Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Happy Easter and Conference

Hola familia! Como estan uds.? Wow, another wonderful and busy week at the MTC! So, I want to tell about a few experiences I have had lately and then I want to ask a few questions. So, first of all, I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY! I love the life I have right here and right now! And I am looking forward with my whole heart to get to Argentina in 3 weeks and teach the gospel to those I've been called to teach! It still sometimes doesn't seem real to me. This life as a missionary is something I've wanted to do my whole life and it's FLOWN by! We've already been here a full transfer- 6 weeks! YIKES! I feel like I have grown so much, and yet there's so much more I can learn and do. Especially with Spanish; I am struggling and struggling. I have to have more faith in the Lord and pray for the gift of tongues. Thanks for Elizabeth for fasting for me again this last Sunday- love you! So, many of my gym-time friends have left and gone into the mission field. So now volleyball isn't AS fun as it was before. But I have been playing more basketball (and out of nowhere I can kinda shoot the basketball fairly well! Are these extra blessings from the mission? :) haha) and I've been running a bit. My FAVORITE exercise time is the morning when we have our exercise classes for sisters. My favorite are step aerobics (which gets intense! who knew?) and kickboxing (a lot like Tae-bo, but even better!). My favorite Spiritual times are when we teach, devotionals, and probably la Junta Grandes (large group meetings). My favorite meals is la comida mexicana because I'm going to miss it!!! And right now I love eating Sourpatch watermelons that we get out of the vending machines! Haha My favorite personal time is when I'm getting a lot out of the Book of Mormon or delving into Predicad Mi Evangelio (Preach My Gospel). I LOVE el Libro de Mormon! I've been reading it again, in ingles, and I hope to be done either tomorrow or Thursday, so I can start it again in Spanish! Hermana Crosby and I had an incredible time teaching in the TEC. We taught Hermano Tidwell once earlier in the week when I was flustered with my Hermanas being sick and things, so the Spirit was not presence. It was a disaster! haha (ok, not THAT bad). Then later that week we prepared well, prayed for the guidance of the Spirit, and felt the peace of the Spirit as we began. The lesson flowed, we used wonderful scriptures, and the Spirit was present! And the greatest part (for me) was that I was able to speak more clearly and much better Spanish with the Spirit! It was truly incredible! The Spirit guided the way and helped me be able to conjugate more quickly and use better sentence structure. I was so grateful! I know I can do this THROUGH the Holy Ghost. I can understand the language of the Holy Ghost much better than I can Spanish, so I will use both as I preach, teach, testify, and commit others unto Christ. Lately I've been really focused on diligence. Austen Archibald talked to me a lot about diligence and as I've been reading the Libro de Mormon again, I've been noticing all the times the word "diligence" comes up. I wasn't feeling completely well this week and I had to try and learn diligence diligence diligence. I was getting a little discouraged towards the end of the week, because I faltered a bit with my diligence. But on Sunday, the mission presidency talked about a lot of things, but President Clegg (the 2nd counselor) turned to the scripture in D+C that says, "Courage brethern (and sistern :-D), on and on to victory!..." And then he made us stand up and sing, "We are all enlisted 'till the conflict is 'ore. Happy are we!" It was wonderful because I realized that diligence requires a smile, courage, and a positive attitude to be successful. I've been thinking a lot about my family- and YOU guys- and about how lucky I am to be born in the covenant, reared by goodly parents who love the Lord, and to have had so many wonderful experiences. Thanks Mom and Dad for everything! And thanks to all those who have touched my life. I am SO grateful for the blessings we have received from the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. And as we celebrate Easter, to know that Christ the Lord is risen and HE LIVES! What a wonderful message that is: I KNOW that my Redeemer LIVES! This is the message I want to share to all the people in Argentina! And I can't WAIT for Conference this weekend! How lucky are we to have living prophets on the earth today. They are incredible men of God; I can't WAIT to here them!

LOVE YOU ALL SOOO MUCH! This church is true! The Book of Mormon is true! Please don't forget about writing me every once in a while! HUGS HUGS HUGS!!!! (just to fam! :) and many handshakes!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

