Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Week 3

On Mon, Feb 14, 2011 at 10:56 AM, Adrianna Randall <adrianna.randall@myldsmail.net> wrote:

It's so good to hear from you and those from Arizona! I certainly do miss everyone! The time has just flown by! I haven't used my debit card at all, but I plan to use it at the airport for luggage. And, I fly out on Wednesday, not Tuesday. I was wrong. So a couple more days.
Today we went to the temple early and did initiatories and then did an endowment session--for a change our whole district was in one session! It was great. The temple is such a place of peace! All right, I have a list of a few things to tell you, so yeah.
Mom, do you think you could check the internet and see if you can find fleece lined tights? They are a bit pricey..so just a pair or two would work. I just want to stay warm. Someone told me they heard of sisters buying extra big tights and wearing tights over sweatpants! Surely it won't be that cold...right?
There have been people from church news here this week. They were videoing and taking pictures. The videos will be used in between confrences for a special clip about the MTC. The pictures will be in deseret news. There should be a picture of me carrying my tray to put away at lunch. Dont be surprised when it says that I'm from Nebraska! So, keep your eyes open! :D
I got the valentines! It was sweet! And no worries, if I have anything negative to say, that I really need to say, I'll say it. But we are so blessed and so many good things happening that I can't waste my prescious 30 minutes typing about the negative! Life is wonderful!
We taught Bregita (I think I told you about the question she asked about living with God). Turns out that we misunderstood our instructors and she is a less active and she decided to play along the 1st time. The 2nd time she told us she was less active. She is one stubborn woman. She finally agreed to come to church. During that lesson I truly felt the Spirit working through me and I felt a special sort of love for her, no matter how frustrating she was. I shared an experience and testified of the truthfulness of the gospel. She then asked how old I was and she told me that I was older than 21. Not in years...but yeah. So, I apparently look roughtly 18 and act older than 21! I wonder how old I am in the eternities! ;)
It's a really cool experience when you feel the Spirit teaching through you. You know that you are not in control of this lesson. It's really incredible. The Spirit is the true teacher.
Let's see. For Sacrament meeting they tell everyone the topic and we all have to prepare a 3-5 minute talk. Then during sacrament meeting they select 2 missionaries to talk. Well, Saturday evening I wrote my talk. Sunday morning after talking with President Meyers I got the impression that I should rewrite my talk, and that I'd be giving it. Sure enough, I got called up. One of the members of the branch presidency said that I had been a target for awhile...whatever that means. The talk went well. Our district (because we are leaving) did a musical number and sang I Know that My Redeemer Lives. We sang a Capella. It was BEATIFUL. The Spirit was SO strong. People were in tears and it was hard not to cry. It was absolutely amazing. We have learned so much, especially in the last few days. It's impossible to even try to tell you.
the MTC President, Pres. Brown, is continually encouraging us to study the doctrine of Christ and understand how that relates to our purpose as missionaries. (Our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them to receive the restored gospel through Faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the End.) We are to recite that often. It's incredible how often those topics are in the scriptures. It's all over the place!! It's really great.
I'm excited to leave, but not. It's safe here! We can't screw investigators up! Out there...well it's scary out there! Out there, we are REAL missionaries ;) and people RECOGNIZE and Respect us as such. It's kind of a big deal. Alright, so, we leave the MTC at 5am. Which means we should arrive at the airport around 6:30, plus getting through security. Sooo I can't call until we are through security I think. I don't know what time it will be. I will try to call, but it won't be until after 7 your time. sorry!
Oh, Miranda! I have a little request. One of the Elder's in our district, Elder Waite doesn't receive any letters. He's a good kid with a strong testimony. He was a football player. Will you write him? He is in my mission, so it's the same address as me. It's Elder Tyler Waite. Anyway. It hink that is about all I've got! Life is great. I'm excited to get out and get to work. I hope all is well. I'm both sad and happy for the passing of Sister Cain. She's a sweet sweet lady.
I hope all works out with the money thing. I love you all! Good luck with everything you are involved in!!
Love ya,
Sister Randall! <3

Week 2

On Mon, Feb 7, 2011 at 10:40 AM, Adrianna Randall <adrianna.randall@myldsmail.net> wrote:

