I can't believe how fast time can fly, but at the same time can seem to go so slow. I have been at the MTC for almost three weeks now and it seems like it has not even been that long. Although the days can seem extremely long and can often seem like weeks. Its insane to believe that I go up to Canada tomorrow and I couldn't be more nervous, but at the same time so excited. This week has had its ups and downs but has also been really funny and here are the highlights from this week.
First of all last Tuesday we a devotional and you'll never guess who the speaker was. IT WAS NEIL L. ANDERSEN. I never thought that I would ever get to see a general authority speak in person or so close to me. As he walked in you could just feel a difference and could just feel how strong the spirit was once he came into the gym to speak. As he walked in I just felt so much JOY and I KNEW that that was an apostle of the Lord. He came and talked about what no General Authority has ever talked about to the MTC and it was about the Temple. He talked about how sacred the temple is and how every time you go, you always learn so much more than you did the time before. The Temple is the House of the Lord and I feel so blessed to be worthy to go into that house. NEVER take for granted the Temple because it is the HOLY house of the Lord. As Neil L. Andersen was leaving he went around and shook many peoples hands. I was really close to getting a handshake from him, but I unfortunately wasn't able to get one, but as he walked out the building I felt like I had gotten one and that I didn't need to shake his hand to feel his incredible spirit.I CAN'T WAIT for General Conference and am looking forward to the wonderful eight hours that we get to hear from our dear General Authorities. NEVER take General Conference for granted because the Apostles and Prophets are speaking the WORD OF GOD and it is simply beautiful.
This week I have also had the amazing opportunity to have exercise time in the gym. I have said this before and I'll say it again, I LOVE BASKETBALL. Being able to play everyday has been such a blessing to me and has really allowed for me to release so much of the stress and anxiety that has built up over the days. I love just being able to go out there and play against so many missionaries that have also been called of God. I know that I am not the best and I may never be the best, but being able to just play brings me so much JOY and I don't know how much i'll play in Canada. I have been able to shoot the ball, drive to the basket, and to have some crazy blocks. It has been so much fun and is something i'll miss up in Canada.
Also this week I have had the opportunity to teach more TRC's( people that the church brings in to help us learn how to teach, they can be real, but they can just be an actor), Elder Norstrom and I were able to teach two wonderful people this week, A girl named Hannah and a guy named Lawrence. Hannah was such a sweet person and I am glad I was able to teach her. We taught her the first three lessons and just believed everything we told her. She not only felt the Spirit, but was also able to read 2nd Nephi chapter 31 and got a testament it was true from the Holy Ghost. In the third lesson we committed her to BAPTISM. Whether she was an actor or not, we still felt just exceeding joy as we were able to bring a child of God closer to him. We also taught a person named Lawrence Brown. I honestly thought going into this that he would be some old, big, scary white guy because I had never seen him before. He was the complete opposite, a short, happy, humble, Tongan fellow. After that I will never just assume because he was so amazing to teach. He had a tough life growing up and had so many trials in his life. As we taught him the Gospel you can just see the GREAT JOY it brought him as we told him that his friend that had died was in a happy place. I just love this Gospel and am so glad to be able to teach it to people before I get out into the field.
This week there has been some very funny moments and I would like to share two of them. The first being a role play with Sister Draney and Sister Sansom. Elder Nordstrom and I were teach the Law of Chastity and the role play lesson was going alright. We were teaching it and I decided to bring up a scripture in Alma 39 verse 3-5. This is where is talks about Alma teaching his son Corianton how sexual sin is right below killing someone and also denying the Holy Ghost. I told the sister Draney( the role play person we were teaching) that sexual sin is basically like killing somebody, how does that make you feel. In the moment that sounded good, but as I said it everyone started laughing and asked why I would ask such a bold question. I didn't realize that is was bold till afterwards, but I know realize that it was bold and kind of rude. After we continued the role play and afterwards I taught through the spirit. I took the time to listen and the rest of the role play went amazing.
Another funny moment was when we were in our final class with sister Powell and we were pretending to be on an airplane. I was sitting next to sister Palmer and I was supposed to be the missionary in this situation. I couldn't help from laughing the whole time and it took me a second to calm down. After I calmed down Sister Powell can by with a pretend drink carrier and offered us drinks. Sister Palmer asked for a sprite and I also asked for a sprite. After we both got our pretend drinks, I turned to her and said, WE LIKE THE SAME DRINK, I SEE. This was really funny and in reality is not how a normal person talks. I'm glad this was just a role play, but laughing so hard is so much help with all the stress and anxiety that can be caused by this mission.
I also had the wonderful opportunity to give a priesthood blessing of comfort to Sister Sansom in my district. I was really nervous as I went into the blessing and I thought that the thoughts that came to my head were not from the Spirit. The adversary was dragging me down and was making me feel like I wasn't worthy to give a blessing. Afterwards I asked Sister Sansom about the blessing and she said that it was exactly what she needed to hear and that hit me deep. It really showed me that I AM A WORTHY PRIESTHOOD HOLDER and that the Spirit can be with me at all time. This experience was amazing and I will NEVER doubt myself again when it comes to the GIFT of the Holy Ghost.The Spirit works in wonderful ways and I am so glad to have seen so many of those ways.
We had a workshop this week where it was a skit of the people at the MTC pretending to be missionaries and pretending to work with the members. They showed us what to do when we work with members and it was really funny. During this workshop I had a clear distinct feeling that on my mission I would be doing a lot of work with the members of the church. This really stood out to me and I know for a fact it was the HOLY GHOST speaking to me. I just can't wait to get to Canada and work with the wonderful members of the Church up there.
This time next week I will be up in Canada and this experience has showed me how much I really do love people. I have grown to love the people and really love the people in my district. It is going to be hard to see them go, but I know that as we each go to our field of labor that it is where we are meant to be. I will miss each person I have grown so close to and know that we will eventually see them again.
Before I go I would like to leave you with a message and that is THAT I KNOW THAT THIS GOSPEL IS TRUE. Each step I take further into this Gospel, I continue to know even more of a fact that it is true. Never doubt yourself and always look to the Lord if you ever have any trials. He will always ease your burdens. Till next week everyone
1.our district in front of the temple
2. Me teaching my companion as he sleeps
3. Elder Nordstrom and me
4. Elder Williamson and me