This week was very spiritual and I learned alot. But I feel like it doesn't make for as good of a letter to just say the words that other people have said, but i'll try my best.
Thank you so much for the package! How sweet. so dang cute. Muchas gracias por los pictures tambien!! Almost forgot what you guys looked like. ;) and your words of encouragement. I'm so impressed by all your experiences and absolutely love the quotes and scriptures you share. and the funny stories too. its all good!
Oh on Saturday I only said like 11 english words all day. The rest in espanol!
So my companera is literally the best ever. We had companionship interviews with a member of the branch presidency and he said he has never seen a companionship so equally matched in abilities and balanced. I know I am so dang lucky that Hermana Bendorf is such a hard worker with a powerful testimony! and hilarious. If this is what marriage is like, I'm stoked! but anyway whenever we go to the bathroom we time each other to see how fast we can go. and the unit of measurement isn't minutes and seconds but instead the first vision in spanish. "vi una columna de luz...." and when we come out we ask "how long was that?" and then answer "three first visions long!" And so the other day we were headed to the bathroom and I was standing outside reciting the first vision really, quite loudly so that she could maybe hear it, i don't know. and I look down the hall and there is an elder in a classroom watching me. so I freeze and stop reciting. and then he starts whispering the next lines (probably because he thought I forgotten what comes next) "hasta descansar sobre...hasta descansar sobre" I know you guys don't know spanish, but just whisper that over and over so you can imagine what it sounds like. Then someone else in the class said "SOMEONE'S SPEAKING SLYTHERIN IN HERE!" so funny, I hope this made sense to you and I explained it clearly. probably not.
i guess I will just have to explain it to you ......OVER THE PHONE WHEN I CALL HOME NEXT MONDAY. wow. I absolutely cannot believe I will be headed for Argentina. There's still so much to do/learn. But I am so excited to start doing what we have been practicing so much. I just love Spanish, and love helping people, and love this gospel! (but probably will call between 8-11am Utah time March 23) huge time gap to be safe.
Elder Cook came and spoke to us Tuesday. It was fantastic. I was in the choir that night [believe it or not. but my companion has the best voice ever and loves it, so i go] He walked into the room and I could just feel the power. My heart was swelling and warm, and I knew he was a man called of God to be a special witness of our Savior and this great work. I just felt like crying I didn't want to sing on camera! He told us we are the message. Because of our lives, the way we exemplify the gospel standards. because of our love and concern for others. people are just going to be drawn to us. I thought of the quote "Preach the gospel at all times and when necessary use words". When he left the building, the entire MTC stood up and didn't say a word until he exited. Wow, I wish you could have been there to witness what a powerful moment it was. All of these people standing still in silence, not fussing with their bags, or trying to leave as quickly as possible. What great respect. It reminded me of 3 Ne 11:8 when Christ first comes down and the people durst not speak a word. Elder Cook also said "I know He lives. I know the voice of the Lord. by experiences too sacred to share". How comforting to have a witness testify so boldly that these things are real and true.
Sister Jean Stevens (primary counselor) spoke in Relief Society yesterday, and her husband said "as a missionary everyday is Christmas! because we get to give the best gift of happiness in the gospel". Hermana Bendorf and I love that. And one more quote from Sacrament meeting "to call to repentance is not to chastise, but a beckoning to be more than we are."
And like Elder Cook, I too am a special witness of Christ. I know He lives and loves me. and that all that is hard, and ugly and unfair in this world can be made right through His Atonement. My life is indebted to Him, and the least I can do is give every second of 18 months focus on others as He did. I'm grateful for the chance I have to be more than I am now, and for the hope it gives me to know I am sealed to my family. I am so grateful for the correct principles my parents taught me in my youth, and for their undeviating faith.
Sorry for the Preaching! I love you so much, I'm grateful that my life has crossed paths with so many wonderful people.