Hey! Yeah, I had some extra time while doing laundry and Sister Murray said she was gonna send home her schedule so that they could see what we are doing. So, I stole her idea. I am finally getting to the point that I have energy during most of the day. 3 hour class blocks can put you to sleep FAST. Anyway, I want to tell you about the lessons we have been teaching. We have 2 different teachers and each of them take the roll of an investigator they taught on their missions. So, we teach them. We have Becca and Prashont.
When we first taught Becca she refused to pray and ask God if what we were teaching was true. She said that it is prideful to ask God for anything and that if we have faith He already knows what we need. It was really hard to get her to do it, but we finally got her to pray two visits ago. On our 2nd visit she said that while reading the scriptures she kept getting the impression that it really only made sense for God and Christ to be two separate beings. That was SO exciting. We went into one of our visits feeling scattered and unprepared. We had tried to find time to get things ready, but we spent a lot of time at the Doctor's with Sister Xidis. (She is now completely better!!!) So, before we went to teach Becca we prayed hard for the Spirit and for direction. This was the visit that Becca told us that she agreed to pray. The following visit she said she felt good and agreed if she truly felt like she was receiving this answer from God that she would get baptized!! The Spirit was strong! I got to share the restoration and recite the 1st Vision. It was incredible. It's beyond description!
Prashont has been difficult and he is really hard to describe. He came wanting us to answer questions about the bible. So, instead of asking him his questions we told him that we believed that our message and the Book of Mormon would answer those questions and we continued to teach. The other companions actually asked him his questions and after finding out his questions we are SO grateful we skipped over that. They aren't questions that are pertinent to salvation and it was essentially wasted time. In our last visit we felt like he was totally grasping everything, but then he told us he felt like he had received an answer that this gospel was true and we set him to a baptismal date. We weren't expecting this or even prepared for that! He then asked how he could prepared. One of the sisters gave an answer about us continuing to teach and help him. I had a thought to teach the Commandments (especially the Word of Wisdom because we at least know he drinks coffee). However, we had never studied that lesson and I was thinking, if I'm feeling this, they have to be too. So, sister Murray continued on with what we had planned. Then Brother Sakamaki (Now not acting as Prashant) stopped us and asked us what we needed to do, gave us a few minutes to collect ourselves, then we started over. We taught the Word of Wisdom and left him with a committment. It went well, but it's just hard for us to really understand what he is thinking.
We also do things call TRC. We go in and teach people who may be members, or investigators, or less actives. So, we never know. Our first time going we had a girl from China. Aaaand she didn't have a belief in God, so we weren't sure what to do, but we talked about God, his nature, how we have seen Him in our lives and that he loves us. Thankfully she isn't our progressing investigator and we are pretty certain she is a member.
We then taught a woman named Bregita. She has no or little belief in God either, but knows some. We began teaching the 1st lesson. Then, she asked us a most horrific question! she said, "Yes or no? If I live a good life, but don't join your church, can I live with God?" We were all frozen. We knew the answer but wanted to be able to explain. Finally after probably 30 seconds of silence Sister Murray said "No." She wouldn't let us explain further and told us that that was very exclusive. Then she said "Your church believes so strongly that they have what you need to live with God that you can so confidently say that?" We told her yes. Then she told us that she was very curious now and that she was impressed that 3 young girls like ourselves could strongly believe that. She told us she could tell we believed it and she wanted to know more about Joseph Smith. We all thought we were about to get kicked out, but it turned around! It was incredible.
We have all been learning about following the promptings of the Spirit and realizing that sometimes we don't realize it's the Spirit prompting us, but we need to act on the ideas that are good. I was truly humbled after Brother Sakamaki stopped us and told us we needed to teach the commandments. Well, he didn't straight up say that, but he helped us out. We have learned so much. It's crazy how fast time is going now. The days are still long and the weeks are short. It's wonderful and the Spirit is so strong.
I still have tons to say and ten minutes to say it. Lucky that you are the only ones that email me! We have our flight plans. We leave A week from tomorrow. So Tuesday. We leave here at 5 AM and we fly out at 8:15ish. We will arrive in Minneapolis I think around noon or so. I'm not totally sure. I believe we are allowed to call home if we have the chance. So, if you want, I'll get a calling card and call home. Let me know before Monday.
Several people in my district are really struggling. Elder Marks grandpa is about to die from cancer. The last thing his grandpa said to him was to serve a mission, and pray when things get hard. Elder McAbee has only 50 dollars left for his mission. That won't even cover luggage at the airport. He is a convert and was not at all supported by any family members to come on this mission. He doesn't know his dad, and no one else supports him. It's really sad. I think we are going to try to, as a district, each give about 5 dollars. That will get him a bit farther. It's really sad.
We had Mission Conference yesterday. If you want an idea for scripture study here is what we were asked to study:
2 Ne 31
2 Ne 32
2 Ne 33
3 Ne 11 (very carefully)
3 Ne 9: 20-22
3 N3 27: 13-20
This is the Doctrine of Christ. After reading it we are supposed to kneel in prayer and ask if these things are true. So, you might could do that as a family :)
We have learned so much and I can't even tell you all about it. It's been great. I've stayed healthy. We have 3 sisters coming into our zone this week, which means that Wednesday night I help with orientation and Thursday night as well. It will be nice to have more than just us 3 sisters for one Sunday! I've stayed busy. I play piano on Sunday, I have a meeting on Turesday night as coordinating sister.... yeah. Too much to say. We went to the temple this morning, it was absolutely wonderful.
I wish I had words to describe. :) I hope all is well. I hope Minnesota is as bad as what you have :S Buuut it's Minnesota. haha. Well, I'm about out of time. I love you all. I hope you are doing great! (And it's not tooooo bad to get a letter during the week. The week gets long when there aren't any letters coming in! I got a card from Wesley and a letter from Rocio this week. So, that was nice! Love you!
Sister Randall

