Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Personal Revelation

Hola Everyone!
 
So, last week, we did have an amazing Devotional.  We had heard rumors that it was going to be someone way important.  We were told to go with a question in mind.  My question was "How can I better serve the Lord right now?"  My companion and I decided to go to the choir, so that we could get good seats.
 
Elder Neil L. Anderson of the Quorotm of the Twelve Apostles spoke to us.  Since it was President Monson's birthday, he had us sing Happy Birthday to him. :)  (I wonder if he heard it, chiste.)
 
He talked about the things the thought that President Monson would say if he were there with us.  He gave us a list of things that he often says.
  1. Follow the Prophet
  2. Do your Duty
    1. "Do you duty.  That is best.  Leave unto the Lord the rest."
  3. Trust in the Lord - You will be an instrument in His hands.
    1. Proverbs 3: 5-6
  4. Let the Lord Shape your Back
    1. "Whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies"
    2. "The Lord will shape the back to bear the burden placed upon it."
    3. "When you are on the Lord's errand, you are entitled to His help."
  5. Smile, enjoy yourself
  6. Love the people you serve
    1. D&C 84:88
  7. Never ignore a prompting
  8. Testify of the Prophet Joseph Smith
  9. Witness the Power of the Savior
And the revelation I received for me was that I need to memorize some scriptures in Spanish of things that Jesus has said.
 
During our District review of what we had learned, I was feeling a little bad.  Everyone, uit seemed to me, had received some pretty spectacural revelation, and all I got was to memorize some Bible passages.
 
But then the Holy Ghost spoke to me.  He said, "You get academic anwsers because you are an academic person."  This doesn't mean that I don't feel the Spirit, or have a testimony.  I always feel the Spirit.  And for me the most important things are the facts and the truths.  This doesn't mean that I can't be spiritual, because I am, and the truths of the gospel invite the Spirit.
 
The Spirit talks to each of us in exactly the right way for each one of us.  If you are open to revelation and the Spirit, then you will get exactly the right revelation that you need.  The Lord knows each one of us and loves each one of us.  He know exactly what I need. 
 
 
Earlier in my MTC journey I had another experience with the Spirit.  One of the days when we were going to teach Joty, we went to building 18 M, because that was were we always taught him.  We went to every room and couldn't see him.  We were getting frusterated, because we couldn't find him.  Finally we decided to go back to the classroom, and see if Hermano Stoddard had left a note for us on the white board.
 
While we were walking back to the classroom, we ran into two elders in our district.  We asked them if they knew were Joty was, and they didn't. 
 
At this point, we were doubting ourselves.  We were tired, and didn't want to climb down the stairs, when we would just be climbing back up them.  If those two elders didn't know were Joty was, then Hermano Stoddard probably didn't write anything on teh board.  We wanted to just wait outside and wait for the companionship that was teaching him right then to come back from their teaching appointment, and we would ask them were Joty was.  Besides, we were already late, and if we went back to the classroom we would be even later.
 
But we really felt like we should go to the classroom.  So we did, expecting it to be a waste of time.  And we learned from two elders who were sitting in the classroom that Joty was in 17 M, and Hermano Stoddard had written the room on the board.
 
If we hadn't gone downstairs to the classroom (Our classroom is in 17 M as well), we never would have seen the elders who were teaching.  They didn't have to leave the building and wouldn't have come outside.  We wouldn't have known where Joty was, and we would have been lost.  If we hadn't followed the spirit on this little thing, we wouldn't have been able to teach Joty.
 
I know that the Spirit will guide us whenever we need his help.  But if we ignore a prompting, even if it is a small thing, he will be less likely to give us promptings in the future.
 
 
On Friday, we taught Joty again.  We talked about how his faith is and how he is beginning to receive a testimony of the Book of Mormon.  The days when he reads, he feels good, and the days when he doesn't, he doesn't feel that same goodness.  We had asked him to study faith in the pamphlet, so we asked him about it, and he talked about Ether 12:6.  Then, somehow or the other we got on the subject of baptism and marriage.  because Joty always brings those things up pretty quickly in each lesson, and we finally felt like Joty was ready to learn about chastity because his faith was finally strong enough.
 
