Wednesday, January 1, 2014


Dec. 3, 2013

The most incredible Christmas spirit EVER. That's going on here in the MTC. Life

First--Shoutout to Darren and Carey for sending the most delicious molasses cookies I've ever had in the most creative package I've ever opened. An instrument will be made shortly. Elder Keene, describing said cookies: "Its like the Celestial Kingdom in my mouth!"

Shoutout to everyone who has sent me DearElders... its the best to get mail. Like Christmas presents every day of the week. and packages are like... I don't know. Incredible and stuff.

Shoutout to everyone in the whole world because we are all God's children and Ele nos ama. MUITO. 

Some brief info:
-the Provo temple closed right when I got here, and will remain closed until right after I leave. I feel personally slighted. So temple time is spent... studying! because I don't study enough. Really :)

-Food is delicious. I don't care what people say. I liked the cannon center, and the food here is better than that. Either my taste buds are indiscriminate, or everybody else is too picky. 

-No sisters in the district. Oh well. It just means that all us elders get really weird. really fast.

-It snowed today. UGH. But actually, it made me very happy. Elder Keene doesn't like snow because he grew up in michigan and says you get very tired of snow very fast when you live in michigan. Its really quite hilarious how he has this vendetta against snow. But Elder Keene is incredible. Love the guy. I know so much more about Arab history, russian history, catholic doctrine and history, why/how we are the only church with true priesthood authority, how the sheer improbability of life being started on earth and the perfection with which we are situated in the universe is only further testimony that God created all this with divine intention and foresight. and lots of other things. Daniel-- he kind of reminds me of you. 

-I got to play CELLO TODAY. They have cellos to rent and me and Elder Sanchez (from Reston virginia! my birthplace!) are working up O Holy Night and auditioning on Thursday. We'll see what comes of it. Playing was so therapeutic today though. 

-Thanksgiving was GREAT! We started the day with a devotional from Elder Nelson. Then we did that service project you saw in deseret news--- those beautiful red caps? My table alone made something like 2,552 meals if I did my math right. 350,208 total I believe. Then that night we watched Ephraim's Rescue, which was awesome and inspiring. It honestly felt strange to watch a movie #outsideworld

-We are quickly becoming professionals at four-square in gym. Its real intense.

Scott-- One of my teachers here is Brother Lefevre. He said he knew you, was a TA in GeoSpat at BYU with you and talked about Thailand? 

Also, fun fact, my other main teacher Brother Dodge? Friends with Jenna from her days in Liberty Square. The world is small. 

Real life in the MTC: 
We've been learning as a companionship what it really means to plan to teach. Coming in I saw it as a two step process-- study, then teach. rinse and repeat. But really the process is 6-fold:

You identify the needs of the people you teach, because the gospel can change everyones lives and fulfill their needs.
You make goals based on those needs.
You make plans to accomplish those goals.
You study to fulfill your plan.
You teach, using your study but relying on the Spirit.
You commit them to act in a way that will facilitate meaningful, spiritual experiences that will help them come unto Christ. Then you reevaluate their needs. 

It's a beautiful cycle.

Also-- Alma 1:26. The preacher is no greater than the learner. This gospel is as much for me as it is for anyone I teach. Dive into that verse. 

Last thing--I'm the District leader in our district now. Elder Bunch/Lyman are now the Zone-leaders-in-training so I'm DL now. And Alma 1:26 had special meaning to me in that light. Called to leadership = called to SERVE. 

I love you all! 

-Elder Jackson
view from the classroom where I spent 16 hours every day. Not bad eh?
-Me, Elder Keene, Brown, Lyman and Bunch.

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