Well. This week has been super awesome, I promise. But now that I'm sitting here in front of this computer screen... I'm not a hundred percent sure what happened. In any given day here at the MTC, SO MUCH happens! But for some reason, when you go to write in your journal each night... you can't even remember what you did that day. There's so much to do and so much to be done that all the days tend to just mash together into one long, never-ending day of happiness and missionary work. So pardon me if I'm scatter-brained and everything from this point on is all over the place...
I got to go to the temple today! I haven't been in over a month and it's been killing me. I really focused on temple attendance before I reported to the MTC, so since the Provo Temple has been closed up until this week, I've been missing my weekly temple visits a lot. But anyways, I can't even explain what it's like to be there with so many other missionaries. We're all just a bunch of kids who have no idea what we're doing. But we know WHO we represent and WHAT He means to us and that's why we're all here. We all have something in common and that something is our love for our beloved Savior. I think that's pretty cool.
Oh, and p.s. I love the Provo temple. I think it's so pretty. It was especially pretty today with all the fog and snow-frosted trees everywhere. The view you get when you walk out the front doors is absolutely stunning. On our way there this morning, the fog was so bad that I couldn't resist saying, "mists of darkness...." as we made our way up to the glowing, lovely, beautiful temple. I thought I was pretty funny. No one else did. Welcome to my life.
With the new semester starting at BYU, all the schedules at the MTC got rearranged. Hence, the fact that my p-day is now on Thursdays instead of Fridays. But it's cool. I actually really like the new schedule, it works well for me. We just think it's funny because the MTC tries to create a "stable and comfortable environment" for it's missionaries, but we haven't exactly seen that take place just yet. We had all sorts of issues with our teacher's schedules and what not so we had probably twelve different teachers within the first few weeks. We didn't ever know who was teaching us... and when we were supposed to be teaching our progressing investigators. But as soon as that all got figured out, our schedule changed. The irony. It's great.
So, seeing as this pastwas fast , I promised myself that I'd be brave enough to get up and bear my testimony in front of the Korean-speaking branch. And I thought it was scary to bear my testimony in English... long story short, I got so anxious that as soon as they opened up the meeting for us to start bearing our testimonies, I could only sit in my seat for approximately ten seconds before my anxiety got to me and I booked up up to the pulpit. Fun fact of the day: I speak fast when I get nervous-- even when I'm speaking Korean. Whoops? After the meeting, Brother Lee, one of the members of the branch presidency came up to me and said some things in Korean before saying, "Very impressive testimony... near perfect..." I was pretty proud of myself, not gonna lie.
After I had sat down, I could help but to think about the process of learning how to bear my testimony in Korean. When I first got to the MTC I think one of the things that bothered me the most was the fact that I felt like I couldn't share my testimony because I couldn't speak Korean. I was so frustrated about it. But because of that frustration, I made the decision to work on perfecting my Korean testimony. I worked on it. I worked so hard on it so that I'd at least be able to share my testimony with the people of Korea.
Bearing my testimony in Korean for the first time in front of a congregation of people, helped me realize the gravity of what has been accomplished in just a few short weeks. Korean is a difficult language. But when I worked on building and strengthening my testimony, other language concepts started making sense. It was a little miracle! I may not be able to say much, but I can share the things I know and I can share the things I feel.
Through this, I learned that likewise, when we work on strengthening and building our testimonies of our Savior Jesus Christ, everything else will start to make sense. You you focus on strengthening that testimony, God will bless you.
I'm far from being fluent in Korean. Far, far, far, far from it. But when I look at where I was as opposed to how far I've come, I feel such a sense of gratitude for all the help I have received from my Heavenly Father and the atonement of Jesus Christ.
Sister Hoffman, Sister Glauser, and myself auditioned this morning for a musical number at one of the big programs that occur here at the MTC about nine times a week. It was so neat to be able to do a musical number together; we all agreed that being able to share your testimony through music is one of the neatest experiences. Sister Hoffman is an incredible pianist and she accompanied Sister Glauser and I in "Nearer My God to Thee." It's one of my all-time favorite hymns. Anyways, long story short, we got a big "YES!" from Sister Nally on our audition so we'll be performing it at a meeting sometime in the future-- I'll let you know when that happens. I'll see if I can find a way to send that home so you can hear it! I know Mom would love it.
I couldn't be more excited to go to Korea! It's such an incredible place with such incredible people and I'm so grateful to get to experience all of that! What a blessing. I'll be getting off that plane before I even know it. Isn't that the craziest thought? I'll be stepping into Korea in just under a month. Woah.
Anyways, I'm running out of time for the week! I love you all and I'm thankful for all the love and support I'm receiving. It makes such a difference as a missionary. It really does. Every little things means the world to us when we're out here. So thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
p.s. I just have to publically apologize to Jill: I may have accidentally given away your address to a small collection of Korean-Speaking Elders. My bad. But for the record, I've read some of the letters that have been sent your way and I laughed so hard that I cried.
oh, and another p.s. I'm not going to be in the MTC forever... so take advantage of that free form of communication while you can! (aka send me Dear Elders because it's the best to hear from you people and Dear Elder is a form of same-day communication. That's all.)