A couple of months ago, I started to write a post about how much love Heavenly Father has for each of his children. Though I never had the chance to finish that post, I thought it deserved to be heard. So here it is, in all its unfinished glory.
These last three months I have spent in Ukraine, and let me tell you, it is the greatest place. I would love to serve a mission here. All of the people are so sweet, and thoughtful and willing to help. I love it. My heart is filled with so much joy and love for Ukraine. Who knew that in just three short months I could come to love a place, and the people here so much. I can only imagine how much I am going to love where I serve, and everyone that I meet there. I am so excited. :) It really is such a great feeling, to be filled with so much love. Although I did not come to Ukraine to spread the gospel, I think I have experienced a little tiny glimpse of our Heavenly Father's love for his children.
I cannot wait for the opportunity I have to go to Japan, and share the gospel with everyone I meet. I hold a special place in my heart for Japan. You see, when I was little my family was stationed in Japan. We lived in Sagamihara, a military base about an hour South of Tokyo. The four years that I spent in Japan, were some of the best years of my life. Living in Japan sparked my love of travel, and gave me the desire to see the world. Since living in Japan I have seen Hawaii, Ukraine, Hungary, Austria, Czech Republic, and Bulgaria. I have met so many wonderful people, and learned so much about myself, as well as those around me. I have been able to recognize just how blessed I am, and how fortunate I am to live in the United States, with all of the many Freedoms we have.
Going back to Japan is going to be one of the coolest things! I honestly can't wait! When I think about it, I just get so happy. Heavenly Father really knows what he is doing. I know he has a plan for me, and it is honestly the best plan. :) I couldn't think of anything better.
This is the story of the day I received my mission call, and all the important things leading up to it. :)
January 14, 2014
Oh my goodness! What a crazy couple of weeks. Well, ready for a life update? I put my papers in on December 20. The next week was Christmas, so nothing happened. Christmas however was PERFECT! It could not have gone any better. The next week I hung out with my family and tried to keep myself busy. On Friday, President D texted my dad and told him my call had been assigned. :) I was SO excited! But at the same time it just didn't feel real. It was hard for me to really accept that my call had been assigned and I was really going to be a missionary. I again made myself busy. I cooked. I cleaned. I had Temple Prep lessons. I did everything I could to be patient and keep calm. By the time Friday came, I was bouncing off the walls! I was so excited, and so bored (I couldn't find enough things to keep me busy), and so nervous I couldn't even handle myself.
When the mail finally came, I sat in my spot (in a chair by the window) and watched for that white envelope. The second I saw it, I was running out the door. Mom didn't even get the chance to take a picture of me waiting. Well I ran outside, and had to wait for the obligatory mailbox pictures, and then I opened it (the mailbox), and there it was! My mission call! Not anyone else's! Just mine! It still felt so unreal. In my hands I held my mission call. I was going to serve a mission, and I still had no idea when or where.
I waited for L to get home, and stood out on the front porch with my mission call. L saw the envelope and thought it was for him. As soon as he realized what it was though, he started crying. I felt so bad! He was so upset and didn't want me to leave! It was so sweet! Once S and H got home, I told them, and although there was a slight problem, everything worked out.
Before everyone had gotten home from school, I called and texted everyone who I wanted to come over/ skype. After figuring out everyone's schedules, we decided that 7:00PM was the perfect time to open my call. So, then I waited for four more hours. And let me tell you, by the time 7:00 came around, I felt sick. I was so excited and nervous, and SO anxious to find out where I was called.
We had the missionaries, Elder S and Elder H, over. We also had H and C, and Brother K over. We called Grandma and Grandpa, and skyped with K, and K. Grandparents in Virginia, K in Hawaii, and K in Canada. We also facetimed M and B in Utah, and R in Tennessee. It was so cool being surrounded by my friends and family. And then, it was time. Time to open my call.
I stood in the front where everyone could see, and started to open the envelope. It was really hard to open, and so I had to rip it open. Then I pulled it out, and flipped over my call (making sure the booklet covered everything). Then I started reading. I made sure not to let my eyes jump ahead. Once I got to Japan Kobe Mission, I was SO surprised and SO happy! I knew that it was perfect for me, and right where I was needed the most. :) I was so excited I forgot to keep reading. Someone had to ask me when I was leaving, what language I was speaking, and which MTC I was reporting to.
I report to the Provo MTC (Missionary Training Center) on May 28 (once again, perfect), and I am going to be speaking Japanese. It was so surreal opening that call, and I could not be happier to serve.
Heavenly Father knows me so well, and is so aware of my needs. I am so excited to devote 18 months to serving him.
Did I mention how excited I am???
One of the things that I remember being asked is did you ever think you might go to Japan? And honestly? Japan was a thought for maybe a split second. My thoughts were more on Europe, maybe because I had just gotten home from Ukraine. After I got my call though, I started to think about the last few weeks leading up to that point, and I kept thinking of little things and moments where you would think Japan would have been on my radar, but it wasn't. :) And that is what makes it even more perfect. Perfect. Just perfect.
As the past month has flown by, I have had many opportunities to think about Japan, and my call to serve. I think the one thing I am most concerned about, is learning the language. Lucky for me though, my Heavenly Father is looking out for me, and has placed so many people in my life that have given me reassurance, dictionaries, taught me a few words, offered to help me, and really helped me to know that through Christ I can do it. :) I mean really, if learning Japanese is my biggest concern? my mission is going to be a walk in the park. Just kidding. It is going to be TOUGH! But SO worth it!
So. With all that said, let's talk about Japan!
I am excited for:
- Cherry Blossoms
- Squatty Potties (I know... call me weird)
- Asian Cuisine
- Asian babies!
- Peace signs in EVERY picture!
- Funny Engrish signs
- 100 Yen stores
- Sitting on the floor to eat
- Teaching the Gospel
- BEING A MISSIONARY IN JAPAN!!!
- Big cities
- Little farming and fishing land
- Socks and Sandals
- Biking everywhere
- Cherry Blossoms!
- JAPAN! :)
The list could go on and on forever. :) Haha.
Basically, the moral of the story is that I can't wait to serve in the Japan Kobe Misison. :)