Saturday, January 11, 2014

I'm leaving TOMORROW!


Guess what?! I'm leaving for Fiji TOMORROW! Is this real life? Holy cow.  So much has happened this week. I feel like all of the prophets in the Book of Mormon when they say " And now there cannot be written in this book even a hundredth part of the things which have happened."  That's how much has happened this week.  

I did a lot of memorizing and cramming Fijian this week.  I memorized the first vision, our mission scripture and a few other things in Fijian so hopefully that is useful. We've also been teaching each other one on one and I feel like I'm finally able to say most of what I want in Fijian. But I'm sure that will all change real quick when I land. :) But I'm so excited! 

We had a really awesome devotional on Tuesday night by Gary and Lisa Stevenson. It was all about Vision and how we need vision for ourselves as missionaries and for those we teach.  He also shared some really neat insights.  He said that as missionaries, the Lord gives us extra rules because he wants to be able to give us extra blessings in doing his work.  We might as well call the White Handbook the book of Blessings.  He also said that it's important to remember that Comparing ourselves to others only brings two things....... Discouragement or Pride, both of which are extremely destructive. Instead we should compare ourselves to the missionary (or person) we were yesterday and the missionary we want to be.  

Some fun things that happened this week........ I finally got to Host New Missionaries on Wednesday which I really loved. And it was Sister Eneri's birthday yesterday.  We had a little birthday party for her today. There were also some more random hair cuts in our room.  I got to go to the temple today with Sister Pauga and we did Initiatories.  I finished the Book of Mormon.  I love that book so much.  Being here, I've realized how much the scriptures truly mean to me and what a precious gift they are. 

Also, this was our last Sunday at the MTC and it was fast Sunday.  I remembered how much I love Fast Sundays. We had a fabulous mission conference.  I seriously loved ALL of the talks.  I was also able to bear my testimony and share a personal experience from the week.  I'll share the story with you now.....

Last Saturday I was feeling super discouraged and inadequate as a missionary.  I was super frustrated with teaching and with the behavior of our zone. I was real scared about going to Fiji.  Scared that I wasn't going to be good enough in the language or teaching etc. And so I said a prayer and poured out all of my worries to my Heavenly Father.  I asked for Peace and Comfort and Strength.  About an hour later I was walking to the front desk through a hall we never take and I saw a picture of a little girl with a missionary.  The little girl had a huge smile and you could see the pure JOY through her countenance.  I immediately felt a huge wave of goosebumps and the message that it would all be ok.  That if I am faithful and humble and do my best, I will be able to bring Joy to many lives just like this little girl.  A few pictures down I saw a man seconds after being baptized with this same joy evident on his face.  Once again..... a flood of Goosebumps.  Through those pictures, I know that Heavenly Father touched my heart and answered my plea for strength and courage and peace.  

I am still scared beyond belief to step onto that plane tomorrow and start "the real deal."  I'm scared I'm not ready.  I'm scared of a lot of things.  But I have been thinking about this entire process of being a missionary.  I was scared when I decided to go.  I was scared when I started my papers.  I was scared when I submitted my papers.  I was scared when I opened my call. I was scared when I went to be set apart.  I was scared when I walked into the MTC.  But I also realize that every time I have moved forward with faith, even though I've been scared, I have been comforted and been happier than I was before. And it hasn't been nearly as hard as I anticipated.   I know this is what I'm supposed to be doing, so even though it is scary, I know I will be blessed if I move forward with faith. 

I've learned so much here at the MTC and I will miss it a ton.  It's truly a wonderful place! But I am SOOO excited to take the next step in this adventure! Next time I email it will be from FIJI! :) 

Loloma Levu!

Sister Matheson :)

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