This week went by really fast again. Last Sunday was cool because some people from our ward saw us walking to church and offered us a ride. We’re actually making new friends! Yeah! Monday’s highlight was ward Family Home Evening. Because there are so many people here, we split up into groups and have FHE. At ours, we learned how to decorate cupcakes the fancy way and it was actually really fun. I only wish there were more cupcakes to eat, but regardless, it was super fun to get to know our neighbors! There are so many new people we meet all the time, I got to pondering, what is a real lasting friendship? And what does it mean to be a true friend? So many people we meet, we only ever see a handful of times, so what does it mean to have a real lasting friendship? Thoughts?
This past week was a bit academically hard for us. The kind of stress that comes from wanting to do good, and trying, but not grasping knowledge or performing exceptionally well on tests and get to you. We try to do really well, but sometimes just don’t quite make it. It’s important to realize that despite all that happens, our Heavenly Father has a plan for us that, as we continue to strive to follow Christ, will gradually be revealed to us. Today in church, our Sunday school lesson was on recognizing the Spirit. It was such a powerful lesson! Our teacher shared one of Elder Bednar’s videos on revelation. It came to me that a lot of times we really expect ourselves to be able to receive answers and know exactly what we’re supposed to do. But, even for a member of the Quorum of Twelve apostles, it’s more like moving through fog or a sunrise, so for us, surely we shouldn’t expect too much!
In my Physics class, our professor opened up class with a scripture. D&Covenants 109:7 “And as all have not faith, seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom”. She said, someone of you are doing great in the class, and some of you aren’t. The class grades ranged from 20%-100% with the majority in the %70s. She said some of us may not have faith, or a knowledge of physics, but those who do can help! She spent the first part of class giving a motivational speech and having those who felt like they understood move and sit by those who didn’t. I thought it was way cool that the professor would care that much about the students and the motivation they gave was much needed. Also, pigs do fly!
This past week or so, I’ve put off applying for a teaching position at the MTC for a long time, but I finally did it! I don’t think I’ve been so nervous for a teaching appointment before. A tip for those wanting to apply: the people there are all so incredibly friendly and welcoming, don’t be nervous! The ten minutes of teaching goes by incredibly fast. Plan to just share a little and a commitment to give and let them do the talking/learning. We’ll find out the results of my interview in around two weeks.
Institute this week was on repentance and teachings of modern day prophets. It was a really great lesson and discussion, also another great opportunity to continue to build friendships and get to know people. I was able to get a ride with a few people from our ward and get to know a bit better. Repentance is actually a theme that I’ve noticed throughout this past week. My Saturday was a day we didn’t have classes, but it was probably the busiest day of the week!
I went out with RDH again and made some new friends! I ended up carpooling with some other people who were also freshman and pretty cool. We all worked together to help build these houses. We had to unbury a lot of large tarp-blankets that had been laid down for pouring concrete for drive ways. These tarps were buried under snow and we had to do a lot of work to get them unburied. We realized that if all of us pulled on the tarps at the same time, even though there may have been some snow left that we didn’t clear off, we were able to pull and slide the tarps away where we could dump the snow. Teamwork really makes things easier!
After that, we went to a session in the temple. We went for endowments, but ended up doing sealings. It’s always such an AMAZING experience to get to do temple work. You can really feel the Spirit and everything things to be put into perspective in the temple. Having been switching from sealings to endowments week to week, I’ve really noticed even more how important the family is and how greatly we’re blessed to have such ordinances such as sealings. Not must marriages, no. But eternal family Sealings.
Afterwards, we went shopping, did homework, and went to my first BYU Men’s Volleyball game. I ate my first cougar tail which was a two-foot long maple donut! So good, and so much sugar! Usually you just get them to share, but because it was my first, I was told I had to try to eat it myself, which I did and am mildly proud of. BYU won and it was actually a really great time! We said next time we’d just need to try and invite other people to go, too.
This is already so long, but one last thing I learned about repentance. We can change. On the nice peaceful walk back home from RHD, I re-listened to the song Second Hand Heart by Ben Haenow. I realized it was such a great song about change. I’ve been thinking about much I’d like to change, and we really can if we just try everyday. We can repent and be better. I thought so much about how badly I wanted, needed, to be different. Grow, become, develop, improve, progress, mature, learn – that’s why we’re here in this life and we can do it. On the way back from the temple, I thought about this again, but about missions. Guess what? The Lord didn’t send me, doesn’t send us, all over the world for 18 months to 2 years to just teach the Gospel. He most definitely sends them to change. To learn to grow, to repent. To finish serving a two-year mission and say you’ve been successful, you really can’t ever stop serving. That’s our purpose here and the conclusion I came to in the temple, that we need to serve. As much as we can gain from a career, expertise in a field, a family, we do so in order to serve and contribute back. I have to write a scholarship essay and that’s what I wrote it on. What motivates us to serve. It’s something I’m relearning time and time again. We went to a tennis match a few days ago, and on the way back, I talked to a stranger I bet along the way. I got to know him and talk to him. It was really easy and felt genuine to just talk to someone. Service and meeting new people are actually really easy and I’m going to make it a goal to do it more! I hope you had a great week!