I am going to the Spain MTC! What what!?!? Yes! So, on Monday Morning at 6am I will be leaving for the Spain MTC and will finish my training there. Exciting... and terrifying! It is strange, because the night before I found out, I was suddenly overcome with gratitude that I was at the MTC. I was so happy to be here! I love the people, the learning, the spirit, all of it! I was so grateful that the Lord continued to encourage me to go on a mission; and I was so happy to be here, at THIS MTC. Then the next day I get called to the Spain MTC! I am excited, but a little sad because I love this place; I think I have become comfortable here, which is probably why the Lord wants me to go! Haha! What a great God we have! He knows what we need when we need it! I am so honored He lets me be apart of His plan and that He takes the time to bless my life individually. I am sad to leave - I love my elders! They are great. Each one has a deep desire to serve and share their testimony. They are hard workers too. They learn the language so easily! I have learned so much from them and will be sad to leave them - we have all become very close! It is fun to see how the Lord works in their lives individually as well. He loves them, and He loves me, and He loves you!
I am sorry that as of late my letters have been choppy! I am just learning so much it is hard to put it all down and make it flow. Plus, I only have a limited time to write so I just kind of write whatever comes. It is amazing the amount I am learning; there have been a few motifs however. One theme I have noticed in my stay here is that God knows our name individually. I think I wrote before about the touching experience of watching The Testaments; yes, that movie is dripping cheese, we could have a nacho party that could satiate all of America, but there is still a powerful message in it. As I mentioned before, I was touched by Helam, the father; he spent his entire life preaching of Christ and waiting for him to come, and yet, when the Savior did come, he had been blinded during the catastrophe that came to the Americas when The Lord died. He had his son describe what the Savior looked like. Then, the Savior came to him, called him by his name, "Helam" and healed him. Helam was able to see the Savior, what he had been waiting for his whole life! I realized I need to make the Savior the focus of my life! What a wonderful, honorable thing to be called by name from the Crowd by the Savior! And the blessing is that he KNOWS are names! Each of them! And he has a calling for each of us to fulfill! This thought again was reiterated to me when I was reading 3 Nephi 11. In verses 17-19, it talks about how Nephi was in the crowd and the Lord called him forward. Nephi, too, had spent his ENTIRE life preaching of Christ and waiting for him to come. And when the Savior did come, Nephi did not clamor to see him, he waited patiently with everyone else in the crowd to see the Savior that this prophet had dedicated his life too! And then the Savior CALLED HIM OUT OF THE CROWD, BY NAME (!!!!! so exciting!!!) and Nephi just fell and wept at his feet. It made me realize that I need to work harder, I need to dedicate my life even more to the Savior, like Nehpi did. My greatest honor should be that the Lord knows my name. Finally, one more experience ingrained this thought into my soul, that it is an honored to be called by name by The Lord. It was a story of a man named Joseph Millett (Or perhaps Milett, or Millet... not sure... look it up, it is an amazing story). Anyways, he had heard from his children that a man named Brother Hall had run out of flower for the winter and needed more flower. Immediately Joseph Millett (spelling??) prepared some flour for Brother Hall. Shortly after, Brother Hall came to there house. He explained that he had prayed to the Lord for help to get flour for his family, and the Lord told him to "go see Joseph Millett." And so he did. Joseph Millett gave him the flour. Afterwards, Joseph Millett remarked that it was "a marvelous thing to know that God knew Joseph Millett." And that's the thing, He knows Joseph Millett! And He knows Lauren Poet! And he nows Annaliesa Peterson! And he knows EVERYONE. He called Jospeh Millett to the task to serve his fellow man and give Brother Hall flour. That was a calling, from the Lord; and he was called by name to do it! I realized that I need to be a servant that the Lord can call by name. I want to serve Him and honor Him so I can help others like Joseph Millett helped Brother Hall. Just as He said "go see Joseph Millet," the Lord says that for each of us. Sometimes he says "Go see Annaliesa Peterson," and that is a call from God, a call to you, by name to serve.
I realized this and I had the desire to work even harder. I want to be able to be a servant that the Lord can call by name. Then I had the most remarkable, humbling thought. He already has! I have a mission call to Russia, and at the bottom of that call is a signature from the Prophet, who speaks for God, saying that that call is a call from God. What an honor! But it extends far beyond that. Each of us that are here on this earth have been called. We have made the decision to follow Christ. Because of that, we were all called by name! And we have an obligation and the opportunity, and the honor to live up to that calling! We each have a calling, a call that we have been selected for by name! It is an amazing thing to know that God knows our names. He knew Joseph Smith, He knew Nephi, He knew Joseph Millett, and He knows you! Rise to the call! It is a blessing, an honor, a gift!
I am so glad that I have this call. I will do everything I can to endeavor to be worthy of it (yes I jacked that quote from Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility). I am glad and grateful He knows my name! What a blessing!
Now, I must go. I love you so much and I miss you! I hope you are well. I will keep you in my prayers. Please continue to write! MIss you!!!
Umm.... I don't know my Spain MTC address yet, but I will try to find out and then I will let you know ASAP but considering that I will only be there 3 weeks, the letters may not get there in time... you can just dear elder me!! GAAAHHHHHH!!! I miss you all so much! It is not even funny. And I love you even more than I miss you! LOVE YOU!!!