Sunday, January 26, 2014

The Call!!

What better place to start than how I made the big decision to serve a mission? Here goes nothing! When President Monson announced the age change for females from 21 to 19, and for males 19 to 18, I considered a mission…for a good 24 hours. (Okay, maybe like 48 hours). After that, I decided Nah..I’ll just go to school and get my degree and everything will be perfect. I was sooooooo excited to go to Rexburg, and I thoroughly enjoyed my first semester there. After struggling the first couple weeks with several different things, I earnestly prayed for two weeks before the October general conference that two burning questions in my heart would be answered. One of my best friends drove down to conference with me, and once there, I met up with Preslee and spent the weekend with her. I prayed..and prayed..and prayed..I need these questions answered, Heavenly Father. During the Saturday afternoon session, I received a simple answer during Elder Valenzuela’s talk, “Melody, you need to serve a mission.” I am embarrassed to say that for about two seconds, I ignored the prompting and pretended nothing happened. However, it kept nagging at me. I thought in my head, I can’t. I just can’t. I have a student loan, I’m in debt, I just can’t do it. As the feeling continued, I prayed right then and there during that talk to know how to make this happen. After finishing my prayer, the thought came to me, you can sell your car. A sacrifice, but one well worth it. Now looking back, what’s so amazing to me is that neither of my two questions had anything at all to do with a mission, yet both were answered by that one simple answer…weird? Yeahhhhh. I began crying, this was so unexpected! I told my Heavenly Father I would do it, no matter what it takes. I then looked over at my sister and whispered, “What do you do about student loans on a mission?” Confused, she replied…”I don’t know,” and she went back to listening to the talk. After that session was over, we walked out onto the balcony of the conference center and I straight up told her, “Pep. I’m going to prepare to serve a mission.” I think she was excited for me, but wanted to know that I was actually serious this time. I prayed again that night and told my Heavenly Father that I would know this was right if I woke up the next morning and was still excited and ready to serve. Sure enough, when I woke up the next morning, the first thing that came to my mind was, I’m serving a mission! And I cannot wait! This same thought was the first thing on my mind the next morning, and the next, and the next, and still is one of the first things I think about at the start of each new day. I called my parents the next day and told them, and they were excited. That night, Alex (my boyfriend at the time) and I went for a walk to talk about everything. It was an interesting talk to say the least! We walked over to Porter Park, and when I couldn’t take it any longer I blurted out, “I’m preparing to serve a mission!” He freaked and was super excited, the response I was hoping for. We talked, and talked, and talked, and came to the conclusion that in order for me to prepare to my best ability and have minimal distractions and temptations, it’d be best for us to be apart. It was hard, I may have cried a little bit. But knowing that the break up was necessary and that my Heavenly Father was by my side helped so much. Knowing that Alex was supportive and happy for my decision also helped during the following weeks. That was on Sunday night, and 2 days later I had my first interview with my bishop. 5 weeks later, my call came in the mail. After sprinting to the mailbox, screaming loud enough for the whole town of Rexburg to hear, and taking a picture with the call, my roommate hid my call in her room until the next day when my family arrived. Opening it was so exciting, and the minute I read, “You are assigned to labor in the Mexico Merida mission,” I had an immediate love for the people I will be serving. With my love for Spanish, I was soooo excited. I know that the Lord knows the thoughts and intents of my heart, and He knows that Merida is where I need to serve. With that knowledge, I get more and more excited everyday to see what’s in store as I serve the people of Mexico.
I practically peed myself when I saw the big white envelope in our little mailbox. Big cheesy smile! And then Kendall hid it for the next 24 hours because I knew if she didn't that I would open it before my family could get there!!

Here we go...

So…it’s pretty boring and nothing special, but that’s okay. It’s a blog nonetheless, and it’ll work for me! Luckily for me, I will have the pleasure of blogging during my mission! For those who don’t already know, I have been called to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the Mexico, Merida Mission. I will serve for 18 months and teach in the Spanish language. Words can’t even begin to describe how excited I am for this opportunity to learn and grow in the gospel, and to teach the wonderful people in Mexico of the doctrines I know to be true. I thought that it might be a good idea to write a couple posts before I go! Also, while I’m in the field, I’ll be able to post my weekly emails and pictures on here for those of you who want to stay updated on my journey! It’s my prayer that this blog will not be too boring and that you all will be able to read my weekly letters and emails all in one place! I’m working on becoming a better writer because I feel as if my writing is pretty mind-numbing…maybe that’ll change, but don’t count on it.