Feliz Ano Nuevo!
In the morning we had a wonderful devotional with Elder Bednar speaking, and it was so cool to hear from him. It felt like watching our own personal General Conference. The meeting was seen and/or broadcasted to 12 out of the 14 MTC's around the world. We were even able to see a broadcast of two MTC's watching it, from Ghana and Chile. About 1,840 missionaries watched the meeting, and I was one of a lucky few hundred that got to see and hear it live. It was amazing to realize just what a world-wide organization the restored Church of Christ is. The gospel is being preached almost everywhere. How do you get 85,000 young people to give 1.5-2 years of their lives? Through the love of Christ and a true restoration of the gospel.
I got to call my family and hear from almost everyone at the Rubio Christmas dinner, so although for a short time, I was able to be a part of Christmas with my family. I felt so blessed and happy to hear so many familiar voices with words of encouragement.
That evening we were very spoiled and got to have an FHE-like devotional with DAVID ARCHULETTA, who got back from his mission in Chile last year. It was amazing, but the best part was when he sang Glorious, which is a song he was asked to record for the Meet the Mormons movie while he was at the end of his mission. My mom is obsessed with that song, so it reminded me of her. At the end of the night we watched Ephraim's Rescue and I highly recommend it.
Christmas away from home was hard, but it really was a great experience in the MTC. They definitely spoiled us.
We did lots of studying. In my journal I wrote an update to my testimony. Here is a part of it: I am convinced that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. If he was not, the church would not have grown so much so quickly. The first two temples could not have been built. People would not have followed despite persecution. Missionaries would not have traveled oversees to England to preach it. Those in England converted would not have traveled oversees and then across the plains in winter just to help build Zion. Miracles couldn't have taken place that allowed those early saints to cross the plains. If the church wasn't true, it would have died with Joseph Smith and would not have become the worldwide organization under Christ that it is today. Only Christ's church could transcend borders and languages like the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints does. Although denouncing the truth would have made his life on earth much easier, and probably would have saved his life, Smith stood his ground: "For I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it, neither dared I do it; at least I knew by doing I would offend God, and come under condemnation." JSH 1:25
I made it to another Sunday! I played piano for Sacrament meeting. It was another great Sabbath day.
This day I learned a lot and the morning was very difficult. Hermana Jensen and I had a lesson planned for Hely, continuing on the Book of Mormon and the Restoration. It didn't go as planned at all. Hely kept talking about irrelevant things and we had a hard time staying on track. We finally tried to ask if she had any questions about the church (taking "teach people, not lessons" a little too seriously) and all she wanted to talk about was the word of wisdom and drinking coffee and alcohol. We were not prepared for that in Spanish at all, but we tried to answer and it took up the rest of our time. My companion and I tried to keep the spirit with us, handling questions with very, very bad Spanish. I got mad at my Hermana because she went into nervous mode and kept teaching by herself too much and didn't let me say very much (pretty ironic). I got frustrated, but tried to be patient. It was our worst lesson. Afterwards, we talked about it and she was so remorseful and humble about the whole thing. I realized that if it had been me, I probably wouldn't have had as much humility, and that I should actually be more like her in that way. In the same day I felt the most frustrated with my companion, I later felt the most grateful. Neither of us are perfect, but I feel very blessed.
We did our first two member lessons, they were on prayer. At lunch my district was asked to Usher for the evening devotional. It was so cool, few missionaries get to do it, let alone as a district! After ushering, we all got to sit together in reserved seats in the first two rows. The speakers were Elder Arnold of the Seventy and his wife. They both said things everyone in our district needed to hear, and it was our favorite devotional so far. The most uplifting time with my district that I've had was the devotional review after. When us sisters got back to the room we talked about the mature love and respect the Elders in our district have for us, and how blessed we are because not every district has that. My district is my family here.
2 week mark in the MTC! Hermana Jensen, Elder Jensen, Elder Fillmore, and I got to help welcome and give a tour to the "dork-dots" (new missionaries that have a circle sticker on their tag so you know that they are new so you can welcome them or help them if they get lost, lol) that are new to our Zone. We love our new dork-dots, although in a couple weeks they'll know just as much as we do now, lol. Our senior missionaries in our zone are leaving, so in the next couple weeks when new missionaries come in it will be just the four of us welcoming them to the zone.
Hermana Jensen and I redeemed ourselves with our lessons with Hely and had a much better lesson that we could control. We even set a baptismal date for her! Hermana said that this time when she wanted to keep talking she would hold back, and then I would say exactly what she was going too. The spirit really is the teacher!
Today, Friday 1/1/2016
We figured out that we spend 11 hours a day in the classroom studying or in lessons, so I'm so glad today is P-day. I can't believe it's already my third P-day, too.
Estoy muy animada por el ano nuevo!