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