It's so great to hear from you all! Thanks for your nice letter yet again, and your wishes of a good Fourth of July. I hope you all had a good one as well. It sounds like everyone had a fun week. Mom, Dad, thank you (and also thank Grandma and Grandpa) for your testimonies of tithing. I'm so glad to hear that Heavenly Father is blessing you all right now. I know He's blessing me.
And I also want to say, last week I didn't have enough time, but THANK YOU Mom for taking that challenge and sharing your experience with me! I'm so glad to hear that you're having such great spiritual experiences. I know when I came here and started studying like that, I also experienced more personal connections with the spirit. The rest of you...you haven't even mentioned it once! I'm so excited to hear how this studying has blessed your lives, but you aren't telling me. Do it this week, even on vacation. Ten to twenty minutes a day really isn't that much, but you'll find the payout is so much more than what you put in. Remember what Alma said about your little faith tree: if you don't constantly nourish it, when the hot sun (trials) comes along, the roots wither and the tree dies. Do it, you'll love it!
So Saturday night we had kind of a fun opportunity; at 8:30 they had a fireside for us called "The Standard of Truth" and it was all about the world events that culminated in the Restoration. You know, the Reformation, the American Revolution, and all that. After that, at 10:00 they let us stand at the MTC's southern campus and watch the BYU stadium of fire fireworks. It was pretty fun, though we were all a little tired later that day.
This is my last week at the MTC. So weird! I think this week our teachers will give us what we need to know about the culture and stuff in Taiwan. We really have been blessed with two awesome teachers. Brother Hodges, the one in the conference Ensign, was apparently a superstar baptizer in Taizhong. I want you all to know, though, that I'm committed to use this last week to work my very hardest. If the MTC's like a race, I'm not going to stop running on the last leg--I'm going to sprint, and I know the Lord will bless me for that.
I'll admit it's a little nerve-wracking knowing that in about eight days my responsibility truly begins. I'll be expected to talk to everyone and find those that Heavenly Father has prepared for me. But you know what? I have faith. Faith that Heavenly Father is of course fully aware that I'm not that great right now at talking to people. Faith that in spite of that, He'll make me into the servant He wants me to be. I know if I rely on Him and on my Savior, there's no reason to be afraid. 1Nephi 3:7.
Thanks for your faith and support. Know that the Lord loves and blesses each and every one of us. And do my challenge!!!