Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Letter #6 - Last Week in MTC

This week went by soooo fast, and yet so slow. There's a saying for missionaries: "The days are the longest, but the weeks are the fastest." It's so true. This week just came and went. It's hard because the MTC is the same exact schedule for 5 weeks. But hey, I'm on my last one, so its all good :)

So I'll start with Sunday. I have become great friends with Elder Ellis, who is from highland and went to Lone Peak High School and ironically, we are both district leaders. We basically were with each other the entire day because of meetings and such, but it was great. Elder Shively and I blessed the sacrament (auf duetch of course) and then guess what, I was called on to give a talk. Ha ya lucky me right? Nah it was great, and I did it all in german. The spirit was sehr strong and I saw a lot of people crying, so that's always a good thing :) I read a poem, "He's Been There Before," by Elder Whittle. I edited it a little to make it a little more personal, but I recommend reading it. It's great.

I must say, I have seen so many blessing come to me while I have been here, learning a new langauge. One of my favorite things is to go to TRC. I am sure I have mentioned it before, but I can fully understand what people are saying, full blooded germans! like what? ha That honestly makes me so happy and gives me hope that I will be able to fully speak it someday :)

There's oppostion in all things :) ha Monday was trrrrble. It was so hard, rained all day so my body ached (everyone makes fun of me because I can tell when it is going to rain or not by the way my body feels. I have been right every time. These are things you notice when you're in a classroom for 12 hours. And its my indian blood. Thanks mom :]) Auf Jeden Fall, it was just a hard day and just hard to fully believe that I could get through it. And then one of my favorite days, Tuesday, came along. It was starting to be a hard day too, but then the devotional came, and it was just great. Elder Neil L. Anderson spoke, and I love him. He is just really relatable, and he is called of God :) Anyway, he talked about love and sacrifice. He talked about the Savior and just how, that his sacrifice is the ultimate sacrifice. He didn't say this, but I wrote "Love is Sacrifice" How true is that statement? Love is sacrifice. We love the things we sacrifice for, and we sacrifice for the things we love. Our Heavenly Father sent His perfect son, a Son of God, to a desolate place, to take upon all the burdens of men, that are no way close to perfect, just so we could have a way to return to Him again. How amazing is that? The ultimate sacrifice was the Only Begotten Son. Unser Savior, our Erloser, Jesus Christ. That truth has so much power. And my favorite part was at the end of his talk, he said "I am his witness." The Spirit was just so powerful and so strong. I loved it.

After the devotional, it was pouring rain, and there was lighting, so they kept us inside for a little and sang hymns. It was great. When we got back outside, it was still pouring, so if anyone knows me, I was having the time of my life :)

So I have 6 DAYS LEFT AND THEN I'LL BE IN FRANKFURT!!! haha no I'm not excited at all ;) Ok yes, I cannot contain myself. Sure it's scary, and I'll be in a total different climate, in a different country, currency, oh ya and language, but hey, I could not be more excited to bring people unto salvation :) So this is the time to write me letters, because I won't have a lot of time to write emails :) but I am acting as the Lord's servant, bringing people unto salvation. Gosh I am excited. And I know I can do it, but only with the Lord. Alma 26 will forever be one of the best GO get em scriptures. I love Alma 37 also. I love 3rd Nephi 27 too. I just love the scriptures. Ich Liebe! ha but I love you all, thanks for all your support and love and appreciation and friendship and whatever else. "When I am weak, I know I am strong; because that is when the Lord gives me His hand" I love life. I love this gospel. Wish me luck! :)

Elder Mayne

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Letter #5

Hallo meine Menschen! :)

I'm guessing it's week 4, but the days honestly just mesh together. The only days I really care about are Mittwoch (obviously), Dienstag, because of devotionals, and Sonntag because it is so easy and chill. So this week, I will try to remeber what happened and what was intresting, but this week was kind of one of those, "eh" weeks :)

I am the new district leader :) I know, I am pretty cool. ;) Nah I love it because honestly, my district is a family. We all are so close with each other and just cheer each other on and everyday we have something new to laugh at. It makes the days go by a lot faster and better.

