Dear Mom and everyone else in the world,
How are you? I'm doing great! I am super excited that this is my last week at the MTC! Don't get me wrong, I've enjoyed my time here, but I am super excited to leave! We've already started sorting and packing to make sure that we don't have any overweight issues with our luggage. :) Today has just been a lot of running around getting last minute things done. I went to go get my books laminated, so now they are nice and shiny. I've also been taping all of my books that can't be laminated so the humidity doesn't kill them off as bad... It's funny; I started out all OCD about taping the books so they wouldn't have bubbles. And now, I couldn't care less. As long as it's taped nice and tight, that's all that matters.
Last Monday seemed like so long ago! I have such a hard time remembering what's happened since then! Thank goodness for journal writing! I've never been big for journal writing, but as a missionary we are encouraged to do so. I think when I come back I'll still write in my journal or at least blog, so I can keep a record of my doings. I'll have to set apart time to do it though, so I don't forget. Journals are a great way to remember things that happened. I encourage everyone to write in journals! :) Anyways, on Monday in the evening we had to teach our investigator. Once Sister Eliason and I got back from our appointment, we were surprised with the news that we would be skyping with members of the Church in Taiwan. We had no time to prepare! We rushed to the computer lab to make it to our Skyping appointment, which no one knew about! That's okay though, because our lesson turned out pretty well. We skyped with a Sister L. in Taipei, who was super nice! We only had a 20 minute lesson opposed to 40 because she had to go to classes for school. But she was super encouraging to us. Skyping with her made us super excited to leave to Taiwan and teach people in Chinese!
On Tuesday, a strange incident happened. Sister Eliason and I were waiting for our turn to teach our investigator (mu2 dao4 you3), and we were just being quiet so we could gather our thoughts. When suddenly, we both started humming "I believe in Christ" at the same time. We hadn't even heard that song on that day, or even the day before! It was just a coincidence that we started thinking of the same song at the same time! Haha! Our lesson with our investigator was good. We only got to teach for 5 minutes though, because everyone else went over time. Tisk Tisk!
We also had a devotional on Tuesday, like always. It was actually broadcasted to all the MTCs in the world! Robert G Hinckley came and talked to us about how to be a good missionary. I think a lot of what he said could apply to how to be a good member of the Church as well. Unfortunately, I forgot my notebook, so I can't quite recall all that he said. Sadness! There were a lot of things about making sure that you do your best... I don't remember! Sorry! :(
On Wednesday through Thursday, I don't really recall much. I was just exhausted. I kept trying to not fall asleep during class... Yup... I've been going to bed on time. Of course, I don't quite fall asleep because the light is still on in our room because the other sisters are writing in their journals. But yup, same old same old.... Oh, it's been getting hot lately! I think this is good training for Taiwan! Except, there is not humidity right now, for which I am grateful! But I only have one more week to enjoy it...
Sad thing about Wednesday is that we didn't get to host. We've been signing up, but they don't ever assign us.. Which is very not fun, because we've been wanting to host for 8 weeks now... :(
Now Friday was a good day! We got our Travel Plans and our new name tags with our names in characters! Yay! There will be 28 of us who are leaving at the same time to go to Taiwan. We'll be stopping in San Francisco and Tokyo before we get to Taiwan. We get to do a bit of time traveling too, since we'll be missing a day! I'm going to try and sleep on the plane, but we'll see how that goes....
Saturday wasn't really that exciting, since we didn't have TRC. I did get a card from Mom which I was very impressed with! She wrote it all in characters! I understood most of the characters, but there was a few here and there that I had to guess on. I don't feel bad about that though, considering the fact that I haven't been learning characters at all (they expect you to do that on your own time, since it's not the most important thing for us to focus on) and the fact that Mom had to use Google translate to write it. But I understood! :) Yay!
Sunday was good as well, though they are always good. We got to listen to music and the spoken word, which always is nice to start your day off with. For relief society, we had Sister Rosemary Thackery come and talk to us. She talked about having faith to always keep moving forward, and the importance of knowing that God is in every detail of your life. She also shared the importance of having enough faith to not have God answer your prayers in the way that you want. I really liked that point. This week, I read in the Bible Dictionary about prayer. In it, it says that Prayer is a method in which we can talk to our Father in Heaven. When we ask for things and it is given to us, it is because what we ask for aligns with the Lord's will. But if we do not receive that which we ask, it's because Heavenly Father has something else in mind for us. It's our responsibility to align our wills, as the Children of God, to His will. It is then, when we will see miracles in our lives. For Sunday devotional, we listened to Jolene Allphine who writes pioneers stories for a collection called "Write my Story too". In the stories she told of the pioneers, she emphasized the importance of enduring to the end. We must have enough faith to keep moving. We must have enough faith to give God a chance to show us miracles. And we must keep a cheerful and brave attitude in all of our trials. After devotional, we watched a talk by Elder Bednar that he gave at the MTC. It's called the Character of Christ. He emphasized that it is importance to not only learn about Christ, but to learn of him. He says to search the scriptures for evidences of the Character of Christ. What he meant by Character of Christ, is the fact that even when Christ was suffering, when he was going through trials in his life, he didn't pity himself. He didn't turn inward, but outward. When he was suffering, he helped others who were suffering. When he was weakened by his afflictions, he went to the aid of others who were being afflicted. He was selfless. Elder Bednar emphasized the fact that everyone can develop the Character of Christ within themselves. It starts with not only having a testimony, but being truly converted unto the Lord. Because when we are converted to the Lord, we become more like him. We become more loving and selfless.
Anyways, Today has been pretty good, though not very relaxing since there is so much stuff to get done! Oh, but one very very very good thing happened today. I saw one of my best friends from USU! Elder Blake Johnson! That silly boy/elder didn't even tell me that he had got his call! That's okay, I forgive him! He's going to Arizona? I think... I don't know... I was just so excited to see him! It was so hard not to give him a hug, because as some other people know *cough*Audrey*cough* he gives extremely good hugs! It was so good seeing him! I was so sad I didn't have my camera with me, since we were getting out of breakfast. And to make things sadder, he's living at the West Campus, so I probably won't see him again! Sad! But I know he'll make a great missionary, and I hope that I'll have the chance to bump into him again!
|This is where we are headed!|
Okay, well, time is running out... Sadness... I hope everyone is having a good week! I love you all!
Love, Sister Nicholle Peng