Gettin closer to the end! Crazy to think about Armenia and how we'll be steppin off the plane before I know it. I know fully well that I'm going to get out there and not know what anyone is saying or how to teach them- thats why we have trainers. But I also realize that I will not have anywhere close to the study time I have now, nor the AMAZING teachers I have now, so there's a sense of urgency thats entered my study. Which is good.
I got the grippers and socks- I LOVE SMARTWOOL. They are incredible. Sandy got me some for Christmas and they were awesome. These new ones are fancy! Much thanks to Grandma and Grandpa. I havent taken them off in 2 days. I havent gotten anything else yet but I havent checked mail today. We still havent gotten flight plans, I think we will next week, but the dept date is still March 18th.
As for my flying pictures, I'll never share my secret so dont bother asking. Im surprised Tyler hasnt told you. Maybe he doesnt remember. Or maybe its just the brotherhood. If some dad ever asked me how his kid was flying in the MTC, I'd say its the Spirit.
Lots to say this week. First thing I want to do is address my questions from last week- a few people sent me answers (which is good, Im glad people pondered it) so I wanted to share what I ended up saying.
The Resurrection- I found a scripture (I think its in Corinthians, but I dont have mine with me) about how Christ was raised from the dead by the power of God's word- the same power that created the Earth. Basically, We have no clue. We know the Spirit probably has something to do with it. But I also have a scripture in Jacob, and one in Mosiah (Jed mentioned it, same page there) that talk about not trying to know the mysteries of God.
The Fall - I have no idea WHY Adam and Eve couldnt have kids before the fall. I dont know why having kids makes you imperfect, and unworthy to live with God- I dont think it does. 2 Ne 2 talks about how they were too innocent to know how to have children, but Arthur still wanted to know why. So I told him I didnt know, and that it didnt really matter.
As for Why God said to not eat the fruit, basically how can God "give us" our agency? We have to choose to have agency of course, if that makes any sense. God being a perfect God cannot command us to do anything that would make us imperfect- He tends to do just the opposite in fact. But its the only commandment He ever gives while also saying "you can choose for yourself"- in BoM at BYU my prof, Brother Parker, always said that eating the fruit was not commanded against, but eating the fruit AND staying in the Garden was not allowed. Im not sure if he's exactly right based on knowledge I now have, but you get the point. Many times we break rules to keep higher rules, and the most important was to have kids. But God couldnt command them to fall or He would cease to be God.
Now, I didnt explain all that in Armenian. I gave my best effort, but then we read from Alma about faith- believing in things which are not seen WHICH ARE TRUE. Arthur, do you believe the scriptures are true? Yes- then you're gunna have to take the prophets word for it on some topics. Boom. Logicked- that's now a verb. I wasnt happy because I shut him up, I was happy because he actually got it. "He" (Im hoping the similar thing happened with the real Arthur) understood that we arent supposed to know everything.
Anyway that lesson went okay- but we only got two words of feedback (normally we get 10 min) inz inch? (those i's are eee's) It means "what's it to me?" but not that rudely. saying kez inch, what's it to you, is very rude. Regardless, that was our feedback. Why should a 14 yr old kid care that two people ate fruit and then had kids- great point. We hadnt taught what it meant to him. So we came back to teach the Atonement, and basically "we" (spirit that we invited) crushed it. Ive never focused on pronouns more in my life. We always say Christ suffered for us. Forget that- Christ suffered for YOU. And would've done the entire process even if you were the only other soul in the universe. We told him that. We talked about his feelings- the real Arthur (he's prob 18 by now) had few friends, his only sister was at college, no brothers, an inactive mother that wasnt close to his alcoholic father. He told us that, and the Spirit was there. Elder Miller told an awesome story in pretty decent Armenian about how his best friend from high school died with his family in a plane crash- his dad was a pilot flying his family to vacation when they crashed. The story wasnt so powerful because someone died though- obviously that makes everyone more serious and thinking about it. But the story worked because it was from his life. We forget how impersonal we seem, missionaries from America wearing suits and ties all day and not telling stories from home and teaching lessons right out the book. Thats the biggest thing I learned to change this week. be real with people. it was a big moment, and a great lesson.
We hosted again this week, but I really didnt enjoy it. Basically I deal with crying elders and have to carry their suitcases that should NOT be that heavy (how many white shirts did you pack?) and carry them up stairs and these elders are freakin out cause they dont know what to do but I dont really have much to tell them. I just take em to their class and their teachers and then their leaders tell them everything they need to know. The highlight of hosting was seeing Sister Smith though, she was in my ward at BYU and is a good friend. And her cousin, Sarah Kemer was also in our ward and also a good friend- she's in Tyler's english class. Thanks for mentioning it, bro. :) Anyway it was great to see them and talk for a few. I wouldve hosted her but two jerks that also knew her took her stuff instead.
Dad asked about the schedule, Im gunna mail mine home for you some day. But basically I wake up at 630, prep till 7, go to class and read the Arm BoM till 730 (not mandated, just a choice), eat till 8, have class till 11- we teach investifakers, prep lessons, learn language and gospel stuff. language study from 11 to 12, whatever we wanna do, lunch till 1, gospel study from 1 to 2, then class from 2 to 5 (same as before, but with a diff teacher) dinner till 6, then gym/showers till 730. Then we do TALL (tech assisted language learning) till 830, then additional study- as a district we sing in Arm, discuss gospel principles, recite Arm scriptures from memory (I have the first vision, james 1:5, Moroni 10 4-5, and workin on John 3:16) and then listen to conference talks translated to Arm. Then at 930 we go to the rooms and do whatever till were asleep at 1030 hopefully. At first people didnt study and would nap and stuff, and sleep in and stay up later. Sometimes we still struggle with that. But we're looking to always make each other better so the scheds gotten a lot stricter so to speak.
Okay that's all I have I think- OH WAIT! Elder Ballard came Tues! He was great. K thats all. okay last thing. Elder Mills and I sang I Am a Child of God during sacrament- 1st verse engl, 2nd arm, 3rd he sang eng and I sang Arm. It went really well. it was fun.
K thats all. I love you all