Friday, June 15, 2012

"It made me realize how much I have..."

Well good news,
I decided to try the waffle at the temple today...and you would be so proud: I ate it with the strawberries on top and the boysenberry syrup and it was great. And yes, every week I will probably begin my letter with how good the temple food is because it's the highlight of my week by far. (Mom's note: He also goes to the temple right before he writes these letters.)  I can't remember if I told you this last time, but we decided that 'Diner's, Drive-ins, and Dives' needs to come to the temple see what you can do about that, please. 

This Sunday we had our devotional with Steven B. Allen. He showed about ten different mormon commercials from the 80's. It was so funny how cheesy they were. A lot of them were the ones we used to watch in the Mesa Temple, so it was cool to see those again. At that fireside, one of the district presidents got up first and showed pictures of several forks and spoons that had been bent in half and left on someone's desk. I thought he was going to yell at everyone, but he just read a scripture in Corinthians about putting away childish things. He said that whoever was responsible had to repent if they were going to be worthy on their mission, and the only way to repent was to go to his office and confess to him then he would bring them to the kitchen to apologize and help them through the repentance process. I can't believe anybody was that stupid; I'm just glad it's nobody in our zone that did that. 

This week in class at some point someone got a bunch of tootsie rolls and our teacher had us compete to see who could eat five tootsie rolls the fastest. We were all racing. I was ahead, or so I thought on my second one, and then Elder Wright was done. None of us believed him at first, but apparently, he swallowed each one of them whole and finished in 10 seconds. It was really funny. I couldn't believe he could do that that fast. 

This week an advanced district left. One them was a sister. She needed a blessing the night before. She asked me to give it to her, so that was pretty cool. That same night, one of the other sister's grandpa had just passed away, and she asked me to give her a blessing, too. It was really cool to see how much more I can recognize the spirit than when I first came into the MTC, but I still need lots of practice. 

I hosted again this week. One of the missionaries was from the Marshall Islands. He didn't speak much English. When I went to go get his stuff, he only had one suitcase that was smaller than my carry on, and it felt empty. And that's ALL he had. It made me so sad. I kept asking if he needed anything. I didn't know what to do. I hope the church takes care of things like that. The only scriptures he had was a paperback triple. Anyways, that was an interesting experience. It made me realize how much I have and how ungrateful and selfish I am. 

Steven Mckee sent me a letter by the way...I replied but the address he left was incorrect. Can you let him know I tried to reply to him? Also, Elder Mcklwain's little brother is in my district. Oh, before I forget...can you send a few black or blue sharpie pens? The kind that doesn't bleed; we write a lot here, and I have already been through two. Thanks. Can someone tell Cami Gallacher to give me her address? She has sent me a couple packages but no return address, and I wanted to reply to her. 

Yesterday, we gave our first new missionary orientation and gave them the tour of MTC campus. It was pretty fun. There were ten people to interview so it took a while. We finished our orientation early, so me and Elder Wilkey just talked for about 25 minutes about what it means to be a missionary and that they need to be obedient. One of the new missionaries is Chase Plowman, who is going to Ogden as well, but the transfer right after me. That's cool that he is in my zone. He seems to be doing well and adjusting okay. It's always good to see familiar faces. Phil is doing well. I see him a couple times a day. We have even worked out and played soccer together at gym, too. Besides that, Elder Wilkey and I don't do much but work with the new missionaries.

So, I shouldn't gossip, but there is this one elder in our district that is pretty funny. He is pretty buff, and he knows it. So when he gets out of the shower, he will go out the opposite side of his room, so he can walk around the entire floor, so people see him with a shirt off. And he probably needs about a 16 1/2" neck shirt but wears probably a 14.5 and just doesn't button the top button so that it's tighter, and the sleeves only come down his arm a few inches. So, that's pretty funny. I'm not sure how his mission president will feel about him not owning any shirts in his size, but I guess he will find out. 

Being zone leader has been great. The only problems this week have been in our own district. A couple missionaries were playing piano every night in another building and getting back at about ten, so the district leader asked them not to do that anymore since the rule is that you go straight home. They completely ignored him and went anyways right after he said not to do it. Elder Wilkey made me wait until the next day to talk to them, which is a good idea, because I wasn't very happy, and I was able to talk to them in a little more of a Christlike way the next day. Anyways, they just admitted, "Yes, we ignored him, because that's stupid." But we helped them understand that it doesn't work like that, so they won't be doing that anymore. The missionary keeps saying that that's the only way he can feel the Spirit. We said,  "Well, then that's a different problem. Everyone is making sacrifices. You need to learn to feel the Spirit in other ways, too." Anyways, this same missionary has been checking his email everyday even when we ask him not to. He told us that his grandpa was dying, and that's why he was doing it. The more that we asked about it, the more we realized that that was a lie, and his grandpa is just old. He just wants an excuse to get on his email everyday. Regardless, the branch president said that he needs to turn it over to the Lord, and the Lord will take care of his family. Same missionary this morning wouldn't get up to go to the temple for his companion, so Elder Wilkey and I ended up being late making him get up and shower. He ended up going anyways just a lot later. So anyways, I promise I won't just write home every week about problems, but that's just what's on my mind right now. It feels like every p-day there are problems, because apparently that's the day that you can "do whatever you want because it's just p-day." So, other than that no problems. 

Our investigators are all doing really well. Graciela just said she is moving out of the area right after we finished lesson four, so that was unexpected. Mariah's aunt is a witch and has evil spirits in her house. So we spent the first couple lessons figuring out why she was so crazy, and then found out that's why and taught her how to pray. She has a date for June 28, but it's tough with her, because she can't read. Roberto is progressing fine; he will be baptized the 28th, too, but we haven't taught the word of wisdom or the law of chastity yet. We will have to see how that changes things. 

We go to the TRC once a week, which is where people from the "real world" come in, and we teach them a 20 minutes lesson on whatever they need. They get all kinds of people. So far, we have only had return missionaries. We just give them a quick message on the doctrine of Christ and invite them to invite their friends. (in Spanish) Also, we had one lady whose husband used to be a member then he left the church and now hates it (this is all after they served a couples senior mission). It was pretty sad. I can't remember what we shared, but the Spirit helped us out with comforting her. (Keep in mind all this stuff in TRC is real. That's cool. Eventually, we will teach less active members as well. We just haven't yet.) I am ready to go and do the real thing; the MTC is great, but I'm just anxious to go to Ogden. 

The letters are always great. They are so coveted now since the first couple weeks of everyone writing to you wears off, and now, letters are a little more rare. I have been lucky to have family and friends that write me often, keep them coming! Anyways, not much else is going on. Happy early Father's Day Dad. We all freaked out last Sunday, because we thought we missed it then realized it's this coming week.  I hope you get your card on time. Take care everyone.

Love you!
Elder Bassett

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