Before we started we talked about Ether 12:6, and how he would receive a testimony of baptism and marriage after he does them.  IT was like how he didn't used to understan why he needed to read the Book of Mormon, but then he started to read it, and now he has a testimony of it.  It will be the same with Marriage and Baptism.
 
Then we started to go through the Chastity folleta (pamphlet), explaining why it is important, what it is and what blessings Joty will receive by keeping it.  We promised him that his relationship with Gaby (su novia) will imporve greatly after they are married.
 
He is going to propose to Gaby this week and set a date with her for marriage in 2 to 3 months.  When we teach him again we are going to set a date for baptism.  I am so excited for him.  This is teh best decision he could ever make!
 
 
On Sunday, I gave my very first church lesson.  I taught Sunday School, or rather our District Meeting.  I taught about the Holy Ghost and receiving personal revelation as a missionary.
 
After the Firesides on sundays, we get to watch church movies and films of old MTC devotionals.  We went to one that Elder Bednar gave last year called the Character of Christ.  He gave it on Christmas Day 2011.    He talked about the Character of Christ, which is turning outward towards others when teh natural man turns inward toward the self.  He says that the natural man is like the Cookie Monster.  He even impersonated the Cookie Monster over the pulpit several times.  :D  He said that "Testimony is what you know to be ture by the witness of the Holy Ghost.  ... Conversion is consistently being true to what you know. 
 
Best Wishes,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez
 
Juan 7:17  El que quiera hacer la voluntad de 'El, concer'a si la doctrina es de Dios, o yo habl'o por mi mismo.
 
Juan 14:15 Si me am'ais, quardad mis mandamientos.
 
Juan 10:16 Tambien tengo otras ovellas que no son de este vedil, a aqu'ellos tambien debo traer, y oir'an mi voz, y habr'a un reba~no y un pastor.
 
Juan 17:3 y esta es la vida eterna, que te conozcan a ti, el unico Dios verdadero, y a Jesucristo, a quien has enviado.
 
Juan 3:5  Respondi'o Jesus, De cierto, de cierto, te digo que el que no naciera de auga y del Esp'iritu, no puede entrar en el reino de Dios.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Light is Everywhere!


Hola Everyone! 
 
I am still loving the MTC.  This is a super great experience.  I am now 2/3 of the way done with my MTC experience.  It is crazy how fast it has been going by.  Only three more weeks, and then I go to Texas!  :D :D :D
 
On Tuesday, I say with the MTC choir, and I loved it.  The choir directors are so animated and so full of life that it is a treat to attend choir.  I really enjoyed it!  We sange Hymn 6, Redeemer of Israel.  The fireside was by David F. Evans, of the Seventy, who is also the executive director of the Missionary Department.  He talked about how our purpose as missionaries has changed from the older generations of missionaries to now.  Missionaries used to just teach until batpism, and then the members were responsible for the new converts.  Now missionaries are supposed to teach everyone, and help everyone.  We are to especially focus on the members of the church who are lost and the non-members.  He said that we will se a great flood of both people coming back  into the fold and people coming to the fold.  We are supposed to do everything the missionaries of old did and more.  We don't just baptize, we rescue.  Aparently President Monson has been talking about "the Rescue" lately, but since I am in the MTC, I haven't heard about it.  If anyone could figure out what he said, and send it to me, I would be so very grateful.
 
During Gym Time on Wednesday, I was watching Mormon Messages, y I had an awesome thought.  (It seems like I have a lot of moments of personal revelation and ideas during gym time.  I am not really sure why.)  On Mormon Messages, someone said, "Light and Darkness cannot occupy the same space at the same time."  And they showed a picture of the sky and the night stars. 
 
Light is everywhere.  When we look into the night sky, we see dark patches.  But when we aim our telescopes at  those dark patches we see more light than we could ever have imagined.  {Lisa, this would be a great place to insert a picture of the Hubble Deep Field if you feel like going beyond the call of duty.  Sorry everyone but you will have to look up your own picture.... I have a squawking baby and have to go visiting teaching soon--red was edited by Lisa.}  Truly the heavens are covered with light.  If you don't see any light in a place in the night sky, there are either clouds in the way, or you aren't looking hard enough. 
 
When we build houses and buildings, and cover the windows, we can create places where light cannot go.
 
