Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Week 4 Message Home

Oi family! Como vao voces?  

The MTC just keeps getting better! Is that even possible?? I don't know, but I guess so. I love being a missionary. Sorry, Mom... I don't think I'm ever coming home.
So last Tuesday! Devotional: Gerald N. Lund (former general authority) talked about receiving revelation. Three key points I want to share with you:
1. What we receive is FAR more important than how we receive it, or when it comes.  
2. "Always expecting the spectacular, many will miss the constant flow of revelation". Ah so true, don't expect a vision like Joseph Smith. Remember that Laman and Lemuel saw angels - and that didn't help them.
3. D&C 85:6 characterizes the Holy Ghost as a still, small voice that whispers. Lund asked, "How can a voice be still?" His answer: It is a "still" voice because you don't HEAR it, you FEEL it. Otimo! Que legal!
He also said it should and will take faith to follow the promptings. Remember this when you are wondering if your prompting is coming from you or Heavenly Father.
I also loved a quote he shared by Neil A. Maxwell, which said, "It is not enough that we say 'thy will be done'... we must also be willing to say 'thy time be done'."
I really love this idea. I have been learning a lot about patience here in the MTC. Patience with my VISA, patience with the language, patience with myself. It doesn't come easily - for none of the attributes of Christ do... but developing these characteristics will ALWAYS be worth it - no matter the cost.
On Sunday, Mary Ellen Edmunds talked to us in Relief Society, and I have two things I'd like to share from her talk:
"No one was foreordained to fail. He [Heavenly Father] will move Heaven and Earth to help you." But may I add, that this help comes IF and WHEN we seek it.
Also, "You learn more from those you teach than those you teach learn from you." This is true. It really is. Right now we are teaching Steven and Guilherme. And I know that I have learned far more about missionary work and the gospel of Jesus Christ than I have taught either of them in any of our lessons. I guess I'm realizing that Missionary Work isn't so much about teaching as it is about learning. This is so cool to me!
Ok! So I mentioned my investigators. Steven is our English investigator. We taught him about the Plan of Salvation last week and we asked him if "when he knew these things were true, he would follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized". He accepted! We are thrilled. Guilherme is our Portuguese- speaking investigator. We have another lesson with him tomorrow, and I will let you know how it goes. He is definitely teaching us how important it is to "teach people, not lessons". My companion and I are realizing we don't understand what he is looking for... so we are going to make that our first priority tomorrow, as it should have been, already.
Sunday night we had the Director of Church media talk to us. He told us that 44% of missionaries here at the MTC are sisters! What??? Crazy! I didn't realize it was that high. That is amazing! His message was about Heavenly Father hastening his work, and he showed us a lot of new advertisements and campaigns the church is doing- Check out New York and London! It is amazing. He also talked about Revelation 12:11. He said, "We all have already overcome Satan with our faith. We are only helping people rediscover a faith that is ALREADY there! I love that!  
Sister Woodland, a sister in our district, got her VISA last week, and she left for Brazil this morning! Our district is having really good luck with VISAS. However, I'm sure I will get a re-assignment before I get to Brazil. But that is A-OK with me! I'm stoked! It doesn't matter to me where I go, because I plan to share the gospel everywhere before I die! ;) Ha Ok, that's a dream. But it's also the plan! On a side note: So great to hear about all of the new mission calls and those thinking of starting their papers!  Missionary work is awesome, and you will love it!
In closing I want to share 3 amazing scriptures I've found recently. If you have a chance, look them up, because they are awesome!
1) 2 Nephi 33:3-4. This is like the coolest missionary scripture ever. I love it.
2) Mosiah 24:16. I testify that faith can heal you! I testify that God will comfort you and lift the burdens from your back, as you trust Him, rely on Him, and ask Him to help you.
3) Alma 13:22-26. I specifically LOVE verse 25. Lately I find myself thinking more and more about the Second Coming, and I wish every day that He, our beloved Savior, would come. I so badly want to see the day of His reign on Earth. I thought it was SO neat to hear Alma say that too, "Would to God that it might be in my day..." but then he continues, that he will find joy in the Lord's timing. Yet again, I am learning patience!
Well, this letter is short this week. Maybe that will be refreshing for all you who read these posts, anyway. But, of course, I want to end with my testimony.
I know without any doubt in this world that this gospel is true. I know that Christ will come again, and I cannot wait for that day. I know that as you focus your life on the Savior-  your life will change in ways you had never before imagined. I know that God will not change you, but He will provide opportunities to change. Embrace these opportunities, for though they will challenge you, they will bless you in every way you stand in need of. I know that families are eternal, and I am amazed by our perfect God who loves us enough to allow that to be possible. I love my family, and I am so grateful to know that I will never lose them. I know that God speaks to us today, through a Prophet, Thomas S. Monson. He does so because He LOVES US. But, He also does so because He has a plan for us. I know that God's plan is a perfect plan, and that we need to have the faith to not only accept His will, but His timing.  I know that God loves His missionaries, because I have seen Him bless them- here in the MTC, in the field, and all over the world. For those of you considering the opportunity to serve the Lord, this is my promise to you: You will never regret that decision, and it will bless your life, throughout this life, and on into the life to come. I love being a missionary- I have never had a greater calling or opportunity in my life. It is hard. Every day is hard. But EVERY DAY is worth it. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ, and though I am so far from who I am supposed to be, I am grateful for a patient Heavenly Father who allows me to become more Christ-like every day, with small and consistent efforts. I pray for you, and hope that God may bless you with every blessing you stand in need of. Pray, and never stop praying, because your Father wants to hear from you. He loves you. This I know and testify. I love being a missionary. I am so grateful for your support. You mean the world to me.
Eu amo voces!
Con muito amor,
Sister Seal

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