Saturday, February 28, 2015

Thursday, February 26, 2015 -- Week #2, Day #10 Guatemala MTC

2/26/15  10:03 pm

Well, today was an interesting day.  In good news, I have the "Commitment for Baptism," "The First Vision," and "My Missionary Purpose" all memorized in Spanish, so I'm pretty proud of myself for that.  I still need to memorize DyC 4:1-7 and DyC 20:37 [DyC is Spanish for D&C = "Doctrine and Covenants"] and the "How to Begin Teaching" principles from PMG ["Preach My Gospel"], but we're getting there! click: Preach My Gospel Manual

Hermano Garcia also taught a neat way of explaining the Restoration with the pillars of a building, I'll have to show/talk about that sometime, it helped me understand the importance of it and made a lot of sense.

Also, making a note here to watch the "Oh yas!" cat video when I get home.  Hna Brady was talking about how there's this cat that meows and looks like it's saying "yes", so they did a voice-over of someone saying "YAS, oh yas!" and it sounded pretty funny... I'm gonna have 18 months of things to catch up on!  [click: Oh Yas! Cat Video]

In some not so fantastic news, I finally hit a wall today and totally lost it just as we were supposed to go practice teaching to the latinos.  I've been doing well these past days, but I guess the stress of having 12 of your 16 hour days be constant input of gospel in Spanish and teaching in Spanish, and talking in Spanish and thinking in Spanish and being surrounded by people you haven't met before and being so submerged in a way of life that I'm not used to living for all hours of my waking day finally got to me. And I miss my family and being home and comfortable and doing easy things, and things that are familiar and easy before are now hard and frustrating. We have a demanding schedule that I appreciate, but with everything compounding together, it is difficult sometimes. So I pretty much had a panic attack or something in front of my district and the poor latinos right before we were supposed to practice together, and I started crying and couldn't breathe, so a sweet latina maestra [teacher] took me aside and we walked around outside and prayed and she talked to me (all in Spanish of course... I can understand everything they say perfectly and respond to normal questions, but I have such difficulty, emotionally and mentally when I have to practice teaching lessons to someone, it's kind of an annoying stumbling block) and I calmed down mostly, she was so gentle and nice to me, she smiled and held my hand and told me how great I was doing.  I realized that I missed having human touch this whole time, which kinda makes me sad.  I still feel kinda emotionally turmoiled about everything, and it felt good to kinda work through that, albeit violently, but I really am OK being here.
Mis companeras [my companions / friends] are strong and supportive, we help pull each other through all this. And they're so funny! I love them. So I know that God is mindful of his silly little daughter trying to figure out how to be the missionary I need to be, and He loves me so much, and He will help me do anything He needs me to do.
So I'm doing ok now, and I'll keep learning, but this made me think that maybe all those missionaries who are trying so hard to learn a language might need a little extra help from your prayers, and I think of Nate and how he's learning Russian right now, and how hard of a time I'm having with Spanish, something I am familiar and comfortable with, and how much help and support we need as we are changing and growing into the amazing people we can be. 
So please remember the missionaries who are literally giving up a period of their lives and giving all of themselves, mind, body and soul, to serve others who they don't yet know but love so much, and are trying their best to understand and learn and so they can teach these people in their own language so they can better understand the love God has for them. This is humbling experience, and makes you knock everything down and build a better structure from the ground up, and it is incredibly hard, but the end goal is so awesome.  click: LDS Missionary Work

There is nothing to prepare you for the way this stuff works, being a full-time missionary is the hardest thing I've done in my life so far. But it is so rewarding now and in the future, and I am thankful for the opportunity to be doing it, even though it takes so much time and effort to start from the beginning and kinda falling in head first. Hna Brady shared the counsel that we are called to the areas and languages that we will be the most effective in teaching the Gospel in, and I know that to be true. For me to reach my potential, I need to serve in la mision de Honduras San Pedro Sula Oeste, speaking the Spanish language to the people living there. I know this is the right thing for me to do, and I'll keeping progressing, mostly slowly, but most definitely surely, in an upward and forward direction.  Vamanos!

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