Thursday, May 16, 2013

MTC: Week 7

Sister Shreck always says that the MTC is a taste of heaven because time just doesn't make sense here. So true - it becomes a freakish time warp and though so much probably happens, I always sit down on P-day and feel like I have nothing to say.
I feel like I've learned a lot and nothing at the same time. We have begun to do 100% SYL (we will for the last 2 weeks here) and it's crazy! I definitely don't know all the words I usually use in a day, and I pretty much can only speak when absolutely necessary, but it has really helped me to grow and learn how to maneuver to say the things I need to say. That will be a huge blessing when I get there (if I can understand what I need to say in the first place - eesh!)

Ooh, something cool. Guess who spoke to us at relief society this Mother's Day? None other than Janice Kapp Perry! For those of you who don't know (because I didn't) She wrote like a BAZILLION songs that we use in the church, including my very favorite, a child's prayer :) But also army of Helaman, I'm trying to be like Jesus, As sisters in Zion, all that... AND, in honor of the new Sister missionary movement, she wrote new words to As Sisters in Zion just for the new wave of Sister Missionaries, and we got to sing it for its very first time this Sunday. I am so grateful, and still can't really believe I am a part of this movement. This is history in the making! And we are all blessed to see it.
Also, let me just say that technology is totally changing missionary work. At least training, if not in the field. This last Saturday we got to Skype with real Russian people, in Russia! It was SOOO scary, but an awesome experience and opportunity. They were all church members and so sweet (The kind that would stay up until midnight to talk to the missionaries in America) and I really learned a lot from this - not necessarily language wise, but I know that all of the things I learn here will make me a better teacher, and that's the most important because it affects EVERYTHING.

One thing I've been worried about lately, is that though I know there will be some way to speak or say what is absolutely needful, I still don't understand Russian very well. At all. I know it will come, but I'm worried that if I can't understand people i won't be able to form the relationship I will need to in order to understand their needs and be effective. It's hard for me too, because I'm more of a listener than a talker usually anyway because I love just listening to people. I love to hear what other people think and feel about everything, and then I read between the lines to really know them. The way they say things, the things that they linger on and are passionate about. I wouldn't say that I'm a people person, because I'm still shy and would never go out of my way to talk to everyone - but the people I do get to know, I really care about. How can I do this, if I can't understand them? These were my concerns. But after and interview with one of my teachers, I realized that I've been prepared for this - by being the chameleon face, by being #7 who got lost at the space needle, by being in the background and by being a listener. I know that if I have faith, and work like I've never worked before that the spirit will help me understand what I need to. Not because I understand their words necessarily (the gift of tongues is real, but for Russian it takes longer to kick in, and doesn't exactly have biblical effects haha) but because HOPEFULLY I will be able to understand their heart. And while I'm at it, I might as well extend an invitation to everyone to try and do the same. If you feel like there's been some sort of conflict or misunderstanding with someone close to you, next time you talk to them, try to not listen so much to their words and find their needs. I don't get to use this theory for another 2 weeks still so I want to know how it goes!
Okay and one last thing - I have a prayer request for my trainer. Because there are so many sisters going out and not that many there, some sisters will become trainers almost immediately after finishing only 6 weeks of training. They probably will not feel ready (because I know I wouldn't). PLEASE PRAY for them. That they'll learn what they need to know and more, and be prepared to take us on and teach us what we need to know. This is very important, I've heard the
trainer creates the setting of an entire mission. PLEASE pray for mine.

Well I think that's all - sorry I don't have too many interesting things to say quite yet, but I know that'll all change in a couple weeks. Thank you everyone for the prayers - I need them here, and I am definitely able to feel them. I love you all!
Sister Willerth
PS.  I almost forgot! The district just older than us left yesterday. It was really hard to say goodbye - I've made some amazing friends here! But the world needs these missionaries - they will be the best Russia has ever seen!


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