Well, I've finally passed the halfway point of my MTC stay. Gotta say, I'm so grateful for the MTC, kedo I am SO ready to head to Nihon. Like, I'm ready to go yesterday.However, there are still a lot of things for me study here, so I definitely will not be bored over the remaining 4 weeks.
First, the MTC rundown. All things are essentially the same. Our investigator lessons are progressing well. We recently started teaching two new investigators. That means we have 4 different people we are teaching, so that's wonderful. My district is still wonderful. My companion is still the Ichiban. The MTC is still a wonderful and spiritual place. There is still far too much food for me to overindulge myself on at every meal. Actually, let me expand on that point. I know I previously talked about the over abundance of food that is housed in our residency. This is still an escalating problem that we have to deal with every day, because Holman 長老の mother and grandmother are still sending him packages almost every day. We have pretty much enlisted the help of every Japanese senkyoushi in our zone to come into our room every night and partake of the food, so it doesn't go bad. But on top of the obscene amounts of food in our room, it's an all you can eat buffet at every meal. I think the MTC Cafeteria is a big social experiment. A giant proof of the word of wisdom. We have been advised to eat all things in moderation, kedo I don't see any missionaries following that advice in the Cafeteria--- 3 desserts, 3 helpings of the main dish, and 3 glasses of orange juice per meal is not a healthy way to live. However, it's secretly genius, because by the end of most missionaries stay at the MTC they are sick to death of the MTC food. They force us into self control by letting us eat ourselves to death within the first few weeks. Guess everything works out in the end!
Funny things for the week:
1. Our instructor sat the class down and told us that a large portion of the class was mispronouncing the word peace. In Japanese the word peace is へいあん (pronounced hey-on), but our class was frequently pronouncing the word はいえん (Like the words Hi and In together) which means pneumonia. So, when some of the companionships in our district were trying to say the sentence "いのる時にへいあんをうけることができます。" which means "when you pray you can get peace," they were actually saying "when you pray you can get pneumonia". That might explain some of the hesitancy the investigators were feeling towards prayer.
2. In one of our lessons with an investigator, Eddington 長老 and I were teaching about the commandments and about baptism. At the end of the lesson I challenged our investigator to pray to know for himself the importance of following the commandments and the importance of baptism. Eddington長老 wanted to add on to that challenge, so he tried to say "If you learn for yourself that these things are true, will you get baptized?". Unfortunately, as he began the sentence he realized that he didn't know the Japanese grammar structure to say "if you learn for yourself". He kind of sat there in silence for a minute, and then paniced and said "この教えはしんじつだ。バプテスマを受けて。” which means (in command form) "These things are true. Get baptized!" Our investigator looked really confused, and there I sat trying my best not to laugh. I quickly said please just pray about it and we left.
I don't have a lot of time left, so I'm just going to end with a quote from Elder Holland's talk "The Peaceable Things of the Kingdom". I encourage you all to read it on your own, as it is a truly amazing talk.
"Surely it is better to find the goodness of God and the grace of Christ, even at the price of despair, than to risk living our lives in a moral or material complacency that has never felt any need for faith or forgiveness, any need for redemption or relief.
A life without problems or limitations or challenges—life without 'opposition in all things,' as Lehi phrased it—would paradoxically but in very fact be less rewarding and less ennobling than one which confronts—even frequently confronts—difficulty and disappointment and sorrow. As beloved Eve said, were it not for the difficulties faced in a fallen world, neither she nor Adam nor any of the rest of us ever would have known 'the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient.'”