My MTC Family/District

Ok, so I always laugh with my companions about what we write in our family emails. They all talk about the funny things that happen and I always focus on the spiritual. So, I decided to write a little about how my district sometimes starts laughing in the middle of singing hymns or during prayer- and sometimes I am the cause of the laughter because I don't always pronounce the Spanish hymns correctly or an Elder's voice cracks or we get off tune or something- it's hilarious! Our district is honestly like family! Oh, guess what? I have a calling- I am the newly called Sister Coordinator of my zone! So, we have the Branch President, then Zone Leaders and a Sister Coordinator, and then district leaders. I was called on Sunday and I felt a huge responsibility on the shoulders. I have already felt a deep love and appreciation for all the Sisters in the Zone. They are courageous women, Sister Scriptorians, and women of God. And many are as crazy as I am! :) We have a lot of health problems right now with the Sisters. I have a sister with kidney stones, one with pneumonia (in my room!), and three with colds. I keep begging the other sisters to stay healthy! haha But I love them with all of my heart. I am so grateful for this calling because I was just starting to feel like I was thinking about myself too much again. Missionary work is all about service, and now I have been so much happier focusing on others. We're getting three new sisters this week, so I will be their "Madre" or "Hija Mayor"- I am so pumped! Ok, so we finally had an apostle come! Quentin L. Cook came on last Tuesday's devotional and talked about the Holy Spirit and how the field is white because of the economic conditions and situations of many. He said this is an exciting time to be a missionary. One of my teachers, Hermano Dallon, talked to us about changing the way missionaries share a message in a members house. He said how many people have had missionaries over and how many spiritual thoughts do you actually remember? and how many people actually referred people to the missionaries? He said he does not think this very effective on a large scale. Hermano Dallon encouraged us to go to members houses and do one of the activities in Preach My Gospel (Predicad Mi Evangelio) and then ask them to make a non-member friend. Just make a genuine non-member friend and DON'T talk about the gospel! He said to just wait until they ask a question or bring up the fact that you're Mormon. It might take 1 week, 8 months, 1 year, 3 years, etc. but he said that does not matter. And the ENTIRE time he was talking about this new idea, I thought about the FOX (or spelled Foxx?) family in Park City! Mom, I'd like to challenge you to call them and just say hi! Tell them you miss them; tell them Ali says Hi! But just be their friend! Then when you move back to UT eventually (when are you thinking about doing that by the way???), invite them over for dinner sometime! Don't even mention the gospel unless they bring it up! And eventually I know they'll want to learn more and more - they will feel your genuine love for them and your love for the Savior. I don't think it was coincidence that I thought about them. They are WONDERFUL and I miss playing LaX with Bailey! So, Mom and Dad, will you please do that? I know you're busy, but the phone call will only take 10 minutes max. Ok, so I was reading in Alma the other day and for the second time in my play, I received a direct answer from reading the scriptures. I've always relied and had a testimony of the power of prayer and I always felt the Spirit as I read, but the answer was in the TEXT of the Book of Mormon. I was wondering why there's so much poverty, genocide, and sadness, and I was reading in Alma 14 where Alma and Amulek are watching Amulek's family and people and records be burned. In the verses after, it talks about agency of men, the judgment and justice, and that those people will be taken up in glory. I received the answer and I was so excited! Then in a meeting later that day, we talked about questions of the soul (preguntas del alma) and someone brought up this one! I raised my hand and shared this whole experience. It was a wonderful experience for me because I have been praying mightily to have a stronger, more fervent testimony of the power of the Book of Mormon, so when I committ my investigators to read, I will do it with power and be able to testify of the many blessings we get from reading the Book of Mormon. I am so grateful for tender mercies of the Lord, like this one. Uncle Scooter and Chase saw/met Victoria, eh? :) haha Mom, you're incredible! All of the experiences you share with me are amazing- and you are such a great example to me of doing missionary work as a wife, mother, and friend. How's Dad? Is he home yet from Austrailia? Oh, and on Sunday we had Sister Camille Olsen come to speak (she's a professor at BYU). She was INCREDIBLE! I want my testimony to be as strong as hers! And she mentioned a scripture in Jarom 1:11 where the people were so righteous and they acted like Christ had already come to earth (for the first time). She mentioned what it would be like if we lived as if Jesus Christ had already come again. Wow, that would change the way I would act, for sure! Thanks for Aunt Sharryl for her letter, and the Jarvis girls, and so many others! I'm excited that the wedding plans are on full throttle! Exciting! While I did sealings today I thought about the wonderful blessings of this ordinance. Wow. I am grateful to have been born in the covenant and I am excited to one day be sealed to my future husband for all eternity. What amazing blessings we receive when we keep the commandments, keep our covenants, and endure to the end happily! I LOVE being able to share this message with people! I LOVE this work! I love love love love love you!!!!!!!!! Hugs and Handshakes to all! Hermana Tingey

