Thursday, March 21, 2013

I'm Even Going to Miss the Chef

Temple President & Matron

We went on splits this week with real life missionaries and had our first experience in the field. I have become too comfortable at the CCM the past few weeks and the experience in the field was a reminder of how I need to continue to push and how I have much to learn. "There is no comfort in the growth zone and no growth in the comfort zone." The hermana I went with is from Costa Rica but moved to Nevada at a young age; she's fluent in Spanish and English. I was intimidated at first but she was very kind and an amazing missionary. When she asked me to begin one of the lessons I froze and I have no recollection of what I even said; words were just coming out. I am sure I didn’t make any sense. A couple of hermanas in the field expressed that they had been concerned with all these young girls coming out but they said they know we can handle it.

My big challenge right now is not letting my fear be greater than my faith. When I focus on what’s ahead and how unprepared I feel regarding the language, it can be a little daunting. But focusing on the unknown is hindering. On Sunday, we watched an MTC devotional given by Elder Holland in January. He said the following, "We know you're young. We know it’s hard. We are not going to apologize for that. Even at your tender ages - grow up overnight if you have to - but we expect you to be bold, powerful teachers. The Lord has always trusted young people." His whole talk had a 'rallying the troops' feel. It was great.

I leave the safety of the CCM walls in five days. I wish I could say I've mastered Spanish but that is still a work in progress. I am going to miss the people I have met here. My teachers are incredible people. You get to know everyone really well because it is so small. I’m even going to miss the CCM chef who tries to get me to eat meat every day. I am going to miss my companion - who has a beautiful voice; I make her sing for me every night. But it’s time to move on. Let the adventure begin!

"What is the source of fear? I think it is rooted in the assumption that I must solve all my problems and face my challenges alone, using my own resources. That is frightening, because deep in my heart I know how limited those resources are. So when I am fearful, I am hopeless. And without hope, I find myself paralyzed. Knowing that I am not capable of changing myself or my circumstances for the better, I stand frozen in fear." - Gregory Clark

I know I am not doing it alone. I have never felt closer to the Lord. I am so grateful to be here and so grateful for this gospel. We have so many reasons to be faithful and so much to hope in.

Les extrano,

Hermana Meg
Are We Done Studying Yet?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Making A Run for It

There were two days in a row this week that I didn’t go outside - at all. I temporarily went insane. The following day my comp and I were so stir-crazy, during our ten minute break we ran down four flights of stairs, outside, and across the parking lot. The president's wife later said she saw two Hermanas out her window that looked like they were making a run for it. I have started running. It has been a terrific outlet for me. I run around the temple lawn; it probably takes 10+ laps for a mile but it is a great outlet. Its a great way to clear my head after being in a classroom all day.

We made it to the University this week. It was very crowded. It's good to practice being bold. It can be intimidating approaching someone and striking up a conversation using my broken Spanish. But for the most part everyone is very kind and loves to try and help. They are a very social people and enjoy talking. Tomorrow we are all splitting up and going into the field with missionaries. I'm nervous but it will be a great opportunity to taste what it’s going to be like.

I LOVE my teachers. LOVE LOVE! They are the neatest people and are all hilarious. And I have learned so much here! So much. And I am so glad that I have a good gospel foundation and knew some Spanish coming in.

All the missionaries that have been here with us left for their assignments this week. When you are around the same people all day long you get close and it’s sad to see them go. Our district was alone in the CCM for a couple of days but today a huge group arrived. There are around forty new missionaries and the majority of these are sisters. There is another big group coming when we leave. The sisters are going to have to change sides of the building with the Elders, where there is more room. It is so fun to be a missionary at this time; there is so much energy with all the changes. Because there are not that many Hermanas currently in the field and so many are coming, we have been told we are going to be training very quickly. EEK! I am going to have to step it up with the Spanish seeing I won’t get to rely on a senior companion for very long.

I am grateful for the things that have challenged me in my life: soccer, school, the Romney campaign, and my jobs because those hard times are helping me now get comfortable feeling uncomfortable.

It’s warm and beautiful here. Life is good.



You will either step forward into growth or you will step back into safety

- Abraham Lincoln


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Things I Never Knew I Never Knew

We were supposed to go to the University last Friday to talk to the students on campus. However, there have been riots going on at the University but they said it’s only dangerous if you don’t join in with the rioters. And for some reason they didn’t want us to do that. Instead we went to a park to practice. Everyone I spoke with was so kind and patient with my Spanish. I may have mixed up 'where are you from' and 'where are we' because everyone I asked pointed to the ground and said “El parquet." I hope I wasn’t getting that wrong because 1) that would have been a really silly question and 2) I learned how to ask that on day one. Perhaps they were all just park residents.


One of my teachers said not to worry when we get things wrong. One of her companions was giving a talk in sacrament meeting and was trying to say she was embarrassed up there and it was the bishops fault but. But she used the word "émbarazada"' for embarrassed, which incidentally means pregnant.


The following are the highlights of the week... We have weekly doctrine classes with President Freestone. He is so wise and my understanding of the gospel is growing more than ever. To quote the wise words of Pocahontas: “I’m learning things I never knew I never knew.” Thursday mornings we are able to go to the temple which we all look forward to. Another highlight is the daily volleyball games we have during fitness. Almost all the missionaries participate. The phrase "'en tu cara'" (in your face), has caught on and at least one person says it after every point scored.


The Spanish learning has hit a bit of a plateau. I have to remind myself it’s ok to be progressing at a slower rate as long as I am growing. I am amazed at the capacity our minds do have. I am still working on utilizing my mind more and expanding my rate of retention.


Something I have found to be tricky is learning to simplify the gospel. With all its complexities and depth, it’s challenging to know how deeply to dive in. But there is also a beautiful simplicity about the gospel of Jesus Christ. The key principles being, God loves his children and wants us to progress. We can’t stress that enough when teaching. A scripture that was shared with me this week was Romans 8: 35, 38-39:


Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?... For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come. Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Te amo,