Tuesday, July 22, 2014


Aubrey Pound aubrey.pound@myldsmail.net

Jul 17 (5 days ago)
Okay, first off, let me just say FELIZ CUMPLEANOS to my amazing mother. Love you, momma. Hope your day is wonderful :)
SOOOO I have a LOT to write and very little time. I'll try to give you all the highlights. 

My companion, Sister McIntire (MACK-in-TIRE; I abbreviate to Mc (read as MACK)) and I were called to be the Sister Training Leaders (STLs) our fourth day here at the MTC. Last night we welcomed in the new sisters in our zone. So fun. We get along so well and we love teaching and learning when we fail. We haven't completely failed as of yet, because we are speaking English, but we are being strengthened in so many ways, learning new ways to teach SIMPLY. I love it.
First day here, I was kind of overwhelmed, but I couldn't stop saying, "I'm just excited to be here!" I think I described everything as 'exciting' that day. It really truly was exciting though. I couldn't wait to get my nametag and then I finally had it and then I met my teachers and my district and my companion and it was EXCITING. (Side note: I finished the Book of Mormon on the shuttle on the way to the MTC.. good stuff. Really great book, I'd give it 10/10 and I highly recommend it.)
We taught our first lesson our second full day here. It was an amazing experience to feel that much guidance from the Holy Ghost. Our invitation to "Kaylee" was to pray to feel her Father in Heaven's love. When Sister Mc first invited her to do that, she said no. After we bore more testimony, I felt prompted to invite her again. She said YES! The Spirit is so present in our lessons and BLESSES us immensely. We couldn't do it without that divine guidance. 
(DID I MENTION SISTER MCINTIRE IS SO MUSICALLY GIFTED. SHE'S AMAZING. We sing at the beginning of every lesson. The Spirit is so "thick" when we do that and then pray.) We study for hours on end and can get pretty tired of it, but we pray A LOT. We pray for focus and for the Atonement to strengthen us. We pray that we can be guided and prepared to share things the Spirit tells us to in each moment of the lesson. Prayers can be answered. We've seen them answered even on what seems like the least exciting of days. I love prayer and the Spirit. 
Our purpose as missionaries is to INVITE and HELP others to come closer to Christ. We do this by extending invitations and commitments during lessons. YES, I've extended a baptismal invitation, and they said YES!!!! (I mean, it's just our teacher role-playing as our Progressing Investigator (PI), but it was so joyous! Sister Mc and I were stoked on life and the Spirit after that lesson.)
The MTC is truly an amazing place to be, we learn SO much in so little time! Seeing people who all want to progress and help others progress is just super impressive and motivating! Everything is worth it (even classtime and studying for ~9 hours a day) when we go into lessons and feel others' faith growing as they desire to come closer to their Savior! What a blessing it is to see even our "fake" investigators growing in the gospel. As we extend invitations, we, too, commit to doing those things. We can extend those invitations in confidence because we know that's what Jesus Christ would do (and did do!). 
Now, we are to the point where we teach 3 lessons a day: 2 for TRC Progressing investigators (actors/ our teachers) and 1 for a member. So much fun. We love teaching. Every time afterwards we know we could not have done it without the Spirit. 
We have class time twice a day for 3 hours each. In class, we learn from Preach My Gospel (PMG) and role-play. I am not a super huge fan of role-playing, though it does help. It helps us to learn how to answer questions, listen, and teach SIMPLY. Our teachers, Sister Zibetti and Brother Crosby, are amazing. They are very helpful because they are inspired! The Church gives us such amazing resources to help us as missionaries, including PMG and those little pamphlet thingies that go with each lesson. Our teachers have both paid us very high compliments, telling us that we are great teachers and "very advanced" to the point he was at near the end of his mission. Again, all credit to the beautiful gift of music and prayer and the Spirit. (Common theme here: THE SPIRIT!)
GOOD(ish) STORIES AND QUOTES (too many.. my life is embarrassing..):
- In our first lesson, when we tried to begin singing, I couldn't find my note and started singing crazy notes and Sister Mc was NOT helping. I forgot the melody for a split second (she always sings these crazy amazing improv harmonies and I'm the melody!). She started laughing so hard she almost fell over. We eventually pulled it together, don't even worry. 
- I ran into a pole (I DID NOT see it at all!) at the cafeteria with my tray. Luckily no spills or breaking things there, but still my pride was shot a bit.. I should get used to my life being embarrassing..
- I sing "Scripture Power" and one Elder in my Zone beatboxes and it's pretty great if you ask me.
- Sister Mc knows I'm deathly afraid of all things crawly so she will randomly gasp and then  I scream in horror, "NO!!!!!" and almost cry. She loves it. (Also, side note: do not squish a pregnant fat spider!!!!)
- We taught a funny lady and I was describing our perfect bodies in the Resurrection as "very prime". She thought that was extremely funny. I think I'm a dork.
- Our branch presidency member describing his wife as "the kind of woman you would kill tigers for!"
- "There are, like, a billion missionaries here. I counted." -Elder Bradshaw
- "What time is it?" "I don't know, I lost my phone a couple hours ago!.." (first day here, a couple hours in.)
Well, love you all. Be good. I would invite you to take up that challenge in Moroni 10:3-5. The Spirit can do AMAZING things for you, if you would just pray! (and pray OFTEN!)
The Atonement gives us so much power. I couldn't do anything without it. I couldn't keep going each day. I couldn't be learning so much, so quickly. I couldn't be changing as much as I am.

hugs & snugs,
Sister Aubrey Pound

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