September 13, 2013
With only two weeks left in the MTC, it's killing me to not be in Korea. But we survive.....somehow.
I thought I'd share an interesting experience with 'justifying in a little sin" and how it progresses.
So when I first got here, I beatboxed ALL the time. That's just what I do. But after a couple weeks, I realized that beatboxing didn't help me study...at all. And it certainly didn't invite the spirit. So I
decided to stop. I was clean for a week or so. But I missed it. And apparently my district had spread the news of the "Sick Beatboxer" to the entire Zone. So I kept getting requests to display such beats. I
decided that it could be classified as a recreational activity....so it was fine on Pday, right? So I I beatboxed the next pday and it was great! But pday ends at 6pm. So at 9pm, I'm in the bathroom brushing my teeth and this Elder wants me to beatbox for him. I refuse. So he gets 20 elders for the hall to crowd the bathroom chanting for the beatboxing. After much persuasion, I finally cave. In the words of our district leader, "Everyone's yelling and then Rosenberg just drops it. Silence. Too sick." So after that, I felt kinda bad. Then on Monday, I learn that one of our native koreans who's leaving that day also beatboxes reallyyyyy well. So we did a little beat boxing together, just for my district. But then that night, he was going to beatbox again. I wasn't going to because I already felt bad for breaking my
goal that day. But an Elder yells "BEATBOXING SESSION!" And the whole floor, 30-40 elders crowds the corner and once again I cave. So he and I did a little collaboration, then some solos, and then finished it up. It was sooooo good. But I felt awful. And then the next day I was studying the missionary handbook about music. We aren't supposed to listen to music that might dull our spiritual sensitivity through it's lyrics, tempo, BEAT, or intensity. And I knew that my musical percussion certainly dulled my spiritual sensitivity. So I decided then that I will not be beatboxing for the next 2 years. At all.
So is this just a story about Elder Rosenberg's beatboxing? No. I learned some important lessons from this experience. I originally had a strong resolve to stick to my goal. But little by little that resolve weakened. Once I justified just a little 'sin,' it became easier and easier to give in. And because I didn't have a totally firm resolve in the first place, it was easy for others to pull me down from my goal. Because I didn't have a firm testimony or understanding of the 'why' behind it, it was easy to give into pressure. With the Lord's commandments, there is no room for ANY sin. We must obey perfectly. Anything less than "exact obedience' is really disobedience. We need to understand clearly why we have commandments. And for the ones we don't fully understand, we need to have the faith
that because it's God's commandment, we must hold true. Because we love him, we must obey him. John 14:21--"He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. " And his will bless us as we are obedient. Remember Nephi's finally words: "I must obey."
The best part about this whole experience and it's relating metaphor? The Atonement of Jesus Christ. We can always repent and become clean. Not only can be redeemed, but we can also be enabled. We can be forgiven when we disobey and we can receive strength in order to obey. Great is the mercy of God. And great is his love for us. Romans 8:the ending verses--NOTHING can keep us from the love of God.
The mission is awesome! I love every moment. I feel so blessed and so happy. Never before have I done anything like this. This is truly the Lord's work, and if we desire, we can truly be his servants.
I love you all and pray for you daily! Your prayers and love are felt and appreciated.