I can now officially say that I'm ready to leave the MTC because we finally had a general authority speak at our devotional this week! We had Elder Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles come. Sarah and I met him at the Pasco Airport a few days before I went to the MTC. He's one of my favorites :) Hermana Hansen and I sang in the choir, and it was hilarious when we were singing for the meeting because the camera people who were recording the meeting did a close-up on Hermana Hansen's face at least 3 times. I'm pretty sure they picked the one red-head of the choir and decided to do multiple close-ups on her face for that reason :) So after the devotional the whole zone was saying, "Hermana Hansen! You're famous!" She's never going to live that one down! So the meeting was great!!! Elder Andersen had us sing "happy birthday" to President Monson since his birthday was on Tuesday. Then he gave us a list of 9 things we need to focus on during our mission and throughout our life. The list was:
1. Follow the Prophet
2. Do Your Duty
3. Trust in the Lord. Learn how to be comfortable with the unseen (which is so good for me to focus on . . . remember how I was like 2 hours before you took me to the MTC? I was getting scared because I didn't know what they were going to make me do here!!)
4. Let the Lord shape your back to bear the burdens that are placed upon it. I know that without the Atonement, none of us would measure up to the responsibilites we have in our life. We are imperfect and we have weaknesses. But if we learn to have faith and trust in the Lord, He will make up the difference.
5. SMILE!! Enjoy yourself!!
6. Never ignore a prompting.
7. Love the people you serve
8. Testify of the Propeht Joseph Smith
9. Witness the Power of the Savior. Speak of Him, testify of Him, talk about Him, know about His life, know His teachings, learn to speak of Him, be converted everyday and you will never find a day wasted.
As Elder Andersen was leaving, he waved and sayed "I love you all!" It was sweet :) Look up one of his talks because he is such a good speaker.
This Wednesday we got to host the new missionaries coming in. We had over 500 new missionaries come in this week, but only 66 were sister missionaries. And there were about 67 host sisters. JK :) I got to help a sister going to California find her room and get her things sorted out. Her bags didn't have wheels, so I got a workout :) I also saw Micail Mann!! She's my friend from USU, she's going to Tahiti!! She has to learn Tahitian and French! And I saw my other friend, Katie Mansfield last week. She's English speaking, so she got here last week and she leaves the same day I do!
I got my travel plans last night! So all this last week I've been having dreams about the day we leave. All of our elders in our district are going to SLC, but I'm the only sister. Hermana Hansen has to fly to her mission in California, so I would have dreams that she'd leave the day before me and I'd be all alone. But we got our travel plans, and I leave before her!! I leave at 6 am on Sept. 5th and she leaves at 8 am :)
So I have to tell this story really quick: Hermana Hansen and I were walking back from the temple last week and we were talking about all of the fires that were getting out of hand at the time we came to the MTC. I asked her if Arizona ever had any fires where she had to evacuate and she said no. I told her about how we had the Hanford fire back in 2000 and we had to evacuate. She asked me what we all took . . . and then I remembered what we took. Mom and dad, I'm sure you remember. I can't believe you had that much patience :) And then I told her how we took the tent trailer and stayed with some friends that night while dad pretty much slept on the roof so he could hose the roof down. Hermana Hansen said she would really like to meet you two because you're hilarious.
Mom, thanks for the letter and thanks for sending a card to Hermana Hansen! I saw that you sent it to her, and I was like "MOM!!" so she let me open it :) And thanks for the "mom moment" and names for the Elders. Elder Eyster likes the stamps you use, especially when you put two on. He says they're "SWEET!" I also got letters from Sabrah (my COLLEGE freshman freind, just had to clarify that :)), Heather Peterson, and DeAnn Hull.
I'm really learning how to be more patient. More patient with the language, more patient with teaching, more patient with the people in the crowded laundry room, and more patient with myself most of all. This week has been hard because I really don't feel adequate. But I'm doing everything that is required of me and I am giving my best effort in everything I do. I started studying the book of Job in the bible, I never really studied that in depth before. But this last week has taught me a lot about myself and about figuring out why I'm out here.
I love you all and I know with all of my heart that this church is true. You only get one more email from me in the MTC!!
Hermana Jenny Bragg