Date

September 7, 2016

Area

MTC

Companion

Elder George

AIRPLANES

Family!! wow. Can't believe eight weeks are gone already.

So the craze this week...FLIGHT PLANS!! hahahaha YES!! We're going to TAIWAN!! hahaha. This place is so ecstatic right now. Today we pulled out our luggage and shined our shoes and we let everyone here know that we're leaving in less than a week. Even if they don't care at all!! haha. I think next Monday we're going to take a victory lap of the campus.

By the way, there's 19 total missionaries heading to Taichung from the mtc, 12 from my zone and 7 from the other one, and guess who the "Travel Leader" is? Yours truly. Yeah I have so much authority...just kidding I literally do nothing. I think it's cuz I'm still the mom around here and they need to make sure somebody's getting everybody else through so they chose me. But it's actually just cuz my last name is the highest in the alphabet.

The devotionals this week have been lit. Get this: last night I heard from my 3rd apostle since being here. hahaha. When you're in the MTC this long...but it was awesome! Elder Christofferson is the man! He talked about repentance, and then changed gears to talking about being trusted, and he shared a quote that President Mckay liked to share--"To be trusted is a greater compliment to be loved." whoa...think about that! The devotionals on Sunday were also super awesome. Since it was fast Sunday, we had a "mission conference" and President Burgess brought the Senior missionary that was in the Belgium airport bombing to bear his testimony. SO COOL. He said "when the time for performance is here, the time for preparation is gone." and he talked about bringing our "Isaacs" to the altar of sacrifice like Abraham did, which is a thought I really love. The cool thing was his view on what happened. He views the Belgium airport not with negative feelings, but as a sacred and holy place. He calls it his Ebeneezer, which is from the Old Testament -a big rock that reminds the people of the power, help, and goodness of God. So that was awesome. But then Sunday night we had our usual devotional, and the speaker was Chad Lewis. He played football for BYU and for Eagles for 9 years as tight end. Guess where he served his mission? TAIWAN TAICHUNG!! Now he's the official ambassador for the NFL to China because he can speak Chinese and he's just a great guy. Most of his devotional was talking about his mission, and since we had all gotten our flight plans by this time already, we were all going insane. I seriously can't wait. He knows one of the Elders in my district, Elder Bosco, and called him down, in front of the whole MTC to share his testimony in Chinese. Probably the sickest thing I've witnessed here. Afterward, all of us Taichung missionaries got to go back stage and meet with him and he gave us a pump up speech. hahaha.

That was long. But also I think a big part of why I've grown the most this week out of all the other ones.

We're ready to go here. Yesterday in class we decided that this is a lot like the Plan of Salvation. The MTC is like pre-earth life --we're preparing and we're just kind of waiting and waiting. The plane is the veil because as soon as we get in Taiwan we'll forget everything we learned here. Yeah. I'm planning on being brought to a whole new level of low. But then the mission is mortality. We will be tested and will have to prove ourselves to the Lord the kind of missionary we will be. Then the after-life is the RM life. As we are obedient to the rules and stuff in the field, we will be blessed in the RM life. Cute right?

But I've been thinking quite a bit about the kind of missionary I'm going to be, and the kind of mission I'm going to have. I commit to having no regrets because I've had eternity to prepare for this mission and I'll have eternity to reflect back on it, but I only have 2 years to actually do it! Crazy right? and it's already going by so fast! So I will not only be a beloved servant of God (because God loves everybody), but I will also be a trustworthy servant of God (and God doesn't exactly trust everybody). I won't wait for the future to be a better person or to be happy, because really, that's deciding to never be happy or change. And think about this, even if I'm faithful and obedient, if my heart and mind isn't totally in it because I'm kind of fighting God's will with my will, then I've kind of failed in a sense because while my behavior might've changed, my nature is still the same, and God wants us to change everyday! It's our choice, because of agency, to let God change us, as we repent and turn to Him and gain access to Christ's grace. And I know it's true too!

Sorry that was all about me, but hopefully you can somehow apply that to yourself. Something cool I was told last night after Elder Christofferson's devo was that it's awesome to feel the Spirit and have those experiences, but the trick/the hard part is to put that feeling to something tangible -something to change in your own life to help make you better. I've never thought about that before, but it's so true! Let the Spirit move you to change and become better.

You guys are awesome! Love you all! Fight on!

Hey, next time I write it'll be in Taiwan!

Love,
柯長老
Elder Barker




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