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Monday, December 6, 2010

11.30.10 MTC

Well, one more day and I’ll have been at the MTC for 4 weeks. Only 5 more to go, eh? It doesn’t seem like it’s been that long, but it also feels as though I’ve been here forever. I know I’ve said that before, multiple times, but you know what, it’s also been completely true each time as well!

This week has been great. At least, the days since my last letter have been great. I especially liked yesterday since it was probably one of my happiest since arriving.

I woke up feeling a bit more energetic than usual. I don’t know why, but I just felt like it was going to be an incredible day. And I was right. I wasn’t that tired during classes, I understood more Spanish than usual, and I was able to actually feel sore from my chest & shoulders workout. I love push-ups. Awesome exercise.

But anyway, it wasn’t until after lunch, that I felt really good. I had been speaking nothing but Spanish for the previous 2.5 hours or so, and I felt a little more confident than usual, which is why I didn’t freak out when I found out that Elder Roberts and I were just about to teach the entire second lesson (or at least, most of it. Oh, and it was the Plan of Salvation) to our teacher, Hma. De Leon, entirely in Spanish. It was the third time we had taught a lesson entirely in Spanish, but the times before that were pretty dang bad. But, I felt different this time. A little more hopeful. I guess.

We began teaching, and the first time in Spanish, I took the lead in the lesson. Elder Roberts and I still taught in unity, of course, but I felt much better about what I offered to the lesson. I focused on our “investigator” the whole time (Hma. De Lon was role playing as one of the investigators she taught on her mission) instead of wonering, “What the heck can I say in Spanish that won’t sound like gibberish?” When that happened, I didn’t even need to think about what to say. The Spirit was there with us, even though it wasn’t an entirely real lesson. I knew what to say, when to say it, what questions to ask, what scriptures to look up (in my entirely un-marked Spanish set), and how to transition more smoothly between speakers. I twas nothing short of incredible.

But, of course, I know it won’t be that easy in the field. Hma. De Leon played her part very well, but she was till taking it easy on us. But she does speak Spanish as fast as a native (probably because she’s from Guatemala), and I understood nearly all of what she said. It was great.

On the flip-side, though, I found out probably the only food that I’m dreading to eat in Mexico: menudo, or in other word, cow stomach. Apparently it’s really popular, and as described by Hmo. Anderson, it’s both “fuzzy and chewy.” But then again, I also spoke with Elder North (Mexican Elder from Orange County who’s going to Cochabamba, Bolivia) and he said that we are going to love every single thing we eat there. Which makes sense, because Mexican food is awesome. But, hit story abou the time he got some freshly-made churros one time when he was visiting his Grandma in Mexico was so good, it boosted my hopes even more. Speaking of dessert, I wonder how good home-made flan is. Eh, I guess I’ll find out since it turns out eating whatever is set before us isn’t just a a mission rule, it was what Christ said to the Seventy before they were sent out on their missions (see Luke 10:8 if you don’t believe me. And, I’m sure the food back then was even freakier than it is now.) Oh, and another food-related scripture that’s kind of interesting is Romans 14:2. Ah, the strange verses missionaries find when bored. Good stuff.

Oh, and another thing: I finished the Book of Mormon again 3 days ago. It tok me a little less than 4 weeks, as opposed to the last time when it took me 3 months. And, guess what? It’s still completely true. Crazy, eh? THE GOSPEL IS TRUE, PEOPLE. JUST READ AND FIND OUT. Anyway, time to start reading the New Testament again. I’m on John 2 right now. Once again, good stuff.

And I’ll wait ‘til tonight to finish this letter. I want to tell everyone who spoke at the devotional, and what they said. Hopefully, another apostle. That’d be awesome. Ah, and we’re singing, “Oh Love that Glorifies the Son” tonight. They could have just called it “Charity” to simplify it, but hey, it works.

I was on camera for a huge part of the hymn, apparently. Doesn’t really mater, but we performed it well.

The speaker was Julie Beck, the General President of the Relief Society. I’ll be honest, I’m not a huge fan of women speakers, since they always seem to sugar coat whatever they’re talking about. Fortunately, she didn’t. She talked about how her father was the only who originally created the Brazil MTC, and many other stories. It was an entertaining talk, but I’ll be honest again: I didn’t get much out of it.

I guess I’m the kind of Elder that likes the powerfully emotional talks, not the light-hearted ones. But she still had some great points, or at least, what she talked about brought some good thoughts forward. This is just one of them:

Charity is not reasonable. It’s not logical. Its motives are not of the world, but the heart. It doesn’t make sense, and doesn’t need to. God loves all men, women, and children, no matter who they are. And even though I may not be a loving, charitable person, I know I can be eventually. Although it might take some time. I am weird, after all.

Elder Humbert

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