If you can't feel God's love, either you aren't looking hard enough, or you have shut yourself away from it.
 
In science, there is really no such thing as darkness, rather it is just an absence of light.  The same way, there is no such thing as cold, only an absence of heat.  God's love will always be there.  There is always light and heat.  It is only how well we become able to feel it and measure it that makes the difference. 
 
I feel like I am getting much better at my Spanish.  We will have times when we will read El Libro de Mormon together as a district, and most of the tiempo I have been looking mostly at my English Scriptures, and only occassionaly at my Spanish ones, but on Wednesday, I mostly at my Spanish scriptures and found that I could understand enough to get the jist of what Nephi is trying to say.  I only had to look at my English Book of Mormon a few tiems.  It was really cool. 
 
On Friday, I was able to do mi pelo in a rope braid, and it was so super cute!!!  It is amazing how much better I am at doing my own hair.  I really have been blessed with the gift of doing hair as a missionary.  It is really cool that the Lord has blessed me with something that I need!
 
We had a really cool experience with Mari on Friday.  We asked her about her scripture study, and we found out that although she has a desire to read it, she also has been reading it like a history book.  Both my companion y I felt that our lesson needed to be on the importance of recieving revelacion through the Book of Mormon.  We decided to have an experiment right then.  We talked about how it is important to pray before we read teh Book of Mormon to ask God to help us understand what we are reading.  We also talked about how it is important to go to the Book of Mormon with a specific question in mind each time you read.  So we had her come up with a question, and pray.  Then we had her read 3 Nephi ii.  (We had no idea what to read, when I felt like the crowning event of the Book of Mormon is Christ's vist, so that is where we had her start.)  and we had her try to get an answer.  She started and then we asked her what she had learned, and she said that while we were establishing the background of Christ's visit to the Americas, she had read 3 Nephi 10:14, which talks about he who reads will understand if he diligently seeks, and her question was how do I recieve Revelation through reading, or something.  It was really cool.  God had heard her prayers, and he answered her prayers.  We knes that this would work, because there are answers on every page.  The Book of Mormon is to invite people to come to Christ.
 
We talked about how although the Book of Mormon is a history book, it is also much more than that.  It is the Word of God and it was written for us.  And God does answer our prayers through the Book of mormon.  It is not a textbook.  We then shared our favoirte scriptures.  We asked Mari to read the Scriptures now with the intent to recieve personal revelation. 
 
On Saturday we went to a workshop, and the maestro had us write letters to an investigator then he had us cross out the investigator's name and replace it with our own.  It was a really cool experience to get a personal letter for myself.  Here is mine:
 
Querido Julie,
 
Yo espero que est'e tenedo un vaccion muy divertido. 
 
Julie, est'a una hija de Dios, y 'El se ama.  'El quiere que venga a 'El.  'El quiere que usted sea feliz y tenga gozo.  Su Hijo, Jesucristo ha sufrido para usted.
 
Jesucristo se conoce usted.  'El sabe como ayudarse.  'El se conoce mejor que usted se conoce si mismo.  Y, ahora, Jesucristo se quiere que usted venja a 'El y ponga todos su sufrimientos, dolores, y pecados a los pies de Jesucristo.  'El no se quiere que sienta dolor unos m'as.  Jusus le ama, Julie.
 
Dase su dolor.  Let 'El se ayuda.  Jesucristo me ha ayudado, y yo s'e que 'El se ayudar'a. 
 
On Sunday, we had Sister Mary Cook, 1st counselor in the Young Women General Presidency talk to us.  She talked about how that we will touch people's lives because of the light that is in us. 
 
Yesterday, we started our second planners.  Each planner is good for 6 weeks, and it was really cool to start on our second planner.  It is a pretty big milemarker in our mission.
 
We were told to really prepare for the Devotional tonight.  We think that it is going to be someone super awesome.
 
(So when I write spanish on this computer, I can't figure out how to make the accents work in email, so you just get appostraphes were they are supposed to go. :D)
 
Yo s'e que la iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los 'Ulimos D'ias es la iglesia verdadera, y el la iglesia de Jesucristo.  Yo s'e que Jesucristo es mi Salvador, Redentor y Creador.  Veo la mano del Se~nor en todos los d'ias de mi vida.  Veo 'El en matematics y en el cielo.  'El ha sufrido por todos mi pecados y 'El sabe como ayudarme. 
 
