Well let me just jump right into it. This week has been such a testimony builder for not only me but my whole district. Thursday morning the elders were a bit late coming in and when we did see them, they had quite the shocker for us. Elder Hughes had gone home. At first we thought they were kidding! Elder Hughes?! We all figured he had the strongest testimony of us all. He was so excited to go out and share the gospel just like it was shared with him a little over a year ago. Apparently up till the day he left, he never changed his personality. He was still the joking fun-loving same Elder Hughes. He had had a few interviews with the branch President and then with the district president the week before but none of us could have imagined anything like this! Even his comp. Elder Lee was surprised. Late the night before as they were all getting ready for bed, Elder Hughes went up to Elder Lee and said he was going home that night. He said it wasn't anything to do with worthiness issues, he just felt he didn't have a strong enough testimony. He then packed his stuff and left that night. We were all kind of shell shocked. Hermano Frey, our teacher that day, changed up the lesson and we watched part of the restoration and then went and prayed to know once more that it was true. Then we had a testimony meeting. We all took a look at our own testimonies and reifermed why we were here. It was all uphill from there. This whole week has been building on that testimony and I have learned a bit more about the character of Christ and what it means to represent Him.
That night we had our first TRC which is kinda like visiting teaching to volunteers from the area...in Spanish. I was really nervous at first but I think that was one of my favorite experiences! It feels so good to teach real people and share the gospel with them. The spirit was so strong even if our Spanish wasn't:).
Fri, Elder Tipps was sick so all the Elders had to stay home which meant that it was just us 4 girls all day long. It is super rare to have more sisters than elders in one district. I love it:) I felt so bad for the elders that day because we learned so much in Spanish and took a huge leap. I am still amazed at the miracle of what we are doing every day!
Sunday is my favorite day at the MTC! This week I got to sing A Childs Prayer with Elder Jenkins in our branch. I love the musical #'s here during all the meetings and it was so fun to be a part of that. I was also made the music coordinator in our branch. That means that I get to be the annoying one to try and get people to play for sacrament meeting and priesthood. I'm excited though. Its always fun to have a calling. Plus I get to go meet the new missionaries in our branch tomorrow and tell them all to come to choir! We haven't had a new district in our branch since we came in so we are pretty excited. Especially since there will be 4 new sisters:) Relief Society was taught by Sister Jean Stevens who is in the General Primary Pres. Yes mom, you should be jealous:) R.S. is my favorite here! She gave such a great talk and the spirit was so strong!
I love how much I am learning here! The Devotionals and Firesides have helped me so much this week. I have learned so much about how powerful the Book of Mormon really is. It's not just a good book that makes people feel good and somehow answers questions that we have. This is a book of power! There is a special spirit contained in this book that is unlike any earthly thing. In a previous MTC Devotional by Elder Holland he gave his testimony of the Book and stated that unless converts have a testimony of the Book of Mormon, their testimony cannot last. That is how important it is! Without the restoration, without the Book of Mormon, we have nothing else to share.
For movie night, we watched last years MTC Christmas Devo. by Elder Bednar. He taught about the character of Christ and how there would be no atonement without the character of Christ. The character of Christ is that Christ turns outward, when the natural man would turn inward. It was such a good talk and helped me have a deeper knowledge of what the phrase "What would Jesus do?" really means. He also talked about conversion. He said that you can have a testimony and still not be converted. A testimony is what you know, conversion is being consistently true to what you know, to have the character of Christ.
I have also learned so much about faith this week. It's amazing how much more you can learn about faith. I have learned that I still need so much more! In Peter 1:7, it says that the trials of your faith are as good as gold. These trial are to refine you and help you to become more like God. Being at the MTC is a different kind of trial than anything I have ever encountered. It has been so different than anything I expected. My faith has already been tried and stretched and I know it still has a long way to go. What a comfort that these thing will be for my good and will bring me experience. In Ether 2: 24-25, The Lord tells the brother of Jared that the winds and storms have come from Him, but not to worry because He has "prepared" them for the storms. Their barges were tight like unto a dish and they would not sink. This is so true in our lives. I have been prepared for what I am going through and I will not sink. Alexa has also been prepared. I want you to know that I think of you guys and pray for you often. It just about breaks my heart that I can't be there to help with everything but like I said before. I am trying to be the best missionary I can so you can get those needed blessings. I love you so much!
I can't wait to get the pictures! Please send more! I actually didn't get any printed off before I left so I don't have a family pic or any thing which would be super nice to have. Besides it will be nice to get some mail too. Lets just say I was super happy yesterday to get the dearelder from you:) James is so awesome! Tell him thanks for keeping Alexa's spirits up. I would write him myself except I don't have his address. Thanks for doing the absentee form. I was actually wanting to ask you to do that so consider permission granted to sign my name:) As far as winter stuff goes, I do have my coat. I just kinda wish I had more shoes and tights. I'll be ok without them though. I have no clue which box or suitcase they would be in under the house. There is a small clothes store somewhere around here that I still haven't checked out. By the way, does anyone know a way to keep my feet from stinking after wearing those shoes all day every day? That would be nice. I'll try and get a pic in my greenish shirt. I actually have a few pics on my camera I was going to attach but I forgot to bring it today. Next time ok? Send me pics of everyones halloween costumes ok? mine is my orangesh shirt with my black skirt and a missionary tag. Who can guess who I am?:) I love you guys so much and pray for you every day!
Les Amo! Hermana Rowley (Shayla)
|There is Hawaii, out in the middle of the ocean!|
|Our Halloween costumes!|