Friday, July 26, 2013

Time to Fly!

Well,
The events of this week are many but went by so quickly it feels like it was all one day! I cannot wait to head out to Korea and start the real work!!!!
The MTC has been fanstastic but its definitely time to move on.
 
1-In field oreintation
Well yesterday we spent from 8-5:30pm in the in-field orientation meeting and it was probably the longest day of the MTC and things got as real as they can get while still in the MTC bubble. We "tracted" and learned how to plan and things like that. Basically it was review because we have now been here for two full months. It was still alot of fun and definitely necessary plus it was a full day in English so not too hard to understand;) all the english speaking elders that have been here for a week and two days were all "so excited to get outta here" -- all we could say was..Youre telling me hahah I felt a little rood after the fact but really a week here is awesome you learn so much in that first week and that is where so many first changes are made.
 
Well the rest i think ill just write out my favs of th MTC experience:
-My District: the best district in the world!! I really hope I see these elders and sisters alot in the field!! unfortunately we loose two companionships-Elder Han and Clark to the Sydney North mission and Elder Sorensen and BLake to California Arcadia mission--we will miss them a ton on our flights and orientation in Korea. HUGE shoutout to the best companion Elder Wilson!! I love this elder to death he has taught me so much and it is going to be hard to leave him in the next week.
-My teachers: Brother Kim and Sister Sagers are outstanding teachers!!! I am going to miss having the opportunity to hear their testimonies and their wisdom daily! They have both influenced my goal setting and the missionary I will be for the better and I can not be more grateful for them.
-Devotionals: If you want a life changing experience twice a week the MTC is where you need to be. THe Devotionals have taught me so much and they are one of the places wher I feel the Spirit so strongly and learn so much in such a short amount of time! Also Devotional reviews with the District sooo great! Definitely a time of learning and understanding and pondering the words of servants of our Heavenly Father!!
-Branch Presidency: We have without a doubt the most amazing branch presidency in the MTC they are all so sincere and want 100% what is best for us and what will help us most while on this call to serve. I honestly could not have asked for a better set of leaders for this branch for our district and for me specifically! I love each and every one of them and will miss them.
Everyday is fantastic here in the MTC so much is always happening and learning is always on the rise. If you dont learn anything in the MTC it is because you are either sleeping all day or dead. you could roam the campus and do nothing and still learn here haha it is incredible.
 
Well now that we have seen 5 groups of english speaking elders come and go it is our turn to join the 6th on the journey back into the "real world." I have grown so much and though I know i havent learned everything(not even close to some of everything) I am ready and feel as prepared as I think I can be at this point. I cannot wait for the adventure ahead! I cannot wait to serve my Heavenly Father and bring others into this gospel of happiness and love!!! Off to Korean see ya in 22;) Peace sign duck face pic just like my people!!!
With Love,
ELder Nathan Jackson

Friday, July 19, 2013

Last Week in the MTC!



Well if you could end a week any better than this one I would be extremely surprised. I am so happy for all of you and know that the Lord is blessing me as He calls us forward to serve only asking us to be our best and follow Him.
And besides the fact that we only have three weeks left.... WE GOT TRAVEL PLANS TODAY!!! I will be leaving the 29 of July and stop in San Fancisco, Tokyo and then head straight in to Busan!!! I cant believe it is already here!!
1-- More on the plans
SO wewont have to meet at the travel office until 7:30 on Monday July 29 and from there we will be shuttled up to SLC! Well we also reacived a letter from President Gilbert this week with information of what we will be doing when we arrive. First off we will be staying in the mission homes for two days and in our time there we will have orientations and participste in cultural events hhahaha Im soo excited to go to work and start sharing what I have learned. THere is going to be a large language barrier when we arrive not only because we dont really understand the language in its fullest yet but also because of the dialect in Busan! either way the Lord is on our side and will provide the means for us to fulfill our purpose as long as we have faith and are obedient!!
In other news--
2-- Koreans
This week starting Monday the group of Native koreans we will leave with came into the MTC. Their English is not as good as the other korean elders and sisters as we have had in the past. This is how I really found out that we really know only the simplistic almost awkward converstaional form of Korean. However it is what we will learn to teach and when we speak in this way we honorfy and show respect to just about everyone! Well another different thing about the elders that came in is that most of them are born in 94 so our same age(they base age and such off of the lunar year there and answer there age with when they are born instead of how "old" they are) but it automatically make us friends in Korea. The weird thing about that is that most korean elders serve their military time for two years before serving a mission so they are normally between 22 and even 25 years old! ha
Funny story though -- I was talking to elder pak who is as of now the korean I am closest to and I taught him how to say my name... he has the hardest time making the "th" sound of Nathan and it is so funny to watch him concentrate so hard each time he does. All Koreans by the way have some pretty solid style. I cant wait to buy some ties there for 2 dollars.haha
3-- mail
I love the mail I get from everyone. It really does help so much and brings back great memories and stories for me to share!! Last night I shared some of my fruit loops with the non sugar eating native koreans and they fell in love and asked me for more. hahah they are all so funny!! I really had a flashback to all the great times watching movies and being together but it really gives me a motivation to be better and to want to serve so that others can have the joy that comes with the gospel in a family!! That is what I am most excited to share with them all. Thanks for the mail again and for the love support and prayers. It really does show even when we are doing the same thing almost everyday the Lord blesses us in so many ways that help us learn and grow and I know that wouldnt be possible without prayers coming from you all!! Eveery missionary needs them and benefits so much from something so simple yet amaxing from our Heavenly Father!
4--Thats all folks
I have seen Elder Burgi twice since wednesday also Ty states, kolton savage, david ju and STU many times this week. I really am so glad that everyone is doing so well and I can't emphasize how much I feel the love from you all!!
Last thoughts...
Remember who you are-- this week I had a few days in a row in which I had forgotten who I was. I knew but for some reason I didnt believe it. It was hard to go through and telling myself I had faith and knew what I was doing when inside I was dying wondering how I could really figure it out. It was of course only as I turned to my Heavnely Father in prayer that he ansered the questions that I had and that He did so only by bringing to my remembrance who I was. It is so important that we remember we are His children and that He will bless us with many things. However He requires us to ask in faith and then act on that answer. I could not be more grateful for that blessing and gift in itself!!
Love You All!!!!
Elder Nathan Hart Jackson