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

MTC Week 4

Hola Familia! Esta semana fue muy divertido y espiritual! Wow, I love being a missionary! First of all, thank you all SO much for writing me, dearelder.com-ing me, and for your constant prayers on my behalf (Mars, uncle Scooter, Amy Brown, todos!). I can feel the power of the Lord helping me; our Father in Heaven truly answers prayers! Special thanks to Holly, Greg, and DeVore family for the cute card! Muchas Gracias! And Mom, MUCHAS GRACIAS por las galletas (ga-shhe-tas pronounced with the Argentine accent! :) haha) My class and maestro were so grateful for the pick-me-up! I hope Dad is feeling better! I put his name on the temple role...again! :) I love going to the temple every week on P-day. I am learning so much as I truly ponder the teachings of the endowment and feel of the Spirit in the Celestial room. It's one of my favorite parts of my week! On a different note, I have another favorite part of the week: Volleyball! I play every gym period and I've finally started to learn how to do a "semi-spike!" But the best part is that old habits die hard - I counted EIGHT bruises on my knees this last week. EIGHT! haha And one HUGE one that's been bothering me. I also had a bruise on my palm of my hand for a while, but I just love playing volleyball! And it helps me have fun during gym time, then work hard during study time. Oh, and I see Mallory at least every couple days. She's incredible! Pues, Every week we write a talk for Sunday. Then the Bishop gets up and calls two people to give a talk in Spanish about what we prepared (but we don't know beforehand if we're going to give it or not). This week was about repentance, so I studied and thought about repentance, about CHANG(E)ing our hearts all this week. I did a lot of soul searching and I have felt the love and mercy of my Savior and Redeemer (Salvador y Redentor) Jesucristo. Ok, so Tuesday's devotional was Bruce C. Hafen. He had a wonderful talk about truly knowing the gospel is true. And that we don't have to know everything right now, but we just have to have the desire and work ethic too. I've taken that to heart and thought about a few parts of my testimony that I needed to do better on. I challenge all of us to continue to re-evaluate ourselves in a positive way. Because it has changed the way I study my scriptures and said my prayers. Plus my weaknesses have truly made me humble and I have put my trust in the Lord to lift me up. Similarly, in class Hermana Jesperson talked to us about a talk written by Joseph B. Writhlin called "Follow Me." It talks about casting our nets aside, like Peter and Andrew, and follow Christ. She encouraged us to cast our nets aside and follow Christ with our whole hearts on our missions. I love this quote from it, "As Jesus the Christ stood on the shores of the Sea of Galilee 2,000 yearas ago, so He stand today, issuing the same call He gave to those faithful fishermen and now to all who will hear His voice" "Follow Me!" We have nets that must be tended and nets that must be mended. But when the Master of Ocean, earth, and sky calls to us, "Follow me," we should leave the entangling, worldly nets behind and follow His footsteps." On Sunday, Sister Margaret Liffereth of the General Primary Presidency spoke to us. She's a very powerful woman in that she always focuses on our Father and Jesus Christ. And then one of my favorite moments this week was singing We'll Bring the World His Truth with the entire MTC. And you know what? They changed the words for us to sing, "We are as the army of Helaman, we have been taught in our Youth. And we ARE NOW the Lord's missionaries to bring the world His truth!" I AM A MISSIONARY!!! I am sooo grateful to my Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ to have this opportunity to serve them and their children. This is truly una obra marvillosa! Ben (and everyone), I LOVE TEACHING! I feel like I've been doing it my whole life. I feel like it comes very naturally. I am grateful I had opportunities to teach with the missionaries before my mission and also to teach Gospel Principles- that helped a great deal! I always go with what I feel in my heart. Sometimes Hermana Crosby doesn't always see where I'm going with something, but in the end the Espiritu Santo is always present and I know that we're doing our best and the Holy Ghost is taking care of the rest! Ben, I would LOVE for me and Herm. Crosby to teach you as a progressive investigator! OH, and this week I have a pretty difficult goal. I have decided that I want to actual be a representative of Jesus Christ in what I say, do, think, etc. I AM lucky enough to be His representative now as a set apart missionary, so I want to do as He woudl do, say what He would say, think what He would think. So far, there's been a clear distinction between the Spirit and Satan working on me trying to pull me in opposite directions and it's been a great experience. We have the FULLNESS of the Gospel of Jesus Christ on the earth! I KNOW we have a modern-day Prophet, named Thomas S. Monson. He leads and guides this church- he has all the keys necessary for the work of the Lord. He must talk to the Savior often. Oh yeah, and this week is my first week of teaching in SPANISH! Yikes! I am very very very nervous because I feel like I can not express myself in Spanish yet. It will probably take a few months, but I will trust in the Lord like I have been taught by goodly parents. I love all of you SO much! So, is Dad feeling better? I was hoping to see him at the temple (haha), but just know that I was thinking about you a lot today, Daddy! Mom, you're AMAZING! I don't know how you do it all! Did you receive my letter yet? I wrote about my schedule and life here at the MTC in greater detail. Biffy, I LOVE YOU SOOO MUCH! I'll write you again! Ben and Jackie, my prayers are always with you! Abby and Jack, keep those smiles on and you'll be a great missionary in your crazy school! :) Hermana Tingey P.S. Mom, can I get Dad, Ben, Jackie, and Biffy's email? Can you dearelder.com me your letters from last week? I miss you Mommio! HUGS AND HANDSHAKES!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

