Last Tuesday our devotional speaker was Elder D. Todd Christofferson. He gave a really great talk. He told us that the call to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to the whole world is the call of the apostles, and since there are only fifteen of them and about three hundred seventies, they call us to be their companions in this sacred calling. That's why I have the same title as they do. That's why I'm authorized to wear the name of Jesus Christ on my chest. We've been called to fulfill an apostolic duty, and it's probably the most important work on the earth; we're participating in the salvation of human souls. Once again, after a talk like that from an apostle, I should have felt overwhelmed and unable to ever fulfill such a calling, but the Spirit told me there is nothing to fear, and that I really can do this with the Lord's help.
Which reminds me, every Saturday we have a TA--I can't remember what that stands for, but we spend all week preparing for it and on Saturday we do some kind of scenario in Chinese, like a dinner appointment or contacting in a park or knocking on doors, and then teach a lesson in English (though starting this next Saturday, that too will be in Chinese. Yikes!). During the lesson part, we were teaching the guy about the word of wisdom and he wanted to know why tea was so bad for us (a question I'm sure lots of Taiwanese will have) and I suddenly got a very strong prompting to promise him that if he tried to live the word of wisdom, his school studies would improve. Now, he was a returned missionary and a volunteer, but that was a really special experience for me. I don't think I've ever before been strongly prompted to say something like that.
But the thing they often tell us at the MTC is that as Jesus Christ's representatives, the things we say and do will be justified by the Lord if we are worthy to have the Spirit with us at all times. One teacher shared an experience where his companion promised all these seemingly impossible blessings from paying tithing, they prayed super hard all week, and the next week the blessings had all come true--the family suddenly didn't owe one of their bills, the daughter got a 10% raise out of the blue. If we have the Spirit, the Lord basically gives us the right and power to in every sense act in his name.
Other than that, it's pretty weird that the "older" group of missionaries is leaving this week. Starting next Wednesday, we're the old group. I really don't feel like I know as much Chinese as I thought our older group knew when we came in. But we'll just try our best to be good examples, speaking our language and acting like good servants of the Lord.
Today the temple was closed for Memorial Day, which made me a little bummed, but we have plenty more weeks in which to go to the temple.
Once more, I'll bear my testimony that this is God's work and He is helping us do it! Please keep reading your scriptures personally and together, because they truly contain treasures. I love all of you, and I'll talk to you next week.
Wo ai nimen! (wo eye knee mun) (I love y'all)