Meine glücklich Familie,
I got your package today! It came at the absolute PERFECT time! My companion was not listerning to what I was trying to tell her and I was feeling pretty downhearted. We were on our way to a lesson with our investigator Nilton. So going in to this lesson feeling the way I was feeling wouldn’t be a good thing. So, we are about to go downstairs to the TRC room to teach Nilton, and Brother Mount calls my name and tells me that I have a package! It was exactly what I needed! I read William and Jakob’s letter and just cried. I don’t know.. I mean, I knew that they loved me and all, but just the constant negativity towards me 98% of the day just really got to me. Even though I didn’t show it, it was really effecting me physically and emotionally. I learned to rely on the Lord and to have constant faith in Him that it will get better. I just had way too many days where I just wanted to cry for hours, but that wouldn’t solve anything. I firmly believe that coming on a mission was right for me at this time. Because of what was happening with William and Jakob gave me the chance to exercise my faith, strengthen my testimony and come closer to God. When I read their letters, especially Jakob’s, my heart became so full that I just started crying. It was like all of the tears in my heart were getting sown-up. That’s the only way that I can think to describe it. I have most definitely had a lot of trials here at the MTC, but I am constantly learning and I am constantly growing. I make Texas sound like such a huge deal (I am currently the only Texas Missionary in this MTC)
I have learned to depend on the Lord and that everything will come in His time, His way. My job is to prepare myself so that I will be ready and able to do His will. Jesus Christ said, “Not my will, but THINE be done.” I have applied that to being a missionary. When I put on my missionary badge, I took Christ’s name upon myself. I am taking these next 18 months to do God’s will, not my own. It is hard, but worth it.
This past week has been a pretty good week! I feel really bad for not writing a mass email on Wednesday, but I had 20 long email to read and respond to within like an hour. I answered Mom’s, Dad’s, Michael’s, and Ben’s 1st and that took pretty much the whole hour! Anyways, so this week I taught Nilton, Peter, Helmut, and Marion. Helmut is from some crazy religion that is a branch off of Christianity.. They are known as “the moonies”… They pray to both Heavenly Mother and Father. Those lessons have been really interesting (both about prayer), and our lessons with him just basically end up him trying to fight with us. Today was our last day teaching him because he is not a progressing investigator, but the other 3 are! Long story short about Nilton is that he had already had the 1st lesson, so we were going to teach him about the Plan of Salvation. My companion had been distracted all day, so I made the lesson. When we had our lesson with him, I ended up giving the lesson beacuse she didn’t prepare herself. The time passed so quickly in the lesson, but the Spirit was strong. The next time we taught him, we taught about the Atonement. After we did that, we invited him to be baptised; he said that he didn’t know. We told him that we were going to ask him again next time and invited him to pray about it. Our last lesson with him, we followed up with him about it, and he told us that he had already been baptised in the Catholic church. That was an interesting lesson XD I’ve already told you all about Peter (or at least I told Mom…)!
Marion is one of my favorite investigators! she is so sweet and happy! She cares about others! When we invited her to read the Book of Mormon, she said she would! Then we followed-up with her about it today, and she said that she started reading and couldn’t stop! She is so amazing! (Elder Staheli says hi btw) Her spirit is strong and I can see that glorious spark! She is coming with us to church tomorrow!
Ok, so I have made a lot of friends here at the MTC (both Elders and Sisters). One of them is neamed Elder Scharff (he claims that his first name is “Elder” XD ). Now don’t go crazy! He and I are just besties forever! He LOVES chick flicks and musicals! And he is from Scotland, but used to live in London! So, yea, I have a best friend with a natural accent that he has used/will continue to use all his life ( haha I worded that funny XD ). I just wanted to let you know of my awesome friend so that you could be jelly that you’re not best friends with him! Hehe I also have another best friend (who is yes, another Elder) and his name is Elder Thomson! He already left for his field, but we email cause we’re cool like that! Anyways, he’s like super duper positive all the time like me and he has great hair! On his last day, he wore this wonderful tie and I told him that I loved his tie and then asked if I could have it after his mission… He said that I could! 1st person to actually tell me that I could have their tie! So we only had enough time that day to exchange emails, and he emailed me this past PDay and guess what! HIS COMPANION IS FROM TEXAS!!! So he told me that he will get to hand-deliver the tie because he is going to go and visit his companion in Texas after his mission! Is that cool or what! What are the odds that there is another Texas missionary in this part of the world… Well… in the Scotland/ Ireland Mission at least XD So yea, that’s Elder Thomson 🙂
I feel like I should tell you about a couple of the Sisters that I am close to since I have been talking to you about the Elders. XD There is my companion, Sister Selph. We get along most of the time, but we also annoy each other at times (which is sort of expected). She is strong-minded and will tell you when something is up. She is an amazing person and great missionary.
So today is Sunday and I have taken 3 days to write this letter. You told me to share with you my spiritual moments and I really want to share this one with all of you guys. Our topic today was the Atonement and we all got to prepare a talk (mine had to be in German). I wrote the talk in German without writing it in English 1st. I was sort of mad when they didn’t call me to speak because I really wanted to give my talk. So we go through Sacrament Meeting, and the Spirit comes strong. We go to our District Rooms for our District Meeting. I sit at my desk with my talk in front of me and it hit me. Today I wrote a talk completely in German! It was me! I did that! I learned that I needed to write that talk for me; I needed to see my improvement. I wrote a talk in German after learning German for 3&1/2 weeks! I could not have done that without the Gift of Tongues. Then we go throughout the rest of our day and then it gets to the testimony meeting. All of the sisters that speak German sang I Stand All Amazed in German (w/ the hymnals) as a musical number. Then we had our testimony meeting. I won’t tell you exactly what was said, but I will tell you what I felt. I felt the Spirit stronger than I ever had before. Usually, it is just a feeling of peace and happiness. This time was different. It started off with that small feeling and then it just kept getting stronger. It felt like there was something inside me trying to burst out. It wasn’t scary, and it wasn’t strange. It was full of peace, happiness, comfort, love, safety, support, and so much more. It is the most amazing feeling ever.
When testiomony meeting was over, we sang a Hymn. I am totally forgetting the name of it, so I apologize. But when we started singing, the Spirit continued to get stronger. It got to the point to where I could no longer sing. The only thing that was coming out of my mouth was air. I was so full of the Spirit that I couldn’t speak or sing. All I did was mouth the words to the Hymn and cry. That’s all I could do. I absolutely loved this feeling, and even though I could not make a sound come out (which is difficult for me), and I didn’t want any ounce of the Spirit to go away. I wanted to feel the Spirit that strong all the time. Something that I just got just now is pretty awesome. Before every lesson, I pray with my companion and we pray that “our tongues will be loosed so that the Spirit can speak through is.” This happened for me tonight. Even though I couldn’t say anything with words, I could say things through my eyes and my actions.
Today has been such an amazing day and I can’t wait for tomorrow! I should probably end this letter on page 4… I want you to know that I love you and I love the Lord with all my heart. I never once question if this is where I am supposed to be. I have questioned my ability of learning the language, but not of me being here. I know that this is where I am supposed to be and that I can learn German with the Lord’s help. I love you all so much and I should probably end before I get to 5 pages. So please be safe and show your love to everyone!!
Always and Forever, Your Missionary,
P.S. I love the popcorn and introduced Elder Scharff to what good popcorn tastes like!