Utica, NY

Monday, September 23, 2013

Hello Again Everyone!

Watching the BYU Texas game from afar

It's good to hear for you all again. Another week has gone by in the MTC, and time is FLYING. Literally. I can't believe I'm already in the third week and in three more measly weeks I will be out of here.
I am still loving every bit of the MTC. Portuguese is progressing well. Last week I was tired of having awkward Invesigator lessons and not being able to say the things that were in my heart and mind. I felt like I was saying repetitive things I learned out of a book. Then I prayed for the gift of tongues and for the ability to work with all my might to earn it. The next day my companion was very sick, so I taught the entire lesson myself. Neither of us had a clue what we were going to teach before the lesson either. So with faith, we walked into our lesson to meet Antonio, our new investigator who was our teacher in disguise. He is a single man who works as a construction worker. He has no children and his wife is Paralyzed on the left side. After getting to know him better I talked to him about religion briefly. He is catholic but shows interest in Jesus Christ, so we talked about him and his atonement, and how it can help us with difficulties such as with his wife being paralyzed. He was very interested and I felt the spirit strongly. I asked my companion to bear his testimony and pray with the little strength he had, and he did. Then I felt impressed to have him read Chapter 34 of Alma. He agreed, but wanted to know more about the book of mormon first, so I told him about it.
I after leaving the lesson, I was amazed with what I had just done. I realized that I am not actually a robot, but a missionary. I realized that the only reason I was able to say EVERYTHING I wanted to was because of my plead to god for the gift of tongues. It was amazing, and really strengthened my testimony of prayer. It is real. Overnight, my Portuguese improved to a new level, but I know I will have much to learn when I get to Curitiba.
Last Sunday we heard from Ron Tanner, producer of 17 Miracles, Only a Stonecutter, Ephraim's rescue, and the John S. Tanner story. He emphasized the importance of learning more about our pioneers and their sacrifice. He showed us a clip from Ephraim's rescue, and when there was a kissing scene, every missionary in the auditorium began to squeel. Elder Schwitzer of the 70 spoke to us in the Mariott Center on tuesday about changing from a good to better missionary. It was amazing. He gave it from a mission President's perspective. He was the mission president of the Yekaterinburg Russia mission not too long ago. I took some solid notes.

There is one more thing I'd like to mention before I close. Every day when I study in the hall outside my classroom I see missionaries with physical handicaps and I am amazed at their sacrifice to serve the lord with all their ability in spite of their weaknesses. I met one who had been out for a year already serving in the MTC. He is slightly physically and mentally handicapped, but this doesn't limit his ability to perform the lords work. For the past year he has sat on a computer desk in the MTC, skyping and online chatting people from all over the world and preaching the gospel to them. I was inspired by his sacrifice and dedication, and amazing spirit. Just like other all other missionaries, he only able to talk with his family twice a year. I met another young missionary who had very tiny legs and had to walk with special hand crutches. He is serving in the Provo mission. I was amazed at how much he sacrificed to serve the lord and how worried his family must be for him. I realized how little I have sacrificed compared to him. If I were an investigator in Provo, and this Elder taught me, there wouldn't be any way I wouldn't believe the message he would have for me. After pondering the amount of sacrifice he made to serve the lord, to lose himself and serve others and share a simple message with other families, his message must be true. That missionary will change the Provo mission.
I wish you all a very joyous week. I love you all and you're in my prayers. Eat plenty of Sun dried Tomato wheat thins, because I really miss those.
All my best,
Elder Kunzler
Part of District 69C

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