Good morning to all! 10 Sept 12
This will officially be my last email from the mission field. That is a very weird fact for me to handle. I still remember going into the MTC, as if it were yesterday. My mission truly has flashed before my eyes and I don't really know how I am handling it all yet. Of course, I am excited to go home and see all those dear loved ones that I haven't seen for two whole years. But there is truly a part of me that wants to stay here. They say it is a sign that you truly served a good mission if you still want to stay. I know that my heart is still attached to Utah. I never thought that would happen when I first got here. I always figured that I would come here, serve, and go home to Washington without in major change in my love for a place. But I am truly attached to Utah. As crazy as it sounds, I love Utah. I love the people here, I love the scenery, I just love Utah. This is truly where my heart is at this moment in time. This whole week, I have just been going about things trying to stay busy and focused. Nothing really hit me about going home until yesterday. I finally realized that it would be the last time driving on some of these streets. The last time that I will see these people that I have truly come to love. The last time that I will be in the chapels here. The last time I will sleep in my bed. The last time I will study with my companion.
Yesterday was probably one of the roughest days for me. I went through the meetings in the morning fine and with a smile on my face. But in the evening as we went to our weekly coordination meeting, as I said goodbye to all those members that I had worked with for 6 months, I just started to break down. The people that I have associated with multiple times a week, I am just leaving behind. I was able to go up and give President Stilson, a member of the Stake Presidency a hug, and it was humbling what happened. I didn't really know what he thought of me and my service here, but as he gave me a hug, he started to choke up and cry a little and he said, "Thank you for your service Elder. I love you. Please know that!" I was caught off guard by that and I was very humbled that this older man was able to portray the love that he had for me in just such simple words. I truly knew that he meant it too.
I really don't know how much sense I am making, but basically I just want everyone to know how much I love my mission. I haven't been perfect, and have made my share of mistakes, but I am so grateful for the chance that I had to serve here in the Utah St. George Mission. I have gained more experience here then I could anywhere else in the world. There is no replacement for my mission, nor will there ever be. I love the people that I have come to know. I love my companions. I love the leaders here. I just flat out love my mission. I will forever be changed for what I have done here for the last two years.
Am I sad that it is coming to a close? You bet! I am sad because I know that I am leaving behind something that I have worked so hard at for the last two years of my life. I have put my blood, sweat (a lot of that in St. George last summer), and my tears (a lot of those through out my whole mission) into it. So of course I am going to be sad to leave all these things behind. But I know that there are so many great things that lay in store for me. I have truly done what the Lord has asked of me, to go a serve a full-time mission to help others to come unto to Christ and to know the truth. I am now moving forward in my life to find out what else the Lord needs me to do. I hope to be able to live my life that I will be able to maintain the strong relationship with my Heavenly Father that I have obtained over the last two years. I know that these lessons will help me with the rest of my life. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ, more then ever. I know that He lives and He has suffered for us. I know that this is the Lord's true church upon the earth. Joseph Smith was a true prophet. He did in fact see God, the Father, and the Son, Jesus Christ. The Book of Mormon truly is the word of God. It changes lives, because I have seen it change mine. These things can change anyone’s life, if they will just learn of them and let them into their hearts.
Last of all, I want to just thank everyone again for the letters, emails, and support that they have given me over the last two years. I really appreciate it. I know that there are blessings in store for you all as well! Well I thanks again and I love you all! See you all in a few days! Cuidanse!
Live it, Love it, Preach it! (Even after the mission!)
la ultima vez del campo misional,