Hola to Mom, Dad, Amber, Aaron, Wade and Nathan!!!
I sure love you all, and I keep you each individually in my prayers and thoughts multiple times a day. I feel exactly the same as Wade -- I wish you knew EVERY SINGLE detail about being on a mission here in Spain. I wish I could have you here for a day to experience what we experience. I cannot tell you everything, but I try to save up some of my most favorite emotions and experiences to share. Thank you for being so wonderful to send off emails and letters to me!
WADE... how was your birthday?!?! I hope you got my letter.
And DAD! HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you!!!! Did you receive my letter yet? I sure hope you have! Tell me all about your birthdays please!
First off, I am not sure if Wade and I watched the same fireside from Elder Bednar, only available to missionaries, but it was JUST incredible. It was exactly what I needed. Ever since I have been in the MTC I have felt a little unsure about how I feel the spirit in my life. I have been so worried, because I am nothing without the influence of the Lord. I cannot teach others if I do not have the Lord with me. So I felt incredibly inadequate and unsure whether I could accomplish all of these tasks that have been placed in front of me. But this devotional was an answer to my prayers. Elder Bednar´s talk is basically summed up in this quote... "Be a good boy, be a good girl, keep and honor your covenants, keep the commandments of the Lord, press forward in the name of Christ, and your steps will be guided, your mouth will be filled with the utterances of God." I could not contain my happiness when I heard this. Elder Bednar had this to say about wanting to know how the spirit talks to us... DON´T worry about it!!! As long as we are doing those things that we know we should be doing, as long as we are following the example of Christ, we need not worry about if we are following the impressions of the spirit. He said that the most important thing to remember was that we should never be idle. We are worse off if we sit and wait for impressions of the spirit to come, than if we just get to work! It renewed my commitment to get to work and do my best. I do not need to know at that exact moment that I am receiving impressions from the spirit. It is interesting because I look back at many decisions that I have made in my life that led me down the path that I am on now. Many feelings I had at the time were ones that I didn’t realize were straight from the Lord. Looking back now, everything was so divinely planned, unique to me. I did not know at that exact moment that I was following a prompting, but now I know. Each of these experiences led me straight to where I am today. Our Heavenly Father is so aware of each of us! I KNOW this. He will not let us go amiss (Elder Bednar shared this scripture from Doctrine and Covenants section 80... you should find it). He loves us and has a plan for each of us. This is my testimony.
That experience is just a fraction of ALL of the experiences we have the opportunity to have here at the MTC. I wish I could tell them all. I do want to share another, more simple story. The other day, our teacher Maestra Martinez was in our classroom, getting ready to teach us some grammar. But she began to share her testimony with us. She speaks in sweet, broken English, but she is the most genuine person that I know. I want to be JUST like that. It is rare that you meet people like this... so in tune with the spirit and so close to Christ. She told us that right now, we do not represent ourselves. We represent our families and the Lord. That is why my nametag says "Hermana Mather" and "Jesus Christ" in large font. My job as a missionary is to do as the Lord would have me do. I need to be His hands to lift others up and help them to realize the happiness that they can have in this life through the Gospel of Jesus Christ that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints brings. I am His eyes, and His feet, always in search of His children on the earth that are prepared for me to teach. Her testimony was so simple, but so profound. God Lives and being a part of this church literally means that we are to be the Lord´s hands. We are to become more like Christ every day. What a blessing!!
Also! I have been dying to tell you ALL WEEK about this story. Not quite as spiritual, but I know you will enjoy it! hahah. So I had a dream the other night that I was with one of the sisters in my district (sister Nydegger) and for some reason Dad was throwing spiders at us. Do not ask me why I was having these thoughts in my sleep, but it happened. Ha. I have never even been afraid of spiders really, but in my dream, the spider that I thought was dead, landed on me and started crawling all over me!!! Apparently, I screamed SO LOUD and fell out of bed! hahaha. How embarrassing. I was so confused, just sitting on the floor at 4am in the morning. Oh goodness. I was hoping that no one had heard, but the Hermanas in my room asked the next day why someone screamed, and Sister Heims said she looked down after she heard it, and she was so confused because it looked like I was on the floor, kneeling to pray at 4 in the morning. HAHA! So dad, I hope you especially enjoy that! We could not stop laughing all day just unable to believe that had actually happened.
Oh one more funny story! So, a companionship of elders in our district taught a lesson with an investigator. They came back from this lesson looking slightly confused. They said that their investigator had left the lesson for about 5 minutes, then came back saying that we was very "constipado" today. haha they were so confused why he had shared this personal information with them, thinking he said he was "constipated". Ha. This silly word in Spanish actually means "congested" like a congested nose. We all had a great laugh after the teacher came in and had to explain that it wasn´t really what we thought. I have had so many experiences with words that do not quite translate well. Sister Heims and I have had some wonderful laughs! She and I are so similar, it really creeps me out sometimes actually. Ha I love her though.
Well, sorry this is a bit of a short email this week. I love you all. Once again, sorry for the lack of time to reply to everyone. I have been trying. I love you!
NOS VEMOS! HASTA LUEGO!!