Tuesday, September 25, 2012

How Glorious

Hey everybody,
The weeks keep passing by faster and faster. I was glad to hear that you all enjoyed the Brigham City Temple dedication, I enjoyed it here at the MTC as well. I'm so grateful for all the temples and I'm excited to go there some day.
I was thinking about some things that happened in my life and I hope everyone can find some time this week to look back at their life. Look back at how far you've come and all the fun times you've had. I remembered that one time I was in the spelling bee and missed my first word and just laughed at that. Thanks for coming and supporting me Mom and Dad. And I'm glad to hear Dad had fun at Fathers and Sons. I have great memories of campouts we went on. Thanks Dad for helping me have great times.
Seth came in this week and that's been real cool. We have the same gym time so we had a nice long run outside. It's so weird to me to be so close to everything and still feel a world apart. Even just walking to and around the temple feels different. Sometimes it messes with my mind, but I'm just happy to be here so no real problems.
I was able to see some progress with the windows at the house and it looks great. Make sure to tell Papa not to work too hard without me. Also, I would love to hear if there's any news on Wallace Lane, I just assume nothing has really happened.
It's cool to hear about all the family gatherings that you are having but I have to echo the words of Mariah and say they have to continue when I get home. I hope the Moulton's are enjoying their parakeets, that sounds like a blast. And please make sure to tell Sam that I'm proud of him for working on his Eagle. I'm so grateful for everyones help with my project.
I guess I didn't write down that much cool stuff this week, but I'll just share some thoughts I've been having.
For anyone that is preparing for your mission. IT'S THE BEST THING YOU COULD EVER DO WITH YOUR TIME!!! Nothing has brought me this much happiness and I feel so much closer to my Savior. It's definitely not easy, but it's so worth it. I used to feel really comfortable teaching and most everything I've learned has come pretty quickly. It's different now, but as I trust in the Lord everyday I am strengthened and when I look back it's amazing to me how far I've come. I know Heavenly Father watches over and blesses His missionaries because he watches over and blesses me.
I used to feel I was pretty close to the Spirit but since I've come to the MTC it's been real different. I wasn't feeling the same and was a little confused why when I'm in the MTC I don't feel the Spirit more. One day I was just thinking about what investigators feel, especially about the Spirit and it just hit me. I've been telling my investigators what the Spirit feels like. The "fruits of the Spirit" are love, peace, joy, faith, pretty much all good things. (Galatians 5:22-23 says it better) I feel that way all the time in the MTC and realized that the Spirit has been with me. I was definitely looking beyond the mark for deeper experiences and now I'm trying to just enjoy the Spirit when I feel those feelings. Also in John 14 I think and like verse 15 Jesus prays that the Comforter will "abide" with His disciples. I know the Spirit can really abide with us and not just be with us. It's a tiny word change, but it gave me lots of comfort.
I was able to watch the Joseph Smith movie on Sunday and it was amazing as always. I'm so grateful for all he did and know he is a prophet of God. Go watch it if you have the time. Or watch the new Mormon Message, pretty much there's just endless amounts of great church things you can watch. That's easy for me though because church things are ALL I can watch.
Two quick things Mom. I was wondering if you could send me a copy of "Come What May and Love It" by Elder Wirthlin. It's probably my favorite talk of all time and I want to be able to read it. Also, if you can get a copy in Spanish that would be real cool. I can read tons in Spanish, but I'm really working on being able to speak. And I'm not sure if it's possible but I would love to get the Ensigns for General Conference while I'm on my mission. Once again I have no idea if that's possible or how it would happen, but if it's not too much of a hassle I would appreciate it.
I almost forgot and I'm sure you've all been wondering. I don't have my visa and there has been no word on it. I've heard of some people going to Peru and other countries (especially Spain) that haven't received their visas and were reassigned to a different mission when their time at the MTC was up. I think that's a temporary reassignment so it sounds pretty cool and the longer it goes the more likely it seems like that will happen to me. I'm pretty sure you just get assigned to a new mission in the US until your visa comes, but I'll definitely be getting more information soon.
I love you all and hope you're loving life. Keep smiling and make sure you're reading your scriptures and praying. God wants to hear from you, that's what I tell people all day everyday.
Love you again,
Elder Aaron Wheatley

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Great Happiness!

