If Lexie's visa does not come this week, it looks like she will be temporarily reassigned until it does come through. She should find out today (April 4th) where she will be going until the visa comes. If the visa happens to come in the next two days she will go to Australia on Monday. Either way she should be leaving the MTC on Monday.
Well this week certainly has been challenging but I have had some of the strongest spiritual experience so far. So I'd say overall it has been good. :) Since we have been delayed we have been going deeper into the other lessons and our teacher was teaching us about the restoration and she wanted us to try to have an experience like Joseph Smith. To go into prayer with a question that has been on our mind a lot and then listen for what God has to say. I was really struggling with why I was still at the MTC and why was I even serving a mission? So we went in and I prayed, really hard. I basically prayed with my whole soul is what it felt like to me. And then after I was just sitting there trying to listen to what God had to say to me, and I felt this huge feeling of peace come over me. And Heavenly Father really helped me to see a lot of things; like how much my testimony has been strengthened just in the month I have been gone, and how much stronger that has made me as a person. He helped me to feel actual love for the scriptures. I never really had felt that before. I mean I enjoyed reading them, and I knew they were true but I never really loved them all that much. And I just felt this over powering feeling of love for them. That is the Book that will get me back to my Heavenly Father. That is the book that gives every step that I need to follow. It gives me peace and comfort when I need it. And then to why I am serving a mission, I remembered this time my Freshman year of college and one of my teachers told me to pray for my future family and he said he knew we would have a good experience with that. So I did that and as I was praying I saw basically a vision but more like a picture of me kneeling around a bed with my family. My husband was across the bed from me and there was a lot of kids around us. Heavenly Father helped me to remember that experience and told me that the main reason I am here serving is for my future family. I will be blessed by this experience, and because of that I will be able to share that with my future husband and children. It was one of the coolest experiences I have had in a long time.
Another really great experience was one of the lessons we taught to our investigator Fred. We were just kind of struggling with what we should teach him, for him to really understand and feel God's love and care for him. So we prayed to know what we should do and then Sister Tanner said she felt strongly that we needed to sing I Believe in Christ to him. So we practiced it and we sang him the 1 and 4 verse. When we were singing the spirit was so STRONG, almost overpowering. Fred was crying and I almost had to stop at points because the spirit was so strong. I really felt the power of God in that room. There is a scripture in D&C that talks about as one teaches with the spirit and one listens both are edified and uplifted together. I definitely felt that. I felt God's love for Fred as well as for me. Really being a missionary is the best decision I could have made. I never would have been able to come this far without my mission.
On Sunday we had a Sacrament meeting all together for Easter. We were all able to take the Sacrament together. There was over 3000 missionaries and at least 100 elders passing. The Spirit was really strong and it was really amazing to have so many people taking the Sacrament together, with all of us recommitting ourselves to follow the Savior for the upcoming week. Bishop Causse came and spoke from the Presiding Bishopric and that was really great. He spoke a lot about Christ and what he has done for us. One of the things that really stood out to me was he asked, "How well do we really know our Savior? Do we know him independently from everyone else? Do we know what he has done for us personally? It really hit me hard. So I challenge you if you haven't done that, or you don't know that, pray and ask God what The Savior really has done personally for you. It really is a cool experience.
Then Sunday night Sheri Dew came and gave a devotional. It was so good. She is such an inspiring lady. I can't believe all the things she has done. She is so strong and powerful and just great. She talked a lot about the Savior as well and one thing that struck me really hard was that Christ is the only chance that we have. I think I knew that I just never thought of it in that way before. Christ is our only chance for happiness, peace, joy, hope and us getting back to live with Heavenly Father again. He isn't only our last chance he is the Only Chance.
In class on Monday our teacher had us go on a picture walk, just looking at pictures of the Savior and really trying to listen to the spirit. Before I tell you what happened, we went to the travel office this week and they told us that they had submitted our names for reassignment. And that we will find out where we are going on Thursday. But if our visas come they will cancel our reassignment, but I was just feeling really stressed about that. I just felt like I didn't know what was going to happen to me. That my life was turning upside down every other day and I was just feeling really discouraged. So when I was looking at all the pictures of Christ, I felt very strongly to just have faith. Have faith in God. God has a plan for me and he is watching out for me. He will not let me down. Even if I go on reassignment that is where I am supposed to be. The scripture that says Be Not Afraid Only Believe, kept going through my head. I really needed that comfort because I really struggle walking in the unknown and so God helped me to feel comforted. And I mean who wouldn't feel comforted when an all powerful being is watching out for you. Then we were talking and we read 2 Nephi 9 and a couple of the verses say something like How Great is our God. and I just kept thinking, but really He is amazing. He loves each one of us so much and He will do anything to protect us and bring us back to Him. I feel that I definitely have a very personal relationship with God now that I didn't have before.
We then had a Devotional last night and one of the 70 came and spoke and he talked a lot about how much we really know about Enduring to the End. He said that one of the best ways to learn how to prepare to Endure to the End is by serving a mission. It definitely is not an easy task and it takes a lot of work but by enduring to the end of our mission we will be much better at striving to follow God when we get home from our missions. One thing I really loved though is he talked about us adjusting back to normal life when we get home. But he said that when we get back we shouldn't be adjusting back into the world. We are so close to God on our missions and that is how we should be living our life always. When I get back I'm supposed to be different because i should be striving to be closer to God. And that is what I want to do. :)
Well I hope you are having a GREAT time in Arches. I loved it when we went last time :)