After post number one about pre-mission life I knew that another post had to be written. While there are plenty of hard times that accompany preparing missionaries, there are countless blessings as well. I would love to share some of them that I have experienced these last few months.
1. TEMPLE BLESSINGS
One of the biggest blessings I have had the opportunity to experience since receiving my call was being endowed from on high. The covenants we make in the temple give us literal power. I have realized a shift in the ways I think and act; I focus more on the important things and less on what the world thinks is important; I am filled with peace and understanding. I agree with Elder David A. Bednar when he said, "The temple is a point of intersection between heaven and earth. In this
sacred place, holy work will be performed through selfless service and
love. The temple reminds me of all that is good and beautiful in the
The convents I have made in the temple become more sacred to me the more I attend the temple. Because there is a lot to learn in the temple, going once will not allow you to gain a perfect understanding of all things. The more I attend the temple, the more I understand AND the more peace I gain from it. I encourage preparing missionaries, with the counsel of their Bishop, Stake President, and the Holy Ghost, to receive your endowment soon after getting your call. And then to attend as much as possible. It will bless your life like it has blessed mine.
Something that I have found a new understanding of through the temple is the sacrament. Elder L. Tom Perry explained "By partaking of the Sacrament we renew all covenants entered into with the Lord. . . " While I am not perfect, this opportunity to renew ALL the covenants I have made has blessed my life. I view the sacrament with more reverence than I have in the past because I realize the significance of this ordinance more fully.
2. EVERYONE IS PRAYING FOR YOU
How many times have you been present during a prayer in which the missionaries are prayed for? Probably like 3 billion. (Okay, so maybe that is an exaggeration, but it's close.) Missionaries are prayed for in 29,621 congregations, 188 languages, and 148 temples. (mormonnewsroom.org/facts-and-statistics/) And that doesn't include the 15,000,000+ members that pray for the missionaries in personal prayers. While I , along with many others, have not yet been set apart, I humbly believe that those prayers benefit preparing missionaries as well. I feel those prayers as I prepare and I am extremely humbled and strengthened by them.
3. YOU HAVE SUPPORT
I was blessed with a family that raised me in the gospel, a loving and supportive ward, and wonderful friends. All of these groups of people support me in my decision to serve a mission. Their support is what strengthens and sustains me when things get tough. I have people that believe in me and love me.
Not everyone is blessed into families that have the gospel and there are plenty of people that do not support preparing missionaries. If this is you, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! The Prophets, Apostles, and leaders of the church, all divinely called, support you. They trust you. Heavenly Father trusts you. 18 year old boys and 19 year old girls are capable to be missionaries because Heavenly Father qualifies those whom He calls. Don't worry, as Neil L. Anderson has said, "You know enough!" Furthermore, there are legions of angels behind you. 2 Kings 6:16: And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.
4. EVERYTHING RELATES TO MISSIONARY WORK
After getting a mission call, suddenly every talk, hymn, Sunday school lesson, Facebook post, and conversation can be related to missionary work. In reality, we all do this is whatever stage we are at, whether you are a new mom, giving a talk on the Atonement next week, or have been struggling with saying your prayers, we tend to relate things to our current situation especially when guided by the Spirit. But the great thing about missionary work is that you have a new purpose! Now your studies turn to helping OTHERS grow closer to Christ and the Restored gospel. Studying becomes more purposeful and exciting. Reading the Book of Mormon this last time around I have related so much of the beautiful stories and testimonies to missionary work. I read it with a new hunger that I have never before felt and it is so exciting! While I have studied the scriptures so much for my own benefit for the last 19 years, the opportunity to study the scriptures for others has helped me gain so much more insight! It is one of the coolest things ever!
The Lord blesses His missionaries, including preparing missionaries. I am amazed by the tender mercies I witness on a daily basis. There are miracles every single day. I think they are Heavenly Father's way of showing His love and support as missionaries prepare.
One miracle that I experienced was the day I was endowed. The other sister being endowed that day in my session is going to my mission the exact same day. There are no coincidences. I have had dreams of revelation, words of encouragement at the exact moment I needed them, more money in my account than I thought, enough gas to get to the temple, safety in countless situations, and so many more miracles that I cannot see or cannot name.
I know that while the adversary increases his attempts to thwart our plans, Heavenly Father increases the blesses that rain down from above. My cup has indeed run over tenfold.