Week 4 in the MTC

Hola!!

To begin, I have come to love the name Marie. It seems that every time I go to the temple I always am doing work for at least one Marie. I love that name and I hold it very dear and close to my heart.

Guess what? Hermana Van Boerum and I are the new Sister Training Leaders because the older district left! Crazy! We are not he babies anymore! We are the old women!! haha. We have a lot to learn and we are excited to be able to help. I love Hermana Van Boerum. She is fantastic and awesome. Though we are very different and don’t always agree on things, she is strength to me.
Last Thursday, we had a testimony builder experience. We went to teach our investigator Hector and had planned on teaching about Joseph Smith and the Restoration. But lo and behold, that wasn’t what the Lord had planned for us to teach. We got to asking him about prayer and if he had prayer about our last lesson like we asked him to. He said he hadn’t. I asked why. He said, “I don’t feel worthy.” BOOM. Lesson planned changed. We talked about the atonement and about how pray should not be scary because God is our Father and we are his children. We bore testimony and I shared a personal experience and we testified and testified. But still, we could not get him to pray. We asked him to try prayer and to just talk to our Heavenly Father. He said that he would do it and so we ended the lesson and left. Hermana Van Boerum and I turned and looked at each other and said something to the extent of wow, that wasn’t what we planned. I know that if we prepare and if we pray for help that no matter what is needed to say, God will help us say it.
On Friday morning we got chastised…. Hermano Stevenson called us out on not speaking much spanish outside of lessons and such. It was blatantly true. We all repented in our hearts and for the next 3-4 hours we all spoke straight spanish! It was a cool experience because I found that we all know more than we give ourselves credit for. I am learning to love the Spanish language and learning to use it every day all the time. All of us our more motivated now that we were rebuked and called to repentance. That sounds sort of funny but it’s true! Our whole district is doing mountains more than we were in weeks previous.
The devotionals at the MTC are marvelous. This last Sunday, Richard I. Heaton came and spoke to us. He is some administrator on the high councils of the MTC. He related to us the scripture in Numbers 21:7-9 which talks about the people going to Moses and asking him how they have their sins taken away. The Lord commanded Moses to “make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.” So, essentially, if they would only look upon the serpent they were cleansed and made whole. Brother Heaton went on to show us more than 7 scriptures that say this same thing throughout the Book of Mormon and the Bible. At the end of showing us these scriptures that talk about being healed by looking upon the serpent on the pole, he then showed us a slide of about 8 medical logos. Our minds were blown, because all of them have some sort of serpent on a pole. WOWZER! Every missionary in the room did a small gasp.. Amazing. The symbolism here is that Jesus, when put on the cross, is that serpent that we simple have to look upon and believe that he can heal us. Christ is our healer.
Tuesday Evenings Devotional was by Linda K. Burton, the Relief Society General President, and her husband Craig Burton. Brother Burton spoke about the mantle of our calling as a misisoanry and how when we are set apart and receive the mantle, it is too big. We don’t quite fill out the ‘jacket’ (mantle). But as we strive and work our hardest we will eventually grow into the jacket or mantle. But at the end of our mission, just as we are set apart, we are then released. And that mantle is taken from us, or we take the fitted jacket off. The jacket that we finally have grown into. And that name tag is removed from our chest. It will be the hardest day, because we finally fit. But, though the mantle is taken off, we remain as we have become and the namtag is forever engraved on our hearts. It was an amazing talk.
Sister Burton talked about the “good news” of the gospel. That “God sent his only Begotten Son.” She shared a story of twin brothers, Adam and Aaron. They were young and riding bikes together down a street one day. They were going fast, probably to fast for their young age. Aaron suddenly lost control of his big and he came crashing into the ground. With scratches, bruised and a bleeding head wound, he began crying. His brother Adam threw his bike aside and immediately ran to his brother’s side. He picked his wounded, crying brother upa nd began half carrying him and half dragging him (keep in mind they were the same size) back home. By the time they reached the house, Aarom had subsided crying almost completely. But now, Adam was the one crying. When asked why he was crying he responded, “because Aaron is hurt.” … Christ is our brother. “When we are wounded and have fallen down, Christ will carry us home” as Elder Skousen put it.
I know that Christ is my Savior and his Atoning sacrifice that he made for me. He is my Redeemer. He is my Salvation. And He is my best friend. I know that in times of spiritual or temporal wo, Christ carries me home. The Atonement is real, not only for the sinner but also for the sad and the wounded. For the unfairness of life, it is real. Jesus paid for it all.
I am striving to do my best and to become more like my Savior. I am also, striving to become more like the stripling warriors who I just finished reading about in Alma. For “they are exceedingly valiant for courage, and also for strength and activity; but behold this was not all — they were men who were true at all times in whatsoever thing they were entrusted”.
Thank you all for the support! I love you and pray for you!!!
I’ll See You Soon Then,
Hermana Houston
It SNOWED this week

It SNOWED this week

Hermano Stephenson's Birthday. He is literally that awkward

Hermano Stephenson’s Birthday. He is literally that awkward

District at the Temple

District at the Temple

Hermana VanBoren and Me at the Temple

Hermana VanBoren and Me at the Temple

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