Thursday, July 30, 2015

So This Is My Last Week In The MTC!

This is Elder Hardy and I. He's in my zone. 
He's going to the Trinidad Port-of-Spain Mission!
July 29, 2015

Dear Family & Friends,

So this is my last week here in the MTC. The next email I send will be from Norway. It's so crazy to know that I get to spend these next two years in an amazing country with amazing people and an amazing culture, spreading the best message that is on the earth. If you can't tell, I'm pretty excited. 

Last week we got to teach a sister in Norway. She is a member and we got to teach her over Skype. She’s from Trondheim. It was really cool to talk with someone that is actually Norwegian. We get to do another Skype lesson tomorrow. It's such a cool experience. I got my flight plans last week for Norway. I leave this Monday. I'm so excited to be going.

This last Sunday I got to play the piano for Sacrament Meeting. It's great to be able to sit and play. I have a feeling I'll be playing in Sacrament Meeting A LOT in Norway ha-ha. It'll be great though. It's good that I love to play.

One thing I loved was listening to an old Devotional Elder Jeffrey R. Holland gave a few years ago. One of the things he said was, "Man's extremity is God's opportunity". When we are willing to do the most we can, that is when God can help us the most and help us grow the most.

This week has just been so much fun. All of my district can't wait to leave. Only a few more days! The next time I email, it'll be from Norway! Have a great week everyone. Remember that we have a loving Heavenly Father and that He is always mindful of us. He loves us. And He wants the best for us.

Love you all,

Elder Mickelson

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The MTC Has Been Awesome!

Elder Collins and Elder Mickelson
July 22, 2015

Hi Everyone,

The MTC has been awesome! I just keep learning more and more Norwegian. So this last week I've seen all of the Lovell missionaries here. I saw Elder Zeke Collins, Elder Andrew Mayes, and Sister Jordan Harper. It's so cool to be seeing so many wonderful missionaries here.

This week I memorized the story of the First Vision in Norwegian. That was a blessing that I was able to learn that. It went really well.
Me with the flag I made on our door...
Apparently we can't hang things
on the outside of the door, so I
hung it up in our room afterwards

I love being able to feel the Spirit so strong all of the time here. It’s a great opportunity and blessing. We had a devotional Sunday by President Richards. He talked about many things. A few things I really like was that power comes through obedience. Also, true repentance requires humility.

This whole week I've been just learning different things. I love learning about repentance and the Atonement and how it can bless everyone's lives.

William R. Walker, and Emeritus General Authority spoke for the Devotional last night. He talked about 10 things we can do to be happy and successful missionaries. I loved how he talked about President Gordon B. Hinckley's experience while he was on his mission. He had served in England and wasn't having success and it was becoming extremely hard for him. He sent a letter to his father wanting to know what he should do. The letter he received from his dad was short but profound. "Forget yourself and go to work." That is when the blessing poured from heaven, when he lost himself in the work for others. We should be like that in our own lives. We will see the greatest blessings in our lives when we forget ourselves and do all we can to serve others.

I get my flight plans on Friday for Norway! I can’t wait! It’s really exciting!

-Eldste Justin Mickelson

Me with my companion Elder Gurr,
and Sister Harper and her companion
(with some others photobombing ha-ha).
Me with Elder Mayes at the Temple

Thursday, July 16, 2015

This Week Has Flown By!

Here's a picture of our District and we are all going to Norway together!    

July 15, 2015

Hello Everyone!

This week has flown by! Earlier this last week I met Elder Christian McArthur. He’s from New York but his grandpa is Ron McArthur from Cowley. It is so weird how there are so many connections to the Big Horn Basin, like its crazy.

I made a Norwegian grammar card to help me study. Norwegian is hard but it sure is a fantastic language. I love it ha-ha. Last Thursday we got to teach some members that came to the MTC that speak Norwegian. They all went on their missions there. I met Bryce; he did an interview with Prepare To Serve on YouTube. He’s really cool and I really liked talking to him. I had watched his interview and its just cool meeting people like that.

We got to watch the broadcast of President Packer's funeral. It was really spiritual. Something I enjoyed that was said was something President Packer said at a funeral once. He had said, "Where there is love, there is sadness at parting." Then Elder Dallin H Oaks had said, "Your faith has prepared you for temporary separation." It's very cool how something like that said at a funeral applies everywhere. Going on a mission creates sadness at parting, but we have faith that has prepared us for that temporary separation from our loved ones.

On Sunday, Richard I. Heaton gave our devotional. He's the Head Director for the MTC Administration I think. His main focus was that we needed to focus on the few really important things when we teach. Our focus for our investigators should be prayer, that they are reading the Book of Mormon, and that they go to church. That is what will bring them the closest to Christ.

In last night's devotional, we were taught by Elder Benjamin B. Banks, he's an Emeritus General Authority. One thing I loved that he taught was that we need to make sure to focus on teaching pure doctrine, rather than just teaching opinion.

