Kyle has been serving his mission for...

Kyle has been serving his mission for...

Monday, November 26, 2012

Week 9

Hey Hey Hey! :)

It's such a great day! :) Today is my 2 month anniversary here! Feels like it's barely been 2 weeks though, time is flying so fast! So I will get my travel info this Friday hopefully, but if not this Friday, next week for sure. That way I can let you know what time I'll be able to call home and all that jazz! :) I'll probably just call you in the SLC airport since almost everyone here is Mormon anyway and I can save my time in the LA airport (almost all missionaries going to AU fly out from there) for proselyting and giving out the stack of pass along cards and copies of the Book of Mormon I bought that I won't use much in AU because I'll be giving out Chinese ones! :) So yeah, sorry if you only get one phone call, but you will probably be bored after about 10 minutes of talking with me anyways because there's not a whole lot that is new in my life. 

Except, this Thanksgiving was the best I've ever had in my life. Elder Holland came. He wanted us to tell our parents that we are officially in his family now, so he's sorry to tell all the parents they have 1 less child in their families, but he formally adopted all of us hahaha! :) Many of his grandchildren came and they performed some really good songs and piano solo's. He talked about how blessed we are to live in this dispensation because it is the only dispensation from the creation of the world that will not end in apostasy and how all the Prophets of old have looked to this Dispensation for solace since they knew that their dispensations would all end in apostasy until this one. I thought that was a very interesting insight! He also talked about just how blessed we are in general to have what we have in this day and age and for the way that we are currently making history with the missionary work we are doing and how many lives we are changing. 

I keep getting letters from my Mission President (just the weekly mission update/report) and it makes me want to leave right now! :) There are some other Elders leaving for AU today as well and I want to just jump on the plane with them! :) But it's okay, I am content with where I am at for now. I definitely don't have the jitters others do about staying here. It's an amazing experience and I'm so glad to have it, but I also and very excited and ready to get out and start serving and changing lives. Our lessons here have been really really good! In our TRC, we had someone new this week we hadn't seen before, and our teacher said that before he came in, he was frustrated with something and a little upset, but through our lesson, he felt the spirit, and received revelation on what he needed to resolve the situation he was in. Perfect since our lesson was on receiving revelation through the Book of Mormon! :) Also, my lessons with Kim have really settled down and I am able to teach her well now I feel. It was a little rough getting my bases set when I started teaching her alone because I had to go over some things that we had taught in the beginning that she didn't understand and had to figure out how the best way to teach alone is. But i worked out the kinks and now she is really progressing well! It still is quite weird to think of how unique my whole situation here is at the MTC. Pretty sure if people heard that I taught alone in a room with an investigator they would think I am the worst and most disobedient missionary in the world haha but I'm just doing what they've said I need to do, so it brings comfort to know that I'm obeying the rules! :) 

I've realized how important it is to teach to the investigators needs, AND their learning style. I hadn't thought about that much, but people have different learning styles, and once you can figure out how best to present the info to others, it really helps them to understand, and to think about what you are presenting, so that way they can feel the spirit. I dont know exactly how the Spirit works, but I do believe that when people understand enough to have more questions and to ponder what we are teaching, the Spirit speaks to them more. For example, I came up with a really good example of how we cannot clean our own sins from our lives by using a hankey (thanks Dad for making sure I had those! :)) that I rubbed a rolo all over so that it was very stained and dirty, then handing Kim a "tide-to-go" pen which is renowned for removing stains I asked her to clean the hankey so that it was white again. She wasn't able to get much of the stain out at all and that is when I talked about how this white hankey is like our soul. Throughout our lives, we will accrue "stains" by sin and in order to return and Live with God, we need to be pure and perfectly clean, Thus, we need to take this hankey to someone who has the ability to get the stains out. This is our Savior Jesus Christ. I was pretty excited about how she was much better able to understand the need for our Savior because she asked. "how can Christ help me today, as you have promised, when He lived 2000 years ago?" Anyways, I just wanted to share that little example of how object lessons, drawing pictures, relating to modern day life and teaching simply enough for a child to undertsand the lesson brings the spirit in a lot more and helps us to truly help the investigators to come unto Christ. 

This week has been absolutely amazing! I had the Best Thanksgiving of my life since I have never felt so rich, blessed, and filled with the spirit in an entire day. I also received a great package on Friday, and will get one from Michelle today I'm assuming so I'm really excited! :) Packages are pretty great, but they are going to be very expensive to send to AU im afraid, thus, when I leave, I decree that ya'll cant send me any more packages kay? Cool, glad that's settled! ;) For Christmas, I just want a picture or two and maybe 1 christmas Orange from Mom and Dad. I LOVE THOSE THINGS! :) Also, if you do send the Christmas Orange, please also send the Christmas Orange Story since I pretty much cry every time I read that story. It's true :b Mom, regarding the Music. I LOVE Mormon Tabernacle and any piano music you can find at Deseret Book that is good I would love, but really, dont feel like you need to :) I love you all SOOOOOO much. This gospel is all about Eternal Families and I have the best one every created by the Master's Hand. I love you all so much!
With great Love,
Elder Shafer

Me at the Service Project. We made about 2500 Education kits and 4500 Health Kits for the People of Ouelessebougou, in Mali, Africa! :) It was pretty cool stuff!

This is Elder Lynch and I, He and I grew up together and then His family moved to Walla Walla when I was...... 8? Not sure exactly, but He's a pretty awesome missionary!

My first bite of some amazing treats Anika sent me for Thanksgiving. THANKS!!!! :) They are delicious!

My little Thanksgiving turkey! :) We all made them as a class quickly to write some things we were thankful for.

They set up a little Nativity set, so I had to get a picture by it of course! :)

Just chillin out by the Christmas lights after dinner :)

I also got a nice packet of straws and some more Tim-Tams from Anika, so now I can use the straws when I need to "suck it up." And I can keep those Tim Tam Slams a-coming! :)

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