Elder Jackson and Elder Kenney
Elder Wilson, Han and Jackson


Sunday, July 14, 2013

another week


Yeah so this week has been crazy and I am just going to get right into things because I dont have alot of time....
 
1-Language
 this week was so hard langauge wise... we are learning how to make more complex sentences and korean is so mixed up and backwards that after trying to process one sentence I have the worst headache and then still have three more hours of class... Its really hard and almost everyday there will be a time when I am completely discouraged.. Now with that said two things happened this week that really boosted my confidence in my ability to speak.. the First on sunday during fast and testimony meeting I bore my testimony in straight Korean. When the meeting was over the korean elder and sisters made a point of complimenting me on my korean and said that they understood everything I said- now in korea you are never ever ever supposed to take a compliment so even though I wanted to stand up and celebrate, I had to just say thank you. This led to quite a humbling thought and that is why would I accept that anyway it was not me speaking alone--the only way any language here is learned is by and through the spirit. Now the second thing that happened was the coming in of two new korean speakiong missionaries including nathan wunderli ao that is kinda self explanitory.
 
2-The oldies.
We are now the "oldest" korean speaking missionaries in the MTC. It was really hard to say goodbye to the older district because we were really tight with them especially over that last week but htey were the greatest examples of what missionaries should be. They were hard working and faithful and knew that if they called upon the Lord for hel-p they would recieve it. specifically elder veerothai. Veerothai is from thailand and so he has been learning english and Korean in the MTC and both are extremely good. He bore such a strong testimony of the work on sunday and gave me alot of advice in such little time so basically I look up to him alot. He is also 18 so just another addition and he was also a convert so yeah alot of small things build up to make one great elder!
The new group of missionaries has been fun to have! they told us that we all looked so old even though some are older than me. Most of them are going to the Busan mission and so its awesome getting to know those I will be serving with for the next two years. In the group I think the majority just graduated this past year..I think that is so awesome and know that those who did just graduate will be some of the best missionaries. I experience it first hand with ELder Wilson everyday!! Last thing--flight plans should come next week so Im kinda really pumped for that I cant believe its already coming so soon!!
 
3-Peeps
Te district has been alot better this week and we have really grown and learned a lot. To continue on with Elder Wilson-we have really grown closer in this last week and as we teach I feel a unity with him and its going to be really hard to teach without him!! still rolling as distrct leader which causes me some extra stress but in the words of Brother Lee ( a member from our braench presidency) If you arent a little stressed you will have no motivation. No desrire to improve and no desire to be your best. so I guess its a good thing. I hope and pray daily that I am doing what is best for my district and that I am setting the example I need to.
Well I saw kevin lynch and one of connor and kennys friends and STUART and others this week. Brendan and I see each other maybe once a week.. Its kinda a bummer but when we see each other its a party! Hermana Coffey leaves monday so we took some pics with the three of us. unfortunately because I hadnt seen either of them I was not prepared with my camera. dang. but just so you know it was documented.
 
