Aloha for the last time....
So the tears have begun. Emotions are high. I am going to keep this short and simple.
The last week of your mission is a reflection period. You think back to life before you even left and then all that has happened to this current point. For me I had the realization that a mission was the last thing in the world that I wanted to do. It was never part of my plans and I didn't want it to be. I was on an exchange with one of my best mission friends and as we sat there with tears in my eyes I looked at her and said, "What if we had chosen not to serve missions? What if we had never met?" There are so many people that I could stop and have that conversation with and ask those questions to. There are so many reasons that I needed to serve a mission. Majority of them being selfish. I have been transformed by the gospel of Jesus Christ into the kind of person that I have always longed to be. I am still so far from perfect but I have learned how to overcome the natural man. I have an entirely different view on the world and that is thanks to a deeper understanding of the plan of salvation. There is no such thing as coinsidence. I know that I hve been changed for good.
As i shared my testimony in District Meeting and church for the last times I was filled with the Spirit of the Lord and I talked about things that I hadn't even realized I have learned. I was overcome with emotion as I realized once and for all how blessed I have been because of my service to the Lord, my Savior for the past 18 months. You get to a point where you want to repay Him, by working harder but then your time is up. Luckily, I have the rest of my life to live in a way that shows my Heavenly Father how much I appreciate Him and all He does for me.
At the conclusion of my departing interview with my mission president I asked for a priesthood blessing. As president Orgill placed his hands on my head I immediately knew that the words I was about to hear were from my Father in Heaven. Turns out that my mission was a preparation for the rest of my life. The blessing sounded similar to that of a setting apart. I really did view it as a setting apart to never forget the things that I have learned. A setting apart to remember how to stay on the straight and narrow path and help others to do the same.
Although, the emotions are high and it doesn't quite feel like my time to go I am at peace. I know that I have served well. I know that the work I have done is eternal. I know that it matters more than anything else. I know that this was the best way i could have spent the last 18 months. I know that everything happens for a reason. I was meant to start in Anaheim and end in Irvine. My entire mission was made for me. I know that for a fact. It wasn't easy. It was actually the hardest thing I have ever done. But it taught me that I am capable of a lot more than I thought. I now know that I can make it through ANYTHING with the help of the Lord.
This gospel is perfect. It changes lives. It was restored by a prophet of God. The priesthood has the power to heal. The work done in the temple binds heaven and earth. Families can be together forever. Thank goodness.
I just want to thank all of you all one last time for your prayers and support. You have no idea how much I appreciate it. It is sometimes what kept me out here. The Lord is mindful of us all.
Have a wondefrul week! I will talk to many of you soon!
I love you all!
For the last time...