Monday, November 5, 2012

Week 5 (November 1, 2012)

Hola familia!
Como estan? Haha. How is life in the real world? What is going on with that storm? We heard that it was pretty bad. How are Blaine and Heather doing? Thanks for everyone that wrote this week. I love getting mail from you all. Rachel I loved your letter and the Shout out to my car (yours too;). Thank you dad and Grandma for the packages. They were amazing. I loved the pictures that you sent. They are up where I see them any time I walk into our room. Thank you for the letters too Wendi, Rylee, and Kaitlyn (hope I spelled that right). The pictures of Ian on Halloween were great! He looked awesome! Charlie and Avery looked authentic and Gracie looked like a princess. :) It was good to look at some of the pictures. Jordan, you letter had me in stitches. My companions couldn't figure out what was wrong with me. Haha. It is weird to think that I have been here for over a month. It feels like and eternity. And to think that I am still so close to all of you is a weird thought as well. I hope everything is well out there (out there, I feel imprisoned. But I love it so it is okay;). This week has been amazing! I think this is the week that I have been waiting for since I have got here. I am finally beginning to understand Spanish and speak it. I am thinking less and less about what I am going to say and how I am going to say it. It's starting to be fun! The past week has been good cause I have learned so much about myself and the power of the Savior. I would have times where I would get home sick or feel like I am all alone, but then every time that I would turn to the Savior for help I was so happy and I wanted to leave the MTC and go share it with someone so they could feel it too. But I can't do it like that so this is how I am doing it. Sharing how amazing it feels when you have an experience with the Savior. So good. :D On Saturday we started a new service assignment in the MTC. We worked in the kitchens for an hour and it was crazy! I guess I didn't realize how much money the Church spent on the missionaries until I saw how much food we eat. It sounds bad but it is true haha. Anyway, Elder Miles was sick, so Elder Smith and I got assigned to de-stem grapes. We did 117 pounds of it. It seemed like an eternity but it was fun cause we talked and just sang church hymns as loud as we could. On Sunday we had a speaker come and talk to us, and he was the church official that was over all of the missionary work in the world. He said that missionary applications have jumped 471% in the last month! Unbelievable! Also, that since there would be so many coming out, that in 3-4 months, I could very well be a senior companion and training a new missionary. Talk about stress! I need to work and get ready! But I am excited for the challenge. On Monday we taught Sal again. He is making progress with his testimony of Christ and his power as Savior and Redeemer of the world. We talked to him about the plan of salvation and how it can bless him and his family and make each other stronger. We have really focused on the Book of Mormon and how important it is. It is such an amazing book! The next time you read it, just watch at how many times it mentions or even just talks about the Savior. It is mind boggling. On Tuesday I weighed myself and I am finally gaining weight! But only 4 pounds more than from when I got here. All I can say is it is about time. I have been working out in the mornings doing pushups, situps, and using the exercise band they gave us. I would like to think that the weight is from that but I am not sure. Innocent until proven guilty. Haha. On Tuesday we also taught William. He is starting to make some serious progress. We taught him about the plan of salvation and how it can help his family regain the relationship they once had and how it teaches his children to grow up happy and strong making good decisions. He liked this a lot and wanted to know more. So we invited him to start having Family Home evenings and reading the Book of Mormon together from passages that we assigned him to read (once again, The importance and power of the Book of Mormon, it strengthens families). He committed to do it and we are teaching him tonight so we'll see. Yesterday though, I had one of the best experiences yet in the MTC. I have talked about being obedient and then when you have done all that you can do, the Lord steps in and does what he does best... blesses you (2 Nephi 25:23). So I have been working really hard to learn Spanish and so all that I can to be worthy of the Gift of Tongues and I have been praying for it. Yesterday something clicked, something just... happened. I couldn't not speak Spanish. It was almost like English didn't even exist. One of our instructors, Hermano Hill said that by the start of your 6th week, you should be able to speak only in Spanish. Now I can. I am very very very very far from fluent but I can say whatever I want to in Spanish now. It is such an amazing blessing. I am so happy and Now I really want to get to Texas and get to work, but I know I have more to do. I also would like to extend an invitation to you. This week I am studying 1 Nephi Chapter 15-21. Would you read it with me and then mail me insights and things that you learned? I am hoping this will help me learn more then we can learn from each other. Plus we can all benefit and grow closer together from reading the Book of Mormon. I love you all. Go forward with faith. Les amo.

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