4-Change
Short section but the dress and grooming standards changed for missionaries this week. so I will be growing my hair back out and wearing street clothes more often...haha just kidding that probably isnt funny to you all but again sense of humor here is that everything is funny.. So apparently we cant wear backpacks at all anymore so I was just wondering what you think I should do with mine..?? anyways they are on lds.org -- resources--missionary and if you feel like sending anything that align with these new standards feel free;) haha
 
 but just so you know eveything is great and improvment is constant here even though sometimes I feel like it is not and further if we are doing the things we should be doing, improvement is always happening even if we do not feel it.
 
your mail definitely pushed me through the week so thanks and keep it coming!!!!!
 
Love you,
Elder Nathan Hart Jackson
Elder Kemp and Elder Jackson

Koreans in Training


Nate and Elder Veerothai

Elder Jackson and Elder Im

Friday, July 5, 2013

WONderful

HOly Email!! hahah love hearing about everything and so glad everyone is doing so well loved getting all the letters and presents in my package. Plenty of face wash and also good on shampoo and such although I may need to have some sent before I head out to Korea! DOederant I dont really care too much whatever you feel is good! Ps yesterday the Harts were on my mind as we learned how to say wonderful in korean it is-- 훌류하다. hahah just started laughing when we learned that as all I could think of was WOnderful!! 
Alright weekly report

1-Food
Basically all I have been eating is salad wraps and cereal everyday every meal... the food is just getting worse and I feel like they serve the things which are the last things I want to eat. Anyway its been a great couple of past weeks and I have had to try and mix cereals. My favorite mix is plain life with frosted flakes and a bit of honey bunches! One or two bowls of that brings complete satisfaction haha what else to make this more exciting... Elder Wilson and Elder Hansen have had two food eating competitions making a total of 10 burgers with nine plates of fries and 32 chicken strips (these are two different times and have been separated by a few weeks but still that is a ton of food!! haha and the package that was sent was much enjoyed because of the treats that are enclosed hah that closes this section
 
2-Devotionals
Devotionals again this week were fantastic!! Sunday we heard from another Brother who has worked with the missionaries for 40 years now and his talk was very similar to the talk that President Witworth gave to me the night I was set apart! I was so thankful to compare the notes between these two talks and pull out alot of the same messages that are fantastic and will hopefully help whenever I am going through a rough time. Following the devotional, we went to a film called becoming a missionary by Elder Bednar(this is just a replayed MTC devotional) and it was amazing as well It really gave me a new sense of motivation and connected with the Devotional on Tuesday night really well also. One of the best parts of Sunday nights films was sitting by Elder Kemp. We also sat by ELder Wilsons friend that he hosted so what a blessing it was for our companionship. Well Tuesday nights devotional was probably my second favortie here. We were addressed by the second counselor in the sunday school presidency Brother Richardson. I cannot explain the feeling of the devotional without being very gerenal in my words. The spirit was overwhelming and I realized what my purpose is in serving a mission. I always wanted to bring others unto the joy found in this gospel, but this devotional really answered my questions as to how as we talked about doing your part and as we broke down our mission calls into responsibilities and blessings. I could not be more grateful.
 
3-The District
Our district almost stepped its bounds this week and contention was sparking... What a stressful time and as District Leader..I had no idea what to do. However thanks to the help of our newly called Zone Leader, Elder Han, and our teachers, we were really able to solve things and we have turned back into the tightest District in the MTC with no problems and a ton of fun!! One thing I realized is that sometimes we have the tendency to go a little to far with jokes or misuse our time because we are all so tight and its just like hanging out with some friends. however, this week we also turned a new page as a district and learned that because we are so close we need to catch ourselves when we hit that situation. anyway besides that the district is fantastic and again I could not ask for a better group of Elders or Sisters to work with while at the MTC. They have taught me so much and have shown sincerity in their want to serve and progress as well as wanting to help me progress I love them all and will miss them when we leave(still have four weeks of fun and Im already realizing this)... haha
 
4-the 4th
What a life saver day!! It was a blessing to only have one full class yesterday because what we learned just wasnt clicking for me and I was having a hard time. However a fantastic devotional/movie watching(17 miracles) was fantastic and we did get to watch the Stadium of Fire light up the night sky! ps loved the part about the sandlot in jessicas music page to me:) It was a different 4th obviously but being able to say that I was learning korean on the fourth of july feels pretty cool haha oh missionaries are nuts about singing certain hymns and they are not afraid to show it.. You always know everyones favorites because they openly tell the whole MTC. Last night it went a little something like this. We will sing America the Beautiful--some clapping and lifting of voices , and then another hymn -- a little bit louder, and finally The Battle Hymn of the Republic and then came the uproar of YESSSSSS!! from half the auditorium now this was only for prelude hymns so i want you to imagine as time went on and after watching 17 miracles what the reaction was when it was anounced that we were singing Come Come Ye Saints... yeah. Don't get me wrong singing hymns is one of my favorite parts of the MTC however when we have to be reminded not to clap or stand during the hymn almost every devo.. its a little much hahaha
 
