Thursday, February 28, 2013

Mission Prep

I was a little bit worried about Mission Prep. I didn't totally know what to expect. I was surprised when I walked in that first day to find that 85% of my class were girls. But I actually love my class! We have spent this whole first half of the semester learning about the preparations of becoming a missionary. Today was the first day of the rest of the semester where we will be learning how to teach the simple gospel truths. Our lesson today was the Plan of Salvation. Sometimes I think the Plan of Salvation is so simple. But looking at it today from a non-members perspective, I can see how it is a lot more complicated than I have always thought it was.
Most non-members only know about earth life, death, and Heaven and Hell, or Paradise and Prison. They are missing out on two vital parts of the plan (Pre-mortal existence and the three kingdoms). Without this knowledge, one can't fully understand why we are here on earth, and why we need to do all we can on earth to follow Christ because there is so much in store for us after this life.
We watched a really cool movie that I am sure many have seen before. The movie related the plan to a play with three Acts. We come to this earth during Act 2. Not only do we not understand, but we are in the play, so everything around us can confuse us. But luckily enough, we have a script (aka the scriptures) to remind us what happened in Act 1, to guide us through Act 2, and help us better prepare for Act 3. Without this script, we will be lost in Act 2, and not be ready when Act 3 comes.
I realized how important this concept of understanding God's plan really is. It really is simple, and it makes so much sense.
My institute teacher reminded us while we are teaching to keep everything simple for those learning. When we are baptized at the age of 8, we don't have an incredible knowledge of the gospel. In fact, we don't know a lot. All we really know is what our parents have taught and what we have learned in Primary. We are only beginning to understand. So we shouldn't expect to teach all that we know. Keeping it simple for those we teach, hoping that they will listen and eventually get baptized and continue learning for themselves is really what we should aim for.
I am so grateful for my institute class and for all that I am learning. I can't wait to be a missionary!


Originally I was hoping to go through the Temple when Kendall got home from his mission. My whole family is planning on being here that weekend anyway, so i thought it would be perfect. But that was when I was hoping to leave for my mission in August or September. Now that things are changed and I am hoping to leave a lot earlier, I am hoping to get through the Temple a lot earlier.
My Stake President and Bishop here both told me to receive my Endowments immediately after i get my call. I have heard from a lot of people that you want to go through the temple as many times as you can before you serve. So my new plan is to go through sometime during my Spring Break in March. The Manti Temple is maybe 10 minutes away from my housing. And I have two really good friends who are getting their endowments within these next two weeks. I am hoping to go with them at least once a week for the rest of the school year.
Really I am just getting excited about the whole process. I started taking a Temple Prep class on Sunday nights. I have been to one of the three classes they teach. I think I will be able to make it to the other two before Spring Break. They also gave me a book to read. Preparing to Enter the Holy Temple. I have almost finished it. I am hoping to at least read it one more time before I go through. In my Mission Prep class we also spent two days talking about the Temple Endowment. My teacher gave us some very good quotes that provide insights as to what to expect. The next class we were able to ask any questions that we had. I still have questions, but I am sure the closer I get to going through, and when I actually go through, my questions will, for the most part, be answered. We also got a very great talk by Elder Carlos E. Asay from the Seventy called The Temple Garment: "An Outward Expression of an Inward Commitment." I have read through that a well. It was pretty interesting to read. I guess I am becoming like my sister, who reads everything! She loves learning. The older I am getting, the more I am finding how interesting it is to read about things like this. I just love it!
I was thinking about which Temple to go through when receiving my Endowments. I love the Logan temple, but have already had two brothers go through there. I was thinking about some others, but remembered the new Brigham City Temple. I think that is where I will go. It is very beautiful, and it is close to everybody. Hopefully that all works out.
I feel like everything is coming together perfectly. I couldn't be more happy right now!

Call Issued

My mission call has officially been issued! So it is set in stone where I am going to go. Kinda crazy to think about. I talked to my Dad today about the rest of the process. He says that now President Monson has to sign my call and they have to put together all my paperwork. Then it is off to the postal services. Every mission has different paperwork. This paperwork will tell me more about my mission area, about my mission president, about the weather and the clothes I will need, and about what else I may need to pack. There is probably a lot more in the packet, but that is the basics that my dad told me today. If all goes well I should get my mission call either Wednesday the 6th or Thursday the 7th. It still doesn't feel completely real to me. But I am so excited to serve!!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

I'll Go Where You Want Me To Go Dear Lord

I am getting really anxious about where I will be serving. With every new day comes new guesses and new hopes and new nerves. If I could choose anywhere to go I would choose Europe. Italy, England, Ireland, Finland, anywhere in Europe. I would love to serve there. But I don't want to get my hopes up so I just keep telling myself that I will serve state side. Which I will still love! I was talking to a boy who prayed to go somewhere warm. He got called to Canada which is so far from warmth. He said he had a really hard time before he left and he kept listening to this song over and over. I love this song, and I will go wherever I am called. 

It may not be on the mountain height
Or over the stormy sea,
It may not be at the battle's front
My Lord will have need of me.
But if, by a still, small voice he calls
To paths that I do not know,
I'll answer, dear Lord, with my hand in thine:
I'll go where you want me to go.
Perhaps today there are loving words
Which Jesus would have me speak;
There may be now in the paths of sin
Some wand'rer whom I should seek.
O Savior, if thou wilt be my guide,
Tho dark and rugged the way,
My voice shall echo the message sweet:
I'll say what you want me to say.
There's surely somewhere a lowly place
In earth's harvest fields so wide
Where I may labor through life's short day
For Jesus, the Crucified.
So trusting my all to thy tender care,
And knowing thou lovest me,
I'll do thy will with a heart sincere:
I'll be what you want me to be.
I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord,
Over mountain or plain or sea;
I'll say what you want me to say, dear Lord;
I'll be what you want me to be.


