Monday, August 26, 2013

Love it here and Love Serving the Lord!

Hey everyone! The weeks just keep getting faster and faster! It's crazy that Justin will be here on Wednesday!! Before I forget here's the things I need haha my long sleeve shirt (purple/blue/black) Alex Boye cd, more t-shirts, if you could find you raise me up sheet music (cool version) that would be sick, stamps, and any old ties dad doesn’t want. The flower one he gave me cause he was gonna throw it out is everyone's favorite! My roommate tries to steal it everyday... literally. The other day I noticed I hadn't seen it in a while and so I asked him and he just laughed and opened his closet and it was sitting on his hanger! Don’t worry I won't let him take it though! It’s a SICK tie! Oh and I’m also thinking about those new scriptures they have. Using my scriptures for hours a day I’ve noticed how beat mine are plus they don’t have tabs... how much are the new ones? 

Ok now onto the interesting stuff.... well actually this week has just kinda been the same as every other week. Weeks 2-8 you have the exact same schedule. Umm differences... well I’m definitely starting to get the language down even more! The spirit here has been so unreal and on Saturday we did a thing called trc which is where outside volunteers that speak Cantonese come and we teach them a lesson. Me and my companion didn’t use any notes (of course) and gave an excellent lesson on the Holy Ghost! I love my Cantonese teacher, Foong Hindi! He is the best teacher I’ve ever had and he genuinely loves us! I can tell he cares and after class he always gives us a hug! Sometimes we'll see him walking around so we all scream his name and talk to him in Cantonese. Oh and there are only 13 missionaries in the MTC learning Cantonese and there are 8 in our district! Cantonese is also the hardest language in the MTC... :) fact. 

And please send this email to Jeremy!! I got his package this week and I loved it!! It was a total surprise and when my district letter brought me the note and I got the package I was soo happy to see it was from him!! I still have the letter and "bear lake in a bottle" and I’ve never heard of those zotz orange candy but they were sooo good!! Everyone in my district was trying to get their hands on them!  

Also for the week we all watched the sunset together after we played volleyball.  We also had 2 kids move into our room but they left early this morning to Hong Kong!  There were Chinese so they took the 2 week program (because they already knew Cantonese) and they were super funny.  Hopefully we’ll be companions when I finally get to Hong Kong!  Our zone leaders also left today and it was pretty sad to leave them.  They all lived in our hall and are on their way to the Phillipines!  I got pictures with them so you’ll get those next week hopefully (if I finally remember) but don’t worry everyone I still probably look the same.’s only been 3ish weeks people.  People don’t change that fast!  Hahaha  On a more spiritual note I have received even more personal testimony builders on the gift of tongues.  This week in a couple of our lessons out of nowhere I literally would just throw out paragraphs of Cantonese at a time!  Before, I would normally say like a sentence and then pause to think or whatever, but I was just flowin’ with the language!  I love it here and I love serving the Lord day in and day out!!

'Til next p–day…(Monday fyi)
Love, Elder Cederlof


Monday, August 19, 2013

The MTC is still fantastic!