In my reading of the Book of Mormon, I've been reading of Christ's coming. It is such a wonderful account of His teaching and His love for others. I loved 3 Nephi 18:32. I took from it that we need to continue loving others. People fall away from Christ, and His church. But we need to remember that they still can return to Him. Through Christ's Atonement, all may return. People can change. It is through Christ that people can change. Never give up on others.

It's been a great week. Can't wait to email you all again!


Eldste Justin Mickelson

Thursday, July 9, 2015

This Week Has Gone By So Fast!

Elder Mickelson and Elder Gurr
July 8, 2015

Hey everyone!

This week has gone by so fast. I’ve learned a lot in Norwegian. It has been so wonderful getting to just study the gospel of Jesus Christ. We finished teaching our first "investigator". She became another teacher for us. I’ve been learning a lot about teaching. Missionaries need to teach with the Spirit. Reading a written script doesn’t help much, but teaching by the direction of the spirit brings the greatest power to teach. We started teaching a new "investigator". It’s been so cool to just to be getting a feel for what teaching will be like. I’ve been trying to speak more Norwegian as much as I possibly can. That has made a huge difference in helping me learn.

Sunday we had Jenny Oaks Baker come for our devotional. She’s a phenomenal violinist, not to mention she went to Julliard for school... and she’s the daughter of Elder Dallin H. Oaks. It was so cool to hear her speak and also play such uplifting music with her kids. I learned from her that true faith is believing in Christ, not necessarily that a certain thing will happen. Faith in Christ brings the greatest miracles in our lives.

Oh and I found my cousin Elder Brennan Lee.
He just left for Alaska. I found out we had
spent a week of class literally across the
hall from each other. It was great to meet him!
I’m sooooo excited to go to Norway. We have a bunch of pictures of Norway hung up in our classroom and everyday I just want to leave and head out there, despite my lack of fluent Norwegian. ha-ha

Last night we had a devotional and I got to listen to Elder Spencer J. Condie of the Quorum of the Seventy and his wife. I learned a lot from him. I learned that there is great power in the account of The First Vision. The Spirit can be felt so strongly every time we hear it. It is so true. He commented something that was said a while ago. I don't know who said it, but it was that "If you want to know if God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith, ask God. He was there." I found it really funny. Its kind of a smart-alek saying, but it still is true. Joseph Smith truly saw our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I encourage everyone to read the account again. Pray about the truthfulness of it, and you will receive an answer. That is a promise.

Thank you all for all of your support. You all are such an inspiration for me. Thank you.


Eldste Justin Mickelson

P.S. 4 WEEKS!!!!!!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

It's Been Quite The Adventure For My First Week At The MTC!

Here is my Norwegian District
July 1, 2015

Dear Family & Friends,

It has been quite the adventure for my first week at the MTC. I showed up, got my luggage out of the car and it was hectic getting my room and everything. I showed up to class and found out we have 13 missionaries in my district going to Norway. We have gotten really close as a district. I have learned how to pray in Norwegian and can communicate with others. We've taught three lessons in Norwegian and we teach another tonight. We have our "investigator" committed to baptism. It has been so much fun. I have a lot of time to study. We practically live in the classroom, but that's ok. It's really fun. We had two devotionals so far; the first was on Sunday by Elder Allen, he’s an area seventy, and then Elder Sitati from the first quorum of the seventy. We really have begun to learn our purpose in bringing others to Christ. We watched a devotional Elder Bednar gave a couple years ago on the character of Christ. It changed my outlook on Christ and who he is. I really have understood now that being Christ like and truly being converted is not simply doing Christ like things, but being that way continually, having that as our character. Christ served others always, no matter how much pain and anguish he was in, or how tired or hungry he was, he always put others first. Because he loved us, his character was to serve. Even when he was betrayed he still blessed others' lives. Many people have the character of Christ, it is not something that happens overnight, it comes from continually turning to Him and remembering Him. Heavenly Father helps us in all that we do. He is always wanting to bless. Because he loves us, he wants to do all he can for us. Miracles happen every day here. It is a sacred place that always has the Spirit. It is so cool to experience having the Holy Ghost with us all of the time to guide, direct, prompt us, and bring all things to our remembrance. There is absolutely no way that we could learn Norwegian in 6 weeks without the Holy Ghost helping and blessings from on high. I love Christ's gospel and I have been so blessed by it.

A normal day in the MTC is getting up at 6:30, getting breakfast, going to gym, getting ready for the day, and then we spend the rest of the day in class except for lunch and dinner. We get out of class at 9:30 at night, just in time for bed.

Elders Mickelson & Gurr
My companion is Elder Gurr from Mesa, AZ. We get along great! He's really outgoing and is very social. Here’s a picture of my companion and I and also a picture of me with my district.

Here’s my MTC address for mailing if anyone ever needs it.

Elder Justin Darryl Mickelson
2009 N 900 E Unit 110
Provo UT 84602


Elder Mickelson