Hey Everybody,

So Jake might be the only one that gets the title but pretty much it means I LOVE THE MTC! It's a place of wonders. I'm not going to say that all my wildest dreams have come true, but I have been having some pretty wild dreams at night. The best part is just knowing every second of the day that you're where you're supposed to be. Now I need to work on doing every second of the day what I'm supposed to be doing. This week flew by and I learned so much.

Last week after I went to the temple I just thought about it for a while. I don't know what your schedules are like but I know if you make time for the temple (even if it's just sitting outside or driving around it) things will go much better. I've been so blessed to live so close to the temple my whole life and I can see so many blessings I've received from going. It's definitely been easy for me with all the examples of my friends and family who go so often. It's my favorite place in the world and I'm so grateful for temples.

I guess you got the picture with the Ambassador of Peru and you can put it up on the blog or something if you want. It was really cool to talk with him and to hear a little about his country. He told us that usually when people go to Peru he tells them to have fun, but he couldn't really do that because we can't have women, alcohol, or other things like that. I thought it was a little funny, but maybe just sad that he thought those were the only ways to have fun. The worlds views are so different from our own just like Elder Holland said in the CES Fireside which I highly recommend. The best part about talking with him was just getting excited to be with the people of Peru though. I can't even express the love I have for them already and I've never stepped foot in Peru. All I ever hear is that they are so warm and loving. Heavenly Father blessed me so much with this mission call and I'm so excited to serve the people of Peru.

I over heard some other Elders talking and it's not the first time I've heard a story like that but it just reminded me of the type of missionary I want to be. They were just talking about someone else they knew who had served and who was always asked by his companions why he walked so fast. He said that he only had 2 years to serve and he wasn't going to waste a single second, he was going to share the greatest message anyone could receive with everyone that he physically could. That was just an inspiration to me and I want to be like that.

I've heard the bells from BYU a couple of times and for anyone there at college (or anywhere else for that matter) try to enjoy the little things because I definitely miss them now that I don't get to be blasted by them everyday.

On Sunday I went on my temple walk and went to the back corner to get a good look at the house. The windows look great and I'm glad I was able to get some pictures. Make sure Papa's not working too hard and if you have some time work with him. I learned so much from him and had some great talks this summer that I will cherish for the rest of my life.

I get to watch the Brigham City Temple dedication and I'm so excited. I'm so happy for Oma and Opa and everyone else that will be blessed so much by that temple.

Now for the coolest story of the week. Sunday during the devotional there was a group of 4 Elders singing. I saw one of their nametags and it said Tipene. My heart started racing and after the meeting I hurried up to see him. I asked him if his name was Beau-Henry (another Elder had told me that was Piwa's sons name) and he said it was. Then I made sure and asked if he was Piwa's son and Uncle Charlie's grandson. Then I told him that Papa was the one that built his chapel in Pipiwai and he said that pretty much made me family. He said his whole family was doing well and I asked him to tell them hi from the Moulton's. He told me to do the same. So this is a hello from the Tipene's. That was just a cool experience to meet up at the MTC with someone I don't really know, but that is still a part of my life. I want to go to New Zealand really bad. Anyone up for a trip in 2 years?

I hope school, work, and all else that life brings is going well. I pray for you everyday and know the Lord is watching over you. Keep working hard and I'll do the same. Thanks for your encouragement and the love you always show me.

Love your missionary,
Elder Aaron Wheatley
The Peru Ambassador toured the MTC and visited with Aaron's District!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

What a Life!!!

