12:19 PM (10 minutes ago)
Greetings from the MTC!!
This week was a wild one. From last Monday till I was suffering from allergies. The snow started melting and was washed away when it rained revealing the trees and plants and all the pollen was released to wreak havoc on peoples such as myself with poor immune systems. It really impaired my ability to study, so I took some Benadryl. That helped out a little with my allergies but also impaired my ability to study because it made me sleep during class and study time. My teachers were really nice though! They didn't get angry or anything. But unfortunately because I was so impaired I'm more behind in my studying than most others in my district. Prayers on my behalf would be more than welcome!
We continued our lessons with our investigator Pii Boy. We taught him about baptism and invited him to be baptized but he just wasn't sure. The next day I had the thought to have him read Mosiah 18:8-10. He did so, and I asked him what the Prophet Alma taught about Baptism. He said people who have a desire to follow Christ shouldn't have anything against baptism. I asked him how he would apply these teachings into his life. He said he would be baptized! My companions and I were so happy. But then he told us he was leaving to Bangkok and wouldn't be able to meet with us anymore. Oh well.
The very next day, while we were in class, who should walk in but Pii Boy! It turned out he just pretending to be our investigator the whole time and was really our 3rd MTC Teacher - Brother Tirrell. But he will always be Pii Boy to me. :)
Another trial that hit me this week: in reviewing the rules of the Missionary handbook and learning more about valuable resources of strength and comfort for Missionaries I began to feel real guilty over my failures and shortcomings as the Ward Mission Leader of 3rd Ward. I spoke with Pii Boy (Brother Tirrell) and my Branch President about this. They are both amazing people who gave me so much guidance and comfort. Pii Boy told me I shouldn't worry about the actions of other people. He told me when I didn't know he was only pretending to be an investigator he loved how I taught him with love, that love is really how Missionaries need to teach their lessons. He told me not to worry about falling short in the language because of my inability to study this week. He said the language will come with time, that when he was learning it in the MTC for his Mission that even he wasn't very good at it and felt real bad. He said to seek first the kingdom of God and then we'll be blessed for it.
President Jackson taught me we can only be as good as we can be, that we will always continually strive to be better. He said he can tell I'm a sensitive person and that because I care about my actions as Ward Mission Leader and the missionaries back home it tells him a lot about me. He says I'll be able to use my experiences, both bad and good, to instruct missionaries in the field. I sure hope he's right.
This week we got our Japanese Encephalitis immunization part 1, and guess what! Turns out they aren't making us pay the 500 dollars it costs to get both immunizations! It's totally free! That made me so happy.
we had a devotional where the speaker asked recent converts from the last 2 years get up and bear their testimonies. Elder Eduardo Espinoza Pena was among them. His testimony was so powerful about the moment he knew when he needed to be baptized. He left this morning for Argentina. Our closing hymn for the devotional yesterday was "God be with you till we meet again." He's going to do so well and touch the hearts of so many people in Argentina along with our friend Elder Kauffman. :)
Also we got to watch the movie Legacy. I really recommend it to anyone who hasn't seen it! In it there is a scene where a young adult who was just baptized asked the prophet Joseph Smith what he wanted him to do. Joseph Smith said: "Help us to build a temple. Here on this very ground." That feels like what my call is to Thailand, to help them get a temple built in their country. Another quote: "Ye shall know them by their fruits. Here are their fruits. (The Book of Mormon.) Another testament confirming what every Christian yearns to know. That Jesus Christ is the son of God." I invite all my friends everywhere, Mormon or not, to read from the Book of Mormon. It is an incredible source of comfort and truth!
I hope all is well in Tucson! Elder Mark Wager
120 - Galaxy in our residence room!
121 - Provo Temple!