Dear family (& friends),
This week has been an adventure. On Thursday we were all evacuated out of our building to an older (much smaller) residence hall. The reason was that a couple of bats had been found in one of the rooms. On the bright side, Sis. Phinney (my companion) and I are apparently pros at moving. We packed up, moved, and unpacked in 40 minutes. Wooo! There were still sisters moving an hour later.
Then, Friday night, I ate a cookie (yes I took a pill, Mom- and it was made with oatmeal, no flour) and had the worst gluten reaction ever. I was in the bathroom sick half the night. Needless to say, I will be much more careful now. Also, because of the mission pres. seminar, we have been eating in the gym and the food has been rather awful. They made sure I have gluten free food in the diet room, but I haven’t had a vegetable other than lettuce since I got here. It’s all carbs and fruit and dessert. Which has really messed with all of our stomachs and energy levels.
But I don’t mean to just complain. I am super happy to be here, and I officially made it to Sunday! Yay!! I got nausea medication from the office, and finally got a full night’s sleep last night. The Spirit here is really strong and real. I’ve seen about ten friends from the 53rd ward! And my district is amazing. The elders sometimes get a little silly and off track, but we’re all working harder on focusing. Yesterday was the hardest day of all. I was tired and queasy, and everyone was exhausted and overwhelmed. None of us could focus on class that afternoon. But then, last night during study, one of the elders, Elder Goates, asked us to share when/how we each knew the doctrine of Jesus Christ was true. BAM. The Spirit was so intense as we basically had an impromptu testimony meeting. All of us had a unique story and had worked hard to get here. It was an incredible reminder of why we’re here.
Already we’ve learned so much. It’s crazy hard work, and I already have blisters, but the blessings are real and so worth it. Thank you so much for praying for me. My prayers have grown so much more sincere and so much longer. I kept on for 20 minutes yesterday. Your prayers are so needed and so appreciated. (Also, thanks Mom for the envelopes and stamps- my roommates and I have put them to good use.) Please keep my companion, Sis. Phinney, in mind, too. She doesn’t have much family support and prayers could really help her.
The MTC is more than a crash course of the gospel- though it is that- but I love the way Sis. Bray explained it: “Everything is gone the first week. Family? Gone! Friends? Gone! All of it! Gone! Everything you’re familiar with and love- gone! All that’s left is that foundation of the gospel. So, if you don’t have a testimony, you better build one, or go home!” That is exactly what we’ve been doing. Building our testimonies and learning to rely 100% on the Lord to make us strong, sure, and bold. Our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them to receive the restored gospel, and we can’t do that if we haven’t received it ourselves. I know that I’m supposed to be here, and I know He will get me through. I do know that Christ is my Savior and that, with faith in His Atonement, I can be forgiven of my sins. I want to repent every day, because repentance is just changing to become more like Him. I know Heavenly Father loves me and I know He loves you, too. I know that following Christ is the only path to happiness, and I hope I can be an instrument to help others find that path and build their own relationship with Christ. I love you all to pieces, and I can’t wait to hear from you. Happy Sabbath!
Sister Heather Bambas
P.S. - I love you more than thunderstorms.