MTC Week 3

HELLO!!!! Wow, SOOO much has happened this last week. I can hardly believe that by tomorrow I will have been here for 3 weeks. I am a third of the way through! (If my Visa works out!) First of all, thanks SO much for those of you who have dearelder.com-ed me and sent me letters. Biffy, Benji, Mom, Dad, Grandma, Scott Carlson, Nate Hendersen, Aunt Holly, Abby, Jack, Amy Brown, etc. MUCHAS GRACIAS! I absolutely LOVE getting mail! (Mom, PLEASE dearelder.com your emails to me! I have NO time to read emails, but if you dearelder.com I have time to read aobu it, write an outline for what I want to say for the next P-day, and then be able to write you back. Thanks, love ya!) Ok, so Richard C. Edgely from the Presiding Bishopric came last Tuesdayl. He is a darling, powerful man. Oh, and we had something crazy happen in our district. I have never really understood how the philosophies and ideas of men "mingle" or combine with scripture to make false ideas until this last week. My district leader, bless his heart, is a convert. He has always been really interested in balance, Karma, Hinduism, Buddhism, finding the center, etc. So he has been teaching us how to use our "energy" instead of the Spirit or something. All of us just take it with a grain of salt, but someone talked to the Bishopric about a certain time when he talked about some things that made everyone a little uncomfortable. The Bishopric pulled the Sisters aside and asked if any of us had been offended. We all said no. They urged us to be bold and not to worry about the "status" of the DL's or ZL's or AP's, but to go with the Spirit to know if what someone is teaching is correct doctrine. I had not even thought about correcting him and I felt kinda guilty I hadn't. But now I will never allow that to happen again. He's still our zone leader and we all love him, but he just had to be corrected on what he could do. Pues, Hermana Crosby and I have been working on the 2 lesson this week. It's a toughy- it's the plan of salvation. Ben or anyone- do you have advice on how to effectively teach this lesson? I LOVE it, but it's hard to give a 20 years of learning it lesson to a convert in 30 minutes! :) In class the other day, my maestra Hermana Jesperson (who served in Argentina) drew up "La Gloria de Dios" (the glory of God) in a Sun on the board. She said stay fixed on that and don't let your eyes wander. She then started to write up words all around the sun, but I was determined to keep my eye fixed on the Sun. After a while it got really hard to keep focused, but I can gratefully say I obeyed and never looked at what she was writing. After she said we could look I say that she wrote, "Distractions, Boyfriends/Girlfriends, Music, etc." All around the Sun with La Gloria de Dios in it. The object lesson was to show us how to keep our eyes single to the glory of God on the mission. It was a great lesson for me! I was grateful I never lost sight, but after a while my eyes started to hurt and I forgot about God and his Glory. Then I told myself, "No, think of my Father and His Son!" And I was able to do so! It's not just that distractions are there, but also that we get into the motions of doing everything and forget the purpose/why we're doing it. I told myself I never wanted to forget my purpose as a missionary and I wanted to stay 100% focused on bringing salvation to people of Argentina. I had a great experience with my testimony. Saturday an Elder bore his testimony in a class I was in. I said thank you to him and he said, "Tomorrow is fast sunday, will you bear yours?" I told him I would. I thought about it the rest of the day and into the next morning. I woke up with such a fire in my heart, I KNEW I had to do it! And when it got to testimony meeting my heart was pounding and pounding and I knew I had to do it- and I must obey. So, I got up there and my voice and hands were shaking. I said I felt in mi corazon (my heart) that I had to bear my testimony in Spanish. I tried my best, but my Spanish was bleah and I spoke a little English. BUt I focused on what the Holy Ghost wanted me to say. Afterwards, I had so many Elders and Sisters come up to me, individually, and thank for me for the Spirit that I brought. "Hermana Tingey, you have such a strong Spirit and I felt the Holy Ghost so strongly as you spoke!" I heard that over and over. Wow, I probably have the WORST Spanish in my branch because we have all intermediate and advanced Spanish missionaries there. But I am so grateful that the Lord showed me on Sunday that, "Hermana Tingey, you can teach with the Spirit and that's enough for now." I know the Spanish will come! I know if I have enough faith and if I trust in my Heavenly Father an Savior and do ALL I can, I will be blessed because I am not wanting to learn Spanish for myself anymore. I want to learn it for my future investigators. I have been thinking and studying in the scriptures the topics of: Faith, Goals, Miracles, etc. It's truly incredible- really, miracles happen everyday! And even small ones; little tender mercies of the Lord are miracles to me. Thanks for all of your prayers. I am praying for all of you too, everyday! Benji, I am SO excited you get to see Jackie in tres semanas! And Biffy- you're incredible! You already are such a great missionary! Abby and Jack- I miss you two SOOO much! Keep it up! Mom and Dad- I pray for you and your decisions everyday. I KNOW we have the fullness of the gospel in these Latter-days. I LOVE the Plan of Salvation. And I hope I can stand at the last day like Enos in Enos 1:27 and have God say, "Come unto me, ye blessed..." LOVE ALL OF YOU!!!!!! Hermana Tingey

