This last week has been pretty busy for me!! I feel like I'm starting to get settled in but I'm sure there is no such thing as getting settled in on your mission haha
It seemed like you guys all had a blast at the family reunion. I'm a little sad I couldn't go but getting all those notes from the cousins were nice! So thank you to all who sent me some words of advice!
Thanks for all the olympic updates everyone!! I was a little disappointed that I couldn't watch it but when Elder Murdock went to the hospital, womens volleyball was on so I got to see like 5 seconds of it as I walked past the tv...so i guess you can say I'm pretty cool! ;)
So this week for me has just been another super busy and hard working week! Let me start off with my weekly low: So on Tuesday we had a fireside for the whole MTC (which we have every week) and the wife of the main speaker went up and told a story. She started off by talking about an 8 year old boy in her ward, going up one day to bare his testimony during sacrament. Here was his testimony: "Good afternoon...I would like to share my testimony...I know this church is true and I love my family (long pause) I know what my brother is doing is right and although I miss him a lot, I know he is making other people happy." Right after she said that I started balling! I couldn't help to think about my relationship with Mitch. It is SO tough to leave a little brother behind but I know that what I'm doing here is right and I will get to see Mitch soon enough...along with the rest of the fam. But Tuesday night I just felt super homesick and I was so mad at that girl for telling that story! I'm not kidding, I wanted to go slap her! haha probably not very missionary like but she just ruined my day on Tuesday. Then she started talking about what the little boy would do to cope with his brother being gone and that the little boy would just wear his older brothers clothes and play with all of his things. I swear this girl just wanted to make everyone depressed and homesick! I have never been so mad at a speaker before!
On a better note, last night we had a dance off in our classroom. We had elder Herrick (obviously) representing our district and Elder Money...yes his last name is actually money representing the new district. Okay let me tell you...this dance off was probably the funniest thing I have EVER seen! Neither of these guys could dance, so it was hilarious! Last night was the best night I have had since I have been here. I can't remember the last time I laughed that hard.
The food here is terrible!! They have a routine and we now know what they are going to be serving every meal. My meal stays the same though. For breakfast, I have a plain bagel with cream cheese. For lunch I have a wrap and for dinner I have 2 bowls of cereal. That's my meal plan every day!! Dan said I was going to gain tons of weight here, I have lost 7 pounds!!!
Austin Rausch sent me a dear elder a couple days ago. I started crying. I left the dear elder in my room, but it was along the lines of "Hey mike. Or should I say elder Payne. It has been a while since we have talked. I just want to let you know that what you are doing is awesome! You, along with some of my other friends, have definitely inspired me to serve a mission next year." I was so happy to read that! It is so true that I am serving two missions while being out here. One through me being in Mexico and teaching people, but also another through my emails home.
I know that "The Lord giveth no commandment unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way that they may accomplish the things which He hath commanded.(1Nephi 3:7)" God has a plan and a reason for why I am out here preparing to serve a mission and serve the people in Mexico. My responsibility as a missionary is to go out and find the "lost sheep." In Luke chapter 15, it talks about 3 parbles: The lost sheep, the lost coins, and prodigal son. I was specifically studying about the lost sheep, in the beginning of chapter 15. There were 99 sheep that returned but Christ went out to search for the one who was lost. It talks about how Christ picked up the lost sheep and put it on his shoulders. He didn't just walk the sheep back, but instead PICKED it up and cared for it. He didn't care why he was lost, just as long as he was found. In our lives, there are so many people who are lost and don't know how to get "home." I know that as long as we put our trust in God and faith in Christ, we can all be made clean again. Without Christ, nothing is possible and we must humble ouselves before Christ so that we find the light. We must be someone who inspires and lifts others up. Estoy muy agredecido por la iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos Dias. Yo se que la iglesia es verdadero y con la ayudar de Jesucristo, podemos volver en ciello con nuestras familias y con Jesucristo y Dios. El solo manera estamos poder vivir en en mejor reina es por medio de bautismo. Necesitamos traer el Evangelio en las vidas de otros y amar todos con todos de nuestras corozones.
I love you all! Thank you for the support and letters! Keep them comin! I mean I don't want to get greedy but seriously getting letters is like gold here! I get so happy when I see my letters!! Even for those of you who I haven't had a chance to get super close with, please write me because I would love to see how you are all doing! And I promise I will write back :)
Con mucho amor,
Elder Mike Payne