Goodbye Provo MTC July 19th, 2013
My last week at the MTC! So bittersweet. I am so excited for what lies ahead in Guatemala but I am going to have a really hard time saying goodbye to my 10 new brothers. When I say brothers, I absolutely mean it. These Elders are FANTASTIC. We have become so close in these last 6 weeks and it will be hard to say goodbye but I know that they will always be my MTC family :)
I directed the music last Sunday..... it was bad. We sang a song toooo!!!!! It was so pretty. O Jesus Thou Who Wearest a Crown to If You Could Hie to Kolob. GORGEOUS
We played baseball this week during gym time. Now when I say baseball, it is a completely different game than what you are thinking. We do not have a bat or a baseball so we improvise. We used an end of a crutch for our bat (extremely difficult) and a stress ball. It was sooooo much fun and I actually wasn't too terrible.
Yesterday we had in-field orientation which is basically where they prepare you for the field. IT WAS AMAZING. I AM SO EXCITED. It also helped that I ate half a bag of Sour Patch Watermelons before 10 am..... I was a little too happy all day but that's okay. The most important thing to me is that we need to set goals and then make plans afterwards. When we have something we are aiming for, it is so much easier to stretch ourselves and truly reach our full potential. I think in life I have always pushed the importance of goals to the side. It has just been something we did in 7th grade gym class and never looked at again but I am starting to realize how effective goals can be. I definitely have a long way to go in making goals and achieving them but I now realize their importance. When we have a plan, we have direction and purpose. It is a reflection of our Heavenly Father's plan for us here on Earth. Although His plan is much greater, if we turn to Him for direction in our goals and plans, we will receive His help and be more able to accomplish that which we should do. 1 Nephi 3:7 :)
I met an Elder from Guatemala and we talked in Spanish :) He said I speak really well and I don't sound like a gringa :) YESSSSSSSSSSSSS!
So we have a new investigator, Constantino from Uruguay! He is so awesome and he knows so much about the church (his son is a member). During our lesson, I had him recount the story of Jospeh Smith (he's heard it so many times) and then I felt like I needed to go over James 1:5 with him. He kept saying how he has so many questions about the Gospel and just religion in general. As he read James 1:5, I said something along the lines of "You said you have a lot of questions. We don't have all of the wisdom in the world but our Heavenly Father does. He is all-powerful and has all the wisdom in the world." It just came out of nowhere and then I had him read verse 6 as well. We can ask our Heavenly Father anything we want but if we don't pray in faith, we won't receive an answer. We need to expect an answer. We need to trust in the Lord and then He will answer us.
I have really been interested in the topic of angels lately! I have started to notice how often they are brought up in the Book of Mormon. Before I left on my mission, Pres. Larson shared a scripture with my family and I that has brought me to tears everytime I read it. D&C 84:88.
88 - And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up.
I am not alone in this work. The Savior is working beside me and His heavenly angels are as well. This quote from Elder Holland basically sums it up, " I testify of angels, both the heavenly and the mortal kind. In doing so, I am testifying that God never leaves us alone, never leaves us unaided in the challenges we face. [N]or will he, so long as time shall last, or the Earth shall stand, or there shall be one man [or woman or child] upon the face thereof to be saved." I would challenge all of you to strive to be an angel to someone else everyday. Sometimes all we need is someone who will listen or someone who smiles. Never let an opportunity to brighten someone's day pass you by. I was having a rough day and I said a pray that I may have more joy and be happier. It was almost 5 minutes after that and I began to see little miracles in my life that came through mortal angels :) Our Heavenly Father is aware of us and our struggles. Pray to Him in faith and He will send you aid. Always.
In our district meeting, we talked about enduring to the end. Whenever I hear this phrase, I automatically think of cross country. In a race, you give everything you have. There should be no regrets once you cross that finish line and that is how life is. We need to be looking ahead far enough that we keep our focus on what really is important but we also cannot let the stretch before us bring discouragement and looking behind you just causes you to get nowhere. The only place to look is forward. In life, our goal is to become like our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. We will never be perfect in this life but as we continually press forward with faith, we will slowly begin to better perfect our imperfections. 2 Nephi 31: 19-20 basically sum it up!
19 - And now, my beloved brethren, after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save.
20 - Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a clove of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.
I was able to watch a devotional by Elder Bednar called "Character of Christ". AMAZING. Try to find it and watch it. It is a great eye opener and caused me to really reflect upon what I have been doing in my life. He talks about how the Savior's instinct is to turn outward when the rest of us would turn inward. In our times of deepest trials, do we look to see how we can help lift others up? In my life, it has really been about what I want but it should be what the Lord wants. One thing Elder Bednar kept repeating was "There would be no atoning sacrifice without the Character of Christ". If it wasn't for his selfless love and ability to turn outwards, we would have no hope. We would have no light. We would be lost. I love my Savior and I am so grateful for the example He has set for me. I know nothing we do will ever repay Him for what He has done but we can give Him our time, our efforts, and we can turn the desires of our hearts into His will. I know that as we do these things, we will gradually begin to turn outwards instead of inward.
I had a great realization while reading "See Others as they May Become" by Pres. Monson. I am a apart of the greatest work on the face of the Earth. I have been called of God to serve Him for 18 months. He trusts me with His children in Guatemala! I have began to feel the pressure of this calling on my shoulders but I know that with the Savior and Our Heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost, I will be able to truly bring eternal joy to these people. I don't want to waste a second of their time and I want to work as hard as I can. We all are children of God and we all DESERVE the opportunity to hear of the Restored Gospel. This is our Savior's truth and it is His Gospel.
Talks to watch: “Safety for the Soul” - Elder Holland, “The Ministering of Angels” Elder Holland, “See Others as They May Become” - Pres. Monson
You can find them on Lds.org :) They are amazing! http://www.lds.org
GUATEMALA HERE I COME!!!! 3 DAYS!!! SO EXCITED. NEXT TIME YOU HEAR FROM ME... I WILL BE IN GUATEMALA!!! YAYAYAYAYYAYAYY!
Love you all sooo much! xoxoxoxo (besos y abrazos)
Con todo mi corazon,
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