Best Wishes,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The gift of doing hair

Hola Everyone!
Life in the MTC basically rocks!  Last Tuesday, I made an appointment with the barbershop to learn how to do my hair.  Elders are allowed to get their hair cut whenever they need it.  Sisters are allowed one haircut, but we are told that if you don't need a haircut, to make an appointment anyways, and they will teach you some easy ways to do your hair on your mission.  Since I got my hair cut just before I left for the MTC, I don't need a haircut, but learning how to do my hair cute-like sounded great!
They gave me all sorts of cute ideas:
  • twist a tiny bit of hair and pin it
  • braid a tiny bit of hair and pin it
  • braid a tiny bit on both sides and pin it
  • part it in different places
  • buns, anywhere
  • side ponytails
  • double braids
  • side braids
  • fish tail braid
  • french braid
  • french braid only a little bit and pin it
I also learned this cool new braid called a rope braid.  You take hair and divide it into 4.  Put all 4 strands in the 4 spots between your fingers and thumb in one hand.  Label the spots 1, 2, 3, 4.  and do the same on the other hand, so that they are the same.  You weave hair back and forth among bother hands:
  • 2 -> 1
  • 4 -> 2
  • 1 -> 3
  • 3 -> 4
It creates the cutest braid ever!
I decided that one of the spiritual figts I have been blessed with as a missionary is the gift of being able to do my hair.  after my hair appointment, I braid my own hair.  It was the first time that I have really done it before, and it rocked to have my hair do what I wanted it do to, without fighting with it.  (OK, so I have pulled off a braid a few times, but that has only been after hours of fighting with it, before it looked like some semblance of cute. )
On Tuesday night Robert K. Dellenbach spoke for la reunion.  He said, "You will be that light that will pierce the darkness.  Your spirit will be able to open the windows of heaven.  They will see and feel the light that you radiate through heaven.  You are that voice in the wilderness.  That light in the darkness.  that testimony."
When we taught Joty again, we found that he hadn't been reading.  So we abandoned our lession plan and just read to him from the Libro de Mormon.  We made it through most of the introduction with him.  It was very cool to feel the espiritu talk through me as we were reading and commenting about what we were reading.  We challenged him to read for 10 minutes every day with Gaby (su novia).  We told him that they can both help each other with the reading.  And we gave him is every own book of mormon. 
We also put Joty up to the "wall of faith".  We told him that if he prays, God will answer his prayer.  We told him that if God tells him that our mensaje is flaso, entonces we will leave, and he can keep doing what he is doing.  But, if Dios tells him that it is true, then he has to get baptized, and follow christ and keep the commandments.  At this point, as long as Joty prays, then it is out of our hands.  It is just between God and Joty, and that is a very comfortable place to be.
Saturday was my halfway mark at the MTC.  it was very exciting!  I cant wait to get out into the field and teach people the gospel.  :D 
My sister sent me half chocolate half vanilla oreos to celebrate.  all over teh package was written "don't open until august 11th."  I got it on Saturday, so I didn't have to wait! :D  But I saw it and I was like "August 11th, that is a weird date", and it was my companion who had to remind me that 11 is my number!  It is strange how easy it has been to leave much of my past life behind, and that my companion had to remind me of teh significance of the number 11!
One of the Elder's in our district, just turned 19 on Sunday.  So on Saturday, our teacher had a party for him.  She brought in Balloons and cake and decorations.  She took him to coaching missionary study, while we decorated the room for him.  Then we yelled "Suprise" and it was super fun!  We didn't have a knife, so we just ate pieces of cake with spoons straight out of the cake, community style!  I don't think that birthday cake has ever tasted so good!  It was really fun to have a celebration in the MTC!  I am really grateful that Elder Miles had a cumpleanos here, because even though it was his cumpeanos and his day, we all got to share in his joy. 
When we taught Mari on Saturday, we asked her how things were going, and she said "mas o menos" .  We of course asked, "Porque mas o menos?" and she said that when she was reading el libro de mormon, Marcos saw her doing it, and didn't like it, and left her.  My heart started to break for her.  Even though it means that Marcos can't steal her book of mormons now, and the law of chastity may be easier when we come to it, I am still very sad for Mari.  I can't even imagine what she is going through right now. 
We weren't sure of where to go from there, so we just paused and thought for a few seconds. And I felt like I should read the scripture that talked about the trial of your fe, and tell mari that she will receive a witness from God.  And if she acts in faith and does the things that Dios wants her to do right now, she will get a testimonio of its truthfulness.
We invited Mari to go to church and to pray and read el libro de mormon dairiamente.  then we backed her up to the wall of fe, and told her that if Dios tells her it is true, then she has to get baptized.  I can't wait to see how things are going for her when we visit her next. 
On Sunday, the Primary General President, Hermana Rosemary Wixom, talked to us in Relief Society.  We sang a lot of primary songs, and it was a lot of fun.  Here are the new and revised lyrics to a populuar primary song:
I'm glad they called me on mission. 
Look at me, I've grown a foot or two.
Now I can be ready
to teach and preach
and work as missionaries do.
She told us that when you feel your love dwindling, to pray with all energy of heart that you can have His love, and then watch for the miracle.  She told us that Nothing will startle us more when we go through the veil to the other side, then when we realize how well we know the Saviour. 
On Monday, we taught Joty again, and he has started to read his Book of Mormon!  We asked him if he had prayed about the book of mormon y Jose Smith and he said no.  sin embargo Joty has prayed about his car.  They needed to go to a wedding, and the car wouldn't start, so they prayed, and then the car started. 
We connected that with tender mercies and milagros.  We talked about how if God would answer a pray about a car, how much more would he answer a pray about his church, his book, and his profet?  I think that he really will pray to know the truth. 
On Sunday, I got released from my coordinating sister duties.  It is only a 3 week assignment.  Now my companion will be coordinating sister for the next three weeks.
I love you all!
Best Wishes,
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Say Cheese!

