Spotted on the field today. This picture of James was taken by some loving Aunts, an Uncle, Grandma and cousins. It was just good to see that he is happy and doing great.
We love our Elder Gilbert!
Dear family and friends,
Another GREAT week at the MTC. I can't believe how many nice notes and packages I got from people this week I really felt loved! I will try to thank everyone individually, but for now just know that this has probably been my favorite week here. I feel like I've been here forever, and when I think of life before it seems strange and distant. I will try to give a good recap of the week and try not to make it sound too similar.
Tuesday had a lot of highlights as me and Elder Trotter got to teach our first "Gold Tag." The MTC has a bunch of "investigators" that walk around, and if you go up and talk to them, you can set up an appointment for a discussion. We set one up for Tuesday morning, and it was SO nice to teach a lesson in English. It went really well, and we covered so much more than we've been able to in our Chinese discussions. It was good practice, and it was kind of fun to see how easy it is to preach the gospel in my own language now that we've seen how difficult it is in Chinese. Also, we had a devotional that night from an Emeritus General Authority, Elder Banks. He was really funny, and also gave an inspiring message about how to not be a mediocre missionary. Also, We had a district from our zone leave this week. Most of them were going to Taichung, and I was so jealous of them being able to go! Although I was jealous, and we even got to see pictures of them actually being in the country, I'm so glad I'm here, because I have a lot to learn before I could hope to do anything in Taiwan.
The rest of the week all sort of blurred together, it was fun to see a lot of missionaries I know enter on Wednesday. I'm seeing a lot from Woods Cross, and actually a ton from Rexburg. It's been really fun to catch up with them. Me and Elder Trotter have started to sing hymns in Chinese for our lessons, because we realized that its the only time we can get away with reading things off a paper during the discussions. Thats been a good way to bring the spirit, except sometimes we don't know the tune of the song, and even gave up in the middle of one one time. It was a little embarrassing, and now our teacher always makes fun of us..
We taught four lessons on Saturday, which was crazy! One of them was with the same BYU Idaho guy who took a picture of me last week. He's obsessed with dad, so he was really nice to us in the discussion :) since the district left, there's less people in our branch. i don't know if I've said this, but on Sunday, we all have to prepare a talk (in Chinese), and then they call on two random missionaries up from the audience to speak. Now its more scary. We are getting two new Chinese districts in our zone this week though, I'm so excited to not be the youngest anymore! I think we have two Elders from Woods Cross coming, Kelson Lee and Zach Slatter. That will make five missionaries in our zone from Woods Cross! I saw both of their names on the list. It'll be fun to have some more familiar faces! We had a devotional last night by one of the district Presidents about teaching. We also got to go to the temple today, which is always a highlight.
Even though the weeks all feel the same, I continue to learn new things every day. Elder Trotter and I have made a goal to both memorize 100 new words this week. At first maybe that sounds high, but there's an Elder in our zone with a photographic memory, who can do 100 in half a day if he tries! Everyone here is so smart! Its been nice as I've started to learn not to compare myself to other missionaries to get a better appreciation for others knowledge and skills. While I'm maybe not the best at anything, I'm the best I can be, which is all the Lord wants! So fun to hear all the updates from home! I love you all so much :)