Tuesday, June 16, 2015

On Wednesday We Wear Pink

This week has been difficult (haha alluding to Josh and I will no more).  It has been hard for me to acculturate into a completely different environment.  Throughout the week I have sung songs like Blank Space, Worth It, Fancy, Animals, Bad Blood, Sledgehammer, and many more.  I'm the elder in my zone that sings Wrecking Ball in the shower while everyone else sings the Lord is my Light. Yep that is me.  It is hard to get over music and the life you used to know.  In the MTC you are stuck in a room behind gates for most of the day.  My inner soul feels trap and I cannot go anywhere.  I am like a dog stuck in a cage while all the rest of the dogs are out running around.  I know that this is for a good reason.  

My companion is Elder Vaughn.  He is from Viewmont High and completely opposite to me.  We have similarities but when we eat we get the two completely opposite things.  He gets the burger while I get the chicken or he gets the orange juice while I get water.  He is very spiritual and scripture smart while I can tell you the equation of photosynthesis or quote Literature.  With that we also have many similarities.  We both have musical talents.  I can sing, dance, and yodel and he can play the drums.  We have been teaching people together and he seems to be the one who supports me.  

This week we taught S***n and J****n.  They are both Mormon investigators that we teach like real investigators. S***n is a Catholic who has a child and lost a child by a drunk driver.  We assumed, never assume, that his child was killed before 8 by the drunk driver.  Mistake!!!!  He was killed at the age of 14 so we taught him the absolutely wrong lesson.  We mentioned that children are saved before the accountability age of 8. This started arguments which led to him getting mad and us feeling like we didn't teach a good lesson.  J****n, compared to S***n was not a religious person.  He had no previous experience with religion and sort of believes in a creator.  He was doing a favor for his pal in Provo and decided to meet with us.  He doesn't really want to be with us though.  He has no questions, he is not searching for anything, he is just there.  This cause many problems for us as we tried to get to him.  He would debate us about our religion and I felt like it was out of hand.  This is a good example of why the MTC is a challenge.  When entering in you think that everyone is going to hear your message and be baptised.  Life is harder than that.  The MTC you experience some of the real world.

To go along with the MTC my week has been spent in a classroom.  The things about the MTC is that you have to get past day 2 and then you should be fine.  You can survive the MTC if you can get past day two.  One wise man said that one third of your mission is the first three days of the MTC the next third is the rest of the MTC and the last is the rest of your mission.  Even though the MTC is so stressful, I have learned so much of everything.  I learned that the Lord does not care how a prayer is.  He of course cares if you pray to him and end in the name of Christ but between those two he does not care as long as it comes from the heart.  If it comes from the heart it will get to him.  I also have learned how to teach.  You are supposed to involve people and listen instead of preaching.  I have seen this in the first lessons I have had with my companion.  We taught more than listen but one lesson we listen more than taught and we felt like we got somewhere.  Another thing I learned is that we are supposed to experience the Book of Mormon instead of read it.  We all probably get caught at skimming the words but instead we should actually try to understand them.  One of the greatest things I have learned was from Elder Bednar.  He spoke a long time ago about the Characteristics of Christ.  The Characteristics of Christ is that of looking outward when others look inward.  If we look outward and think about others over ourselves than we can be like Christ.  This is how true conversion happens.  So that is now what I am focusing on.  Prayer is also a main thing in the mission field.  All of this came in 5 days at the MTC.  This wouldn't have been possible without my district.

My district is so amazing.  We get so much done but also have a great load of fun.  On Wednesday We Wear Pink thing is a thing my district came up with and so we are all wearing Pink tomorrow.  We just laugh and have a good time.  Pictures will come in two weeks though.

I know that I am supposed to be here on this journey to become changed in the sight of the Lord.  I have my eye single to the glory of God.

Elder Vance

Friday, June 12, 2015

I'm here!!

I survived and am doing well.  I have p-day Tuesday.  I have a killer companion from Viewmont.  I'll email you Tuesday.  A lot of people from Arizona here.  I'm going to say I'm from Mesa now.  It just feels better.  

Elder Vance