I can't believe I've already been in the MTC for 3 weeks! Last Monday was the halfway point and I'll be heading off to Sweden in 19 days! I'm so excited, but I still feel like I have a lot to learn. I'm becoming more comfortable teaching the first few lessons in Swedish now, but I still have no clue how to say anything that's not gospel related. We had a Devotional by Chad Lewis and he told us how after his mission he was asked to commentate the the Super Bowl in Mandarin, but he only knew gospel words so it went a little like this "I testify that Tom Brady threw a true pass!" That's how I feel right now!
Some highlights from this week include a very powerful story time with my district, a really spiritual moment were I got to exercise my priesthood, I got released as DL, Elder Quinton L Cook came and spoke to us, and we had a sleep over with the Zone Leaders!
On Friday night, our District had a little get together where we had lots of food and talked about why we chose to serve a mission. It was really amazing to hear the stories of the Elders and Sisters in my district and how they got to where they are today. Many of them had very cool moments in time when they decided to serve a mission. Some decided on a Church History tour others decided after using atonement to get their lives back on track. It made me think because for me I've never had a moment where I decided I wanted to go, I just always wanted to go. But after I thought about it there are 3 main reasons why I chose go on a mission. They are I love to serve, I love leadership, and I love the Savior. Over the years I have grown to love service and a mission is literally 2 years of the best kind of service. I also love Leadership, and on a mission you are literally leading people to Christ. Whether it's by teaching or example, on a mission you can be a leader in many ways. But most of all, I love the Savior and want to follow his example. The Prophets have called all worthy young men to serve and I love this gospel and am beyond happy to serve.
I had probably one of the most spiritual moments of my life this week. I wish I could share it with you, but we were advised by our Branch President to keep such a powerful moment to ourselves. All I can say is Priesthood Power is real. If you hold the Priesthood, especially the Melchizedek Priesthood, keep yourself worthy because at any moment you may be called upon to use the Power of God and you never want to miss out on that opportunity. And for everyone else, don't be afraid to ask for blessing. The priesthood was restored so it could be used to bless the Children of God.
Since we are halfway through the MTC, I got released as District Leader and Elder Ahonen, the Elder from Finland, was called to be the new DL. Ahonen is amazing and has such a great testimony. He will do an amazing job. I'll miss being DL though because it gave me a chance to get to know everyone I'm serving with on a whole new level.
On Tuesday, Quinton L. Cook came and spoke to us. That makes 2 apostles in the 3 weeks I've been here! He spoke about 4 "Loves" we should have to be good missionaries. Love your Companion, Love the People, Love the Mission President, and Love the Savior. It's honestly so amazing to hear from a man who can testify that he has "Seen his face, and heard his voice." Just let that sink in.
The last highlight of this week was we had a sleep over with the Icies! There are two missionaries going to Iceland in our branch, they are the coolest people ever as well as our zone leaders. There are only 8 missionaries in Iceland total and they only get new ones every 6 months. But two nights ago, Elder Shipp and Elder Burnett brought their mattresses into our room and slept with the Swedes! I may be working harder than I have ever before, but I'm still finding time to have fun. Speaking of fun. The Norwegian Missionaries keep stealing our chairs and other things from our room so last night we hid an alarm clock in there room that went off at 2:30 a.m.! It was hilarious to listen to them struggle to find the alarm clock in the middle of the night. Hopefully that will keep them from stealing our stuff, or maybe we just started a war. Either way I'm having so much fun here at the MTC and I can't wait to get to Sweden.
I love you all!