A little story for you....
Julie entered the MTC with a good digital camera.
Said digital camera did not last very long.
It already had a funeral.
Julie was without a camera for a time.
So...
 She bought an instant camera.
Some of the pictures below are instant quality.
And some of the pictures are sideways.
They won't rotate.
You will just have to turn your head.
Just be grateful that there are pictures though.
And for the record...
Julie has a new digital camera.
The End.



























Thursday, August 9, 2012

Part 2

{Julie Anna sent me a [rather sloppy] letter along with the letter she wrote me this week. She was writing crazy fast. :) She asked if I would transcribe it for her so everyone can read what she ran out of time to type. I know... I'm the best sister ever to be willing to type her letter for her. LoL! All of my editor comments will be written in the squiggly brackets.}

Sunday was Mission Conference because it was Fast SUnday. We heard a lot of talks from the MIssion Presidency. One really good scripture is D&C 89:86 {I think it says 89... it might be 84??} It talks about how angels will bear you up seen or unseen, angels are always near. Hermana Georgia McIff talked about knowing if we have the Spirit. It is cuando me stop {uh, your guess is as good as mine as to what that means...?} seeking the spirit, that we should worry. President I. Bruce McIff said that there is treasure everywhere in the Book of Mormon. He even showed us a Calvin & Hobbes cartoon about there is treasure everywhere. He encouraged us to read more slowly with more pondering and to examine every word. President Brown talked about repentance.

During lunch time, we have an Hermana Conference with our Branch President and his wife. She told us how to stand next to a door, so that the elderes can get it for you. We also talked about elder/ sister relationships. We need to make it like siblings. Flirting is bad, but we also shouldn't let any of the elderes look to us as a mother figure. We need to be all that we can be and help the elderes be all that they can be as well.

At the chaula fogonera (fireside) President & Sister Nally talked. One of the things they said that stood out in my mind was that we are numbered unto God. He knows each of us. He knows our names and our abilities. Each one of us in unique and no one can take your place. The Lord has called you to do what only you can do.

Alma 56:96- God will not suffer that we should fall.

We taught Mari again on Monday. It was a really good leccion. We talked about the Book of Mormon and faith. We applied the whole leccion to the fact that God loves her and she can receive personal revelation from God to help her. She is struggling with choosing the gospel, because she thinks that she will lose her family when she joins the church. (They don' like the Mormons.) She feels that it is true, but she doesn't want it to be true because of the hard things that will come from it.  We talked to her about how hard it was for the people in the Book of Mormon to leave their home (Lehi's family), but God blessed them for their faith. It will be hard for Mari to leave her family, but I know that God will bless her for her faithfulness. We asked her to start reading the Book of Mormon, and applying it to herself. We asked her to think about baptism while she is reading and praying.