Friday, February 4, 2011

MTC - Week 1

It's been so crazy! I am in the new Pilot program that will take full affect in probably May. We have already taught 2 lessons and will have taught 22 by the end of our 3 weeks. SOOOOO BUSY! On Thursday they asked us to have Doctrince and Covenants 4, Our Purpose, The 1st Vision (Just 3 sentences of Joseph's own words), the first 8 principles of the first lesson, and it seems like something else... but we were supposed to have it all memorized by Sunday and have read the white handbook. I didn't think I could do it--I have always been terrible at memorizing. We were in one of the buildings and I was trying and trying and trying to get everything memorized! I stopped and saw a picture of Christ walking on the water toward the boat (This is like the most beautiful picture EVER) and I remembered Peter and how when he doubted he began to sink. So, I put my faith in Christ and...I DID IT! That was on Saturday. Ok, let's start at the beginning.
I'm in a tri-panionship with Sister Xidid (ex-itis) and Sister Murray. They are both great. They both live here in Utah, but Sister Xidis used to live in Mesa. Friday we got asked to come to the front desk and were told that there was a sister who had been in isolation for a week with the flu and missed her departure date and her district left her. So, we now have a fourth sister until tomorrow. She leaves to go to Canada. (Wow this emailing thing is stressful. We only have 30 minutes and then it shuts down!) We will be both sad and happy to have her go. She's way ahead of us and in a way it is slowing down our learning process. But we have also learned so much from her.
Oh, I was called as the coordinating sister in our zone. Which is sort of like a relief society president but not really. I basically keep track of the Sisters and report on how they are doing. I also welcome new sisters and give them a tour of the residence hall and do some orientation things. Sadly, we are getting no new sisters this week. My companions and I are the only sisters in our zone. Our district is...well full of 19 year old boys. We are all either going to Minneapolis Minnesota or going to D.C. South. All English speaking. We stay so busy and we are all so exhausted! I was able to see a friend from BYU-I (she leaves tomorrow), I saw two of my friends from Arizona and a couple other people I recognized from BYU-I.
I think to basically sum up everything that has happend-- It has been SOO hard yet so rewarding. We are seeing the blessings everyday. We were so grateful to have Sunday come. It was relaxing, even though we still stayed busy. Sister Murray came to the MTC with a cold and Sister Xidis had Bronchitis right before she came. She's still been coughing. Sister Murray is better. On Saturday I had to accompany Sister Xidis off campus to an Insta care and then to a pharmacy (which all in all took about 4 hours). It was weird to be away from the MTC. Here it's normal to be a missionary but away it's not so normal! It was a fun experience, although we missed our 3 hour class and a workshop.
I'm trying to stay healthy, I had to get the flu shot, they made it required the day after I got here. I wasn't too excited about that. Really we have just stayed super busy. It takes forever to fall asleep and morning comes way too quickly and the showers feel like someone is melting ice on you if you choose the wrong one. For whatever reason I can't seem to get the one that gives you warm water. Maybe I'll have it figured out by the end of 3 weeks! Haha. Well, what can I say? My showers only last a couple minutes. Long enough to wash my hair and a quick wash of the body and then it's OUT!