Friday, August 12, 2016

Death and Love (Letter #2)

Hello everyone!

#Mishspiration for the week:

In all honesty the MTC is not all roses and feeling the spirit. It's amazing and continues to be full of tender mercies, but it's hard. At first I was confused why it was so difficult then I realized it's because I felt like I was losing myself. The first few days here you give up your means of communication (phone), friends, clothes, school, hobbies. Everything that used to define you. But it's worth it to give all that up because now the only things that define me are the names on my name tag: Goold and Jesus Christ. I am so grateful for the chance to wear Christ's name (literally) on my heart for 18 months, but that doesn't change the fact that it's hard to feel like I'm losing myself.

Two things have brought me comfort:

1) God called ME to France. We've met so many people who speak French fluently who are going spanish or chinese or english speaking. But for some reason I was called with France even though I don't know the language at all. "God does not work in convenience" (soeur Jones). Someone in France needs my personality and I can lose myself in the work of Jesus Christ, without losing WHO I am. Because God called me. We aren't meant to become clones of Jesus Christ, we are meant to become the most Christ-like version of OURSELVES.

2) 1 Nephi 7:12 "How is it that ye have forgotten that the Lord is able to do all things according to His will, for the children of men, if it so be that they exercise faith in him? Wherefore, let us be faithful to him." That scripture hit me like a ton of bricks. I feel like God was saying. "Cami, how is it that you have forgotten? This is my plan for you, and if you only have faith and hope in me, all things are possible." Every day I am praying to have faith not only that God CAN use me as an instrument for His work, but that He WILL.

There are definitely highs and lows, but it has been an AMAZING week. And I can already see that my time in the MTC is going to fly by!

We are teaching an ami de l'eglise (investigator, who is actually our teacher acting), It's going as well as it can with the little French Soeur Jones and I know, but the Holy Ghost is always with us in our lessons and I think that is significant for us and our ami. Funny happenings: I said "Grace a l'amour de Dieu, nous pouvons trouver le bonheur" (thanks to the LOVE OF GOD we can find happiness). Apparently I said it like an American and not like a French person and it sounded like "Grace a la mort de Dieu" (Thanks to the DEATH of God). That one took some explaining hahaha. Good thing our ami is very patient with me and good thing we start in the MTC and not in France.

Soeur Jones is HILARIOUS. She adds so much joy to everyday. Below is a picture of her hair after taking it out of a bun. She proceeded to walk around our residence casually with me so we could see people's reactions. I think I almost died laughing. It's the little things.

Getting letters is the absolute BEST. We can't get them until 9 PM so it's something little to look forward to everyday. And I LOVE hearing and seeing updates from the outside world.

Matthew Holland came to talk to us about Joseph Smith on Sunday and it was SO good. Soeur Jones and I sing in the choir (even though I'm completely tone deaf) so we can get good seats to the devotional, and because music is much needed here.

Not gonna lie at first when they said Elder Holland I thought Jeffrey Holland, so I was slightly let down. But the talk was no disappointment! AND Neil L. Anderson spoke to us on Sunday!! AAAANNND, according to the schedule the older Elder Holland is ACTUALLY COMING on Tuesday. So pumped!! Hopefully that's real...   {We believe that Neil L. Andersen and Jeffrey R. Holland are modern-day apostles}

I'll just end with the quote from our sister mission president: "There is not much growth in a comfort zone and not much comfort in a growth zone." Amen! The MTC is not the most comfortable I've ever been, but it's definitely a growth zone. And, that being said, the tender mercies and little blessings of each day make this place incredible. It took a couple days to get used to, but I'm genuinely happy to be here and I'm so excited for this journey to have officially begun!

All my love,
Soeur Cami Goold

A different perspective 

The beautiful Provo temple 

On the lawn of the Provo temple 

Cami and her district 

Someone sent them treats and they are all enjoying them!

Cami wanted to make sure I included the one of her "escaping" over the fence. Haha!


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