I was beyond overwhelmed when I got a church calling as Relief Society teacher. In my head I wanted to say no. But my Dad always told me to never ever say no to a call the Bishop asks you to fulfill. Even if it is just saying a prayer or giving a talk. So I accepted the call. I was really nervous about it. Teaching and Public Speaking are not my strongest points. But I am grateful that I accepted that call. It has taught me a lot about studying, coming up with questions, and teaching, which are all things that I will need on my mission. I have not had a lot of opportunities to teach. I have only taught twice since I got the call in September. But I have grown already through preparing and giving those two lessons.
Last week while preparing my lesson, a member of the bishopric called asking me to speak in Sacrament. Again, I just couldn't say no. Luckily my lesson was pretty simple and almost finished. Then I found out my topic for my talk. I was overjoyed. My topic was why I decided to serve a mission, the preparations I took, and what I hope to experience. I loved thinking about these things deeply. And pondering those thoughts is what led me to start this blog. I love this gospel and am so excited to share it wherever I am called to serve.
Sometimes we don't think we can do what we are called to do. But we are called for a reason. It is an inspiration from the Lord. So don't be afraid to accept a call. Don't give up that opportunity to grow and learn. And sometimes, if not always, you will look back and realize why you were called to that position at that time. The Lord knows us so well. Let him guide your life.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

My First Thoughts

The day of Saturday General Conference I was scheduled to work. I was scheduled to work last semester and went back later and read it. Not the same, but it worked. So I figured I would be fine. I was supposed to work 30 minutes after Conference started. So instead of watching part of Conference I decided to go into work early and get some stuff done. When I was leaving I heard Conference starting and had a feeling to stay. I decided to test the Lord. I told him I would stay if I could hear something that I needed to hear. So I stayed. The first talk was the Welcome to Conference by our beloved prophet Thomas S. Monson. And I heard exactly what I needed to hear in that simple opening of Conference.
I knew that I wanted to go on a mission. I have known since I was a little girl. But I didn't know if I would get to the age of 21 and have the opportunity to go. I knew if I was 21 and unmarried I would for sure go. So when the opportunity to go presented itself early, I was unprepared with an answer. I needed to know for sure that I was supposed to go. And that I was ready to go. One specific experience that I had had earlier made me realize that I was ready.
I was miserable my first night at Snow College. Not only had I never been away from my family, and was for the very first time, but I didn't know any of my roommates, I had gotten in an argument with my friends earlier, I didn't know anyone, I was in a new city I had never been to, I went to campus and couldn't find any of my classes, just everything was adding up not how I wanted. I couldn't get anything straight. I was so uncertain and felt so alone. The only thing I was certain of was that my Heavenly Father would listen if I knelt down in prayer. So I did just that. I tested my Savior again. I told him that I didn't want to be here. I wanted to go home so badly. But I also said, I will stick it out that night and try hard the next day. I told him that if things didn't go right, I would know I needed to go home. So the next day I tried. I went to campus and ran into President Wyatt (The President of Snow College) who helped me find all my classes. I went home and really got along with my roommates. They were very welcoming. I also reconnected with my best friends. I still missed my family, but I realized that I can get along without them.
That night I prayed to my Heavenly Father. I thanked him for helping me realize I needed to stay. I didn't know why, but the longer I go along, the longer I realize. I learned a lot about myself, about others, about everything. I needed to be away to be on my own in a new city. I needed to learn to live with new people I had never met before, people I may not have much in common. I needed to learn to work things out with my best friend instead of holding grudges. I needed to live in a new city with new people. I needed to learn that reading my scriptures is more worth it than not. I needed to learn to go to church and firesides because I want to, not because I have to. I needed to meet new people who teach me everyday to be happy. I needed to get my church calling as a relief society teacher to learn how to best teach. I needed to be away from my family to learn patience. I needed all these things to prepare me for my mission. So, although I did not know this at the time, I needed to stay at college for me. I am beyond happy that I trusted in the Lord enough to stay.
Looking back on this I realized that, even though my mission will be hard, I know that I can do it!
The last thing I was a little worried about was if I knew enough about the gospel to be able to teach and share. I worried that someone would ask me a question I wouldn't be able to answer. I emailed my brother on a mission and asked him just that. He basically said, you know enough! You don't know everything, you won't ever know everything, but you know enough. Your testimony is what is most important. That is what people listen to. Share your testimony and the Holy Ghost will cover the rest.
So after these three things, I knew with a surety that I needed to go and that I could go. After finishing all my paperwork and interviews, I now have my papers in. I can't wait to get my call in two weeks! This is definitely the most exciting time of my life!"general-conference")

A Word For The Hesitant Missionary

The decision for me to serve a mission was a really hard one. When I heard about the age change I obviously was excited, but I needed to make sure it was what I needed to do. But I finally figured out that it is exactly what I need to do! I can't wait to serve the Lord for the next year and a half of my life. I don't know who will read this, if anyone will read this, but I needed to write down all that I am feeling about a mission.
One talk that really influnced me was from Elder Uchtdorf. Not all of us need to serve a full time mission, and not all of us will, but for those of you who are thinking about it, don't fear! This is a word for the hesitant missionary. Enjoy!