Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Final MTC Email, Wednesday September 10, 2014

Departing from the MTC

Hey all!

Well, we are finally here. I have never learned to love somewhere so much and yet been sooo ready to leave.  We finally got our travel plans this last Friday!  We will be departing Monday morning, off to the Netherlands and Belgium, and off on the adventure of our lives.  With this being my last P-day here at the MTC though, I think I'll take a little time in this letter to give my take on many things MTC.

Dutch Weather! Downpour on Tuesday
Waterfall on the stairs
Before I get started, I would like for everyone to know beforehand that I really truly have loved this experience at the MTC.  It has given me such a great opportunity to grow spiritually, to learn this Dutch language, and to gain a greater sight and appreciation for this work we are spreading, and for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

With that being said though, there are some secular things that I think I'll comment on.

As for how good the food has been, it has tasted pretty good.  But I'll be honest; it does weird things to your body.  We do get 50 minutes of gym time every day, but I'll be honest; it isn't enough.  I'm not sure if its because I'm used to having so much or what, but I can tell that not exercising a lot has taken its toll on me the last couple weeks.  I have had trouble paying attention sometimes because of my overflow of energy, but it's crazy that the Lord would even help me with that.  In the fact that when I pray and do really try my best, He seems to calm me, or at least give me the opportunity to walk a million strides back and forth across the classroom while studying Dutch ;) (haha I'm pretty sure I've driven some of the other elders nuts with my pacing and muttering in Dutch)  In hindsight, maybe it was even a blessing I got sick while I was here so that my excess of energy could be toned down. I don't know, maybe I'm trying to throw a curve-ball with that one, but I do know for a fact that the Lord is in every fold of our lives, and that he knows us personally and loves us all so much even with our imperfections.

Ghosts ;)  Elder Dolphin had packed all his clothes (He left for Suriname on Monday.) Anyways, he had packed all his clothes and didn't have anything to wear so he wore his bed sheet, we felt kinda bad for him and we thought it was cool so we joined him. :)

It is my feeling that for nearly all the Elders here, all of the attitudes and end results can be summed up into two categories of varying extremes.  There are those who use their time here as an opportunity to build up spiritual knowledge and strength, and of their language, and cement their commitment to become dedicated servants of the Lord.  And of course there are those who are simply here as to what seems to be a trial of their faith, and sadly for some I think who lose their sight of why we all truly came out here, and who start to treat this experience here as more of a college life, and something that simply must be gone through and not gained from.  I am firmly convinced that 99.9% of the Missionaries who come out are out here because really, truly, deeply they love the Lord and desire to help him and our fellow brothers and sisters receive this Gospel,  and give back a little for the blessings we have received from it. Of course all of us will slip in losing sight of why we are truly out here sometimes. We are mortal, and will all eventually make mistakes. I myself have slipped in making sure I always keep my vision clear as to why I am here. But I would challenge everyone, not only who are on or going on missions, but really everyone to make a dedicated effort to continuously remember why we are here in this life, and where our end goal is. 

Ha ha, in case you can't tell, we had a devotional last night and both the speaker and his wife talked about how we must always have our end goals in sight in order to have direction.  When we do so it makes nearly all choices that vary from hard to seemingly unimportant, seem both important and easy to make.

Holding the Light of the Gospel

Holding the Light of the Gospel 2 (must be a MTC thing)

Once again, I have loved this MTC experience, and have gained so much from it!  But I know that there are people in Belgium and the Netherlands waiting to hear the gospel, and I am so excited to be one of the Lord's servants with the opportunity to share and help them receive it!

Het is mijn getuigen dat dit kerk is de evangelie van Jezus Christus herstelt op de aarde vandag. Ik weet dat het is zijn plan voor uns te volgen hij en na dit leven, te leven met hij en hemelse Vader en onze families.  Ik weet dat door Jezus Christus dit mogelijk is.  Ik weet dat als wij zijn gehoorzamen, God geeft ons zegeningen.  Ik houd van de mensen van Belgie en Nederland, en ik verlangt dat zij kunnen ontvangen het evangelie om zegeningen en eeuwig leven te ontvangen.  Ik wil dat alle mensen heb dit ook. Dit ik will achterlaten in de naam van Jezus Christus, amen.

Love all you you!

-Elder Hayden L. Lott

ps Yes again Mom, I have received all the packages that you have sent, and Dad I think it would be ok if you sent the phone.  Other missionaries have had some similar things sent to them so it should be good, then after I will just send it back to you.  I don't really need anything else other than maybe some more Crest toothpaste if it is really hard to come by in the Netherlands.  I already know that once I get there I am going to want to get some European clothes, so yeah, I'm not gonna want anything else I guess.  Haha I'm sorry, I have to expound on that... we met two missionaries who are going to other missions who are from the Netherlands.  They have super nice clothes!  It's made me way excited to buy some clothes there. I'm glad I packed semi-light so I can get some clothes there. Love ya'll 

[parent note: He wasn't able to get any pictures of Elder Taylor Anderson yet.  But we received a message from Elder Anderson's mother that Elder Lott was the first missionary they saw as they made the MTC drop off this morning; he was directing traffic as they entered the MTC drive. Tender mercies all around.  Can't wait to hear if they were able to find each other later in the day.] 

With Elder Watson and Elder Miller
With Elder Ahlstrom

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