December 11, 2016
Big news! I am moving for the last time (probably) off to the most rural area in the mission! It definitely should be an adventure down there and I am excited to have a ball. So recently when I got the call to go down there I have been thinking about a lot of things. When I first heard the news, I was very excited because it is one of the hardest challenges in the mission, but then I worried because the last little bit of my mission probably will be very hard with not a lot of actual success (who knows, maybe we will do great). Anyway, as I have pondered this the thought that has kept coming to my mind was how much I already have been given. I have had the chance to be very successful in all of the areas that I have been to. I have had wonderful companions and learned so much from the missionaries around me. I have had two wonderful mission presidents. I have a lovely family at home who are healthy and happy. I have so many friends here and in America who support me and who make my life more entertaining. Even if the end of my mission is cold and discouraging, which I don't think it will be, how much do I have to be grateful for?
It reminds me of Job, a man who lost everything but the day he lost it all he said this:
20 Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped, 21 And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. 22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.
Sometimes I think about how many people would give anything to be able to be blessed with the things that I have. When we go through trials, we often ask why me? Why do I have to do this? Sometimes it would be wise to consider how many people have suffered so much more than us. This does not mean our trials are not important to God or that they are not easy, but during our trials, we should be careful not to charge God foolishly. Do not demand a perfect life without challenges. Do not demand immediate success or the ability to overcome trials. I am reminded of the great missionary, Paul, who said this in the midst of his trials.
11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
I am so grateful for the gifts that have been given to me as a missionary and I am grateful for all of you and the things that you have helped me with. I hope that you and I can find more peace, security, and contentment in our trials. I know that the Lord Jesus Christ lives and that because of his sacrifice that we will remember this Christmas season. There is nothing, no permanent trial, that he cannot help us overcome. I am grateful that He has been so good to me and those that I love.
I love you all,