Thursday, June 23, 2011

Una Semana!!!

Well I have been here for one week.  Crazy! The first 3 days were ridiculously long, but now that I look back it is crazy how fast time goes.  Where to start.  I already talked about my companion, things are still going good and we are still doing our best to be the best missionaries that we can.  One way that we really improved our teaching, our language study, and our study was to ALWAYS start out with a prayer.  At first, when we remembered we prayed, but now every time we pray.  It is amazing the difference that it has made.  We have progressed leaps and bounds since that began.  So pretty much everyday here is the same.  We wake up at 6:10 so that we don't have to wait in line for the showers, and then we get hot ones.  I've gotten used to that so its not bad at all now.  Next we go to breakfast, where we feast on cereal, sometimes some meat, some fruit, yes I have been eating fruit, and those fake eggs that taste like rubber.  Fruit is the only thing that doesn't make your stomach hate you.  Best thing about the food.  THEY HAVE BARQ's rootbeer.  Wait let me say that one more time.  They have not just rootbeer, but Barqs.  You have no idea how excited that made me. Then we go to personal study for 1 hour, then class for 3 hours.  Then its lunch time, more class, more study, dinner, GYM!!!! The best part of the day. Spencer circled his meal times, I circle gym times.  It is the only thing that keeps us from going stir crazy.  The first few days we played basketball in the gym, but that is now closed due the mission presidents being here, so now we go outside.  The first day we played soccer, and I was so frustrated at everyone yelling BOOT IT that I had to quit. So I took on a new sport.  Four Square.  yeah, that game we all played in like 1st game is pretty legit here.  Its not supposed to get competitive, but it does.  Its way fun though.  Sunday was kinda weird to not be in our church building.  It is all in Spanish so I pretty much understood this much.                           Yep, it was really hard, but I know that with faith I will learn this language.  For sacrament meeting everyone is required to write a 5 minute talk in Spanish, and then they just randomly call on you.  I thought President Randall was bad for doing it every once in a while, this is every week!!! But it will be good preparation for the mission field. Mom, I spend all my time in 6M (my dorm) and 17M (my classroom).  All of my immunizations were good, so no shots for me.  Anyway, enough of the boring stuff.  This week we had some great devotionals as well as a great fireside.  The one thing that I keep hearing is that Fear and Faith cannot coexist.  I believe this to be true.  If we have faith that the lord will bless, help, or protect us, he will.  It's amazing.  Faith is something I believe we can all improve on.  On Saturday we had a zone teach, and we were teaching a second lesson to our "investigators".  Well as soon as we said the opening prayer I had this feeling that we shouldn't teach this lesson, but that we should go over the first one.  Needless to say, I said nothing.  We continued with the lesson and it went horribly.  Moral of the story, act on your promptings of the spirit.  No matter what it is, how small  or big, act on it!!!   It will bless our lives more than we can imagine.  On Sunday, at our fireside, we sang Called To Serve.  It was a special version of it, and all I can say is wow.  The spirit was so strong in that building.  It was amazing to hear 2000 missionaries singing to our savior.  Music is so powerful.  Today, P DAY, was very needed.  It was so nice to go to the temple and just think.  I hope you are all taking advantage of the opportunity to attend the temple every week.  If you aren't, please start.  I promise it will help you with anything.  I realize more and more that we try and do too much by ourselves.  We don't have to.  Let the lord help us.  Anyway, on our way back to the MTC, we were crossing the street and a security guy ran across the road and told us we couldn't come in.  We were like como? Well needless to say all of the sudden 3 cars pull out and drive past us, and guess who was in there?  Well President Uchdorf rolled down his window and waved to us,  as well as President Eyring and President Packer.  Pretty cool huh.  Tomorrow we have a devotional and word on the street is that the 1st presidency will be there.  I'm way excited.  Also exciting, I have travel plans! WAHOO!!!! so here it goes.  July 7, 2011 I get to report to the travel office at 3 AM.  I'm super stoked.  Then, I get on American Airlines flight 416 at 6:00 AM to Dallas FT Worth, arrive at 9:35.  Next flight 1970 from Dallas to Miami.  Leave 12:35, arrive 4:40.  Then 6:10 I leave Miami, and at 8:25  I arrive in Santo Domingo.  Sorry I am out of time, hopefully that makes sense.  Dear Elder me if you have questions, and to tell me what works best for a telephone call. I'm so excited to get there!!! Anyway, I love and miss you guys, but know this is what I need to do. I love you guys and might send a written letter including my travel stuff. 
Riley AKA Elder Reeder

Well I'm Alive

Hello Everybody,
I am here and I am alive.  Pretty cool huh?  Well Wednesday was probably the longest day of my life, but it ended up being pretty good.  It has just gotten better and better since I have been here. companion is Elder Smoot. He is going to Puerto Rico, but is going to the DR MTC with us. He is way cool, and in my room it is Elder Richardson and Elder Dispain. All of us seem to have a lot in common, and it has been a lot more fun now that we talk more and are more comfortable around each other.  Mom, I forgot the card with the 500 questions so I am sorry if I don't answer them all.  Spanish is coming.  They just keep telling us to learn it in English and the Spanish will come.  I am just being faithful that this will happen for me.  One of our teachers said that learning the language can be a spiritual experience, so I am striving for it to be that way.  This also let to one of the funniest things so far.  Our teacher told us that we would be able to learn Spanish by the spirit.  One of the elders in my district, Elder Gilman, looked at him with the straightest, most serious face I have ever seen, and said, "So you are tellin me that the spirit is gonna teach me Spanish?"  His face said, there is no way this is gonna happen.  Maybe you had to be there, but Elder Smoot and I laughed way hard about it.  So today is the first day that we really have had any free time, so I haven't had time to be homesick.  I miss lots of things, but I also know that this is what I should be doing, and I am learning to love everything that we do. So apparently the MTC in the DR is full, so they had to change the flight plans of some of them.  Me, Elders Smoot and Richardson were all lucky enough to get to go to the DR MTC, I was way excited about that.  We make sure and rub it in to Elder Dispain that he has to stay here.  hmmmm what else.  I'm doing my laundry right now.  I have made my bed EVERYDAY.  Impressive huh.  You should all be very proud of me.  Overall, I am having a good time.  It's hard, but rewarding, and I know that I, as well as you guys will be blessed.  The spirit is strong here, and I know that as we seek to get closer to the lord it will get stronger.  I am grateful for the opportunity to serve.  I love and miss you guys.  Sorry if I forgot anything, its hard to remember what to write, I will remember more next time. 
Riley-June 18, 2011

Monday, June 13, 2011

I'm Out of Here!

Well the time has come.  Its time for me to get rid of my cell phone, computer, Fifa, and movies, and head into the MTC.  Thanks to everyone who has helped me get to this point.  I love you guys. 

-Elder Reeder