Well, unexpectedly, I am getting transferred for my last transfer! I thought I was going to stay in the office until I went home, but God's plans were otherwise. My time in the office, and especially my time in the Robindale YSA Ward, have been great and I have learned so much from these last three transfers. I have loved this ward! Never have I felt so apart of a ward. I honestly felt like it was my home ward. I was invested in the members and the work and everything just fell into place as we were able to be instruments in the Lord's hands to bring many unto Christ. I have met so many people and have seen many changed by the atonement of Christ in this area. From member madness with the members doing missionary work, to converts who are truly converted to the Lord and His church. I look back and am without words at all the blessings God has poured out upon us. I am truly grateful for the hand God has had in my life and throughout my mission.
I am very sad to leave this area and for all the wonderful people that I have met. But it will be exciting to come back for some more baptisms and on exchanges to see all these people I have come to love so much. And then to keep in contact with them throughout the rest of my life. I think spending my last six weeks in Spanish will be good as that is what the Lord called me to speak. I am excited to dedicate myself to the language and plan to only study and speak Spanish as much as I possibly can. I am excited to apply all that I learned in the office with those in my zone and to have much more of an one on one impact with the missionaries. To be more of a minister and not so much as an administrator.
I really don’t know what to say, but that I love being a missionary and that I have enjoyed seeing so many people’s lives change these last 4 months. It is a miracle that with all the other things we do on a day to day basis for the mission that we even have time to proselyte. But the Lord has put so many people in our path; just random street contacts and referrals that have just turned out to be people that really wanted and needed the gospel.
We had a fireside this weekend and it was a member from one of my last wards speaking to all the YSA in the region. He was part of swat and a convert to the gospel and just gave an incredible talk. But one part that stuck out to me the most was when he kept bringing up "real intent". He told of when he was reading and praying to find out if the Book of Mormon was true and wasn’t getting any answers that a friend told him to go see a bishop and ask him. And so he found the nearest bishop and since he didn’t have transportation he figured out how long it would take him to walk there. He walked hours to speak to a man he had never met before because he wanted to know if this was true. After receiving advice, he met back up with the missionaries who had first taught him. And to do so he had to hitch hike 3 hours to find them. Then later, as a member, he wanted to get his patriarchal blessing and he had to make a five hour drive to get there. He talked about how those were moments of real intent. That he would do anything to know and receive the truth.
As I pondered this, I thought of how often we talk about having real intent to find out if the church is true, but how often do we have real intent in our day to day lives and in exercising faith in god and in receiving answers to our questions? That we pray a lot as missionaries to find people to teach but do we work at every cost to find them? Will we do whatever it takes to fulfill the prayers we have offered up to god? So it was a very good fireside and I have enjoyed all the many activities we have been able to take our investigators to that have helped them on their own path.
Being in the office was never easy, but I learned a lot about looking ahead and being strategic and how to influence people in a very hands off way and through asking inspired questions. I learned a lot about not just jumping into things but really looking at things in depth. The Lord has truly blessed me with so many opportunities to grow on my mission and he never lets me get comfortable.
I am excited to serve until the end and I know I will apply the things I have learned here to the rest of my life. That’s the real test; to take these things and apply them the rest of our lives.