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

MTC Week 2

Wow, I have SOOO much to tell! First of all, I went in front of the ENTIRE MTC and read my mission letter from President Monson at the devotional on Sunday!!!!!!! It was SO AMAZING! So Brother Stephen B. Allen came to speak. He is head of the missionary department of the church and he is just like Nephi- all about obedience. It was WONDERFUL! And he asked, "Does anyone have their call with them?" I was directly in front of him on the front row and I said, "I have a copy of mine!" He called me up and I read it in front of EVERYONE! It was so fun and it was needed- I needed a reminder that I have been called by a prophet of God to do the Lord's work and to invite people unto Christ. Since then, I've had Elders and Senior Missionaries say, "Oh, YOU're Sister Tingey! Good luck in Argentina!" What a friendly, wonderful atmosphere! Ok, so previous to this situation, I was having a very very hard week. I was struggling with Spanish, so much so, that I honestly came home crying one night. But, ever since I've been having the greatest experiences. Elder Shawhan in my district wrote me a note that said, "Hermana Tingey, don't worry about your Spanish. You have such a strong Spirit when you teach - your mission language will be the Spirit, and the rest will come." That has had a huge impact on me. I have decided that I will not get discouraged, but that I will continually strive for the Spirit and let the Lord take care of the rest. Oh, and Ann M. Dibb spoke on Sunday. She is an incredible woman of God! She said that one of President Monson's favorite scriptures is Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart....and he shall direct thy paths." So, since I've been called by this Prophet of God, I decided to take that scripture as my own while I'm here at the MTC. As long as I trust in the Lord, everything will work out! Hermana Crosby and I taught in the TRC for the first time. We taught the first discussion in English and it went so well! I have had some experience, but I am learning more and more everyday. So much more, that I feel like I did not actually have that much experience at all! I have been learning about how to effective extend committments, how to help people read the scriptures and pray, how to ask good questions for investigators to think about soul searching questions. Oh, and I almost forgot to say that Jay E. Jensen came on Tuesday's devotional- wow, powerful testimony and talk about the Book of Mormon. I have made a personal goal to really, truly love and know more about el Libro de Mormon. I am reading it thoroughly, again, while I'm here at the MTC. THANK YOU ALL SOOOO MUCH FOR THE dearelder.com's! Those make my day! I love having something to read almost every night. And especially this last week when I was getting really down and having so much trouble, I was able to turn to Lord, but also I was able to turn to the love from my wonderful family and friends! Thanks to Mom (for your faith and love- great job with Kathy!), Dad (I love you so much, Daddio! Thanks for your inspired words), Aunt Mary, Sister Holbein, BIFFY!, Jackie, Grandma, BENJI!, my friends Peyton and Shauna and Austen, and ANYONE else I missed! Thank you SOOO much! I love this gospel SOOO much! Yo testifico que Dios es nuestro padre eterno y nos ama. Yo se que Jesucristo es mi Salvador y Redentor. Yo se que Jose Smith era el propheta del Restoracion. Yo se que el Libro de Mormon es la palabra de Dios. Soy una representante de Jesucristo y la Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos Dias...I LOVE THIS WORK!!!! HERMANA TINGEY P.S. I am still playing volleyball during gym and I am getting better and better. I love going to the early morning workout classes- who knew I really liked Step Aerobics? :)