I noticed that about my home ward. I will talk to President Orgill or someone about it. So I don't know what order to write things in since it's been a little while since I was able to email. I have some stuff from the field and also some stuff from the MTC.
So some spiritual stuff first:
If I had to pick one thing that I learned in the MTC it would be that every missionary is called and prepared specifically to meet the people that they will meet on their mission, and every person they meet is prepared specifically for them. Therefore, the most important thing you can do as a missionary is just be yourself. Even though I kind of knew this stuff before it really dawned on me at the MTC, because I still somehow had this misconception about what missionaries are. A missionary is not a generic representative of Christ or the church or whatever. A missionary is ME representing Christ. Sister Atchley as a spokesperson for Jesus Christ, that's what's important. I also realized that you are called to help people come unto Christ not to help non-members come unto Christ. One of my MTC teachers said that every district he teaches he feels like is called specifically to teach him something as well, because when we're set apart we are given power and authority to help EVERYONE come closer to Christ.
At the beginning of our very last class together as an MTC district Brother Lim made us sing "God be With you till we Meet Again". It was the saddest thing ever and later in the field I heard someone say that when there's a group of people like your MTC zone or your district in the field or anything it is a unique occurrence. All of the same people in the same place for the same reason will NEVER happen like that again for all eternity. It was such a bittersweet sentiment. I learned so much from all the people in the MTC and I feel like I really did make lasting friendships there. I had to drop my companion off at the travel office early because she had to go back to Canada to wait for her visa and then half my zone didn't have to report until an hour after us. It was so sad to be split up like that and all go our separate ways, because I know that if I ever see any of them again we both will have grown and changed so much.
The field is awesome. California is so super pretty. My first area is Irvine Oak Creek ward. There are so many trees here in Irvine. I'm so happy here because it reminds me so much of east Texas, there are SWEETGUMBALL TREES!!!!! I saw one and it was the happiest day of my life I was so excited and Sister Shober didn't understand! Sister Shober is awesome and she thinks I'm super hilarious so we're always laughing. I haven't had a single bad day yet.
Here's something I learned during personal study the other day:
I was reading in the beginning of Enos and I'll just type what I wrote.
Enos is a great example of the character of Christ. He goes out into the woods where he is presumably alone with this thoughts. While he's there he realizes that he needs to repent - the words of his father enter his mind and heart. Once he realizes this he immediately starts to pray for his own salvation. He doesn't stop praying or exercising his faith until he gets an answer confirming that his sins are forgiven. He asks the Lord how his sins were forgiven and is answered that it's through the power of Christ. He immediately thinks of the Nephites, or the people of the church in those times. So he begins to pray for his brethren and the Lord answers him that they are taken care of and the Lord will bless them according to their faith. This satisfies Enos and also strengthens his faith and confidence in prayer. So he starts to pray for the Lamanites, or the people not of the church. So the Lord says he will grant him what he wants because of his faith. The only thing Enos asks for is that the records of his people not be destroyed so that one day the Lamanites would be able to learn from them and be brought to salvation.
How cool is this!? It reminds me of the scripture that says when ye are strengthened strengthen thy brother or something along those lines.
Oh yeah and I met the MTC president and his wife. They came up to me and said "Sister Atchley we heard you were a recent convert. That's wonderful!" and some other stuff too it was really awesome.
I probably learned a lot more stuff but I want to have time to type funny stuff and read the rest of my emails.
So here's some funny stuff:
"Did I say it right?"
"OH WHAT!!! YEAH!!"
-Conversation between me and Brother Slavens on the last day at the MTC
"you're going to get pneumonia from living in the font." - Brother Lim
"How many of yall were born in the church?" *people raise hands* "So sad... I was actually born in a hospital." - some guy at one of our trainings
"Thanks MTC food for backing me up. Figuratively AND literally." -Elder Bowman while talking about his gains and the bathroom
"this is the tiniest Band-Aid I've ever seen."
"well you have a tiny finger so...." - one of the MTC teachers after handing me a really tiny Band-Aid
"sorry our son is weird" - Elder Blue
"that's because he has two dads" -Sister Shober talking about Elder Center who is in a triple.
There's a ton more because I'm hilarious and we laugh all day every day but this is all I'm typing at the moment.
One more thing: Is Adam Vore in the BYU men's chorus because if so I definitely saw him like 3 times when they preformed at the MTC?
I will try to send pictures but I can only send three at a time in e-mails I promise I'm taking a ton of them. I only have 15 minutes left to email.
I LOVE YALL <3 <3