Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Week 8 in the MTC

I got my flight plans!! Huge deal in the MTC!! We are leaving on Tuesday, July 27. We are split up into three groups and my group leaves at 12:25 pm. We fly into Dallas and then London and then Rome. Ahhhh!!! It's real now!!!
Other exciting news, Matteo is getting baptized at the end of the month! Wohoo!
Today we were able to go clean the temple because the temple is closed for cleaning for the month. What did I get to do?? Um, put together a chandelier in the sealing room. Yes, that is right. The chandelier cost more than my mission and me and one other worker put it together, polishing one crystal at a time and adding it to the chandelier. Amazing. The time and care that goes into the temple is incredible, of course symbolizing our love and respect for God.
I think I will just run through some of the things I've learned here in the MTC. Some of this may sound familiar, but these are my MTC "themes"; the things that changed the way I act or view life or the gospel.
1. One thing I learned early on is that external validation is never enough. We MUST seek our affirmation from our Father in Heaven, He is the only one who counts and will lead us in the right way. This has hit me so hard while I have been here, the problems of comparing and finding success from other people's failure. Life is so competitive, it is so much this way but that is not how we can be happy.
2. Everything is a gift from God. Everything we have. I've spent my entire life feeling entitled to blessings, but I am finally learning that I am entitled to very little. Rather, everything is a gift and we must have gratitude for it
3. The plan of God is a merciful plan. Everything is motivated by His love and desire for us to succeed. How wonderful!
4. I will be a valiant missionary. I choose to no longer feel disappointed or weighed down by doubts. Not anymore
5. This is God's work, we are merely helping in it. He could easily accomplish this without us but chooses to let us help so we can be benefited. And we must give everything we can! Don't just let him take over because He can. He will take over through someone else. Do all that we are able if we want to benefit!
6. The Spirit of God is real and necessary for conversion. We have authority as missionaries and can have this power through the Spirit. I have felt it.
7. The Book of Mormon truly is a miracle, a tangible miracle that we can touch and hold and test out for ourselves. It teaches us of the gospel of Jesus Christ and convinces us to follow it
8. The gift of tongues is real. I've seen it in others and I have seen it in myself. I have learned much faster than ever before, even in other "immersion" settings
9. This gospel is simple. It is faith, repentance, baptism, enduring to the end. Really, it is simple and we have our Savior as our example. Wonderful.

Love you all! Thanks for all the letters and packages! I am excited and nervous of course. Ready? Who knows. Italy here I come!

Sorella Askew

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