|Leaving on the airplane!|
Yay! I'm a missionary now!! It's kinda weird because I'm still at home, and not on my way to the airport, and its also weird because I don't feel all that different except for the fact that I can't use my phone, go on FB, read, watch TV, play video games, etc. Oh and that I can't go anywhere without a companion. That's kinda strange, but not too weird.
I was glad Aunt Jill, Uncle Jeff, and Nick were able to make it to my setting apart. That was very nice of them:) The time that I was supposed to get set apart kept changing because we weren't sure when Robert's Invitational MMC Track Tournament ended, but I am glad we pushed it back, even though Robert's track meet ended at like 4 because then Jeff and his family could make it since Nick was at Elder Bednar's conference thing.
I still think its really cool that I get to go to the same mission as Ben, with the same mission president and everything. President Marshall didn't realize that it was the same mission president too. He thinks that super special, and not at all a coincidence.
One strange thing about my actual setting apart was being the one sitting in the chair facing everyone. I've been in the other seats with both Ben and Josh, and its way different being the one sitting in that chair. I missed having all my siblings there, but I was really glad Robert came:) (Not that he wouldn't have, but he was good representation for the rest of my siblings.)
Before I was set apart, President Marshall invited everyone that was there to give me a bit of advice. (Which if you remember he does every time.) Its definitely different being the one receiving the advice than giving it.
Uncle Jeff told me to learn the importance of revelation. That while I'm on my mission I need to learn to recognize the spirit and follow what it says. He said he thinks I already have a good grasp on it, but he wasn't me to remember to listen when I'm out in the field.
Aunt Jill told me that she remembers that even when I was little I had great faith. That it would serve me well on my mission. She also said that when she served her mission, she had an English speaking state side mission, and that at first, she was a little disappointed that she wasn't speaking another language, but since then has come to appreciate that she spoke English on her mission because she learned how to bear her testimony in English. So many people when they learn other languages for their mission will associate the language with their testimonies and their mission work, and for her and she feels like for me too, speaking English helped increase her testimony, and her ability and likelihood to use it after her mission.
Nick said that there will be times that I will feel alone, that there will be days where it is just so hard, you feel like you can't go on, and he said that if I just kneel down and pray, and then go to work that it will be all worth it. He told me though not to forget that it is hard work and not just all fun and excitement like we might sometimes think.
Robert talked about the example that I am to him, and to others, and that I need to continue to be that example on my mission because I never know who is watching. He also said all his older siblings were great examples to him, and he wants to be like us:) (I think he misses his siblings, and is sad that I am leaving so fast) I love you kiddo:)
|Mother's Day with family|
Dad expounded on what everyone else said (cried too) and told me that in relation to what Nick said, that in those times when I feel alone to realize that will never be alone, because the spirit will always be with me. Christ is there to answer my prayers. He also said to remember that as a missionary I will have a greater dispensation of spirit and so it will be easier to not feel quite as alone as you might otherwise feel.
Mom talked about my great faith. She recalls my patriarchal blessing and how although I am a very smart person, my blessing doesn't go into a super a lot of detail about that, it really only mentions it in passing, but that the vast majority of my blessing focuses on my faith and the impact it has on others. She told me that I know the Spirit well, and that I need to use that to help me teach the individuals learn rather than to just teach the information.
I then was set apart, and that was really cool too. Mom and Dad cried, and can you believe it? President Marshall didn't have any Kleenex left. I am glad everyone was there, and I'm sad none of you were, but I'm grateful you all Skyped Sunday on Mother's Day so I can see you one last time before I leave for real. I love all of you, and you better all read my emails, because I will be putting a lot of effort and time into them, and tis the only time I get to talk to each of you:)
Love, Your favorite sister,
Sister Monica Walker