that needs to be there when we are teaching real investigators. The reason we worked so hard on it, was because on friday we went to the TRC which is a place where they take someione off the street and have them sign up to be taught by us. We got a member and they are instructed to be pretty lenient with us. so after struggling during the week to really get comfortable teaching that first discussion, we were thrown into the fire to teach this "investigator". It was kind of funny because it's role play, but our lady that we taught (a college student) kept going in and out of character like, she we would ask her how she was doing since the last time we saw her (which was 5 minutes before, but was in the role play "a week ago") and she would be like oh i just texted my friend in the room next door, she's here at the TRC too. And it would kind of catch us off guard and we'd just say no i mean what did have you been up to since we saw you "last week!" (wink wink!) but she didn't really catch on so it was just awkward ha! But eventually we got into teaching and started off slow. We tend to take a little while to get into our discussion but once we did, we started rolling really well and teaching really effectively. It's really hard with three people to have unity and flow into one another's thoughts and questions, but our practice was starting to pay off...untilll, one of my comps covered like 4 points that were supposed to be divided up between all of us ha and me and my other comp elder walker are looking at each other like, uhhhh is he gonna stop hah! but we laugh about it now and it's a learning experience. none of us are perfect and we all made mistakes so i dont want to be the one that points the finger cause it's really hard for all of us.
after that meeting though, we've continued to practice and it feels so comfortable. We feel like we teach with the spirit and we have much better unity even since friday when at the TRC. It has helped to set a lot of goals (something i've always been terrible at). Our first week goals were like:study spanish everyday, read b.o.m, practice 1st discussion. And all of them seriously did nothing for us. We've learned to really focus our goals and not just fill our time here, but utilize it to our needs and what we need to work on as a companionship and individually. So we set much more specific goals and amounts of time to complete them and it has helped us tremendously. We've also learned a ton about who were teaching. It's so important to LISTEN to people, more so than thinking about what you're going to say to them. As you listen to people share things that are unique to them (struggles, desires, goals etc...) you learn to love them and see how you can help them. Teaching the the gospel is sooo much more than just teaching! It is applying what i know to be true, into someone elses life. It is so much more powerful and you can feel it, when you are teaching someone and you are addressing their concerns with gospel teachings. I know it's kind of vague but it just is soo important to not just teach, but to listen. In Preach my gospel it says: people are like iceberges, you only see the tip sticking out of the water (or how they say they are feeling on the outside), but mozst of the iceberg is actuyally under the water and we have to ask the right questions and get people to trust us in a way that they will reveal more of the ice berg. As they do that, we can help them so much more than if we just cram a lesson down their throat.
On sunday i had a really cool experience. It was fast sunday and we went to sacrament meeting. I was really looking forward to it because i needed a little boost for the next week. A bunch of the missionaries that left yesterday, got up and bore their testimony. It was AMAZING! They all said very similar things since it was in spanish, and i understood it all. But what i took from it is, we don't get our message across by speaking very intellectually or profoundly, but it is the sincerity and the reality of what we are saying that delivers it with such a spiritual punch! WHen these missionaries were bearing their simple testimonies in spanish, i literally got the goosbumps up and down my spine and on my legs and my head and i know it was the holy ghost telling me this. What an awesome experience it was.
Only have a efw moer minutes, but saturaday was sweet cause we got an extended curfew to go watch the fireworks shoot out from the football stadium! it was soo cool just to be kickin it with all these missionaries looking out over utah and seeing these huge firewoeks launch into the sky. I saw elder pulsipher there too which really was something i needed that night. I had been getting homesick a lot more this week and just letting my thoughts get the best of me. I've worked really hard to sing a hymn or recite the first vision in spanish in my head, to get the thoughst out, and it's really helped. But that night specifically it was nice to just talk with someone i knew really well. but yeah the fireworks were aweomse!
we had a cool "large group meeting" is what its called and we learned a lot about finding people. A cool point was that the lord is doing missionary work right now before we even get to where we're going. in alma 13:24 it talks about the angels preparing the hearts of man (and women) ha! But it's our job to go and find these people that are being prepared. never let one go by because they may never have another opportunity.
Just to answer some more questions that katie gave me, my companions are going to carlsbad california and somehwere in argentina (idk how to spell it). No one in our district is going to the same place ha! I love learning here in the mtc and i've learned a lot about how to use the holy ghost in our lives. We don't always get a miracle moment where something mniraculous happens and we feel the holy ghost, but he is with us always unless we offend him in some way. We don't need to do something incredible, to get him back, we just need to stop doing whatever offends that soft spirit.
Yo se que la iglesia de jesu cristo is la unica iglesia verdadera en la tierra. Yo se que nuestros familias son eternas. Testifico que dios nos conoce personalmente y que El nos conoce mejor que nos conocemos y que la iglesia fue restaurado por Jose Smith. Yo se que jesu cristo vive y nos ama, y que la expiacion se realizo.
i dont have mroe time but i love you guys so much! i can feel your prayers and im really starting to feel better here. I get homesick of course but i feel greart