I know I say it every time, but I cannot believe it has been almost a whole month since I've been here! Time flies so fast. I won't spend any more time talking about that though, because you get that update every week.Alrighty.. This week.
SHERI DEW CAME ON SUNDAY!!!!! I was SOOOO excited. I just love her. She gave the most amazing talk on the enabling power of Christ's grace. It was wonderful, and I learned so much from that. I wish I could share all that she said about it. Just let it be said that I know that we really can do things that we are not capable of alone by relying on Christ. I get to see that here everyday.
Sunday was a.. [lacking fitting adjective] day, and such a good day. I have no doubt that God loves us, and chastises/humbles those He loves so that we can better serve Him and grow closer to His Son. I learned so much through the Spirit that day, including a fuller realization of how much I've taken the guidance/teaching from the Holy Ghost for granted in my life.
M. Russell Ballard came on Tuesday, and we were lucky enough to hear from him. He spoke about the importance of sticking to and really understanding the doctrine of Christ and how that connects with - or dictates - everything else we believe. He also spoke about how we should keep our eyes on the apostles, and to not be swayed by the media opinion of the church. So um, I'm guessing something big is coming/has come?
This next week is the mission presidents' seminar and almost all of the quorum of the 12 and first presidency will be here, so that's going to be terrific too. A bunch of the missionaries in our zone are part of a special choir that gets to sing for them! Unfortunately we chose to study instead of going to choir the Sunday they held auditions for that. You win some, you lose some, I guess.
Overall, I really do just feel so very blessed to be a part of this wonderful work. That's not to say that there aren't difficult moments, but I can honestly say that I go to bed every night happy, and wake up every morning excited to get going.
OH! We got to watch The Character of Christ, which is a devotional that Elder Bednar gave a couple Christmases back here at the MTC. He spoke about how the character of Christ is turning outward (focusing on others) whenever the natural man would turn inward(focusing on self). It's by developing that character that we can really be changed by the Atonement and help bless other peoples' lives. It's been so wonderful to see the truth of that this week as we've tried to implement that individually and as a companionship.
I taught in English yesterday! Sister Peatross and I taught a "gold tag investigator" (they're employed by the MTC to roleplay their previous selves before they became members of the church. It went well, and was such a learning experience. I realized how thankful I am for a language barrier. I know that sounds weird, but when you have to really simplify and get down to the core of the doctrine because you have a limited vocabulary, it really helps you focus your studies and lessons on what the investigator really needs to understand to help them draw closer to Christ I don't know if that makes sense.. but yeah. I'm thankful to be able to build off of that core foundation of doctrine and eventually be able to explain things with more detail.
Oh, anyway, our investigator was from Japan and he was the sweetest man ever. He wanted us to sing for him, and he took a video and some pictures that I believe he's going to send to mom.
Dad: I loved hearing about your experience in China. I know that experience will stay in that lady's heart and mind. Sister Peatross did a study abroad in China last year, and just said how ready the people of China are for the gospel. We'll get there, I know it.
Mom: Thanks so much for all you do with our family. I loved seeing those pictures of you all.
Bennett: I hope FBLA training has been great! Let me know how everything goes for you.
Claire Bear: You are the best, sweet girl! I hope you had fun at your camp this week. You sure look beautiful. Thank you for your prayers
Catherine: I want to hear from you, Roonage! YOUR SWISS MISS COSTUMES ARE SO CUTE. And you just look adorable. I'm excited for you to get to do that. You'll definitely have opportunities to be the good example that you are, and I know you'll do a wonderful job with it.
Noah: Hey buddy!! I hope you've been getting to be outside a lot, and that you've been having so much fun.
I love you all. I'm so blessed to be a part of our family and to have this gospel. I realize that more and more everyday.
P.S. I FORGOT THE FUNNIEST PART OF THIS WEEK!!! We taught the Word of Wisdom to our investigator Jyryar, and well.. it may or may not have ended up with him storming out of our lesson. Which shouldn't be funny.. except that Brother Wahl (who was playing the investigator) definitely played it up as much as he could. But, teaching the word of wisdom was really great practice because we learned this week that almost all of the people in armenia have issues with one or more of the substances mentioned in the word of wisdom. So yes, that happened too.