Sunday, September 6, 2015

August 6, 2015 - Week 2 at the "Happiest Place on Earth"

Hello Everyone! Well week 2 at the Mexico MTC has been nothing short of amazing! The Spirit is growing ever stronger and the hand of God is more present with each passing day. Every day is basically the same with the language learning and teaching lessons about teaching investigators. There is so much we have learned concerning the language and mostly building upon our testimonies of the work that we have to do here. At the beginning of the week we got a new teacher to be our night teacher. His name is Hermano Carlos Carranza and he served his mission in the Provo Utah South Mission! It is such a small world! But his desire to teach and his enthusiasm for us to learn and grow in the gospel is truly remarkable. It makes me more excited each day I learn from him to go serve the people of Oaxaca! We have watched videos and read experiences about how the gospel has changed peoples lives, and looking back on this week it has changed mine. I want to share some experiences that I have learned from this week from various places. 1. On Sunday we got to watch a rerun of an MTC devotional that Elder Bednar did a few years ago. It was a talk that hit me so hard and had one of the greatest impacts on me. The theme that seemed to be a common occurrence was the spirit and the Holy Ghost. Elder Bednar talked about feeling the Holy Ghost in the service we are able to do to other people. He stated points that have inspired me to rededicate myself and things that will help me to be a better person and missionary as the servant of the Lord. I hope these points can help all of you as well. He said that we need to find the Character of Christ through our study and prayer. Begin a pursuit NOW of learning of him instead of learning about him. We need to pay the price to obtain our own light of Christ instead of borrowing off of the light of others. The way that we can do this is to turn outwards like Christ did instead of turning inwards just as the natural man would. When Christ was in the hands of his captives in the Garden the night after he had suffered unbearable pain, when the ear of the captor was sliced off he wasn't worried about defending himself, he was worried about healing the man who was seeking to take his life. "Dedication and desire to obtaining the Character of Christ will bring us answers to our questions and bring blessings upon our heads." 2. On Tuesday we were able to watch a live broadcast from Provo that President Nelson spoke at. He called us missionaries "Epistles of the Lord." He challenged us to engrave the initials of Christ upon our hearts and turn to him in our times of need. He challenged us to never let the atonement go without use, that Christ will never be disappointed in us when we come with full purpose of heart to him no matter what has happened or is happening in our lives. It has been so special to be able to hear two prophets of God speak to us this week and it has felt as if they were speaking directly to me. 3. Today we had the opportunity to go to downtown Mexico City, and it is a beautiful and remarkable city! Just watching the people out the bus window made me appreciate them even more and the humility that they all have. I love to see the way the people live, the special culture that they all share, and the love that they have towards everyone. Our Branch President told us this week that if you were to say "I like your shoes" to any of them, that they would take them off and give them to you. I firmly believe that after seeing the Mexican people today. I am looking forward to immersing myself in the Oaxacan Culture and loving those people as much as I do the people of Mexico City. We drove down the main plaza with all the memorials, I ate a cow tounge taco from off the side of the road, and I have nothing more to say than I love Mexico and this is where I want to be. But better yet, this is where God has prepared for me and where he has sent me to shape me and help me become a true disciple of Christ. I wouldn't change any of this for the world! Thank you for all of your prayers and support. Sister Nelson said that if I were ever feeling down, to think of the 15 million members praying specifically for me. It is truly humbling to be receiving those. 4. Last point that is the greatest blessing and miracle of the week. So we started teaching real investigators on Tuesday night. We only taught one this week but it was the best experience that I have had thus far. This lady came in to the MTC and asked if she could talk to some missionaries. The Lord blessed my companion and I with the opportunity to talk to her. She used to be a member of the church but a few years ago she was involved in a car accident. It completely wiped out her memory and she couldn't even remember her own name. She said she forgot her testimony and if the church was true. She went off the wrong path and didn't know where her happiness was, and then she realized that it was in Heavenly Father. We shared a scripture with her, Romans 8:39 and she started crying over it and said that this was exactly what she had been looking for. None of us remember anything else, all that we know is that we were both able to bear our testimonies and speak through the spirit in complete and fluent spanish. It changed all of our lives in that room that night. Again, thank you for all of your prayers and thoughts, I look forward to sending back more stories next week. May God bless you all and may you feel of his loving kindness in your lives. He loves you and he wants the best for you. Elder Peterson

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