Saturday, February 23, 2013

Zone Leader, It's made life even busier but it's a great experience

Thanks for all the letters and packages from everyone! My companions and I all enjoy the extra food. I have had a crazy busy week. The days all kinda mesh together but it's been amazing! I loved studying and learning about the Gospel before, but I've gained a greater love for it now. I learn so much, we have amazing teachers here. One of my teachers yesterday was Brother Christianson, he's the blond guy from that show "the District." 
    So whats new with me this week?
First, on Sunday, me and my companion were called as Zone Leaders, It's made life even busier but it's a great experience, I've learned so much from my Branch and especially the Branch Pres. and councelors. We have great leaders in our Districts, I've become closer to them and made some great friendships.
My companion and the guys I share a room with have gotten pretty close, when guys are together alone sometimes we get a little weird as you'll see in some of the below pictures. Elder Clark kept getting bloody noses so he got a humidifier, for some reason our room is kinda dry so we sniff the mist a lot. There have been some amazing days in the past week, but i'll be honest, there have been some that have been very tiring and hard to get through. Yesterday was our In-Field orientation, I learned so much, but it was the longest day of my life. One thing I noticed is that some people have a harder time with the long personal study hours we have, I love them, but make sure anyone preparing for a mission is used to having long studying hours. I don't mean to sound negative, it's been an amazing week. 
The food is still amazing. Most of my friends in my district are starting to complain about having to much "cafeteria food," but it sure beats roman and pb&js so I can't complain.
So I don't know if i told you guys already but I figured out I leave the 26th (tue.) in the morning.
We learned something very important yesterday, Members of the church can do soooo much missionary work! Never ever be ashamed to share the gospel with your closest friends in your life.
Oh and i forgot, I do have one complaint about the food here, my comp and I had what we thought was lasagna the other day.... (don't eat lasagna if it has melted white cheese and grass sprinkled over it...)
But it's been great! I love it here. Keep up your reading and praying! The Gospel is amazing and changes lives! God loves each and every one of you, and so do I. Good luck with everything!
Oh and i guess you can send me letters through, check it out.. see ya

Sunday, February 17, 2013

MTC as 20% EFY, 10 % Scout Camp, and 70% Amazing spiritual experience

Howdy, Today is my P-day, It's a pretty busy day considering it being our "day off." But The MTC has been amazing. I have really learned so much. I've felt the spirit more here than any time in my life. Picture being in an atmosphere where you, and those around you, are all striving to live the best you can to have the Spirit with you constantly. The Spirit has taught me, and let me understand things that can't be taught by words. I would describe the MTC as 20% EFY, 10 % Scout Camp, and 70% Amazing spiritual experience.
    My companion is awesome, his name is Elder Cameron Johnson. If we went to school together we would have been friends so I definetly get along with him. We can and do talk about any spiritual impressions we have and I learn so much from him. Having a companionship really is inspired of the Lord, both he and I have learned more than we ever could on our own just from our difference in learning.
   The life here at the MTC is VERY organized, I love it. We have a very organized schedule. We wake up at 6:30 or earlier and have time to get ready and study, then every minute of our day is planned and scheduled until 10:30. I feel more order in my life than I ever have. In my residence there are 2 bunks, 4 Elders--Elder Johnson and I, and Elder Clark (From Pow, Wyoming), and Elder Graff (they are both crazy, we spent our time getting ready this morning while quoting spongebob). It has been very hard to get used to calling everyone "elder," my companion and I always call each other "dude," or "bro" but we're trying hard to get into the habbit of saying "sisters and elders." The food here is amazing, tell dad I don't know what he was talking about of "boring cafeteria food." Every meal we can choose between 3 entrees and we have access to unlimited ice cream bars and cereal (as well as main meal). The only bad part about eating is sometimes our dinners are only 10 minutes long so we have to cram down everything we can pretty fast. At first it was hard to not eat before bed but now me and my comp. have droors full of candy and food (we're taken care of). I'm getting a little more excercise now, (pull-ups and push-ups mainly) we get a little bit of gym time and i'll tell ya, it makes me have a lot more confidence playing basketball with my district the the 8th ward Elders...
  Random things...
  •  Is Nate still sick or is he feeling better?
  • Mom can you tell Jim Stephens thanks for his card, I remembered I forgot to tell him.
  • Mom also, you guys can contact me at my email but no one else, they all have to write letters
  • Oh I guess I'm actually going to Houston the 26th...
  • I would love to get a ton of letters
  • Everyone can have any candy in my room, or my clothes nate and jared can wear.
  • I've only played piano once since I've been here.. it's pretty tough.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Off to the MTC

Yesterday was a beautiful day!  Excitement filled the air as now Mike was ELDER Michael Russell.  The setting apart was such a special and spiritual event for us all. What a great blessing to be apart of the Gospel plan.  This truly is the Lords work and now Michael will spread his word to all who will listen!  His testimony  of the Savior is powerful.  He is well prepared to teach.

After the setting apart was family time!  Goodbyes were exchanged and a fun time together at the Olive Garden, at Mike's request!  After, when we arrived home my heart was especially touched when Mike tucked in his little brothers and sisters telling them goodbye again.  He sang Emmie's favorite song to her..."I am a Child of God" and spent time talking with each of them.  He made Addi a huge dollhouse valentine box that she kept on her bed that night. Mike and his brothers are best of friends and they are super excited to send him their continuing comic strip of life's events.  The girls plan to help me in the kitchen with goodies to send off in packages!  It will be a great two years! Thanks for everyone's support!

So here's his address in the MTC:  He will be there for 10 days!

Elder Michael Russell
MTC Mailbox #371
TX-HOUS 0226
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604-1793