The food here is just, wow. I'm eating salads and yogurt. Mmmmm. The best right? Ha I just want that Deutsch food NOW! Ha but hey, only 2 more weeks and I will be out there!

On Sunday, my companion and I taught the lesson for our district. They forgot to assign us a subject, so when in doubt, why not talk about Christ? :) It was one of the best lessons honestly. We made a district goal to pick an attribute of Christ ("Character of Christ" by Elder Bednar is kinda why we did this :)) But in Chapter 6, we pick an attribute, study it, and just work on that attribute that day. The first one we did was dillegence. By golly that was a good day to do it. The more I learn about it though, and think about Christ, and honestly see how perfect he was? Wow. I become more amazed every day.

I also read Luke 22. One of the best chapters ever. And for the people that have read it, they know why. It's the atonement. Ah, this week I have just learned how amazing the atonement, or das Suhnopfer is. It is so amazing, and we can use it with anything, not just sins. It is our only way we can return to our Himmlisher Vater. I love it so much. I have grown closer to Christ. And that's why I am here. I want to bring others unto Christ. But I have to grow closer to Him before I can make others grow closer to Him. It is an amazing feeling when you just sit there and think about what the Savior has done for us. The atonement is the best thing we could ever have.

My two best buds left for Norway on Monday. How great will I miss them. But boy, how lucky is Norway to have them. I am so exicted for them and for how great they are going to do. They will be instruments in the Lord's hands, as will I. Pray for them :) They will need it. But I am excited for them. Elder Line and I are doing our best to live these last 2 weeks so we can survive to go our countries :)

As usual, I always leave with a thought. This tuesday devotional, Elder Maynes, the President of the Seventy spoke. It was good :) One thought he had though, was the first missionaries in this dispensation were Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, when they appeared to Joseph Smith. And now its our job to fill those shoes. Pretty big shoes, eh? :) I know that I can fill them though, only with the Lord's help. "I do not boast in my own strength...for in my own strength, I am nothing. But with the Lord thy God, I am able to accomplish all that He asks" (paraphrasing there). Mmmm that is music to my ears. Read that chapter people, it's good :)

I love this gospel. I love the people in Frankfurt, and I haven't even met them. I love this gelegenheit (opportunity) I am given. I am so grateful for all the wonderful influences in my lives. Thanks for everything. I will do my best and thank you for the motivation and the letters. It means a lot and helps me keep going. So let's keep it up, yes? Thank you all and may God be with you til we meet again! :)

Elder Mayne

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Letter #4

Well Guten tag miene freundens und familien, (that's way wrong, but I don't care, my typing is terrible today :))

Wow has this week been a crazy week of events. But it honestly may have been my favorite week in the MTC. And well, I will tell you why...

On Donnerstag (Thursday), meine Miterbiter and I went to the doctor in Provo. We went off MTC campus... rebel life maybe? Ha no, anyway, we went off campus to the doctor because Elder Shively had an infection, which turned out to be in the inside of his cheek and was filled with puss. Ya I had to see that and yes it was disgusting. But anyway, when we were going there, it was so weird because it was the real world frankly. While I was reading PMG at the doctor's office, I was reading the section about finding people and to talk to everyone. And it was kind of a blessing because I could do that right then. So while I was in the waiting room, I talked with a little boy, Steve, and his mom, while watching "Tangled" (gasp). I just learned so much about them and I honestly ended up loving them in those 20 min. and I just thought, I am a representive of Jesus Christ. I am able to act in his name and act as he did. So it was a fantastic opportunity and if I felt love for a Mormon family in Provo that I talked to for 20 minutes, how great it will be to serve the people in Frankfurt. So that was a pretty cool experience.