I feel like I have finally figured out how to teach and it is amazing. Now, the Lord can work milagros through me.

{The end. The letter just stops. This Saturday is Julie's halfway mark at the MTC. I know I already posted this on facebook but lets flood her mailbox with support and encouragement and celebrating halfway through her MTC journey. Her address is on the right at the top of the side bar.}

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Spiritual Promptings

Querido Everyone!
 
We got a new distrito este semana!  It is very exciting.  They are going to be wonderful elderes y hermanas.  Las Hermanas son Hermana Jackson y Hermana Shaffer, y Hermana Reyes y Hermana Anderson.  Hermana Reyes is from Dallas, and she has been telling me a lot about my mission.  I am very excited to get out there and serve the Lord.  Hermana Reyes is going to Honduras, and the other hermanas are going to Nicaragua.  They will only be in the Provo MTC for 3 weeks, because then they will go to the Guatemala MTC for 6 more weeks of additional study. 
 
On Tuesday, during Leadership Training, we were encouraged to pray for a prompting to help those I serve.  So I did.  And at night when I was coughing (I have a cough, but it is not a big deal.), I felt like I should get a cough drop so my companion could sleep.  It wasn't a big deal, so I did it.  And then, I realized that it was a spiritual prompting.  I get lots of seemingly trivial promptings all day long, and I do them.  But I also realized that this prompting blessed me more than it blessed my companion, because I was the one who was coughing.  So, wanting to fulfill this challenge to my absolute best, I prayed and thanked the Lord for the prompting, and asked that he continue to give me promptings like that, and I will continue to do them.  But I also asked that he would give me a prompting that would be a little bit more difficult for me.  I was a bit nervous while I was praying, because I have heard General Authorities say that when you ask the Lord for something hard, he will give it to you, but I really wanted to be the best leader I can be, so I prayed for it anyways.
 
The next morning, it came.  When we were doing a practice lesson (role play) with each other, I just felt like I had no idea how to teach.  I knew all the concepts int he lesson, but I felt like I had no idea how to share that.  I didn't know what to say or what to ask, and it scared me.
 
Hermano Stoddard (Nuestro Maestro) came over and talked to us about it.  We talked about how a lot of people's problems are like weeds in a garden.  If you just cut off the weeds, then it won't do any good, and will just grow back stronger than before.  But if you pull out the roots then the ground can begin to heal.  If we just attack the problem that we see on the surface, then it won't actually solve anything.  We have to dig deeper and find out what the true problem is.
 
As he was talkign to me, he was both teaching me how to help my investigadores, and how he was helping me right then.  He told me that this problem wasn't just about questions, but that there was something deeper, there always is.  He encouraged me to figure out what the deeper problem is and to then try to solve it.  (The Lord always knows what the problems are and he can help you figure it out, if you don't know what the deeper problem is.) 
 
I think that my problem is Pride.  I want to be a perfect missionary, and when I am not, I don't want anyone to see it.  I have been researching humility, and praying for the Lord to soften my heart.  Again, my prompting is more about helping me than it is about helping the sisters that I serve.  I think that the Lord is trying to tell me that if I do the best I can do, and be the best missionary that I can be, then that is enough, and I will have done all that I can do to help those that I am serving.  Both here, and out in the field.
 
When we went to the TRC this week, it was awesome.  We went with a whole bunch of questions about prayer and a leccion sobre oracion prepared.  We talked to Trevor (name has been changed.), a member who volunteers to come in and help the missionaries.
 
We asked him about prayer and he gave the "right answers".  He prays every day, and he recieved revelation from God that day.  Then we read him a scripture, 2 Nephi 32:9.  It talks about praying always.  We asked him what he tought about it, and he said that he thought it was interesting that it said to pray always.  He said that it is hard to pray always when you aren't doing good things.  He said that our actions are reflected in our prayers.  When our actions are good, then our prayers are good too, but when our actions are bad, it is hard to feel like praying because the Spirit isn't there.  We asked him what were the things taht were keeping him from praying always, and he started talking about his music and when he listens to some of it, he can't feel the spirit and doesn't remember to pary.  We asked him to change his music so that he could feel the spirit always.  He said that he woulkd, and then we asked him how this change would help him in his life.  He talked then about how he knew it would help  him and that it is important to pray always.  We were out of time, so we asked him to say the closing prayer, and he did.  He thanked God for what he learned and asked for help.
 
