Sunday, August 3, 2014

Letter to Mom - 31 July, 2014

Hey!!! Ahh, all of that is so so so exciting! I am thrilled that Josh got his mission call! Tell him congratulations for me, okay? And that storm sounds insane! Kaitlyn wrote me about it a little bit too, but it sounds way worse in your email. Um, not to my knowledge did that storm hit here. The past couple days have been overcast and there have been some light showers, but I haven't experienced any windstorms. One of the elders in our district put it best: The MTC is kind of like the Mecca or Vatican of Provo. :) haha It's so crazy!! It's this little city . . .inside of a city! They are treating me very nicely, but like I said the food quality is horrible. They don't know how to have real vegetables here. :P The only vegetables that we do get are mediocre salads or overcooked under  spiced veggies. So yes, if you are wondering, I miss white sauce so so so so much!! And just how healthy we ate. I am definitely looking forward to Japan so that I can eat healthier and I've heard that the food there is incredible!!

So guess what?? We had a Japanese congressman from the Diet come yesterday!! It was so cool! He kind of just sat in there and watched what we did for 5-10 minutes, but it was cool! I'll send you the pictures when they send us copies. Man, I am so excited to go to Japan. I wish I could just go today! haha all in due time though. He was so much shorter than I thought he would be from the picture we saw of him! haha so I guess I have a better frame of reference for when I go to Japan. :)

Also, this week our senpai left. Senpai is the Japanese word for "higher ups" so it is used to refer to the district(s) older than you in your zone. It was surprisingly sad to see them leave. None of them are going to Tokyo South, and they are all so amazing. I wish that I could tell you about each and every one of them, but I'm not really sure that there would be time to put that much information in an email! haha They were amazing examples to me though, and I learned through their examples that if you really focus and try so hard to study then The Lord really makes up for our weakness, and qualifies us for His work. We are the all that He has, and He can mold us into the perfect tool if we only allow His hands to do the work instead of our own.

So, a little more about what we do every day: We wake up and have gym time for an hour, and then we get ready for the day and go to breakfast. After that we have a 3 hour class instruction block. During those three hours we: 1. Teach our progressing investigator for about 30 minutes, 2. Receive individual/companion coaching from one of the teachers, 3. Some other activity, usually that has to do with learning new Japanese. After that we have a daily planning session for around half an hour, and then we have additional study (whatever we feel we need to study for our investigator, for our own needs, etc.) for about an hour. After that we have lunch, and then back to the class for another 3 hour block! In that block we usually practice teaching lessons (In Nihongo of course (Nihongo is Japanese for Japanese . . .I'll let you figure that out haha)), learning more Japanese on a language program called TALL, and learning doctrines and fundamentals of teaching or being a good missionary. After that we have additional study again, and then dinner! Following dinner we have different activities such as teaching members on family night (In Nihongo) going to a devotional on Tuesday night, or most nights we have an hour of personal study, an hour of companion study, and then an hour of language study. Then we head back to the residences and get ready for bed, write in our journal, and then go to sleep!! It is such a busy day, and you always have something to do. I am so sorry that I am slow at responding to letters, I will definitely write them as often as I can, but I've found that will usually only happen on P-day because every other second of my day is super busy. I'll do what I can though.

I love you all so so so much!! Thank you for your examples. I can definitely see the light of Christ that works through each and every one of you. Mom and Dad I want to specifically thank you for being the most amazing parents that anyone could have ever asked for. Your examples and letters to me have been perfect, inspired, and so full of love. I love hearing from you and I look up to you all so so much!

Thank you SOOOO much for the package!! It was absolutely perfect! I am still working on the Tic Tacs and the Icebreakers, but the Doritos were gone very quickly! haha I loved it. Thank you. I will write you back letters and get them sent as fast as possible.

Lastly, put your trust in the Lord. He knows what He is doing. :) He is so incredible, and through Him I feel like I have grown so much. Honestly though, it still isn't that I'm such a better person. It is just that when I can recognize my need to be humble, Heavenly Father makes up for my inadequacies a million times over. I am so happy, and the spirit here is so powerful. I love it. I can feel it every day of my life. I know that the Lord lives, that Jesus Christ, His Son, is our Savior and Redeemer. He died for us on the cross, and suffered for us in Gethsemane, because He loves us with a love that is so infinite and eternal that we could never imagine. I know it. I love you all so much, and I miss you tons!! Keep me posted, okay?? And thanks again for the written letters! Those really are so amazing to get in the middle of the week. :) Love you all!!

Love, Elder Livingston

P.S. If you have the chance look up a talk/devotional by Elder Bednar called the Character of Christ. It has changed my life, and I know it can change yours.

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