¡Mi semana fin es se acercará rapidamente! El tiempo de nuestro esta casí aquí! Una mas semana! (plus a few days)
I have decided that the CCM is slightly formatted like high school. You arrive as a "freshman" and feel completely lost for the first week. As the weeks go by your "ranking" increases and soon you are a "senior". (My time has finally come.) The days seem to last forever in the beginning, but eventually you get in a routine and all of a sudden you have one more week left! (eeepp!)
There were 680 missionaries here as of Sunday. 60 "graduated" and 200 arrived yesterday. Yes that means that there is now over 800 young adults all trying to learn Spanish in 6 weeks. It is the greatest thing because we are all in the same boat and trying to help each other as much as we can.
The comedor (or cafeteria) is not meant for 400 people, let alone 800 people. This morning there were so many bodies looking for something to eat I thought I was going claustrophobic because all I wanted was a banana and there were so many people that I felt like I was in Time Square on New Years Eve.
This week hasn't had too many events to talk about. Sitting in a clasroom from 7am to 9:30pm can only be so entertaining. To brighten up one of our long days, I wanted to make food or something crafty, but our kitchen in nuestra casa is bare and I have no supplies to craft with but my hot glue gun (yes, I brought my glue gun and it has already come in handy, don't judge.)
So we were walking back to the casa and rain was flooding the streets when all of a sudden I look over at the lawn next to ours and there are a bunch of palm tree leaves that have fallen because of the heavy rain. I think Heavenly Father heard my heart praying for something that I could make. We picked up all the leaves, grabbed my glue gun, and brought them into the laundry room.
Most people don't know this but the leaves on palm trees have HUGE thorns. I was breaking the stems off and tore my palms to shreds (palm leaves do not like my palms... ha). Anyways, I won the battle, hot glued the tops of the leaves together, picked them up and belted it around my waist. TADA! A skirt.
Hermana Rupp and I both did little Hawaiian dances around the laundry room laughing and then Hermana Fitzgerald came in wondering what all the noise was. She picked up one of the extra leaves and pretended it was a Nimbus 2000 from Harry Potter. So then of course we had to draw lightning bolt scars on our heads and fly around the casa. You could say it was a successful night.
On to a more important note, the theme for the week has been teaching by the spirit. We as missionaries can learn and study for hours, but if we don't have the Holy Ghost leading our lessons, the words are just words. In the devotional we watched on Sunday, Elder Bednar said
"The spirit can only reveal things we have leaned, he cannot give knowledge that has not been obtained." also, "You cannot force truth into the hearts of the investigator, only unto."
We read Alma 26 (https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/alma/26?lang=eng) a few days ago. The whole chapter is about the sons of Mosiah on their missions teaching the wicked Lamanites. People told them they wouldn't have any success because they were so evil, but they went anyways. They went door to door, preaching in the streets, in the fields, and in the homes. They were spit at, laughed at, and rejected.
"27 Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about toturn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thineafflictions, and I will give unto you success"
And then something clicked in the Lamanites' hearts. They became the Anti-Nephi Lehis, the most converted people in the Book of Mormon.
I realized that who am I to discern who gets the gospel? Christ's gospel is for everyone, and it is my responsibility for them to receive it. Not everyone will accept it because everyone is born with agency, but they all need the opportunity to.
I am so grateful for everything I have learned so far and for the friendships, experiences, and knowledge I have gained. This experience is life changing, and then some. It's humbling, motivating, and demanding, but I would be disappointed if it wasn't difficult. The hard things in life are the things that change us the most.
Shoutout to my best friend, Spencer Hemmingsen aka Aldste (Elder) Hemmingsen for going into the Provo MTC next week. We can do this! Bring it on world!
Thanks for all your support.
All my love,