Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Week 7

Hello Everyone!

I really can't believe that in two weeks I will be in Indonesia! My time here at the MTC has been strange in that it seems like it went by fast, but it really was pretty slow at parts. I am jealous of the new missionaries who will be leaving next year--they only have to be here for one third of the normal time at the MTC. If that were the rule for our district, we would have already been in Indonesia for a week! You should have seen the reaction from all the missionaries when they made those announcements. The MTC is changing for sure, as they are about to expand the MTC in preparation for all the new missionaries.

I really have liked the MTC experience, even though I am thrilled to leave. What really was nice was to receive all the letters and packages throughout my time here. Thank you to everyone who sent me letters and packages, especially the Beeson family! Thank you all so much for the cookies! They were amazing, and reminded me of home. I will send your family a letter as soon as I can!

Our classroom time has now been completely in Indonesian. It makes us learn so much more, and even though it is hard, we now understand the language quite well. Our lessons with our fake investigators have been going well, and we are able to give the lessons without any notes in the language. Our teachers really are fantastic. They spend so much time with us, and we have all grown to love each of them! 

{Elder Miner putting on a bunch of clothes that our teachers have from Indonesia. When we role play we always dress up, it's pretty funny!}

Our study sessions have also been much more focused, and I have never understood the Book of Mormon more than when I read it here. Before, I did not completely understand many of the stories, and I was mixed up with the history. When I first came to the MTC, I had brand new scriptures, and I began to read the Book of Mormon in great detail, taking many notes, and marking important scriptures. My goal is to finish it on the plane ride to Indonesia. I am around Alma 55 right now, so I think I can do it! I am in my favorite part of the Book of Mormon, which, of course, are the war chapters with Moroni and Teancum. I have also really begun to love Preach my Gospel. The teachings in the book are so inspired, and we all can learn more from reading it.

As far as the weather here, it has became much more cold, and the fields outside have been closed a few times. We are going outside to play volleyball as much as we can before it becomes too cold. I never really was into volleyball before, but for some reason, our District loves it! Like I said before, we get a little rough, but it sure is nice to release some energy!

The times at the Temple have also been very nice. We only have one more time next week at the temple, and after that, it will be our last time for about two years. I realized this while I was walking back, and I am so grateful that I have been able to go every week here in the MTC.

A cool thing happened on Tuesday at the Devotional. We never know who is speaking until we are there, and every time it has been members of the seventy who comes. We were expecting a normal meeting, but then Elder Bednar walked in and sat down in front! It was such a great surprise for all of us! He gave an amazing talk on how to study the talks in conference, and we were all very blessed to have him come. The MTC is really fascinating in this way--you never really expect who you will see, or what happens. All the talks and devotionals we have had in the past have been amazing, but I am so glad that I was there for that particular one. Once the talk ended, a few people in our District said we are ready to go now, since we saw a member of the Twelve Apostles. I completely agree!

Other than the few things I have talked about, there is not much else that has happened. We have gotten to the point that each day just slips by, and leaving seems like an abstract idea right now. Our teachers have told us the coolest stories about Indonesia, and I can't wait to have my own experiences. As always, I would write more if I had time, but I have to go eat lunch! I wish you all the best of wishes, and I can't wait to email about all my adventures in Indonesia!

Sampai Nanti!
-Elder James

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