This week was just out of control fun. I was laughing every other minute of every day. I must have drastically underestimated how hilarious spending 2/3 of my day with 9 19-year-old boys would be. The sisters and I marvel every day at how they can be so endlessly entertaining.
Well, the MTC is turning into life. Our district is turning into a little family, and the time is just flying by. Every day is an adventure as we learn more Czech and strive to become better teachers and missionaries. I'm really, really loving it all. It's still quite intimidating when I let myself think about how large this language is and how little I know about the scriptures, and that I've already completed 1/3 of my stay here at the MTC. However, there are several moments in every day when I feel the Lord telling me that it will all work out, and as long as I keep striving, I will be ready.
We had great experiences teaching this week. We're finding that it's quite difficult to teach with three people, in a different language, when you're trying to follow the spirit and customize the lesson on the fly! However, I wouldn't trade this threesome for anything. I can't imagine going through this without Sestra Bean or Sestra White. We're making huge progress in teaching even from day to day. The are the most magnificent companions. I had a cool experience in TRC this Thursday again. I had been working really hard on preparing my parts in Czech for teaching the restoration lesson. Part of that included telling the JS story. So, I made it a goal to memorize the first vision in Czech. It got a little crazy for a few days there - any time my mind wasn't on something else, you would see me muttering to myself "spatril. jsem sloup svetla..." over and over and over again. There weren't as many volunteers this week, so for one of our lessons we taught our teacher, Bratr Machado. When it came time to quote Joseph's words, I felt the spirit drop into my lap, and the words came out. One day, and many days, I will be quoting that vision to people who will be hearing it for the first time. It is so beautiful and so incredible! The gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored in these latter days! Joseph Smith was a prophet called of God!
Other great parts of this week- our district has become so close. We do everything together. I think if it was just the three of us sisters, we would drive ourselves insane by studying so much. The elders keep us balanced, ha. They've developed a little song in Czech about the 'seetry' that they sing. I can't really translate it in a way that would convey how hilarious it is.
I also had a super good Sabbath this week. Relief Society is especially great here. We had a phenomenal speaker come - Sis. Doxey from the RS general board.. She spoke about the grand and powerful nature of Relief Society. It is a marvelous, magnificent sisterhood. It made me remember a lot of tender moments I've had in Relief Society this last year, but it mostly made me think about, Mom, and what a loving example you've been to me. I thought when I went off to college that I was finally 'doing it on my own.' But that wasn't true. I always had my Mom and Dad to turn to. I could always counsel with you when I didn't feel very strong or independent anymore. Here, it's a little different. I often yearn to counsel with you both - to tell you what's happening, what I'm feeling, and ask what you think I should do. I just want to tell you how grateful I am for the wisdom, and love, and counsel you've given me over the last 21 years. When I feel confused and stretched and a little lost sometimes, I'm learning to turn wholly to my Heavenly Father and His Son. You taught me how to do that. Thanks, Mom and Dad. Not being able to talk with the people I love is definitely a little sad sometimes, but I can't believe the effect it's had on my prayers. The people I think and worry about, I plead with Heavenly Father and He promises to take care of them as my mind and my work must be somewhere else right now. We are very much workikng together these days. Whenever something comes up, I pray and ask, "Ok Father, what should we do?" I feel Him very near.
Want to know something else cool? Since I've been here 3 weeks now, I've seen multiple groups of missionaries I arrived with, leave already. On my first day here, the MTC welcomed about 27 missionaries from Japan who would receive training and then return to their country to serve. These 20 something missionaries sang a farewell musical number in our special Sunday night fireside. Oh, wow. I felt like I was transported to some magical place. I'll never forget that moment. Those missionaries are going to work miracles!
Ah, there's definitely many momments of the day when all I'm thinking is "Am I going to choose between the tater tot casserole or the thing over there that looks more like food?" However, there are many special moments that set the tone for this whole experience. I'll never forget the moment I stood up to hug friends after I opened my mission call, and I saw a vision of myself walking on the streets of Prague. Tears started to come as I saw that brief view of a companion next to me, Prague in front of me, my missionary shoes beneath me, and a Book of Mormon in my hands. I'm so excited. My teachers will probably tell you I'm a little too excited. However, I can hardly wait to walk in His shoes, to spread His love,and to gather His sheep. As I sat in the temple last week with my companions, doing sealings for the first time, I felt His love for each one of us. The gospel is true and it is His. I know that with all of my heart.
Sestra Folsom (right)-going to Poland.