This week I was able to go to the temple with the other departing missionaries. What a special experience. It was so neat to be there with president and Sister Bingham. I love the temple, I am looking forward to regularly serve in the temple. After the temple I had the opportunity to attend mission leadership council. As I sat and reflected upon my mission I have recognized not only how far I've come, but who I have become. My mission has changed me for the better and I thank Heavenly Father for all he has done to bless me.
Gingers baptism was beautiful, I love her so much. I could not think of a better way to end my mission. The Akinola family came to the service and so did Van! He his still planning on being baptized and is progressing very well. Chicago Heights is changing. The ward is completely different and the perspective and attitude for missionary work is changing. I am so happy. I have poured my heart and soul into this ward and my mission. I am sad to leave, but the time has come... "The testimony which ye have borne is recorded in heaven for the angels to look upon; and they rejoice over you. … And now continue your journey” (D&C 62:3–4). I am ready for my life's mission now, and I know as I give my life to God he will help me and guide me.
Just some thoughts.
“Our spiritual journey is the process of a lifetime. We do not know everything in the beginning or even along the way. Our conversion comes step-by-step, line upon line. We first build a foundation of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We treasure the principles and ordinances of repentance, baptism, and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. We include a continuing commitment to prayer, a willingness to be obedient, and an ongoing witness of the Book of Mormon. (The Book of Mormon is powerful spiritual nourishment.)
"When you go home, you may wish to take some gifts. Everyone likes to shop. I don't know why. Let me suggest ten gifts to take home with you on that day when you are released from this labor and go back to your loved ones.
1. A knowledge of and love of God our Eternal Father and His Son the Lord Jesus Christ. "And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent" (John 17:3). Make that your number-one gift to carry home with you from the mission field.
2. A knowledge and love for the scriptures, the word of the Lord. You read them. Continue to read them when you get home. Read the Book of Mormon the rest of your life. You will be inspired. You will retain the memories of your mission. And you will prepare yourselves for any opportunities that might come your way.
3. An increased love for parents. You are no longer the careless young men and women you were. You have learned to appreciate and love your parents. Tell them so.
4. A love for the people among whom you labor.
5. An appreciation for hard work. Nothing happens unless we work. You never will plow a field by turning it over in your mind. You have to get out and take hold of the plow and go to work. Work is what makes things happen. You won't accomplish anything by sitting in your apartments thinking of all the nice people to whom you would like to teach the gospel.
6. The assurance that the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is available to each of us when we live for it. Listen for the whisperings of the Spirit and follow those whisperings.
7. An understanding of teamwork. You can't do it alone. Every one of you has a companion. Don't look for his faults; he has plenty of them. Look for his virtues and try to bring those virtues into your life.
8. The value of personal virtue. There is no room for evil thoughts in your lives while you are here. They will destroy you if you persist in them. Dismiss them. Stay away from them. Pray to the Lord for strength to rise above them.
9. The faith to act.
10. The humility to pray. There is power greater than any of us that is available to us. The Lord will bless us. He will guide us. He will magnify us. He will lead us to those who will accept the truth. He will protect us if we will listen to the still small voice and follow it.” (Guatemala City Central, North, and South Missionary Meeting, January 24, 1997)
I have learned so much on my mission and I am looking forward to all the Lord has yet to teach me. What a wonderful week. What a wonderful mission!
My heart is aching as I say goodbye to the many I love here. I hate goodbyes... but I find comfort in knowing there are many who are there to love and support me as I begin my new journey! Thank you for all of your love, prayers, and concern. I will see you soon!
|These people will always will be in my heart!|
|Early Christmas gifts!|
|Such a special Day! 12.9.16|
|Going to miss this girl right here! Love you Sister Webber!|
|Ahh reunited with Sister Patterson! Last Temple day and heading home together!|