Pamilya and friends and anyone who's reading this,
I love you all so much. I feel like the luckiest sister missionary ever because I know all of you. You know what else? This gospel is true. There is infinite light and peace and joy that comes in this gospel. And I love this work.
This week has flown by; it's crazy. I feel like I was just emailing you. I think it helps that we have a real schedule now, full of wonderful things. We get to start each day with personal study, and then breakfast and then class. Our teachers are wonderful- our class has two teachers- one for the afternoon, and one for the morning, but we know all 8 of the Cebuano teachers. They are huge blessings to me in language help, but also in teaching me how to be a missionary, or how to do this thing that I'm going to do for the next 18 months. The rest of the day changes throughout the week, but it all helps. We get to do TALL- technology assisted language learning, which is the coolest program, and I'm pretty sure it's inspired because it helps me learn vocab like I'm never learned before. We have more class, and we teach! We teach a lesson everyday, and I'm still nervous everytime. But I'm learning that fear and faith cannot dwell together, and that my faith can blot out any fear that I have. Plus, Cebuano comes. We learned some grammar principles this week, so I can put together sentences, and say some of the things I want to share with these people. It's still really frustrating to have this message that can make someone happy and only be able to tell them a few things. But I try, I have faith, and the Spirit will take my words to the hearts of the people I teach. It's also been really reinforced to me this week that any weakness I have in this language can be turned into an advantage of vulnerabilty, sincerity, and simplicity. That's so great.
I learn so much everyday, which is just fine by me. My understanding is getting better, and my love for this language grows. Even more importantly, my love for the people I'll teach grows. Thanks for that picture, Mom. The people of Cebu can't be ready for all these sister missionaries coming to them.
We definitely eat three meals here everyday like Pres. Purcell blessed me- sometimes it feels like we study and eat and that's it. But there's lots of great salads and fruits and vegetables and food prepared for us. We get mail after lunch and dinner, so that's another really good time. Seriously, you're all the sweetest people. We get to have gym/exercise everyday in the gym, or at another gym, or the indoor track, or the field outside, which is a great time to tire myself out, and think about the day. I end each day feeling like I gave my best effort, and even if I'm disappointed that I didn't learn more, that's all I can ask of myself. The Lord will help me do the rest. I absolutely know that- He can do anything, and through him, with him, and standing beside him, we can do the same.
Sundays are so wonderful in the MTC- and we're especially excited for this Sunday with the missionary broadcast. There's an amazing spirit of enthusiasm here in the MTC about everything. It's so fun to sit in the Marriott Center with our 1600 person choir and sing Hark All ye Nations. That's what we're doing- we're calling to every nation, that all may rejoice. This Sunday, Sister Rugg and I went to watch The Testaments- which I don't think I'd ever seen in its entirety. Christ is real. That's all I can say. He knows me and you and every other person. He knows exactly how to help us and he is working in our lives to lead us to good. This week, I think I've really gained a testimony of the Holy Ghost. As I try everyday to be worthy of that gift and that inspiration, I'm learning more about how the Spirit speaks to me. It can be little things, like the word I wanted to use in my prayer (tinguha-desire, oh and the rest of it means a desire to share the gospel), that I didn't remember before or after, but I did in the moment. Or it can be bigger things, like the confirming feelings, or precious messages that tell me that I'm here in the right place. The speakers and teachers here at the MTC know how to access that Spirit and we all hear something we need. On Tuesday, Robert C. Gay of the Seventy spoke, without notes, without a script, and he said things we all needed to hear. (He served his mission in Spain, right at the beginning of missionary work in Spain, so I got to think of my Mom and Dad- He told a great story about being inspired to put up streetboards to teach, even though they weren't allowed under Spanish laws at the time- did you use those to teach?) After Tuesday night devotionals, we come together as a district and have a testimony meeting about our thoughts, and I think that was my favorite part of this week. It's hard to choose, but there was something so special about each of us teaching each other, when two weeks ago we were doing entirely different things with our lives. My district is so great- half of my district is going to Tacloban, and that's sad because we love them so much, but right now, we all gain so much from each other. I think one of the blessings of a mission is learning to love people because of their differences from us, not in spite of.
We get to go to the temple again today, so that might become my favorite part of this week, and after dinner, we have our first TRC appointment, teaching someone we don't know in Cebuano. Faith not Fear Sister Tueller.
Thank you so much for your love and messages and thoughts and prayers. I have the greatest family. Thanks Mom for sending the news of my cousins who are serving. Their wisdom is such a blessing to me. And we're all here together, inviting others to come unto Christ.
I'm healthy and happy and thriving in this work. Ultimately, this is the best thing I can be doing right now, it's Heavenly Father's plan for me, and I'm gaining so many blessings as I try my best to do His work. Nasayud ko nga tinuod ang niini simbahan ug ang Basahon ni Mormon. Jesukristo mao ang Manluluwas. Buhi siya! Nasayud ko nga naa Amahan sa Langit og plano para ako. I love you all so much. How are all of you? How is life in Hawaii/Utah/ where ever you wonderful people reside? What's exciting in your life right now? I love any updates, and I care about your life!
Ayo Ayo ug Gugma,
Sister Josie Tueller