First and foremost, WOW, the Mock Trial team is HUGE!! So many great people! Also CONGRATULATIONS! (Jessica's Mock Trial team took 1st place and will compete at State in a month. Jacob's team also won first 2 years ago and went to State but we had already scheduled our trip to Hawaii and so he did not help them compete at State. Jessica is excited that State is the weekend before Spring Break this year.) I am super excited that you guys are going to state--that will be a great experience. I hope you all do well. I am also happy you see how fun Mock Trial is. It really teaches you a lot about logic, problem-solving, law, and even respect of others.
What an exciting prospect (both state and BYU acceptance letters) these next few weeks hold for you. (Jessica will find out on Friday evening if she has been accepted into BYU Provo.) That is frankly a real pick-me-up for me this week, along with the fact that there are transfers. My companion has left in the dust all of the communication I've been trying to build up with him for the last few weeks (because there are things I do that bug him)--he hasn't talked to me all day, even if I ask what's up or where he wants to eat. Nothing. Ever since he found out he was leaving the area he basically gave up on it and on me. I know I have lots of faults and that I can be a bit of a know-it-all sometimes, but I feel like I have been trying really hard these last few weeks to change. I have given up, because transfers are tomorrow and he is leaving. He has said himself that he's kind of dead as a zone leader--he wants to go back to just focusing on his area. I hope all goes well with his next companion; he's not too excited for it. Elder J***** is coming to be zone leader with me, and I am really excited. He is a super energetic guy from Idaho (we call him our favorite little hick) who is BEYOND elated to be a zone leader, especially in the zone he's already in. More on that next week.
Thanks for the basketball update. (I haven't been reporting to him how the BYU Basketball team is doing but I couldn't miss giving a update on Saturday's game!) Glad to see we beat the Zags. I hope Jessica wore her BYU gear proudly to school after that one.
(I asked if he had cell phones and how they were charging them, how he was doing laundry, and if he was using flashlights at night since the power has been out since he got there.) We have cell phones--they are assigned to the areas and stay behind when there are transfers. In most areas there is just one phone, but as zone leaders we get two to do extra calls and stuff. We also get text messaging to send information out to the zone quickly and to communicate with the assistants. We use predictive texting, because all the phones are little Nokia bricks made for function over form and flair. They are basically indestructible, though, so that's nice. We have been charging the phones from members' houses, investigators' houses, the chapel (when we're there), and basically anywhere that there are power outlets. However, it has occurred that all the phones in the house but one die and we have to blow through all the calls as quickly as possible before that phone dies. We use flashlights because Elder B*****(one of the other elders in my house) has a warehouse of batteries in his suitcase that his mom sent him with--so many he'll NEVER use them all in the field. We have been living off of those. Remember how I said that we basically do laundry by hand already with how washing machines are here? The only differences without power are 1)we have to either spin the water with a broomstick every couple of minutes or scrub everything with elbow grease and 2)we have no dryer so things need to be hung up on lines for longer.
(I finished a book last week called Daring Greatly. In it the author explains the difference between guilt and shame. Guilt is "I have done something bad." Shame is "I AM bad. " It is good book (warning: it does have a little language). The author is preaching the gospel in a self help book, she just doesn't know it. I shared a few insights from the book with Jacob in my letter.) This week has been slow, and I have started to feel the shame instead of the guilt--that I AM incapable of making an area progress or that I AM incapable of working harder that I am (which frankly is not very hard at all). I need to stop seeing all the bad stuff and instead focus on how I can be better and the blessings it will bring. I was studying about extending commitments and noticed how it all has to do with keeping an eye on blessings--on the positive. People won't commit to change their lives if they have no positive reason to do so. Likewise, If I wish to change myself I need to make myself see the blessings over all else. Having a new companion will also help; even teaching a lesson becomes hard when you are struggling with companionship unity. I feel like I am trying, but then again I can always try harder. Being with Elder J***** will be a refresher for sure.
I love you guys so much! Stay awesome.