Sunday, August 7, 2016

MTC Week 4

Kumusta po kayo!

I'm almost finished up with my experience in the MTC, only one more full week!! I"M SO EXCITED!!!!!!!!!!  

Sorry for the outburst, I'll be moving on to my letter now :)

On Sunday, we had Stephen B. Allen speak to us. He is the Managing Director of the Mission Department and he was also the head of many of the departments for Church advertising.  He showed us many of the "Homefront" advertisements for the Church, which are the old advertisements from the Seventies or something.  At the end of each of those advertisements, there was a little tagline that Brother Allen would expound upon that tagline.  They were really good and I have many thoughts in my Journal about it.  The thing he said that stuck out to me the most was this "Being yourself is being great, but that means to be your best self, and your best self is becoming like Christ."  I felt that was very profound. It's true that we need to be ourselves, but that doesn't imply that we don't need to change.  Instead, "being ourselves" requires change, change for the better and working on bettering our Christlike attributes.  I mean, what's the point of eternal progression if you're content with remaining the same throughout all eternity? I don't know about you, but I don't want to have a flat line on my eternal progression graph.  

Monday was class, we taught our investigators as usual and the lessons went really well.  Our teachers are really pushing us by asking questions that cause us to improvise our lesson, and my companion and I are getting better at those improvised lessons as we have to completely disregard our original lesson plan.  Oddly enough, those improvised lessons turn out to be the best ones (possibly because my companion actually has to listen to the investigator) ;).  

Tuesday we had Bishop W. Christopher Waddell come and speak to us about the difference between "going on a mission" and "serving a mission".  It was fantastic!  He talked about how the mission was going to be hard, quite possibly the hardest thing we'll get to do in our life, but it will also be the best thing we'll ever get to do in our lives.  He talked about his own mission (Barcelona Spain) and how he only witnessed 3 baptisms for the entire time he served.   He served in areas where there weren't any members, and by the time he finished the transfer there were still no members.  He said it was hard to stay positive while they were rejected so often, but then he said that he came to realize that as long as he was working hard, doing his best, and serving the Lord, the number of baptisms didn't matter.  He realized that he was not called to harvest, but to sow.  It was a time for him to understand the purposes of God and better himself, as well as invite others to come unto Christ.  In fact, our purpose as missionaries isn't to see how many baptisms we have on our missions, it's to baptize those children of God who have become truly converted to the gospel.  Bishop Waddell said, "[The converts] need to start with baptism and end in the temple." It's not enough for people to simply be baptized because the missionaries said to, it's vital that those we baptize go on to finish their ordinances in the temple and endure to the end.

Wednesday was a pretty boring day because the Elders didn't teach that day.  We used the language learning software (TALL) pretty much all day.  But I was able to learn some new words, so that's good. However, our district did get to host new missionaries, and that was pretty fun.  It was so exciting to see all of the new missionaries coming in, it was actually the largest drop off of the year with 819 new missionaries coming in (The cafeteria is EXTREMELY crowded now).

And that brings us to today!  We're able to go to the Temple every P-Day and it's such a blessing in my life.  For the past three weeks, several Elders and Sisters in my zone have gone early to eat breakfast at the temple, and it is SO DELICIOUS!  Just thought I'd let you know ;) After being physically fed, we then go participate in an endowment session and get spiritually fed.  It's wonderful :)  Later today, our district has TRC, only this time we have a Skype call to someone in the Philippines and teach them for about a half hour.  I'm really excited for it and I'll let you how it goes.

OH! I've also seen Elder Scott, Elder Craig, Elder Bailey, Elder Doman, and Sister Cluff :)  I have yet to get a picture with them on my camera because we run into each other at the most random times.  I'll see if I can later this week.

Love you all! Mahal ka kayo!
-Elder Anderson

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