Hey All,
I'm in the same district I was in before I'm just with a new companion, Elder Poole. I guess the training schedule is pretty much the same here at Provo and in Lima too so if I get my visa I would head on down there and continue with the same program. The way I understood it was that as soon as the church got my visa they would send me down to Peru. Probably that would be on a flight with other missionaries going to Peru, but I'm not completely sure. I love it here though and have grown so much. I would probably be learning the language better down in Lima but that's really only a means to an end. The only reason Spanish matters is so I can effectively convey what I am trying to say but way more important than that is being the right type of person. I'm learning so much about patience and love here at the MTC and I think those are way more important lessons. I know the Spanish will come in time and I'm working hard everyday.
Last week we went to the TRC and had two great lessons. The first was with a man named Patricio who is from Ecuador. It amazed me how much I understood, I know he was talking pretty slow, and how much I could say back to him. I was a little intimidated at first but when I stopped thinking about it and just talked like he was my friend the Spanish came. I'm not even close to where I need to be but I saw a lot of progress this last week. I know Heavenly Father is blessing me so much and I have learned so much. I can read the scriptures or Preach My Gospel and understand almost everthing. I'm learning new words everyday and our lessons are getting so much better. The other lesson we had in the TRC was with a guy named Kyle who got back from his mission in Spain a couple of months ago. When he found out we were going to Peru he got so excited and kept saying "Es la mejor comida en todos los paises" or something like that. He explained that in Spain there were people from all over South America and by far his favorite was Peruvian food. It made me excited to see someone else that excited. I gained a lot of confidence and I'll have a lot to learn when I get to Peru but I'm grateful to know I can have a conversation with a native and it will only get better.
This last week was full of crazy surprises. It was so great to see Aunt Heather at the temple and I'm glad she was able to pass along the hug mom. We went to the health center yesterday because one of the elders in my room was really sick. A man walked up to my companion and me and asked us if we could help him with a blessing and that was a great opportunity. I'm grateful we were able to serve. The best part was the lady with the "it's so fluffy I'm gonna die" ring tone though. Just little things like that make you laugh for a while when you're a missionary. On Saturday BYU had a football game, as I'm sure you all know, but I didn't. When we went outside for gym we heard the band playing and that was awesome. I guess it was after the game because a huge line of cars started to accumulate. It was fun just thinking about all the times I've been to football games or been stuck in football traffic. It seems like it should have been a distraction but I don't really think about those things anymore. I was just happy for all the people that were able to have a fun time at the game.
Sorry to hear about the exchange student but I still think that would be awesome if you're feeling up to having one. I just love getting to know so many different people and I know you would be a great influence in their life.
I watched the talk "Good, Better, Best" by Elder Oaks and that was a good choice. I would definitely recommend it along with pretty much every Conference talk ever. I've been trying to read from the last Conference Ensign and that's been a great blessing. What I wanted to say about the talk was that I'm grateful. I can't remember exactly what he said but I wanted to thank you Mom, Dad, Brianna and everyone else for the one on one time where you showed me how much you loved me. And I want to say thanks for the talks under the stars, in the car, on the couch, or wherever they happened. I've been so blessed with such great friends and family in my life.
I hope school and work is going well for everone and I pray for you guys. That's great to hear that Dad is doing a lot of soccer games. Have tons of fun and don't over do it.
I just remembered that you asked about Elder Poole and yes, he's going to the Lima West Mission too.
Have tons of fun Mom, Brianna, and the Aunties for the rest of the time you have in Florida. I hope you're all taking time to relax, especially you Mom. Don't be worrying about me at all because I love it in here. This last week flew by but that's what happens when every second of every day is used in the service of the Lord. I'm so grateful to be here and there's no place I would rather be. If there's anyone you know who's trying to decide about going on a mission tell them they will never regret spending their time serving the Lord. I watched "Missions Are Forever" by Elder Holland which might be another one of those MTC only talks but it helped me be even that much more grateful for my mission. He said a day doesn't go by that he doesn't think about his mission. He also said he hopes we are never "normal" again after our mission. This is Real Life he said and I know we all have an opportunity to share the gospel with those around us. Thanks for being such great examples to me and I know you're being a great example to everyone else around you.
Next week is gonna come faster than ever.
I love you all.
Elder Aaron Wheatley