On Friday, I had my first TRC. It's where they have volunteers, that are members, just talk to you in German. Some are from Deutschland. And it's basically like home teaching. Wow, it was an amazing experience. I understood honestly, like 88 percent of what they were saying and I felt words go into my mouth that I thought I had forgotten. It's amazing how the Lord works and the Spirit. I bore my testimony both times we went, but the second person we taught was amazing. She is from Germany, served a mish in Hawaii (yes) and spoke Russian (what?) but when I bore my testimony, I just started bawling. And she started to cry too. It was such a touching experience, and I felt so close to my Savior. I found a new love for teaching. And getting to know people. I love love love love love love looooooove it :)

This is a special shoutout to my Young Mens teacher Bro Bird. Thank you so much, so much for helping me. I honestly, would not have been as prepared, not as excited, not have such a love, and not have such a closer and deeper love for my Savior if it weren't for you. So thank you for that. I honestly have been working so hard on my mish, and I can already see the blessings. Now stop getting teary eyed and go work on your shot, so you maybe might have a chance in beating me in PIG :)

I had the most amazing experience in my class today. My teacher taught us about the restoration. I have never had such an amazing lesson about that. It sounded like he has been wanting to say that for a while. But wow, I learned so much about just why the Lord calls prohphets, his Atonement, and the Plan of Salvation, and how amazing it all is. God loves his children, so he gives us prophets, which are men called of God, to act in God's name, to lead His church, and to exercise His power, the priesthood. The priesthood is God's power, to access Jesus Christ's Atonement and use it. God has always has given us prophets, since Adam, and Moses, and Abraham. But the people were never ready for the word. They rejected what they had to say and killed them off...... Ok so that's a little teaser. I have learned so much. I wish I recorded that lesson and just could give it to you. I learned so much and I love, I love this gospel.

The next day, ironically, I was able to use God's priesthood power and give my first blessing. It was such an amazing experience. A sister in my district, Sister McMurray, was sick and needed one. So she asked me to give her one. Ha by golly, I was nervous. But wow, the power that I felt and just to be able to use God's power — that was truly amazing. Christ atoned for our sins, our sicknesses and illnesses, and so when I exercised my priesthood, I was able to access his atonement, and give a blessing. It was amazing. Thanks dad for always setting a great example of having faith to give blessings and just being worthy of the priesthood :)

My favorite part of the MTC is the devotionals. Last night we had Elder Richard G. Scott come and speak to us. WOW. That man is amazing. He was so powerful. He talked about beten (prayer) and having and using the faith you have. He used the same points I think when he spoke about the same topic in general conference sometime. So I recommend you look it up. The most amazing part of his talk was when he paused, and said, "If you are all wondering why I am so emotional tonight, I have a reason, and I think I ought to tell you." His wife has been gone for sometime and he said that he feels that we have been lucky enough to have her in our presence tonight. That was so amazing. Because the entire time, it just was so reverent and the spirit was so strong, even before he said that, so I had been wondering why. It was amazing.

The other night, I was given the opportunity to grow closer to my Savior. I felt the impression to pray to him, while I was trying to sleep. I got on my knees and prayed for 2 hours. Longest I have ever prayed. But I just poured out my entire soul to my Heavenly Father, and I knew he was listening. How great did it feel. I recommend to just take time, go to a quiet place, get on your knees, and humble yourself before the Lord, aloud. He is there, he does listen, and he loves us. A little boy of 14 years of age, had that same faith, in 1820, and God answered him. God is the same today, yesterday, and forever. I testify that this is true :)

On Sunday, we watched "Character of Christ," a talk by Elder Bednar that he gave to the MTC on Christmas morning, when it was Sunday. Please go watch it, however you can get a hold of it. It is one of the most amazing talks i have ever heard. It honestly, has changed my life and how i act. Please go do that, and do what he says. You will be blessed and see the changes in your life.

I'm at my halfway point of the MTC! I couldn't be more excited. I just want to get out there. Elder Childs and Elder Gunther leave this next week, and I envy them. But I wish them luck and love them :)

I will write more when i have time, but this is all I have for today. Write me personally! I love dearelders. Makes my day/week. Love the artistic envelope i got from Emily Orton. It was sweet. But I ought to go, but I love you all, and I know that the Lord loves you! 

Love you all! Love you mom :)
Tchuß  i  Buß  i  Papa!

Elder Mayne

I searched for a while online and finally found a link to the talk Adam mentioned. I hope it's the right one! It's the only one I could find since the talks given in the MTC usually aren't published. If you'd like to read it, go ahead :) 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Letter #3 - What Are You Good At?

