Sunday, June 24, 2012

a missionary for a day

last week, two girls who looked about my age walked into my work to get some ice cream. i immediately recognized them as sister missionaries because they were both wearing nametags. not only were they sister missionaries, but they were spanish speaking sister missionaries. how lucky was i! i think heavenly father must have sent them right to me. as i was scooping their ice cream, i asked them how long they each had been out and then proceeded to tell them that i myself was planning on serving a mission and that i'll be headed to the mtc in september! they both seemed so excited for me and invited me to teach with them sometime. of course i accepted, and we set a date. that date was today.

this morning i got dressed in an outfit that i had bought specifically for my mission, and headed out to meet hermana okey and hermana guerra. on the way to the apartment of the family they were teaching, i said a prayer that i would feel the spirit and receive an affirmation that serving a mission was the right choice for me. i prayed that i would understand the lesson being taught (as it was going to be in spanish) and that if called upon to bear testimony, i would be able to communicate effectively.

we knocked on the family's door and nobody answered, so we left a note and decided to try a different apartment. giovanni answered his door and had time for a lesson so we sat down outside to teach him! the lesson was mostly about prayer and how important it is in having a relationship with Heavenly Father. we also talked about prophets and how they speak for God. giovanni wasn't saying a whole lot, which made it hard to tell if he was learning anything or feeling the spirit. hermana guerra asked giovanni who God was to him and he responded that he didn't really know. she turned to me and asked me to describe who God is to me and i answered. the words just flowed right out! i explained to giovanni that God was my father, that He loved me so much and He wanted me to be happy. i explained that i speak to God daily through prayer and that i know God hears me when i do. we talked more about how having a relationship with God. hermana guerra asked giovanni if he felt like he had a relationship with Him and he shook his head no. she asked if he wanted a relationship with God and he shook his head no again. that made me so sad. she then said, "out of curiosity, how come you don't want to have a relationship with your Heavenly Father?" from what i understood of what he said, he explained that he knows a lot of people who say they're close to God and they follow Him, yet they do bad things and say bad words. hermana okey told him she completely understood. she reminded him that nobody's perfect, including us, and that sometimes we slip up. but Heavenly Father still wants to hear from us. the discussion ended by teaching giovanni how to pray and encouraging him to pray to his Heavenly Father. then hermana okey asked me to offer a prayer before we left. i hadn't prayed in spanish in so long, so i was a little rusty, but it was okay.

the hour and a half i spent with hermana okey and hermana guerra was so good for me. i got the affirmation of my decision that i needed and i got so much more excited for my mission than i already was. and the best part is i get to teach with them again on tuesday!

i love this church so much. 
i love missionaries so much.
i love the spanish language so much.
and in just 85 days, i'll be in the mtc.

Monday, June 18, 2012

a thousand things to do

anybody that has served a mission knows just how much work is involved between getting your call and reporting to the mtc. i feel like i'm constantly crossing things off my never ending to-do list. here's a small idea of what i've already done...
  • written and mailed in my acceptance letter
  • applied to get my passport renewed 
  • got a couple immunizations
  • bought missionary clothes
  • set a date to get endowed
  • did my language evaluation with the language coordinator at the mtc
  • bought my plane ticket to salt lake city
  • filled out my visa application
and here's what i have left...
  • get a statewide background check
  • get my driving record
  • apply to get an apostille for spain
  • apply for an international driving permit
ahhhh it's so much work! but each task i cross off my list means i'm one step closer becoming a missionary! i cannot even express just how excited i am to be a missionary. i just wish i was leaving sooner - all this waiting is killing me! last week, my mom and i took a day trip to st. louis to do some temple related errands because the louisville temple doesn't have a distribution center. it was a great day just the two of us, and got me really excited to go through the temple.