Janelle's e-mails to her family

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Another Week....

Well, we're about to be the old timers at the MTC. The only district older than us in our zone leaves in a week. That's so weird to me. I remember when I got here I was wondering if I would ever figure out how to do my laundry or use the email, much less learn a language and how to teach the Gospel. At least I have figured two things out...laundry and email. I'm still working on the rest. Hna. Larkin and I are becoming much better at planning and following through on our plans, and that has been such a blessing this week.

Also, I can tell that my Spanish is improving. My vocab has grown quite a bit, but I am still needing to work on tenses more. But that comes with time and practice. It's hard to not pray in Spanish now--I feel like if I know it in Spanish it should be said in Spanish. However, my English is getting poorer and poorer, does that mean my Spanish is getting better and better? ...I hope so at least. Tomorrow's district goal is to speak all Spanish all day--yeah! Wish me luck.

This week I did taste some discouragement, however. It's difficult to describe. It's just hard sometimes. You might ask, "Well, how is it hard?"....I don't know. The best way that I can describe it is you just feel like the adversary is constantly trying to make you feel weak. Constantly trying to make you want to give in to the natural man and give up--it keeps telling you that this is too hard, you're too tired, you're too weak, this is impossible, you'll never be as good as you want to be, you just don't have what it takes... I finally just kind of realized that this work has to be hard. It's the Lord's work. Nothing was easy for him, why should I expect it to be easy for me? I am on His errand. I have noticed that in moments of discouragement, I read the words to a hymn and then get to work. It's my own personal medication I suppose. I also always try to force a smile even if it comes hard at first; after that it's not so hard. I got a letter this week reminding me that we learn from contrast. We know nothing of light without darkness, sweetness without bitter, humility without pride, unity without contention, peace without chaos, or success without failure. The hard part of life is needed so that we can fully see and experience the sweetness of joy. I am so happy here. There are challenges in all things, but I am so very happy.

I missed hearing Elder Wirthlin this conference, but I encourage all of you to watch the Mormon messages on mormon.org form him. They are "Come what may and love it" and "Sunday will come". They are beautiful and so applicable. I thought much of everyone back home as I watched these. Have faith and be believing in the atonement of Jesus Christ. It hold miracles and the power to heal all.

Conference was amazing. We are so blessed. I don't have too much time to go into my 19 pages of notes, but needless to say I thought of my family often. How grateful I am for my family. I notice last night that in so many ways your examples to me have been irreplaceable. So thank you. As I watched conference I realized that I am not on this mission only for the Lord, or for me, or even those I will serve, but I am very much here for my children. I know that for me, this was needed to help me be a mother. I am serving them right now as I learn lessons that I will be able to teach them someday. I am so grateful for that lesson and reminder of my ultimate purpose.

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