Leih hou! 
Ok well first you mom you don't need to apologize cause I knew what you meant. Second it doesn't really matter what you guys do with the bike. Oh and has anyone called about my dirt bike?  I forgot my list of things I need you to send so I'll do my best to remember them: retainer with stuff I can put it in so it doesn't smell horrible, 3x3 Rubik’s cube, Motab cd w/you raise me up, sheet music for Come Thou Fount, and I can't remember anything else.  I don't think I'll need an adapter but I still need to check on that!  I can't believe there was another fire on the mountain! That's crazy! Oh and my stomach is feeling great! Thanks for the medicine!
Landon and Melissa sure are getting brave! I'm so proud of you two! Oh and it isn't worth it to iron his shirts and the MTC gives you bedding to use here and please send my retainer and fingernail kit. When does Nick get here? and I don't know if I told you but I won’t be able to go to the curb when Justin gets dropped off but still look around just in case I’m around.  
The MTC is still fantastic!! And the spiritual lesson for this week is about prayer. Moses 1:18 I will not cease to call upon God, I have other things to inquire of Him: for his glory has been upon me, wherefore I can judge between him and thee (Satan.)   There is no way anyone could make it through the MTC without prayer! it is so important and I’ve definitely come to realize that! Praying in the morning and at night is very good but one thing I’ve noticed is that when I’ve been praying practically constantly throughout the day the spirit is soo much stronger!! 
Exciting stuff for the week is on Tuesday we had a devotional and Richard G Scott spoke! He focused a lot on the missionaries who were learning a new language and at the end of his talk he bestowed an apostolic blessing on us to receive the gift of tongues!!  That was very neat and I can definitely feel the power and truth of that!  Me and my companion didn't take in any notes or other helpers when we went in to teach our investigator and we definitely worked through the gift of tongues and gave a good lesson!    Elder Moore and Elder Hendrix's plane got cancelled so they had to stay an extra week and they were in our room! They are both awesome! They left Monday night and so our room was a mess the next day cause they left a bunch of stuff and left at 2 a.m. but we had room check and the note just said "are you kidding me?" Haha so we cleaned up and hopefully we'll get a better feedback next time!  The language is super tough but we are all starting to get the hang of it! Memorizing all the words alone is tough, but then we also have to memorize the tones! For example sik can mean to know or to eat depending on the tone. But I love it here and I can't wait to be able to go out in the field! My companion is soo sick! We both are twins and we both are the only ones that want to work-out in our district so that works out well!  oh and here's some MTC facts: 30 hrs a week of classroom  7 hrs personal study  6hrs 20 minutes of language study 2 hrs devotional 1 hr missionary portal/assessments, temple, 3.5 hrs planning, 4 hrs 10 min exercise, and 12 hr 5 min additional study! We are in the same classroom for over 50 hours a week! Haha and tell bishop page I got a seat by the window! Hahaha.  This week when we were at the temple there was a protestor! He was holding a cross and a bible! The missionaries are not allowed to talk to him though! He was saying that we didn't have to do this, we only had to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ.... which is what we're doing.... hopefully some missionaries get to his house and teach him more about us!  Well that's really all there is this week! Most of the stuff is just really repetitive! Oh I don't think I told you about who's in my room with me and my companion. Elder McEwen and Elder Williams!  We are lucky cause we have a good group of elders and have a lot of funny guys in the room! This definitely helps keep tension off and the stress out! None of us have ever gotten mad at each other! i honestly couldn't ask for a better companion and roommates! Well this is it for the Week! I love you all and can't wait to see you again! I’ll send you some pictures next week! I forgot the camera today! 
Love, Elder Cederlof


Monday, August 12, 2013

Importance of prayer!

Leih hou ma?

Well this week has been crazy of course! I've loved every minute of it! The first day I walked into my class and the teacher would only speak Cantonese. He only speaks in Cantonese even though he knows like 7 languages! He has got to be one of the smartest people i know! So on the first day I eventually figured out what he was trying to have me do (by basically playing charades) the language is sooo hard and it has been really tough! We have 1 but mostly 2 three hour sessions of Cantonese class. And then on top of that we have a computer program called T.A.L.L. which helps you learn Cantonese and additional study time and language study and devotionals and soo much more! I'm basically always doing something. Now I fully understand what Colter said about always being exhausted! I am always tired! Not always physically but mentally sometimes. After focusing for hours and hours on Cantonese and only hearing Cantonese your mind overheats but somehow everyone manages to keep going! I know this gospel is true and on Thursday i believe, we were in class and I had no idea what foohng Hin dei (teacher foohng) was saying. I was praying constantly for the gift of tongues and he then asked me a question and I fully understood and gave him an answer in Cantonese. I was shocked. There is no doubt in my mind that the Holy Ghost is real and does help testify as well as speak different languages! The lesson of the week is the importance of prayer. Now I literally pray 15-20 times a day or more. Sometimes I’m almost always continually praying. And I can feel a huge difference when I do so.

