HELLO! I seriously forget what it's like to not be a missionary. It's been a month here and guess what ....I love it (what's new?)! I had a dream this week it was 2011 and I was done with my mission. I was SOOOO happy to wake up and find I was still in the MTC at the BEGINNING of my mission! People ask us how long we've been here and I guess we've hit our halfway mark??! Cool ... I guess. Though I look forward to Arizona, I am definitely enjoying all the studying/learning here!
This week blew every other week out of the water!
First, I will give you a schedule of a day here at the MTC.
6 - An exercise class for only Sister missionaries or running. An extra half hour to exercise and clear my mind! I love it!
630 - shower, dressed .... doesn't always happen in 30 min but it gets done somehow!
7 - breakfast
730 - personal study (from scriptures)
830 - companion study (practice teaching, bounce ideas off each other about doctrine, etc) 930 - language study - this is becoming every moment of our lives because most everything now is in complete spanish!!! Practice vocab, grammar, words, phrases ..... TEACHING LESSONS ...
1030 - MDT "Missionary Directed Time" We can sign up to practice teaching a lesson and get feedback, practice our spanish and contact people or what not. VERY beneficial. I am finding that more and more everyday.
1130 - lunch - there's always some sort of chicken burger. haha
1215 - class with Hermana Smith - from Idaho, served her mission in Paraguay, didn't want to go but going on a mission has changed her life. She's fantastic. She's great at saying this worked for me on my mission but the point is not for me to teach you how to do this ... it's to teach you how to learn so you can teach yourself.
3 - gym! I like to run for 20 min and then do some stairs (lacrosse!!!) or sit ups or pretend like I'm work out .... I always memorize things while doing this or I'd be completely bored! So far mi objetivo y el primero vision y una parte de "O Mi Padre". Me gusta!
430 - dinner ... who eats at 430pm?
515 - class with Hno Pino. He is from Venezuela and served his mission here in Provo, UT. Great teacher and so nice to have a native speaker to hear the accent and all. Same as Hna Smith - he's great at teaching us HOW to learn and lets us figure it out on our own. It is helping our district with accountability. If we don't take the time on our own ... we don't learn it! Oh and his dad is a 70!
815 - Then we prob have some more MDT time where we, as a district, like to read from the scriptures en espanol! Our accents are improving ... though of course we have a long way to go!
9 - plan for the next day. Though our schedule is pretty much set, we must PLAN what we will do during each of those segments of time (ie Personal study, comp study, MDT, language) 930 - residence hall. Chill out. talk with friends. take fun pictures. laugh. write in journal.
1030 - bed. lights out.
THAT'S THE DAY!
Throughout the week we have devotionals at night with all 2000 missionaries, we do service once a week (we like to dust all the pictures in the building we're in .... they line to hallways so it's fun to look at them all!). We also get to go to a place called the RC where people call in to get a free Book of Mormon or DVD on the family or such. Many people call because they're interested and are seeking more in life. It's fun to be able to talk to people and testify of Jesus Christ's gospel which is on the earth. Cool experiences in there!
Ok next. Two devotionals this week that were POWER. One was on the BOOK OF MORMON. The BoM should be the main tool in teaching, not PMG. Again, the BOM SHOULD BE YOUR MAIN SOURCE OF TEACHING THE GOSPEL. Talk was way forward that we need to do a better job at this. We also talked about promising people blessings. Not just anything but what God has said to his people in the scriptures. If you pray with faith -> He will answer your questions. He will comfort you. There are so many examples of this. I am simply the messenger. Not sure if that makes any sense but .... that is why I love being a missionary.
The other devotional was on teaching. The only pattern we should focus on ... or outline for lessons ... is to TEACH BY THE SPIRIT. We do not know the needs of the people but God does. Therefore, we must continually seek the Spirit and then go forward and not worry about it. God will put the words in our mouth. Along with that Hna Barlow and I learned a powerful lesson this week on meeting the needs of the people. We never teach a LESSON. We teach the GOSPEL. Huge difference. I love the quote that says something like "Do His work, His way, by His power" -> SO TRUE.
This past week we officially started teaching in Spanish! Wow it is scary and fun and hard! I love it though! At this point we're trying to apply what we've learned as of being a good teacher ... but it's hard to deviate from the outline we have when we don't know other words in spanish or even understand responses people give when we ask questions. It will come. I'm not worried about it. Definitely not easy but fun to see how much we actually CAN communicate!
This week we had new Zone Leaders called from our District. In a week we will be the oldest district (5 districts in a zone). We also got a new District leader. Hna Barlow is the Coordinating Sister (ie in charge of all sisters in our zone - there are 6 of us!) This week will be a transition week having so many leaders in our zone - we are the examples now! Weird but cool!
Hna Barlow and I have lots of fun speaking all the spanish we can come up with, talking in any accent (she is from Georgia so she has the southern one down pat!!!), helping the Elders keep a smile on their faces, and singing every moment we can - now in spanish!
The MTC was having problems with missionaries disagreeing on the music they were listening so we can't listen to music. Real bummer in the mornings. We just have decided to create our own though. I will really miss her when she goes to California!
Anyway, I have less than a minute left! I love you all! Thanks for the letters, pictures, and packages!!
Love always, Hermana Clark