The morning program was about the Book of Mormon and was taught by Ed Pinegar. He started by having us tell about who we were, where we were from and where we were going. It seems that he personally knew people to say hello to in about half of the missions. He then went through the ‘Great Questions of the Soul’ and the Book of Mormon. As he spoke I realized that it was what I just did not know the Book of Mormon well enough to use it as an effective tool in Preaching the Gospel.
He mentioned that if you read 5 pages a day that you could read the Book of Moron three times a year. I decided I needed to do that. I also decided to get a new set of smaller scriptures – the ones I have now is much too heavy.
The afternoon session included taking calls at the call center. I took two calls and both times the caller agreed to have the missionaries bring the article. It was not that I was really good, it was just that I was lucky.
Next we role played as missionaries and then less active so we could get the feeling of working with less actives. The couple who acted as less active for us was great. The sister was perfect – I do not think we had anyone better in the two years we were at the TRC. I thought we did pretty good but we still have lots to do. Of course in a real situation we would take time to get acquainted before we would start in bringing the gospel.
I also thought we were quite good as inactives. Of course since we had actually had some experience at this, it was not too hard. All in all it was a good day.
After dinner we went to the bookstore and got in by the skin of our teeth. I bought a new Quad so I could start reading the Book of Mormon tonight.
Sister Tippett had something to do so we had the evening off. But by the time we got home we were beat so about all we did was come home, watch a little TV and fall into bed. I did read 10 pages from 1st Nephi.
Since it was intake day, we had to go early to get a good parking space in the lot next to the MTC. We had time to eat breakfast with the missionaries.
Today’s lesson was on preparing to teach a lesson on the Plan of Salvation. The sister today was much better but I did not think we taught as well. I did not really feel the spirit. It was rather disappointing.
I just realized I forgot one of the most important thing about yesterday. We got our tickets changed to the 19th. I went to the MTC travel office and they let me call Salt Lake. The sister there was very nice and I told her I would be happy to pay any difference in the cost between the tickets they bought and the ones I had reserved. I told her the Mission President would be happy to have us on the 21st instead of the 31st. She put me on hold and went to her supervisor. I had already decided that if they would not approve it than we were not supposed to be there until the 1st of the year.When she came back she said that it was approved, that I did not need to pay any difference. However I would have to buy the tickets – I had already put them on reserve – and they would cut me a check. So I went on line and bought the tickets.
The second part of this was that the Kanes decided that even though they had a daughter and her family in the area, they did not want to wait until the 29th. So today – Wednesday – they called and asked the people to please try to get them out earlier. It turned out that SL somehow got them on our flight.
Unfortunately it seems that Elder Kane and myself hurt the feelings of the head of the MTC travel office and she was not at all happy with us for basically taking over the travel department’s job and going over her head. While I do not think we did anything to put her down, I am sorry that she was offended.
After dinner, we had a two hour language lesson with Sister Tippett. She reviewed some things we already knew and a couple of other things. It was a good lesson. One of the things I have been trying to do is learn to bear my testimony. I explained to sister Tippett that I could say the world but I did not feel them. She promised me thatÂ if I would keep trying and bear it to others the spirit would come.
We got home about 8:30 and was in bed by 9:30. I am not use to not having a nap sometime during the day. But I have not fallen asleep in any meeting.
I have been really bad about writing in this blog. I can use the excuse that when we get home from the MTC we are so tired that I just can not find time to write, but of course Marie Seimers took that excuse away from me 40 years ago.
It is true that we were very tired each day, but we found time to sit down and watch some TV and study Indonesian. That is enough repenting…now on with the show.
Tuesday was the real start of training. It started at 8:00 with a lesson on ‘The Message of the Restoration’ lesson. We learned how to give a 3-5 minute lesson – what we might do with someone we met on the bus, etc. I think we did quite well with this one. Next we spent two periods putting together a 45 minute lesson with each companion taking alternate parts. The highlight of this for me was working with our afternoon teacher. He wanted to check out how we were doing and so I taught him. I was able to feel the spirit as we taught and even came up with Jacob 2 to answer one of his questions.
I did not think the teaching with ‘investigator’ went as well. This was mainly because the volunteer talked too much. I know this could actually happen when we are in the field but the purpose of the practice was to allow us to teach. We were familiar with this problem of a volunteer taking up too much time. When we were running the program we used to tell them that they should speak about 20% of the time and allow the missionaries to use the rest. But even with that problem I think we did fairly well and by the end I was again feeling the spirit as we bore testimony.
The next step was getting our last two shots. One for polio and the last shot in the hepatits series. The nurse was really good and the needles are small so it was over in a minute -after waiting 25 for our turn.
Â After dinner we went to the devotional. The senior missionaries get to sit near the front. Bishop Edgley of the Presiding Bishopric and his wife were the speakers. Sister Edgley showed a picture of an apple and a real apple. She said one was the image and the other was the real thing. She mentioned that just going to church was the image of a righteous LDS, but it was only when we were truly involved with our complete heart and mind that we are truly LDS. She said the same thing about missionaries – just wearing a tag and going on a mission does not mean that a person is truly a missionary. It is only when we are giving 100% that we can truly say we are missionaries.
Bishop Edgly told a number of stories one funny was the thought that we should call young missionaries when they are 16. At that age they know everything and their mothers will not cry when they drop them off at the MTC. He said that Boyd Packer figured out he was Nobody Ã¢Â€Â“ until was given a calling. I am a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He siad in missionary work, faith is the power, obedience is the price, love is the reason and Christ is the message. It was a great experience and I look forward to next weeks devotional.