Monday, June 29, 2015

June 29, 2015

So this week went by pretty fast!! We didn't go to the temple this morning because it's closed for cleaning the next 2 weeks.. Next Monday we get to go help clean it though!

So first a little about my companions. Elder Facer is from Tennessee and Elder Hawkes is from Centerville. They are both really great and super smart. I really like them. Elder Facer played basketball in high school too. We have a goal to break the free throw record in the gym.. I think it is 47 right now but we have like 40 something days to beat it so I think we can get it;)  Dave Maynerd has the three point record with 33 in a row. I don't know how he did that. Pretty impressive!

Okay so this week we had the mission presidents seminar! I didn't see an apostle all week! They didn't speak last Tuesday or yesterday.. Hopefully we will have one tomorrow! But it was another normal week. Lots of studying and learning. I memorized about 200 words throughout the week but I'm not sure if I retained very many of those. Still the learning is going good. We are still trying to figure out how to teach in Chinese and together and stuff but it is going well!

I met my mission president on Friday night! He talked with us for about an hour and he is awesome! He is taking his twin 15 year old sons with us so we'll get to be around them some I think too! He left yesterday for Taiwan so he's probably getting there soonish. I am excited to serve with him. He said that Taiwan is great and that we will love it! 

I didn't get to host Landon or Tanner.. But I see Elder Mellior like everyday and I have seen Elder Cuff a few times too! It is great to see him! So nice to see faces from home! 

Before coming out here you think about your mission to Taiwan and stuff.. Now in the MTC Taiwan doesn't seem real. It's like the MTC is the mission;) but It's good! The days are super long but the weeks are starting to fly by! 

I think about the people I am going to serve and that helps me enjoy the time here. I have been focusing on taking advantage of this time! I don't want to just look forward to leaving the whole time! The MTC can be a really good experience too! And I'm starting to enjoy it. I have made a lot of good friends. I'll have to tell you all about Elder Johnson sometime.. He's done everything;) He's just super funny and great. But he's going to Hong Kong.

I guess that's all for this week! I'll try to have more next week! Remember the Lord will bless us as we rely on him! 

Have a great Fourth of July! 

Love, Elder Jensen

Here is my branch!

Elder Facer is the one to the left of the red head with glasses and Elder Hawkes is on the bottom with the back pack strap almost right below me!

Elder Jensen and Elder Todd- Provo MTC.  

June 22, 2015

So week two is almost over and things are going a lot better! The sitting isn't killing me anymore so that is good and I'm starting to figure out how to study and learn and stuff. The Chinese is hard and a slow process but it is coming along! 

My companions are great! We get along and study hard. We are more focused than some of the others in our district I think. Our district is really funny though! I think that I will be in the trio for the rest of my time here at the MTC. 

I am kinda sick of the food.. It is all fried and I'm getting fat;) but it isn't bad! I ran a few miles this week and play basketball most mornings! It is pretty fun!

Okay so this week we followed the same schedule. Lots of studying and stuff. We taught our investigator a few more times and then at the end of the week she became another one of our teachers! We start teaching a new investigator tomorrow I think.
This week the mission presidents are all coming in and so the First presidency and quorum of the 12 will all be here through out the week. We aren't aloud to go near where they'll be so I'm hoping we get to have a devotional or something! It will be super cool to have all of those people here and we will be getting to meet with our Mission presidents on Friday night! 

My favorite thing about the MTC is the choir practice on devotionals on Sunday and Tuesday nights! They're super fun and really good. I don't even know how to sing but the director is funny and the music brings an awesome spirit. I am looking forward to tomorrow nights devotional a lot. 

I'll be saying goodbye to Matt tonight hopefully if he comes by like he said he would. I saw him yesterday though and he seemed good!

Tanner Mellior will be in my branch I found out yesterday so thats cool! Also I get to host on Wednesday so I'll be keeping my eyes out for Landon and Tanner! I'm super excited to be getting some new people I know in. It's fun to see people you know. I have seen a few others from Lehi in the last few days and it is always fun! 