I felt like Nephi then, "and I was led by the Spirit not knowing the things that I would do beforehand."  I had no idea that we would be talking about the importance of righteous music.  I never would have made the connection between praying always and listening to good music, but Trevor did.  I learned about the importance of asking inspired questions and following the spirit.
 
After, our maestra pulled us aside and told us that Trevor had talked to the director afterwards.  HE told him that he ahs been volunteering in the TRC for 8 months, and he never knew that i9t could be like that.  He said that it really changed him and made him want to be better.
 
Ther fill out a survey afterwards and this is his:
How did you feel during your time with the missionaries?
I felt uncomfortable in a good way - uncomfortable thinking about things I knew I needed to change.
What new things did you learn today?
The way we pray is a reflection of the way we live.
Was you faith in Jesus Christ strengthened? How?
They actually invited me to do something that specifically applied to me.  It will be hard but I'm going to do it.
What do you want to do as a result of this experience?
Earn the presence of the Spirit.
 
The strange thing is, that from my perspective, the lesson wasn't any different than  all my lessions.  I just went where the Spirit led me.  The Lord knows how to help people and Trevor was willing to be taught by the Spirit.
 
On Friday, we had two really awesome lecciones.  Our teachers taught us how to teach lesson 1.  This is something new that they have just been taught.  10 minutes to get to know them.  10 minutes on the restoration (but do not talk about the Book of Mormon) and then 10 minutes on prayer, and have your investigador pray right then with you.  You still teacher people, but rather you are teaching people through the lession instead of not teach the lession.
 
When we taught Joty, at the end of the lession, Hermano Stoddard stopped us, and talked to us out of character.  He wanted to make sure that we recognized what a good leccion it was.  He told us that we did a really good job, he also advised us that besides emphasizing prayer, we also need to emphasize praying for a purpose.  We need to challenge them to baptism before we ask them to pray.  It felt really good to be an instrument in the Lord's hand.
 
Then later when we taught Mari, we did the same thing all over again.  Only this time we realy covered the apostacy and the need to understand which church to join, because that was what Mari needed, but with Joty we emphasized that becaseu God loves us, he calls propehts.  (We ddin't even talk about the apostacy at all with Joty.)  Then we asked Mari if she would liek to know for herself if it was true, she said that she wan't sure.  She talked about how if she joined the mormon church, she would have to leave her family and Marcos (her boyfriend), and she wan't sure if she was ready.  Instead of just asking her to pray to find out if the church was true, and our message was correct, we asked her to also pray for strength from the Lord.  We read 1 Nephi 3:7, and talked about how God gives no commandments unless he shall prepare a way for them to keep it.  We also said that we knw that God would provide a way for her.  I bore my testimony of recieiving help from God and that I knew that this help from God could also be given to her.  I also told her that I knew that the Gospel gives me happiness and that I want her to have the same happiness that I have. 
 
Then we aksed her to pray again, and she did.  Both her and Joty's prayers were amazing.  They both prayed with a sincere heart., and I expect that they will continue praying. 
 
I am almost out of time, and I want to be exactly obedient here, so you are going to have to wait to hear about our next leccion with Mari on Monday.  I will write it down in paper format, and hopefully either my mom or my sister will type it up to my blog, so that you can all read it.  But you will have to wait for the mail to come...
 
Nos Vemos,
 
Hermana Julie Anna Sanchez

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Seeing is Believing

These first pictures were taken right before Julie was dropped off at the MTC.
Provo Temple
Walking around temple grounds RIGHT before entering the MTC
Beautiful
Showing off her new purse
Mysterious
Outside the MTC--very anxious to enter! :)
Julie and Mom
Pictures Julie emailed home from her experience thus far at the MTC.
(She did not email captions with them... Your guess as to who the people are/ what she is doing is as good as mine!!)














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