This week was a roller coaster of emotions! There were lots of ups and downs, but nonetheless it was an amazing week and it had to be my favorite one here at the MTC......week nine!
Monday September 14, 2015:
We went to the temple and watched a Sister Missionary from our branch take out her endowments. She's from China (she's a fast track) and so she didn't have access to a temple in China! She went through the Provo temple and our whole district got to be a part of it! She looked so happy and it made me remember when I received my own temple endowments. It was really emotional for her and it was honestly just an amazing experience to be a part of. We also did another Skype lesson with a member in Taichung Taiwan. She was super nice! I knew that she couldn't really understand our Chinese. It's not because we are saying the words wrong but because our accents are really weird and hard for her to understand. Even though she couldn't understand us, she kept participating and kept encouraging us. When we, Elder Miller and I, were done we looked at the rest of our district Skyping other members from Taiwan. It made me so excited for Taiwan. I could just picture all 10 of us Elders in Taiwan talking and spreading God's love. It got me so qidai (excited)!
Tuesday September 15, 2015:
The Tuesday Devotional today was ZHEN BANG (EXCELLENT)! The Primary General President, Rosemary Wixon, talked to us and she did fantastic! At the very end we sang The Armies of Helamen and that song really moved me. I loved it when everyone stood up and sang it at my farewell. It's one of my favorite songs. I especially love the lyrics which go:
We Are As The Armies of Helamen,
We Have Been Taught In Our Youth.
And We Are The Lord's Missionaries,
To Bring The World His Truth.
I don't know why but those lyrics really, really hit me! It makes me think about how important our calling is as missionaries. We are the Lord's missionaries in order to bring the world his truth. Sister Wixon also shared a scripture about how the Lord won't have us do anything he doesn't think that we can do!
1 Nephi Chapter 3:7
And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.
I love this scripture. It's really reassuring and comforting.
Wednesday September 16, 2015:
Everyday is amazing but nothing worth note happened. We watched a video about the Ten Commandment of Good Health. After watching it I decided that I don't eat enough grains and fruits or vegetables. I'm going to try and incorporate more of those into my diet...HAHA!
Thursday September 17, 2015:
We taught Holly today. We actually teach her everyday, but most of the lessons I don't mention. Today was a very special one! We interviewed Holly to get baptized! We had Elder Holloway and Elder Wadsworth act as the District Leaders and conduct the interview. They said she passed so that is awesome! Holly will get baptized Saturday! Just so everyone is clear, Holly is really our Laoshi (teacher) Sister Hsiung. She role plays/acts as our investigator, butt it is still really cool! Elder Miller and I could see just how much she has grown and developed throughout our lessons. I think it will help us later in the mission field to reflect back on.
Friday September 18, 2015:
Today was a test of faith. Our whole district was called to the main office and we were told that they have not received our VISA's and we have to stay in the MTC for one more week. When I first heard this I was so upset! For weeks I had been looking forward to going to Taiwan! The MTC is amazing, but I am ready to leave this place honestly! I thought of this quote I heard: "You can only have unlimited Spiritual bread sticks at the MTC for so long until you look around and realize....What am I doing here with all these Spiritually fat people!" ! HAHA No..... the MTC truly is amazing, however I just want to go to Taiwan at this point. I feel like I have learned all I can here and the only way I'm going to take the next step is in the field. I guess you could say I'm going a little stir crazy?:)
Saturday September 19, 2015:
Today I woke up and decided to adjust my attitude. I needed a different approach about the whole VISA situation. I realized that this is happening for a reason. I'm not on my time and I have to realize that this is the Lord's time. He delayed our VISA's for a specific reason. Maybe he wanted us to stay here at the MTC so we can be more spiritually prepared for Taiwan? Maybe the people in Taiwan that we are suppose to teach are not ready for us yet? I don't know what the reason could be, but I know there is a specific reason for it. I'm just going to trust in the Lord and his timing. It will all work out.
Sunday September 20, 2015:
We watched Meet the Mormons. It has to be one of the most influential movies that I have ever watched. I even cried during it which my mom knows does not happen very often (if ever?). It was amazing. It is so wonderful how much the Spirit has transformed me and molded me. Before coming on my mission, I had a testimony that God was real and that he loved me. However, since being here for 9 weeks, I have now realized how blessed I am to be part of this church. I started to think about how much the church has blessed me and my family. I wondered where I would be if I was not a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Would I have the greatest family in the world? Would I be here serving him? Would I meet all of these wonderful people I have met at the MTC? I know, without a doubt, that this church is true. The gospel has blessed me and my family so much that I can't even put it into words. Most of my life I have taken everything for granted. When I would pray I would ask for help, but I wouldn't always thank the Lord for what he has given me. He gave me my perfect family. I know families are forever and I'm so grateful I get to spend eternity with mine. I owe all of this to the Lord. I know that God loves us and he wants to help us here on earth. That is why he has given us our families. That is why he has given us the Book of Mormon. That is why he has given everybody the ability and invitation to pray to him. Watching Meet the Mormons made me realize how many people have come to know this church is true and how we are all children of God, no matter how different we are. I really loved the story at the end about the Missionary Mom". It hit me really hard when she was in the convenience store, crying because she felt like God did not love her. Her second son had died. She felt like nobody loved her, but then the store clerk was there to comfort her. The clerk was so loving and accepting of her. I realized that EVERYONE here on earth are children of our Heavenly Father and we are all perfect in his eyes. We are all his children and he wants us to return to him so badly. While watching the movie, I put myself in the shoes of someone who has never heard of the church and who needs some guidance in life. Just thinking about that brought me to tears. I love my Heavenly Father. I know that if everyone can come to the knowledge and understanding that God exists and loves us, how much better this world will be. Sorry for making this so long, but this was a really important experience to me. The most important person I could convert on a mission is myself and I think that has happened. This church is perfect. I know that our Father in Heaven loves us. He has blessed me so much in my life and I have never realized it until now. I challenge everyone to first watch Meet the Mormons because it is amazing! Even if you are not Mormon, you cannot deny the miracles that occur! It will change your life. Try to apply the teaching in this movie into your life. Think about how amazing this church is and how much it has blessed your life. Every little thing is from our Heavenly Father and we all need to help others feel of God's love. After you have reflected how this church has blessed your life, go share it with someone. Christ died on the cross for all of us so that we can return to our Heavenly Father. The least we can do is tell everyone about our faith in this church and our gratitude for it. If everyone spreads the word about the blessings of this church to someone who doesn't know about it or understand it, the Lord will bless you immensely! I love this church and this mission opportunity. I am so grateful for it. It honestly has changed me for the better. I love you all and I am so grateful for each and everyone one of you being a part in my life! I'm better for it.
This is of two Elders leaving our branch. The one leaning on me will go to Utah State, so I'm sure I will see him again! The other one is the one from England. Absolutely hilarious to hear him try and speak Chinese with his English accent!
The Elder on the left is going to Taipei with our district. He is from a different branch. The one in the middle is the one on the left's companion. He is going to Mandarin Chinese speaking England. The one on the far right is Elder Ball. Elder Ball, Elder Slatter, and I are known as the big pranksters in the district! He does have an extremely strong testimony. He is going to Mandarin Chinese speaking Australia, Sydney
3: The pajama pass down continues! It's a tradition. Also, my Chinese friend LOVES my rubix cude!