Greetings amazing people! I seriously love you guys and I'm excited to share my experiences from my first week here with you! Today there are over 83,000 missionaries currently serving, and I am privileged to be one of them. This is history in the making. My first day in the MTC was wonderful. As I waved goodbye to my family instead of tears streaming down my face and sorrow in my eyes a smile spread from ear to ear. That's not to say I wasn't sad to say goodbye to my family, in fact I will miss them tremendously, I already do, but a smile spread across my face because I was finally beginning to embark on a marvelous work and wonder.
So lets start at the very beginning. Right when I got here I was raced to a classroom to begin roll playing and actually teaching the gospel! There was absolutely no down time. It was rather intimidating ha. I also met my companion who believe it or not has almost exactly the same shade of hair color I do. Her name is Sister Peterson and she is from San Diego California. Oh and it gets crazier. She has two siblings...a brother named Taylor and a sister named Hayley!! She is radiant and full of energy and she can speak about 1,000 words a second. We have worked well together. In our very first lesson, our teacher was impressed how well we taught together for our very first time. My district has 8 people and we are all going to Columbus Ohio!! My friend from BYUI is also in our district and could very well be related to Shelly Egbert. One of the other girls in my district, Sister Mecham is related to Uncle Delbert! Cindy's brother! She is cousins with Addie and Travis Leavitt.
As we taught some investigators that very first day I found myself genuinely caring about them. I didn't even know them how could I care about them?!! Why did I care so much if they believed my message. I ultimately saw them for who they could become and I wanted them to enjoy the blessing I have. I guess I was given a small glimpse of what Christ must feel like with His children, and I wanted desperately for them to accept what I had. We have been teaching a girl named Jordada and things are slowly progressing. The spirit has been incredible. One night I honestly could not tell you anything I said during the lesson and it was because I was not the one doing the teaching. It was the Holy Ghost and it was a powerful and moving thing. We also taught an atheist which was tremendously hard. The lesson all over the place and practically everything we said she contradicted, and fought back with a difficult question. We prayed hard that night for Heavenly Father to strengthen us and help us teach her something that would mean something to her. The next day we read with her in third Nephi of when Christ comes to the Americas and ministers among His other sheep. I got very personal with her and spoke with the spirit and directly from the hear. And guess what, she did not fight back once. She could not argue my testimony because it belonged to me, and was something no one could take away from me. It was amazing.
Our Branch president is intimidating but amazing. I have already learned so much from him. It's crazy being raised in the Church I thought I knew a good deal about what we believe in, but coming here I have truly been humbled by how much I don't know. I learn so much daily. I know that God has the ability to make bad men good and good men better, and I have already felt that principle come into play. We all have room for improvement and that improvement comes through following our Savior Jesus Christ.
So here's the funny story for the week. My lovely companion set her alarm clock for the four of us for that first morning. Mistakenly she set it for San Diego time which therefore caused us to wake up an hour later and be late to our very first meeting the first real day of the MTC! It was awful. We wondered why it felt easy to get up and why it was light outside. Now we know, and don't worry my lovely parentals it will never happen again. I have repented.
Tasha this one's for you! I have been running most days! I also play basketball as often as time allows. The second day here I twisted my ankle pretty good which was rough. I had to go to the training room where they took good care of me. But rest assured Dad I beat all the guys in my district in a game of horse. This missionaries still got it! And don't worry Mom I'm all healed up and feel great!
Life here is exhausting, overwhelming, and busy. My companion and I are sister training leaders, the daily schedules are intense, we hardly get a break, but honestly I love it here. I have done a lot of fun things this last week, but the most important thing I have done is allowed myself to come closer to Christ daily. I am learning more fully what this means and what I need to do in order to accomplish this task. The work is hastening, and I am more than grateful to be an instrument in helping this work progress in an upward motion.
Please write me. I would love to hear from you guys and to be able to share my testimony with you. It is growing day by day, little by little. Also written letters would be fantastic because I can write back to those whenever :)
I love this work. I love putting on my name tag and wearing his name. I truly believe I was called of God to be here, and I have felt such comfort being here. I love you guys. Do not worry about me. I am doing better than ever :) I love you guys!
When everything says you can't believe in the part of you that can
Love Sister Mathis