I will keep working on adding detail and making these longer and more interesting to read! 

One last thing. We watch Meet the Mormons last night after the devotional, and guess what?? The guy that helps the missionary buying his stuff is the same one that helped me. I thought that was kinda funny.. The movie was good. 

Oh and one more thing. We watched the mormon message "Because He Lives" and I just wanted to tell you guys that is an awesome video! I know you've all probably seen it but maybe just watch it again. I know that we can do all things no matter how hard because of what He did for us. Never forget that. I know that He lives. 

Talk to you all again next week! Let me know what else you want to know! 

Love you all a ton and miss you! Take care!

Love, Elder Jensen
June 15, 2015
Hello everyone! It is good to hear from you all! Thank you for the love and support! I'll just start from the beginning and tell you everything! I'm sorry.. I wrote a letter home but didn't get an opportunity to send it until today! So it will be coming! But Monday's are Pdays!
So on Wednesday I got my name tag dropped my stuff in my room and went straight to class! Then we went to a little welcome thing and dinner and I saw Matt and Tanner Willes! It was a long long afternoon! When I got here they told me that my companion would be Elder Yang and that he would be in the advanced class so I wouldn't be with him in class. He never showed up though so I am in a trio with Elder Facer and Elder Hawkes. They are both awesome! 
So Thursday through Saturday we pretty much just sat in our classroom all day! We have personal study, then companionship study, then language study. Then lunch and additional study and then a three hour instruction from a teacher and then dinner and then another three hours in the classroom studying or preparing a lesson or with the teacher some more. I am already so tired of sitting in these desks.. My legs hurt and stuff but other than that it's been good! The first few days felt super super long. It feels like I've been here for like a month. But someone told us yesterday that the first third of your mission is the first three days the second third is the rest of your time at the MTC and the last third is out in the field. So hopefully the next few weeks go by more quickly! The Chinese comes slowly and I don't know very much yet, but I am able to understand a lot of what our teacher says! I can tell that having taken the three years already is really helping and that the gift of tongues is real! Even though it will still take forever and a lot of studying. I know how to say a pretty simple prayer in Chinese already! I pray for all of you in Chinese;) Hmm.. It turns out that two of the guys that I saw in my session at the temple last Monday are both Elders in my district! So that is pretty cool! Sunday we kind of took a break from studying. We have sacrament meeting in Chinese! Well two talks given by us and the sacrament prayer.. the other talks by the branch presidency are in English! It was nice to take a break from the study, but we didn't take a break from sitting. haha it was hard. But last night I went to choir and the director was pretty funny and then in the devotional after we heard a great talk about prayer! After that we were able to watch a special devotional Elder Bednar gave here a few years ago called the character of Christ! It was absolutely amazing! To summarize Christ turned outward and helped others even in His times of trial and we need to do the same. If we are here for ourselves we won't find what we are looking for! But if we lose ourselves in the service of others and love the people we are around we will receive blessings and find ourselves in the process. I decided to try to forget about my legs and being tired and not wanting to study and stuff and just focus on the people I am going to serve! Also we got to walk to the temple after District meeting yesterday and we sang a bunch of hymns there and it was a really cool experience. Today is my first P-day and we went to the temple and now working on laundry and emails! Let me know if there are other questions you want answered! I hope I got  most of them.. and thank you for the emails! I have been worried about how everyone was doing and I felt like a weight lifted off of me when I saw what you all had to say! I know there will be hard times but the Lord will bless us! Hopefully the Chinese goes well this week! There are 6 people in our district that have been here for 4 weeks and their Chinese is a lot better than hours so that's promising! Love and miss you all! Be safe! Have a great week!

Elder Jensen

P.S. not sure how to send pictures yet.. I'll work on that! Oh! My name is Jian Zhanglao. Zhanglao means Elder!