This concludes my last week where I'm on the same exact schedule! Hooray! On the one hand (not counting the fact that I get to go to Norway) I'm kinda sad to feel like I'm going to be leaving the MTC soon. I'm going to miss having the setting where you were always in a place that you could feel the spirit and learn and grow. I hope however that even after I am gone to Norway though, I can keep this constant drive to always be focused on helping and serving others. In fact I bet that will increase, because I'll probably have more ways to do it than just beating my head against a wall trying to learn Norwegain :) On the other hand... It will be so nice to (sort of) be thrown into the semi-normal world again...(ok it won't really be that normal :) But, it's going to be Norway!!! Holy smokes! 2 weeks from this moment, i could be on the streets of Ålesund, doing something that is probably quite similar to death :) But I feel much more prepared now. Over the course of being here I can't be quite certain how many words I have in vocabulary, but I roughly estimate it at about 1200+... That's awesome :) And I can probably understand a little bit more than that. I'm definately not fluent or anything, but I know without a doubt that if I continue to do everything I can to learn the language instead of just letting it passively happen to me, that I will have the language skills I need in the time that I need them. For the next week and half, and well, probably the next 2 years 90% of what I say will be in Norwegian. Cool! (I don't think this has really hit me yet)
This last week was full of more experiences that tested my ability to keep a really positive attitude. Last thursday, we say brother Gardener and Brother Bartholmew together for the first time, and there were only three of us in class that day. I sum up my feelings on that by saying, those are some of the most intense people I've ever met, and they work wonders together. As my skills in study, teaching, speaking, helping, and everything else improve, it's hard not to feel a little overwhelmed because so much is asked of you. But I have felt the constant comfort and strength of him whom I serve and I know I couldn't do this without his help. Sundays are always fantastic, and on this particular sunday I was reminded of the simply things the Lord does for us to lift us higher. Instead of hearing another talk on sunday night, as we usually do (for like the 17th time), this time we just watched a broadcast of a Motab concert and I dunno. It was just what I needed. And then we watched like a 40 year old movie on missionaries entitled "labor of love"... heh :) it's a winner.
I thank all of you for your support and your love. I honestly don't know what to expect in the coming days, but I think that's ok :) I know what I know, and I'm going to continue doing anything and everything that is asked of me. I may have said this before, and even if I can I know I cannot possibly describe exactly how I feel, But I really had no idea how much I would miss my family until I got here. Take away everything else, and that's just fine. no problem. But I can't wait to see and talk to all of you guys again! Have a fantastic week!
-Eldste Christopher Whetten!