5- Thats about all
I am still loving the MTC and knowing I only have three weeks left makes it even better-14 days til flight plans and 2 days until the the next group of korean missionaries leave.
Seeing everyone on the constant is awesome and knowing that you all pray for me is sometimes better than a letter or package because it is something I can feel and that pushes me to want to do more and be more.(this doesnt mean you can slack off on the letters because I love them;))
 
 LOVE YOU SOOOOOOOOO MUCH 사랑합니다!!!!^^
~Elder Jackson
America


missionary runway

Monday, July 1, 2013

Host with the most

BYU Roommate Reunion

Elder Jackson, Elder Kemp, Elder Han

HALFWAY!!!!‏

Well looks like Im not the only perspn who has been counting the time here at the MTC.. haha HALFWAY mark hit today!! and it has been so crazy to look back over the month and see progression in so many things. I apologize if this e-mail has any repeats of things I have said. Honestly having the same schedule for a month now.. not a ton of change.
 
1-World Wide Broadcast Sunday:
To begin, because of the Mission President Orientation and seminar, a lot of things were actually different this week. First, cafeteria was moved to the big gym and that really was not great because having options became nothing. Six lines with the same food and then only like three choices of cereal.,..rough. The gym floor got pretty nasty and it was good to see that they had washed it and waxed it as we retuened back to it yesterday. Next, What an aweome Sunday that felt nothing like a Sunday at all. haha well it was just an overall amazing eperience. To see every Elder in the MTC in one preisthood meeting was so cool and then further to go to a sacrament that was so different because of the amount of people was way cool. I loved knowing that the principles and ordinance was the same even though it was in a different setting and different place. Then the broadcast. Holy Smokes could you have asked for better instruction... I don't think you can. It was a blessing to be a part of and I was glad I had the chance to be a part of the excitement. Main themes I picked up throughout the day: 1--Humble yourself and trust in Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost. 2--Every member must be a missionary, it is how the Lord would have us work and it will hasten the work. 3--Have Faith and do not fear, if we are obedient, the Lord will not let us fail. It was so cool to hear directly from those who speak for our Heavenly Father.
 
2- Preparation Days
Normally this is what a p-day consists of (since we have now had 5 Im sure they wont change too much haha) To begin, we wake up at 5:30 and put on our overalls this is so we can beat the laundry rush. We start our loads and then head to service at 6:05 where, for the past 4 weeks, Elder Wilson and I have had the great chance to clean bathrooms... Its a lot of kicks;) haha we eat breakfast, finish our laundry, shower, email, nap, study, write letters, temple trip, chill, dinner, and then end with class and TRC! they are pretty fun and we get alot done! One thing we are all really sad about is that the Provo Temple is closing(for cleaning) for the rest of the time we are here so we are going to have about 3 hours to fill each day. More study time, napping time and letter time coming maybe some gym time as well. We just learned that the small gym is open to us on p-days so having another day to excercise will be a blessing. hah and thats about it. A lost of time to think and reflect and most of the time, p-days are the days where decisions are made and goals are evaluated because of the time you have to listen to our own thoughts hah
 
3-Hosting
What a great time hosting was!! I was allowed to host three elders(one Elder Kemp) and it was just cool being on the other side of things. One thing that is crazy to me is how old I felt even though some of the Elders were older than me in age..It was interesting for sure and really such a blessing to be able to have the Kemps pull up right in front of me. I honestly did not have to take a step to the side or anything, couldnt have worked out better!! Thats all I really have to say about hosting but it was really fun and I am glad that everything was the way it was cause it set a great feeling for the rest of the day and week.
 
4-Language
On wednesdays, we have missionary portal time and this week were surprised with a language test....... all I could do was laugh as it asked me to answer siome questions that I wouldve had a hard time explaining in English.. however this is the time that I really recognized that the ability to bear testimony is so important. As we share what we know, our abilities and faith increase and invite the spirit and so the answer is in fact not given by us but by our Heavenly Father through His Spirit! So important and so cool!!! I also memorized the missionary purpose in Korean over the last couple of days and it is great to see it read it and understand what I am saying. We learned some more challenging grammar forms this week that I am having a hard time with but ya know it will come.
 
5-Tender Mercies
Rain on some night this last week!! so awesome to walk back from class with a slight sprinkle ;)
Hosting my best friend and seeing so many others come into the MTC
Mail (Fa Mulan, Sunshine in my soul) haha
Devotional by my companions great aunt Janice Kapp Perry (he got a shout out and we got to go talk to them for a bit before they kicked us out--no time for a pic)
Sang Primary songs in the Devotional on Tuesday
Ability to create sentences off the top of my head while sharing my testimony in Korean
The Book of Mormon
My awesome district and great teachers and amazing breanch presidency
basically there are too many to count and I could not be more thankful for the joy I have felt and the guidance I have recieved this week.
 
Love you,
Elder Nathan Hart Jackson