My new companion is awesome! His name is Elder Cordon, we get along so well! We both have the same types of goals and we both have fun personalities! You definitely won't have to worry about me losing my fun personality anymore! But more importantly we know how to work together and work hard. We just make sure that we also have fun when the time is appropriate.  We've already taught an "investigator" in Cantonese. Well we tried at least... Friday our teacher told us about this Chinese lady named Judy (actor) and we've been teaching her and practicing talking in Cantonese and teaching lessons. I felt like for only being in the MTC for 2 days we did pretty good. We managed to give her a book of Mormon and get her contact information so that we could teach her Saturday. We taught her how to pray. She was asking a lot about the Holy Ghost so for our next together we tried to focus on that. It’s very hard to explain to someone what the Holy Ghost is when all they say is gahmyet (why) and diimgai (why) we tried to explain to her what it was but she kept asking why. We told her that the Holy Ghost gives you a warm feeling in your heart and helps you to know truth. And by the end of the lesson we asked her to pray about the book of Mormon but she said it felt like we were forcing her so we backed off a little. We have another appointment with her today so we'll see how that goes. (And remember she only talks Cantonese)

Oh and thanks for the letters everyone! Thursday we were all joking about who would get the most letters and I told everyone I just wanted one so I could say I got my first letter! I got 4 and I think elder Williams got 3 or 4 and other people got letters too but it was still funny.

Like I mentioned before it’s a lot of hard work but it's definitely worth it. I can’t wait to actually teach the people of Hong Kong. One important thing I think Justin needs to know is that he should not expect to come to the mtc and never have fun. Having fun is just as important as working hard. If you never have fun here there is no way you'll make it through (especially when you're here for 9 weeks) and if you do make it through you would have been absolutely miserable and it'll be hard to feel the spirit when you're miserable. Obviously this needs to be kept in balance because if all you're doing is having fun and you're not working then you're wasting your time here. But having fun is definitely important. It is a different kind of fun though. For example we have fun just by talking and hanging out. Everyone in my room is my best friend. I seriously scored when it came to roommates. Everyone likes to enjoy each other’s company and most of us are funny or at least try to be! We’ve all slowly noticed that we laugh at things that if we would've said a week ago we would've thought it was really dumb. But here it's funny. Mom, don't worry, this is my home for 9ish weeks and I’m in good hands. In fact, I’m in just about the best hands possible, the Lord's.

The food here is really good but it's pretty rough on your stomach. I haven't gotten used to it and so I haven't felt the best.

The missionary badges are sweet to wear around and I still can't believe this is happening. I’ve literally been dreaming about this for as long as I can remember and it's even better than I’ve ever imagined. I love it here. My roommates are my family.

Mom I miss you and I’m glad I know how to iron my shirts really good now.

Dad thanks for telling me to go to the temple a lot, we went to the temple and some of the people didn't know what to do and you were right, it's nice to not be confused about that stuff.

Justin I can't wait to see you here and you're going to love it. Bring medicine to help you get used to the food

Landon, I miss waking up and playing with you or playing sports or Xbox or whatever!

Melissa I wish I was going to be here for your birthday but I’m going to bring you home some sweet presents from china in a couple!

I’m sorry if I forgot anything. I’m not really used to sending email and so much goes on that it's kind of hard to remember everything since I left my journal in the room! Keep having fun everyone and don't do drugs.

Before I forget can you please send some face wash, another "missionary" belt. (don't even send Justin with a belt with holes), a cd player with speakers so you can play a cd without headphones (not required but would help with the language study) and something that'll help me stop feeling sick! I’m not adjusting to the food very good and I’ve felt sick since day 1. Luckily it's not terrible so I’ve been fine and can still focus on learning.

Love, Elder Zach Cederlof