5th Letter–MTC–April 24, 2013

Walking to classDistrict walking to the templeMe--going to brush my teethOla familia, bom dia ūüôā
I apologize ahead of time if this letter seems strange because we did get up at 4:30 this morning to beat the laundry rush. Therefore Sister McCleve is feeling a wee bit sleepy ūüôā
Also, totally forgot to bring my journal today so this week is a blur. A lot of this week was quite normal. Classes, studying, teaching etc. I am so burnt out,(being inside¬†all day besides 45 min. of gym is hard)¬†I guess that’s what happens when you’ve been here for almost 6 weeks. I have no idea how my dear friend Jenn Knutson was here for 16 weeks because of flooding in thailand (where she was supposed to go). The days go by slowly here but the weeks ZOOM by.
I’d like to share about one experience this week that really meant a lot to¬†me.It¬†really got me¬†contemplating about some things in my life and I hope it does for you to.¬†On tuesday we went to choir practice. No you don’t have to try out or anything so don’t get too excited. Anyone can come and sing and you’re in, and you get good seats for devotionals. But¬†you¬†know I like to sing (as long as I’m not by myself) so I love choir practice. Our teacher/conductor is a stud. Brother Edgett (spelling?)¬† he is an institute teacher in Orem and man can he sing. His voice sounds like chocolate cake -best way to describe it, moist, rich chocolate cake…this isn’t an infatuation simply a compliment. My district will attest to this. ANYWAYS not the point, the point is every choir practice is basically a fireside. We always sing hymns for the choir piece for devotionals but they’re 4 part arrangements that are just beautiful. And we actually talk about the lyrics of what we’re singing, the feelings that these words touch on and how they APPLY to us (application is so important, can’t say that enough).
This week we sang “Where Can I Turn For Peace?” hymn 129. We worked on our parts going over measures and crescendos etc. Then he would stop us and ask a question about the lyrics such as; “What are the sources in our lives that cease to make us whole, why?” He went on to talk about how many people in this world are lost. When hard times come in their lives (which we all experience) that they may¬†turn to¬†alcohol, drugs, counselors,friends, family, exercise etc. for relief. And although some of these are good (not the first 2) do they really leave us feeling fully at peace. Completely relieved of a burden that was once there. Is the guilt gone, the anguish calmed, and our souls¬†strengthened? He then went on to say that the only way that any of us can ever befully¬†healed is through the Savior. I know in my own life that I’ve experienced so much love and support from friends and family when I’ve experienced my own trials…but I know that I would not be where I am today without the Savior. He is the one who ” …reaches my reaching, in my Gethsemane, Savior and Friend”. As we continued to practice he talked about the only thing that we should do that night (at devotional)¬†is to teach. Even if we hit a few wrong notes or sped up when we weren’t supposed to etc. that that night we were teaching these people we sang to. This song had a message, yes it was beautiful but there was point that¬†needed to be taught. As missionaries that’s what we do! We are constantly inviting and helping people to know of their Redeemer Jesus Christ and invite them to come unto Him. To turn to HIM for peace. Where in our need to know, we can run to Him.¬†It is¬†His hand¬†that can calm our anguish. Who, who can understand? He, only One.
Part of the arrangment included the 4 sections overlapping eachother singing that last statement “He, only One.” Just as Peter walked on the water and realized that HE was in fact walking on water towards the Savior began to sink beacuse he doubted. He reached his hand up out of the water pleading with Christ “Lord, save me” and there Jesus was to reach his reaching hand to pull him up. The same is with us, if only we would reach. If only people knew that this life is to be full of happiness and joy as we overcome experiences that may be difficult. This can be done through the Savior and His atonement. He knows HOW to heal us because He’s been there. No one else, but He only One. The atonement performed by Jesus Christ allows us all to be able to come to Him and be healed in every way possible. The atonement was infinite and is extended to all. There is not a single person on this earth that cannot access to the love and mercy that Christ gives to us, through Him we can change, become better, let go of guilt, or be relieved of sorrow. What a blessing. Many people ask why I’m so happy? -this is why. I don’t have to remain in sadness or pain ever we can come unto Christ and be happy, not just for a little while but forever. This gospel is everlasting. Think about that. How often can we find things that last forever?
I love you all, I know that this gospel is true. This is HIS church, the Church of¬†Jesus Christ¬†of Latter-day Saints. As a missionary I’ve better come to see that every day. It’s not a cult, or a brain washed group of naive people…these are real people with variety of lives (see¬†mormon.org) that know that their families can be together forever, that they can be clean and happy through the atonement of Jesus Christ and that this mortal life is only a small part of the plan of our Heavenly Father. We are God’s children, ALL created in His image but each of us are different.¬†I am grateful for the message that I get to share with everyone as a missionary.¬†I wouldn’t share it if I didn’t¬†believe it was true….and you all know I’m not getting paid or receiving school¬†credit for¬†this. No, I want to make it clear. I am serving the¬†Lord as a missionary because I want to help and invite others to come unto Christ.¬†Why? Because He is the way. Other things can give us joy, pleasure, satisfaction, excitement etc. but to remain in a state of¬†contentment, peace, and fulfillment never to disappear/fade with time ONLY comes through the gospel of Jesus Christ. That’s it. To put it simply, that’s why I’m here.
Eu sou grato por meu Salvador, Jesus Cristo,em Ele eu seria nada. Ele e O Somente Uma.
Eu amo voces. Ate Mais.
Sister McCleve

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