Wednesday, January 8, 2014

HI from this MTC veteran (winking emoji) jk, but one week down - CRAZY!!!!

WOW what an adventure, a HARD adventure! I think I have learned more this past week than in my whole life combined. Mom I am so thankful that you gave me that quote on purpose because that is a very important part of my life as a missionary. I am finding out my purpose and it is wonderful. 

WILL guess what!? Navajo tacos for lunch today!!!!!!!!! WOOT WOOT - I ate one just for you. The food has actually been really yummy. I'm not always very hungry but there is a good variety and it definitely beats out the market place at Utah State.....GO AGGIES THOUGH

We have our flight plans. We leave the MTC Tuesday morning at 4:30AM. We take 3 different planes to get to Halifax!! So our flight leaves from Salt Lake around 8:30 in the morning - I will probably call between 6:30 and 8 so be ready!!!!!!! Can't wait to hear your voices :) I know the kids have school but hopefully I can catch them (hope going back to school wasn't too guys are awesome!)
Ok let me tell you a few things.. we play basketball during gym there's that, YES my companions are totally into it and I just laugh at myself and everyone else (in a nice way - bless their hearts) our district is great though, maybe not athletic but they are so nice and fun to be with. 

Our teachers are phenomenal - seriously it is amazing how much I can learn from them, I really look up to them. They are so kind and understanding..they encourage us and help us remember why we are here and who we are representing. We sang in the devotional night and afterward I saw Taylor Thomas and JONATHAN ANDERTON - they both saw me on the screen and then came up and found me after. It was cool. I have also seen True a few times so yeppp those are my people! We went to the temple this morning which was amazing - I feel like I see and understand everything so differently since being here and it was such a powerful experience.

Sorry I'm running through all of this sooooo fast but seriously time doesn't exist here hahahaha that makes no sense. Ok I just want to share the three most powerful lessons I have learned so far..they haven't been easy to learn them but they have been worth it.

#1 I thought I knew a lot before I came here, I had a testimony and I was confident. And then I got here and I missed my family, I was tired all the time and nights were sad. One night after teaching a lesson that did not go very well and doing a lot of role plays, I reached my breaking point. I couldn't hold in the tears no matter how hard I tried - at this point we were with the other zone (they left this week for Reno - they were amazing) and Sister Purcell, who I look up to so much (she is 30 and from Hawaii) shared this with me -- 

She told me that she felt the same way when she got here but Heavenly Father quickly showed her that even though she has strengths, he didn't need to use those right now. He was showing her all her weaknesses so that she could truly learn and grow (ether 12:27) she was humbled and so was I. 

#2 This one goes along with the first but I've learned that this work is not about me! This is the Lord's work, it is his gospel and we are teaching his children. In order to be successful and happy I must entirely forger about myself and dedicate my life to serving others. This might seem obvious but I promise it is WAY harder to learn than you would think - or at least than I ever thought!

#3 Finally the third and most important lesson - (inspired by Elder Bender's talk - The Character of Christ) Each of us must be truly converted to Christ, we must take upon ourselves his character. We must experience a full change of heart.  Christ turned out when the natural man, all of us, would have the tendency to turn in and be selfish. Christ never thought of himself no matter the pain he was enduring..he saved us all and can continually save us if we just have the faith that he will. The Atonement provides us with strength beyond our own. This gospel is not about what you know but rather who you are!! And it is a process - step by step we     can accomplish true conversion,. And that is what I am working toward!!  I am heading in the right direction and I am happy :)

Sooo what an amazing experience this has been and I know it will only get better. I thank my Heavenly Father every chance I get for giving us a Savior so we can overcome the impossible. Don't think for a second that this is not the hardest thing I have ever done in my life because it is 

BUT how awesome - WE CAN DO HARD THINGS!!!

 I am so thankful for you, I love you all and miss you like crazy!!!! Thanks for everything. Talk to you soon!
Love, Sister G

PS: Tell Duke hi and tell my awesome Aunt Sara that I am so thankful for her letters and that she is so kind to think of me ALL THE TIME. Love you Sara. BYE BYE

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

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