Well...this week has been pretty crazy. As you know...MY VISA CAME. Monday afternoon we were in class and over the speaker in our room they said, "Can we have Sister Stone, and Sister Kahle come to the travel office please?" Hermana Kahle and I looked at each other and our eyes got huge...and we jumped out of our chairs and started hyperventilating. Haha. We almost sprinted all the way there, and when we got there they said, "Sisters, your Visa's arrived just now. You're leaving for the Peru MTC on Thursday morning!" We were SO excited, but then it started to hit us and we got super nervous.
It was so fun to talk to you guys on Monday for a few minutes. When I called the house Colton answered and I said, "Colton...it's Carli." (SILENCE) "Is Mom there? It's really important!" (SILENCE) "Colton??" "Hi...Carli? Mom's not home." Hahaha. I'm pretty sure he thought I was leaving or something cause he sounded so freaked out. Last night you'll never believe what happened! I've been singing in the choir (which I have LOVED) and just before devotional was about to start the whole gym went silent and everyone stood up...and in walks RICHARD G. SCOTT! His talk was absolutely incredible! The spirit was so strong you could cut it with a knife. You could hear a pin drop! And because I was in the choir I was super close. It was amazing! He talked about prayer and the importance of prayer and the role that it will play on your mission (which is a HUGE role!) I didn't stop writing for the entire devotional. I couldn't feel my hand. Haha. Right after he finished his talk, we sang a closing song, and then as a Sister was walking up to give the closing prayer he motioned for her to sit back down and came back to the pulpit. He said, "I have one more thing I want to say before I leave..." He said, "The Lord has called you to succeed, not to fail. This mission is an opportunity for you to learn things about yourself you never knew. Remember you have been called by inspiration. Those who he calls, he strengthens. The Lord will fit the task to your capacity" You should have seen me. I was weeping. The girl next to me kept looking over to see if I was okay because I was crying so hard I couldn't breath, so I was taking really deep breaths, trying to write, wipe my tears, and contain myself. She probably thought I was dying or something...I haven't cried that hard in who knows how long. It was absolutely incredible. After the devotional you go back to your classroom and have a testimony meeting with your district about what you got out of the devotional. I thought I could handle myself, but once I stood up I started bawling again. It doesn't really phase my district anymore. They probably just laugh inside. Also...I know they said "everyone cries on a mission" but I don't know if that's true cause I'm the only one in my district who actually has. We talked about it the other day. Haha.
Last night in my departure interview my Branch President (who knows Grammy and Grandpa Stone by the way, and wants me to say hello from President Mortenson) said to me, "Sister Stone, I'm very proud of you. You have changed quite a bit since the first interview I had with you." Haha...maybe cause I actually talked to him this time instead of cried while he just talked. He told me that this change (no matter how scary it is going to be) is going to be good for me because I don't like change and for the next 17 months...that's pretty much all I'm going to see. I'm really nervous to leave the MTC cause I love it here! BUT...I know that I will feel the same way about the MTC in Peru once I get comfortable there. Plus it will do wonders for my Spanish and I know how helpful it will be cause I've been having a lot of trouble with it lately.
This morning I got to go to the temple one last time before we fly out tomorrow morning and it was amazing. It was the first time I've done a session without Mom sitting next to me so when it started to tear up a little bit (shocker!) Haha.
After the session my companions and I went to the cafeteria and ate waffles! It's SO nice to eat outside the MTC cause the food here is kind of disgusting. EXCEPT...the other day they had sweet potato fries and I was SO excited. It's quite the delicacy here at the MTC to have something good to eat. As my last breakfast here yesterday morning I had a bowl of Lucky Charms...and my district made fun of me cause they had this huge breakfast with eggs, and ham and sausage and biscuits and gravy...and I just had my cereal. haha. Can you believe all the people I see that I know here? My latest is Michael Duke! The other day after night gym (which is probably the MTC's best invention) someone called me "Carli" So I turned around and looked up to this 6'4 giant and it was Michael. I couldn't stop laughing at how much he had changed! (At least I wasn't crying though, right?)
NIGHT GYM: Night gym is SO much fun! You get to end the night playing games and it's the best! I've been playing volleyball every gym time since I got here and guess what? I'm actually not too terrible anymore. It was so bad at the beginning that now whenever I actually hit the ball all the Elders cheer for me...it's a nice confidence booster. Plus my serve is unstoppable. You guys would be proud.
Well...I should probably finish packing. We're supposed to be at the travel office at 6am tomorrow. I'm so sad to leave, but what an adventure is ahead of me! I can't wait! Even though it's going to be hard, I know that I can do it because the Lord will fit my mission to ME. He will stretch me just enough to help me grow, but not too much that he's going to kill me. (And if I die, I'm going straight to heaven)
Pray often! I promise that your Savior loves you, and wants to hear from you more than you know. His love for us is perfect, and no matter what trials you are experiencing, he has been there, and he understands. I love you all SO much! Thanks for your support and letters this last week! And Cami for her package of the yummiest chocolates in the world! All the Elders asked if she would write them and when I said she was married they said "Well...is she happy?" HAHA!
I pray for each of you, and miss you a lot! Pray for me as I leave the country tomorrow...I'll probably cry a lot in Peru too. Haha.
In closing...I'm going to tell you about the sweetest lady Sister Edmunds who spoke to all the sisters on Sunday. Find talks from her and read them. She's my hero. One word of advice she gave to the Sisters was, "DON'T TOUCH THE ELDERS! Just don't do it, but keep track of the one's you want to touch, stay in good shape after your mission, and when your reunion rolls around...look at your list...find the one's you wanted to touch, and touch them!" HAHA! We were all dying laughing.
Stay happy!Love, Hermana Stone
If you are interested to know who Elder Richard G. Scott is, here is a talk given in General Conference, 1998.
“A righteous life requires discipline. Discipline is that characteristic which will give you the strength to avoid giving up what you want most in life for something you think you want now. It is a friend, not a harsh taskmaster that makes life miserable. Discipline is easier to acquire when it is rooted in faith in Jesus Christ, when it is nourished by an understanding of His teachings and plan of happiness. ”
Richard G Scott: The Power of Righteousness.