It has been a great couple of days here at the MTC! I have learned so much already! After I was dropped off I picked up all the things I needed and met my companion. His name is Elder Crook. He is 6’2″ and reminds me a lot of Elder Fogelman. We clicked instantaneously and it was evident to almost everyone we met. The first night they had us do a workshop in a large group. In this workshop we were intoduced to someone and we were supposed to figure out how to answer their questions and practice being a full time missionary. What made it difficult was working with the 40 other companionships. At first we were unorganized and were not very effective. Our teacher would have us stop every 5 to 10 minutes to review what we know and brainstorm what questions we should be asking. Elder Crook did a great job of contibuting to the question portion. After the first investigator we moved to another one where we were to meet with a couple who were asked to meet with missionaries by a friend. We were told they have five childeren who live all accross the country and many other small and simple facts. After that we asked them about God. Jose and Heli (the couple) both had different opinions. While both believed in God, Heli believed we could have a relationship with God and Jose did not. As we began to ask Jose why, he got defensive and began telling us his story about how prayer has only hurt his life because it got worse as he prayed more. He told us of tragedies he had seen and how the people who died in these tragedies had someone who was praying for them. Then he turned to me, in a room full of 80+ missionaries, and asked, “how can we have a relationship with God in a world like this”. To be honest I was not sure how to respond so expressed to him that he was right and this world is a terrifying place, but I assured him of the power of prayer and bore testimony of it and what it had done for me. It was a great moment for me to be used by the spirit like that even if it was just a role play. It felt incedible! I challenged him in the end to pray again with an earnest desire and to wait to hear answer from God. He accepted my challenge and it made me feel great. On the last investigator my companion and I were chosen to lead out. We stuggled for various reasons but it was a great learning experience for us.
Yesterday was my first full day at the MTC and it involved a lot of learning and sitting down. To be honest, I was a little sleepy and nodded off a little in some of the classes but it was still a great learning day. We also met our branch presidency yesterday which was great. They had all the missionaries in our zone come up, introduce themselves, and bear their testimony. After that experience I understand why people compare this place to the temple. The spirit was that strong due to all the testimonies. It was truly overwhelming. We interviewed with the Branch Presidency and Elder Crook and I were chosen to be Zone Leaders! I was surprised but I am excited to serve everyone in our zone. I know this church is true and the blessings that come from knowing that are amazing. I am grateful to be here and have an oppotunity to share the gospel with everyone I meet. I hope all is going well back home. Love and Miss you all!