I had an awesome week at the MTC again and had a lot of really great experiences. I wont be able to get them all out because one, its hard to remember everything,and two i dont have enough time to write too much, but i'll see what i can do. I appreciate all of the letters and packages that i got from everyone. It is always really nice to read and find out how you are all doing. It sounds like colton and austin had fun at their camps and that summer is continuing on without me. What merit badges did austin do? I am glad that you are all staying busy and having fun with the nice weather. It has been nice weather here as well, but i'm inside for 95% of the day other than walking to the cafeteria, or to walk to the soccer field.
You asked to explain my day a little better. I thought i explained it pretty well, but i cant remember so i'll do it again. It is different everyday, but i have the same things just at different times. I wake up at 615 620 everyday, then i either have personal study time in my class or gym until breakfast at 815. Then i usually go to class with one of my teachers. Sister Rivas is hawaiian and went on a mission to honduras and speaks really great spanish and english and some hawiian too. She is leaving at the end of this week though because she is going to be having a little baby boy. She took a little while to warm up to us, but she has been a ton of fun lately, but still wont speak any english to us. Our other teacher is Brother Mcpherson. We learned this week that he converted to the church when he was 18. He also served his mission in Honduras and he knows a ton about the gospel. Our new teacher that we are getting went on her mission to spain, meaning she speaks with a theta which is kind of annoying. that means she says hacer like hather. Hopefully we'll get used to it, and she'll try to change a little too. She has taught a few short lessons and seems really excited about teaching us and she has some good methods of teaching as well. I'm going to stop doing to time by time thing now becasue it changes. We usually have about 6 hours of class a day, and 4ish hours of MDT (missionary directed time or study time), one hour of gym, 2 hours of our meals, and then we have an hour or so devotional some nights. Those times arent exact but it gives you a rough estimate. We then are back in our rooms at 930 and i usually get ready for bed, write in my journal, and then am in bed a little before 1030. Though i'm in bed that early, i'm still trying to adjust and i just have a lot going through my head at night that its hard to fall asleep before like 1130, but hopefully i'll adjust cause i need the sleep!
This week was great and i'll share a few highlights. The main highlight would be that this was the first week taht we got to teach in the TRC. That is where we basically go and do role plays and teach people. We had to do 3 contacts in spanish and set up appointments to meet with them in spanish, then we started to teach the first lesson to the last person in spanish, then we had to ask if we could continue in english and then teach the lesson. The fist person we contacted was a native person from ecuador i think. She spoke english too, but her spanish was so fast and with her accent it was really hard to understand her. I didnt understand some of the things, and if my companion didnt either, we would have to aske her to say it agian. It was a nice eye opener that we need to really work hard on the language because that is what it is going to be like all the time in mexico in 2 to 3 months depending on visa stuff. I'm guessing its going to be more around 3, but maybe not. after the contacts we had a really great expericence with the lesson that we taught. We taught the first discussion and i had a lot of opportunities to give my testimony of many things. the best part of the lesson though i thought for me was when i got to bear my testimony about the atonement. The atonement is something that i am very greatful for. I am forever in debt to the savior for suffering for my sins. After i read isaiah 53:3-6 to the investigator i bore my testimony to him and the spirit was so strong in the room. Overal it was a great experience and i'm so excited to do it for real. Afterwords the investigator, who was really a byu student who had gone on a mission to mexico city told us that we did a great job and that he felt the spirit and enjoyed out lesson.
Class and studying has been great this week. i have been able to learn a lot from the scriptures and am learning to really look deep into them. There are so many little things that you dont pick up when you just read the book. I have been trying to read slowly and highlight things that stick out to me and write down my impressions that i get in the margines. IT has helped me to really focus and make the best use out of my time. Spanish wise things are gettting a litttle more fluid. We havent done much more in class, but i am trying to get all of the tenses down adn all of the conjugations of the verbs so taht i can start saying more.
I was able to see josh jones on sunday and a few other times. He seems to be doing great and enjoying the mtc. He is the DL and said he's kind of nervous about it, but i told him not to worry and that he'll do great. He and his companion came and did a door contact to my companion and I, it was good, but it was in english. He'll prob start getting into more spanish soon. I feel like my district is going a lot faster than most which is a good thing.
One funny thing i want to share from class is when a elder in my district asked the teacher if he could just say all the irregular verbs the way he wanted and not pronouns them correctly and the people wouldnt mind. Hermana Rivas responded by writting a scripture on the board. Judges 12:4-6. you should all look it up on google fast cause its really funny, but basically it talks about how a guy misspronouned a word and the people he talked to kiled him and a lot more people. It was funny in the situation that my teacher used it in, but was kind of scary for us., not that i think were going to be killed for mis pronouncing but just that its scary to have to only speak spanish.
Okay i have 5 minutes for my spiritual message so if i cut it short i'm sorry. Last night i was writing in my journal and it was quite and i could hear the second hand on my watch ticking. I had to stop writting and i thought about the significance of time. Time is a blessing that heavenly father has given us. As im on a mission, I'm on the Lords time. In perspective the two years that i will be here and the life that we have on this earth is not very much time at all, but is all too important in determining the rest of eternity. I had a realization that i needed to always use my time (the lords time now) the best that I can. If i waste time, i miss the chance to better myself and potentially i miss out on being able to help that one extra person that extra little bit. If ye are prepared ye shall not fear. I am going to really try to focus this week and the rest of my mission and to never waste the Lords time that i have.
Alright thats all i have time for. I have about a minute left. I just want to say how much I love and appreciate all of you. You are all such great examples to me in my life. Thank you for all of the letters and packages that you have all sent to me. It really does mean a lot to get those things and i really appreciate it. The MTC is so amazing and the spirit is so strong here. I love this gospel so much and i own everything to it. I hope taht you all can do something to try and better yourself this week, and i hope to hear from you soon. I love you all!
Elder Bradley Smith