Monday, September 30, 2013
Guess what! GENERAL CONFERENCE IS NEXT WEEK. General Conference is right up there with Christmas here in the missionary world. There’s seriously nothing better.
Except my birthday.
Which just happens to be the following week!
It’s so weird to think of where I was at this time last year. Innocently minding my own business, stressed about school, struggling to get up at 9 every day, in my comfy dorm room being as antisocial as I pleased……look at how my life has changed.
Up by 6:15 every day, in bed by 10:30 every night, working tirelessly right next to my Heavenly Father as He leads me and my companion [who I am with 24 hours a day 7 days a week] to those people who He has been preparing for years to hear the gospel specifically from us. Chemistry is the farthest thing from my mind when I get up in the morning. Instead is the question, “How can I help someone today?” as I drop to my knees and plead with my Father literally every single day to give me the energy, strength, and bravery I need to do His will. And then, it’s running shoes on and out to our apartment gym, which consists of 3 machines, where we try our best to work up a sweat for precisely 30 minutes.
Then, back to the apartment to shower, throw on some makeup, and eat breakfast. All the while we still haven’t quite woken up.
Exactly at 8 am we sit down to start studies in the only room in our tiny apartment that gets sunlight. We sit in this room for 3 hours straight. Personal Study. Companionship Study. 12 Week.
A quick 60 minute breather for lunch as we try to scribble out a letter or catch up on our journal from the previous night. [or in my case, one of the 7 journals….]
Back to our study room at exactly noon for one more hour of Language Study.
And then out the door.
Our plans differ from day to day. But the time from 1-5 tends to move slowly. Turns out, very few people are home at this time. You probably don’t think about that. Missionaries do. Missionaries are the best people-watchers.
At 5 pm we come back and take another quick 60 minute breather. It flies by. We get to check the mail this time. Full mailboxes = good days.
And then it’s back out at 6 pm.
Working for another 3 hours…pedaling, driving, teaching, finding. Whatever the Lord has in store for us that day. Like I said, no 2 days are alike. Missionary work is no Groundhog Day.
And then at 9 pm we come back home. 30 minutes of planning as fast as we can. Praying for inspiration for the following day. Write down the names we think of. The things we think they need. The goals we met and the goals we make for the following day.
At 9:30 we have one precious hour to wind down. Get ready for bed, write in our journal, and pray. This hour goes by the fastest of the 24.
10:30 is lights out.
3 seconds later, we wake up and do it all again.
This is the life of a missionary. It may seem repetitive, but it’s the farthest thing from that. Every morning there’s something new to learn during studies. Every day we see different people. We say different things. Plans fall through and opportunities arise. Missionaries have to learn to go with the flow. The best stories come at the most unexpected times. And in Florida, the sudden rainstorms are just the icing on the cake of it all.
Every day we feel the love of the Lord. Sister Russell told me a quote [it’s not exact and I don’t know who it’s from.] that goes something like.
“We [as missionaries] are Heavenly Father’s #1 priority. We are at the top of His to-do list. There is nothing He is more concerned about than the spread of His Gospel and bringing His children to the knowledge of His love.”
I think that’s pretty special.
And I feel His hand guiding us each and every day.
We had a general authority, Elder Teh, come for zone conferences this week. I believe he came to assess the obedience of the mission. For any “next steps” that could be coming. You know what that means.
I went into that meeting prepared because he had us come with a question. And a promise that our question would be answered.
I heard this all the time with General Conference, but I never actually have done it. I always forgot….or something.
I did it this time. I had a question in mind. Actually 2 questions. And both were answered. Not just once, but like 3 times each! Whether by something someone said, or by a prompting I had. It works! And I know it works for everyone cause we spent the last 30 minutes of the conference going through some of the missionaries who had their question answered, and I’m not exaggerating when I say everyone received an answer.
So this weekend, at conference, come with a question. There’s nobody more inspired than our incredible Prophet and loving apostles. They care about us so much and they will be told exactly what to say to touch your heart. And answer your question.
Try it….it works.
Love you all so much!