Hallo Familie und fruenden!

I'd just like to say thanks for your letters this week and just how great things are going on at home. I love that you are going to the temple every week and you can just see the blessings that have come already. Don't get complacent though, hard times will come. But it's just Heavenly Father's way of making a trial for you so you can grow closer to him.

Thank you for the clicker. [I'll explain this a little for Adam: my mom found this article about LDS singer/songwriter Hillary Weeks and how she helped herself focus on positive thoughts by counting them with a clicker. She would click for every positive thought she had, so she could see how good her days really were. My mom gave one to Adam to use too.] It honestly has helped so much. I'm at 105 right now, and its not even 12 yet :) It honestly changes the way you think and makes you forget the negative comments in your head. Dad was complaining that he didnt get one, so you should get him one. :)

Thanks Alyssa and Brady for your letters as well. Alyssa, you sound just like yourself on your letters. It's wunderbar. Ha so it's great. Im so glad Brady got into the program. You won't have to move now yayyyyyyy!!! :) Ha but I feel loved that you set my picture at the dinner table for dinner. Makes me feel loved. I would die to have any of your homemade food haha.

I'm sorry I cant talk about everything in everyone's letters, I wish I could. :( I don't have a lot of time everyday and it's hard to type fast cuz I got funky pinkies, but I really do appreaciate it when everyone talks in detail and tells me specifics and they're long. Dearelders are espcially nice because I get them the same day. So I'm not saying anything but... :):) but if I don't give you a personal reply, I just don't have time so I'm sorry, but I still love you :) Time has dragged on here. I have to find new ways to study, learn, keep myself awake, and how to have fun while doing it :) I've managed to be acutally quite productive and also have fun at the same time.

My favorite things here at the MTC are the devotionals. I will never take another talk for granted. So for all you that are watching General Conference next October, watch it with a pen and a notepad. Those are inspired leaders, called of God, and their message is directly for you. So how can you not be wanting to listen? :) I loved, loved, loved, loved Jenny Oaks baker during devotional, Mom. I was crying when she was playing "I Stand All Amazed" because 1. it was so beatiful and 2. it's my favorite hymn. :) But all the other hymns she played were just so beautiful and she talked about our spiritual gifts and how we need to recognize what we have and grow them. So I recommend all of you, to just take 10 minutes out of your day and think of anything you are good at, whether it is dancing, singing, talking to people, cleaning the house, whatever, and just think how lucky you are to have that abililty and how you can share it with others :)

The language has taken leaps and bounds. I still am working on speaking it, but I can see the progress I have made in just 2 weeks, and its quite remarkable. When I was doing role spiel, or role play, I was doing so good and it was the strongest spirit I have felt. I talked and testified of the Book of Mormon and its importance and the Holy Ghost. It was fantastic. and then the other reason I'm progressing... My teacher did another role spiel, and picked me to be the untersucher, or the investigator. and I understood everything he said. It was the best feeling. It felt so good. There are definitely a lot of bad times and it's a struggle everyday, but I learn everyday and the good times stick out more than the worst ones :)

I will be taking photos and sending them every week :) I'll take a lot so you can get them all. But I love you all. I love the work that God has given me. I know that, especially learning this week, that the Book of Mormon is sehr sehr wichtig [very very important]. It has so much importance in our lives. How lucky are we to have a book that can answer any of our questions, any problems, and it can help us. I know that if you search with real intent of the scriptures, with a question in mind, it will be answered. Read 3 nephi 27. It is one of my favorite scriptures to read.

I love you all. I appreciate hearing from everyone of you and getting packages and whatever. So please keep sending them. I'll try to reply to all of you, but I don't have a lot of time. Serving the Lord you know :) But how lucky am I to be a servant of him and call myself a representive of the Lord. How I wish I could do that longer than 2 years. And I can! As well as you. Our mission is never done. Take every chance to show you care about others and show that this gospel, will strengthen them and bring happiness to their lives.

Sorry for being preachy :) I will send some more pictures and letters. I love you Mom and Dad, Alyssa and Brady. And I love all you that are reading this. Thank you for your support. Tchuss!