Elder Michael Cevering

Elder Michael Cevering
Puerto Rico, San Juan Mission

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

MTC Emails

August 21, 2012 Just to give you all a heads up so you’ll understand what Michael is saying at the beginning of his letter, I had quite an experience at BYU Education Week last week, where I met a lady from Puerto Rico. She is the only member in her family – she’s only been a member for 3 ½ years, and the circumstances in how we met was quite incredible because her and I almost didn’t go to the class where we met. It’s a long story, but in a nut shell, I asked her where she was from and she said Puerto Rico. She wants her family to learn about the gospel. She has been praying really hard for them and then we happened to meet in this class. I told her that my son just left for the Puerto Rico Mission and she said she would send me her families information so that he can contact them and see if they’ll let him teach them about the gospel. When we parted she had tears in her eyes and said, “I want you to know that our meeting was not by chance.” We hugged (and cried) and parted with each other’s contact information. So that’s what he’s referring to when he begins his email below. -Melanie ____________________________________________________________________ Hello Family! Mom, that's quite an incredible story! I will pray and ponder on it over the next few weeks as I prepare to enter the field. I got my travel information this week: we leave for the Dominican Republic next Thursday (the 30th) and we fly to Texas, then Florida before the Dominican Republic. I'm stoked to get to the DR where the food will be a little bit better :) Elder Evans spoke at the MTC last week. It was really cool! Well, I have some sad news: Elder Acor and I had to change rooms this past week. We are no longer roommates with Elders Perrenoud and Laws. Elder Laws left for Colombia. Elder Perrenoud has some medical issues keeping him back, and since he's been here longer than us, and since he's the only one being held back, he had to be put in a threesome companionship. That meant we had to change rooms--we miss spending time with him. He's really good at beat boxing! And he's just a cool kid. Our new roommates are English speaking Elders. They're not in our branch, so it's a little different. They did the weirdest thing: the first few days after we moved in with them they would make our beds for us and leave little bite-sized snicker bars on our pillows. I've actually come to appreciate it a lot, but it was definitely weird at first. Elder Acor and I started making our beds on our own so they wouldn't have to do it, but they still leave us candy. HAHA. In other news, yes, it is the Dakota Bone that Denise is thinking of. He's a cool kid. He works really hard--probably harder than the rest of us. He's a great example to me, plus he keeps us all laughing. He's just a good kid. Our district is really great! Just for your information, a district consists of the people in your branch/zone (about 30-45 people who you go to sacrament with and other activities) that you entered the MTC with. So my district has ten Elders in it. We all get along really well, there's only one Elder who we struggle with because he’s a “one-upper” and he does it to everyone, all of the time. He's from Texas. His mom is a Baptist preacher. He was baptized into our church two years ago, and has no family support. His ward and his friends are paying for him to serve his mission. So, understandably he's having a hard time. His companion is not patient with him at all. Elder Acor and I teach him about the gospel and he really appreciates us. He really trusts us. Elder Acor and I have taught 5 lessons completely in Spanish now. We teach our teachers (who act as investigators that they had on their mission). We keep a record of the things we teach them, and we treat them like a real investigator. We've been capable of teaching everything--not perfectly, but hey, we only started speaking Spanish two weeks ago. Elder Acor had Spanish all through high school though, so he's pretty smart. Hermano Zimmerman said something that was impressive: He called the MTC the most consistent miracle in the church because of how well we all learn the language here. I don't know how well I've done at learning Spanish in the past week. I feel like I've hit a wall, so I'm trying to be patient to surpass it. I prayed last week for a mountain to climb haha you might laugh at that, because the MTC in itself IS a mountain to climb. But I thought I'd pray for more. Well, the Lord answered: I'm so incredibly amazed at the ways He compensates for our adversities. Here are some incredible things that have happened this past week: --So, like I said I prayed for this mountain. The day after that my feet began to swell and turn dark red. I went about the day and they began to really hurt. That night I took off my socks and my toes were bleeding through my toenails, and it was really uncomfortable. I thought it was because of the shoes, but both pairs of shoes caused the pain. So I prayed to be healed that night (side note--I can pray in Spanish now.) The next morning the pain was still there, and my feet were swollen, but I got up and put my shoes on...and after I started walking the pain was just gone. Completely! And when I changed for gym an hour later the swelling had gone down. --Then, in the midst of that, the flu swept through our district this week. Elder Acor and I got the worst of it. Yesterday I woke up with hardly any voice at all. But I got up and went to work--I knew Elder Acor and I had to teach our investigator later. And by lunch time I had my voice back as I needed it. Our lesson went great--it was our best lesson yet, and we committed him to baptism! I know the Lord qualifies us despite our weaknesses. It was a ROUGH week with all these things. But it was all worth it. I can't believe it's my P-day already haha it's gone by fast! :) After our lesson last night I was standing in our classroom looking out the window, looking at the mountain, thinking about that prayer I had, and the words of Spencer W. Kimball "Give me these mountains! Give me these challenges!" I'm really moved by those words. I listened to that talk (Mountains to Climb) by President Eyring yesterday, and felt with all my heart that he is called of God. Well, I love you all and miss you! I know the gospel of Jesus Christ is here on the earth today because of a living prophet and because of the prophets of old. I know Christ suffered for our sins and love us each so dearly. Our prayers are heard by a loving Heavenly Father, who seeks diligently for our well-being. Love, Elder Cevering

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