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Fun Stuff

Hey Everybody,
I haven't received mail this week because yesterday was Labor Day so I'll write a big one now but leave some room to write you hopefully if I get your letters at lunch. If not I'll be excited to have a lot to say next week.
Right after I emailed last week I realized how boring my letter was and even though it contained some spiritual moments I hadn't really found or at least talked about anything I enjoyed at the MTC. This week I made it my goal to look for fun things and then I wrote them down in my planner so I wouldn't forget them. This is probably going to be all over the place but I hope you like it.
Before I start though I'm in a new companionship with Elder Poole from Eagle, Idaho because my companion and his companion received their visas this week and are on their way to Peru. It was weird that first day that I found out but as I've focused on what I could learn here, and what Heavenly Father wants me to learn here, I have been extremely blessed.
I forgot to congratulate TaLisha on her wedding and to wish Aunt Kimber a happy birthday so if you could pass those along I would really appreciate it.
It sounds like you all had fun up in Brigham City and the temple sounds beautiful. I hope they broadcast the dedication here, but I'm not sure. I'm looking forward to going through when I get home. I would love to hear about it more if you haven't already written me through dearelder.
Mom, Brianna, and the Aunties. Have a great time in Florida this week and take tons of pictures. I don't really know how you couldn't have fun though so I'm not worried.
I hope you all had a great Labor Day and I would love to hear about The Lord of the Rings. Any memorable quotes or just the thrill of watching such a great movie.
I've been looking out the windows in my building and watching the leaves changing colors on the mountains. I can't believe it's that time of year again and I want everyone to go outside and enjoy it. I'm going to miss these mountains a ton so I'm trying to take advantage of them while I still can. Maybe go on a little walk or go up to that park and have a breakfast. Or just look up at the mountains and remember that God created them for us. His creations never cease to amaze me.
One day I was reading in my scriptures and in 2 Corinthians 5:7 and it says "(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)" I guess this is at the same time spiritual and funny. I've read it tons before but this week I noticed the smiley face at the end. It's not a big deal but it made my day brighter and I'm always happy when I choose to walk by faith instead of sight.
I was sitting at dinner and I heard the elder next to me say that he went to Church College. I asked him where he was from and he asked if I knew where Whangerei (I'm not sure how to spell it) was. I said I did and asked him if he knew where Pipiwai was. He said he lived there for six months and I told him that Papa built that chapel. We talked for a little bit and he told me that Uncle Charlie was at his setting apart which was way cool. I guess Uncle Charlie's grandson is here too but I haven't been able to see Elder Tipene yet. I'll keep trying.
The field has been kind to me as I've seen a couple of people as I cross the street. It was great to see Bekkah and Johnny. On my way back that day someone yelled my name and I looked over to see Pat Boyer. That was so cool to see him and tell his mom hi and to tell him that it was great to see him. I also saw Catie, Steph, and I think Emily yesterday but they blazed by. It's weird because I love everyone but I know I'm where I'm supposed to be. I'm just grateful the Lord blesses me with fun experiences like that.
Probably the best experience of the week was the Sunday Devotional. We watched the birthday celebration for President Monson. It was fun to hear great songs like "All I Ask of You" "Bring Him Home" "Seventy-Six Trombones" and other good ones. I liked thinking about our good times at the Merrill's singing songs together lately, but also all the other times I just sang with family and friends. I hope you will all be ready for a ton of great music listening sessions when I get home.
I got that letter from your cousin (Lane Montgomery) and he told me I wasn't allowed to write him back so if you could let him know how grateful I was to receive it and the personal story he told me. It was just what I needed to hear.
The days feel like weeks and the weeks feel like days in here. It's a magical place and I am growing so much. I read "Beware of Pride" and "'Judge Not' And Judging" this week and I highly recommend them. Also I loved reading the section in Preach My Gospel in Christlike attributes about Charity.
Thanks for all your support and prayers. Know I'm praying for you. Keep working hard and I will do the same.
I love you with all my heart,
Elder Aaron Wheatley