Well I have survived my first week here at the MTC and all I can say is that this has been the longest week of my life! But not in a bad way. They weren’t joking when they said that we were going to be fire hosed with information. It is insane how much we are able to learn in such a short period of time! As I said in my first email, I have an awesome companion! Her name is Sister Kiser and she is going to the same mission as I am! In addition to an awesome companion, I am in an amazing district! We act just like a family. We can feel the spirit really well with each other and at the same time we are the biggest goof balls!!
Here at the MTC, they waste no time in getting you comfortable with teaching investigators. On day 2 they said “okay we have an investigator for you guys (meaning my district) and you’ll be teaching him in an hour. Prepare for a 15 minute lesson, here’s some info about him. His name is Nathaniel and he recently moved here from Canada and all of his roommates are LDS and he just wanted to know more about us and how he could rebuild his relationship with God.” Man let me say my adrenaline was going! I was so nervous!! Sister Kiser and I were planing to teach him about faith and prayer. Well when we got in there, we quickly found out that we had prepared the wrong lesson. That was such a long 15 minutes!! We learned a lot. We were able to teach Nathaniel a few more times and each time got better as we learned to use the spirit. Our last lesson came and it went spectacular!! He was finally willing to commit to praying on his own and with us! I felt so much love for Nathaniel and it made me so happy to see his faith growing! He sent us a video that told us what he liked about our teaching and what he thought we could improve on. At the end of the video, I felt the spirit so strongly and I was so happy to see that he was progressing! When our teacher Sister Priday said “so I have to tell you all something, Nathaniel is actually a member and a teacher here at the MTC.” There was a collective sigh of disappointment from the entire district! We thought he was a real investigator! I was really struggling with it, but as I thought and prayed about it I began to feel better and have a better understanding of why. Well “Nathaniel” aka Brother Gardner came into our class and he explained that we were an experiment and he saw such and improvement in how we taught in comparison to other missionaries who knew that it was their teacher. I think they might start playing around with it and more missionaries might have the same experience that we did. It really was a great experience.
I have been called as a sister training leader, which is the equivalent to a zone leader but for sisters. As if I didn’t already have enough stuff to do. Its really not that bad but it is very interesting how the Lord seems to trust me and Sister Kiser so much.
In the one week we have been here we have taught 3 investigators (including Nathaniel) and it is one of the coolest things I have ever done! I have never felt the spirit so strongly and consistently in my life before. It is amazing how we are able to know which lesson to teach and how to do it so that it makes sense to the investigator. I learn so much everyday that one day feels like it is at least 2. Sister Lillie, one of the girls in my district, said one of the most insightful things i have ever heard. “The spirit is not a tool for us to use, we are the tool the spirit uses” How powerful is that!! Sister Kiser and I have added that to the list of things we want to be able to accomplish when teaching. We also are striving to have Christ’s name on our lips. I feel like those are some of the most important lessons I have learned in regards to teaching people. That and LOVE!! Love is the answer to everything! We were meeting with a girl named Emily and I was super frustrated with her because she would just butt head with us at everything! Before we went in, we prayed that we might be able to feel God’s love for her, and he answered our prayer. As soon as we walked in, I felt so much love for Emily and the spirit was so strong. That was the best lesson we have had yet!
Our third investigator her name is Katie and Katie is so cool!! I think she is FANTASTIC! She had great questions and was so willing to learn that we committed her to read the Book of Mormon and if she learns for herself, if what we told her is true, she said she will be baptized!! And this was all in the first lesson!! I was so scared to extend the invitation of baptism, but I felt so strongly that we needed to do that. When she said that she would, I could hardly believe my ears!! We are meeting with her again tonight and I am so excited!!
So, Sunday by far was my hardest day! Through out the week I have had several moments when I felt like I couldn’t do all that was required of me, and i really wanted to give up.But each time I turned to the Lord in prayer and I found the strength I needed. Though on Sunday it all came to a head and I was just a puddle of tears. A rash came out of no where and I wasn’t able to see a doctor so Elder Buckhannan gave me a blessing and in that blessing it had exactly what I needed to hear. So many times that day the Lord showed me how much He loves me and my testimony grew so much. On Sunday’s they show movies and the movie we chose to watch was Joseph Smith Prophet of the Restoration. There was not a dry eye in the room. Watching that movie as a missionary gives it a whole new meaning. I know that Joseph Smith was called of God and that he did restore the gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth. I know that Jesus is the Christ and that it is in and through His atonement that we can find lasting peace and happiness in this life and we can live with Him and our Heavenly Father again in the life to come! I know this church is true and even when I have my hard days and moments, there is no place I would rather be. I love you all so much and I hope everything is going well!!
Camero Ferrari 😉
P.S. Oh we love the treats you have sent us!! Sister Kiser is wondering if you are trying to make us fat because I share the treats with her and our entire district!