It’s been another great week here at the MTC. We’re coming up close to
the end here! There’s definitely been an atmosphere of excitement
already in my district and zone. We’re all super excited to get into
the field next week. Of course none of us feel prepared whatsoever,
but who actually ever does? Lots of great things happened this past
week as well, per usual. Let’s get right into it!
Tuesday night we had a devotional by Elder David F. Evans. Here’s part
of the missionary committee that developed the new mormon.org video
“He Is the Gift.” Speaking of that, has everyone seen that? If not, do
it right away! It’s a great message on Christmas and that we shouldn’t
become so stressed with Christmas season coming upon us. Focus less on
presents and more on Christ! Elder Evans talked about the three
“commitments” if you will in the He Is the Gift vid: 1. Discover the
Gift 2. Embrace the Gift 3. Share the Gift. It makes more sense if you
watch the video. Christmas.mormon.org! To discover the Gift we have to
study the scriptures and find out why God would send His son to the
world for all of us. To embrace the Gift we should act on our
discoveries; try to become more like Christ’s example…even when it’s
hard! He really stressed that. Then sharing is actually pretty easy.
Easier than you think in fact! Literally the easiest way is to click a
button and share it to places all over social media like Facebook and
Twitter. And that’s why iPads are becoming more utilized in the
mission field. The Internet makes everything so much easier and
simpler to access! So I’d like to challenge all of you to share the He
Is the Gift video on your Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, whatever! You
never know how it can touch the life of another.
Another thing that was really stressed to us missionaries this week
was to beware of pride. In fact, we watched a talk by President Benson
of the same name. It was quite eye-opening. Essentially we need to be
careful of pride because it is the source of all contention. And
contention drives the Spirit away which leads us to making bad
decisions in life. If you would reflect on your life and find any sort
of pride in it, get rid of it! It is only our choice that can allow us
to become more humble. There’s no such thing as righteous pride!
Brother Taylor, a member of my MTC branch presidency made a funny
little comment on that. He said, “You should never be prideful, but
rather have righteous satisfaction.” If you feel you’re living your
life more fully than another, don’t boast of it. You only need to be
content with yourself. Any sort of comparison between mine and yours
is prideful, according to a President Benson. His advice really
changed my perspective on how I should strive to be a better
missionary, leader, and frankly a better person.
Here’s a quick fun story. We learned this week literally the greatest
part of the entire Spanish language. The suffix -azo. In most
countries if you add that to the end of any word it indicates a blow
with that object. So pretty much for the rest of the day we had so
much fun with that as you can imagine. Example (my favorite):
¡Gordazo! Literally, hit with fat. And the best part is, Hermano
Página served his mission in Argentina and he explained that there a
term they use to call an endearing child is “gordo” or “gordito,”
translated literally to little fat haha. So if you were in Argentina
and you said ¡Gordazo! it would be taken as “Hit with a little fat
child that is endearing to me!” Best thing ever right?? Other examples
of -azo would be florazo (hit with a flower) and corbatazo (hit with a
tie). So great. And totally useful of course haha.
Now here’s a few other talks we watched this week that I really liked.
As always I’d encourage you to watch them. “Ask the Missionaries! They
Can Help You!” by Elder Nelson for obvious reasons. And “Be Anxiously
Engaged” by Elder Ballard. That one was really great. It talks about
how little drops of service here and there all add together to create
an atmosphere of bringing all unto Christ. All we have to do is ask
God if He will help us recognize opportunities to serve others. And
the last one was an MTC devotional by Elder Holland: “Feed My Sheep.”
Apparently everyone says it’s one of the greatest of all time. I think
they’re all great, but you could definitely feel the power in his
voice. Biggest thing he said to me was “You’ve got to be the greatest
missionaries the world’s ever had!” And he talked a lot about Peter
the apostle. Peter loved Christ so much, but after His death he
basically said, I don’t know what to do now, so I’m gonna go fishing.
When Christ appeared to him after His resurrection he asked him the
question “Lovest thou me?” Three times! “Of course,” he said. Then
“Feed my sheep”. If we really love Christ, then we should be trying to
bring others unto Christ as well.
Elder Holland’s message I think ties in really well with the Christmas
season. Did everyone see the First Presidency Christmas Devotional?
Guess who they all talked about… Christ of course! We should always
keep Christ in our hearts, but especially during the Christmas season.
He is the reason for the season. Sounds cheesy, but it’s so true. He
is the perfect example for us and if we strive to become more like Him
our lives will be blessed. I know that is true! I hope everyone will
find joy in this Christmas time of year. If you haven’t gotten the
message, watch He Is the Gift! It explains everything so well.
Discover, embrace, share!
So like I said earlier, I’m headed into my last week here at the MTC.
It been a blast for sure. Brother Switzler, another member of my
branch presidency, challenged us all to make more than 20% progress in
the 20% of time we have left. I promise I’ll still be working hard.
I’m so (not) ready for the field but I want to prepare as much as
possible for it still. 6 weeks in the MTC has been such a blessing. I
can see why they want to get missionaries in the field asap but it’s
nice to get that extra practice in and learn so much from my teachers
and pretty much everyone. Almost time for the real thing! I’m so
excited. Next time I send an email like this it’ll probably be in
California! I mean how exciting is that. Have a great week everyone. I
already know I will!
Question: Why would God give Adam and Eve contradicting commandments
in the Garden of Eden?
Answer: He didn’t! (Short version). Basically it came down to two
things, they could live in the Garden forever or leave in order to
populate and replenish the Earth. By partaking of the fruit they
actually chose to follow the commandment of God. “Adam fell that men
might be, and men are that they might have joy.” God let them choose,
and they chose correctly. The Fall was a critical part of the process,
but through it we are here today so we can also choose for ourselves.
So that was a quickie. Sorry for forgetting earlier. Thanks so much.