Monday, December 31, 2012
My daughter. What an amazing young woman. She has made the choice to be a missionary for the next year and a half, serving the people in the Tempe, Arizona mission of the LDS church. That is a big deal. A very big deal. As a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, you devote yourself, full-time, 24/7, to the people to whom you are sent to serve. You have no outside worries of the world - - no bills to worry about, no school papers to write, none of that. Nothing to distract you from the work you are sent to do.
What is that work? That work is to teach people about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You see, Jesus Christ loves everyone . . . not just me :) And so he wants everyone to hear His gospel and then decide for themselves whether or not to accept His teachings. Contrary to popular belief, missionaries do not convert people. They don't have magic dust that they sprinkle on people in order to brainwash them into believing something they don't want to believe. They don't. Honest. They just teach. The Holy Ghost, a/k/a Spirit, converts. Have you ever been touched as you've watched the kindness of others? Have you ever looked at your family and felt that warm feeling in your bosom? That, my friends, is the spirit, testifying to your heart of goodness, of love. I know this because I have felt it.
Our daughter leaves on February 13 for the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah, where she will learn Spanish. And then she will go to Tempe, Arizona where her 18 month mission really begins. And, to be honest, that is where she will really learn to speak Spanish. We will speak with her on Mothers Day and on Christmas, but will not see her until August 2014, when her mission will end. And, believe it or not, I will not worry about her. Not one bit. I know she will be in good hands, and she will be well taken care of.
She will have many experiences that will become a part of who she is. She will touch many lives, and many lives will touch her. Her life will never be the same - - it will be so much more than she ever dreamed it could be.
My daughter. What an amazing woman.