Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Because I have been given much, I too must give.

Last week, Tyler Morgan wrote me and asked, 
"What do you think the biggest lesson is that you have learned on your mission?" 
My email today will answer that question...

I will never forget the promise that I made to Heavenly Father October 31, 2013; that for the rest of my life, I would not only turn to him for guidance, but accept whatever he would want me to do in this life. President Kahnlein had just called me and told me that I was going to be staying in Chile for the surgery and that it would be a 2-3 month recovery in the mission home. I was....devastated, to say the least. I remember just falling on the ground, crying like a li'l baby and then remembering Matthew 26:39.

"And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."

I knew that if the Lord wanted me to stay in Chile, I needed to accept it and trust him. So, I regained my strength, just enough to get on my knees. Instead of asking him to help me find a way to go home for the surgery, I asked for Him to help me understand and give me the strength to accept His will. That was a rough time thinking that I was going to be in Chile for the surgery, but I accepted it. What a relief. Then, I later found out that there was a doctor (who is in our STAKE back home) that would be able to do the surgery and that I'd be home for the holidays to recover! As as many of you know, when I got home, I was home for good. I felt good about the 10 months I had served and was content with staying home and going back to school.

After being home for a few weeks, I felt that I hadn't really turned to the Lord 100% in this decision. I knew I needed to ask him if he wanted me to go back out and finish my mission. Long story short, I'd never received such a direct answer that my mission wasn't over and I needed to return back to finish my calling as a missionary. I was happy when President McKay (our Stake Pres.) told me that I was only expected to go back out and finish my last 4 transfers, 6 months, and that it wouldn't be necessary to add the time I was home for surgery if I didn't want to. I knew I would be able to serve strong and faithfully with a return date of June 24.

Back at the airport headed to the San Diego California mission.

My first transfer was more than a success. It felt so good to be back in the mission, healthy and happy! I loved my district and I'm in a perfect area.The night before transfers last week, President Clayton called me and asked if I would be willing to stay until October. Like I told you, Mama, my first reaction was H no! (Didn't say it, but thought it!) Then when he asked if I would stay until September, it was another H no! But when he sincerely asked me if I would consider August 5, I told him I would pray about it. I didn't want to extend. I came out here to finish and in my mind that meant June 24. It was hard enough to decide to come back out for a SECOND mission but I didn't want to have to decide to extend or not. I felt really guilty all week that I didn't have a desire to stay longer...and I wanted to feel proud of my work that I would have accomplished from now until June. 

On top of that stress, my dear sweet, new trainee has really been struggling with anxiety and other personal problems. She met with President Clayton yesterday to figure out what is going to be best with her. She doesn't think she can do this and wants to go home. I'm trying my best to love her and work with her. We don't have a car or bikes so we've been walking like crazy and are still waiting for my background check from the DMV in Utah. It's been a long week to say the least.

After my companion met with President Clayton yesterday, he asked if he could talk with me. He told me that it would be an easy procedure for President McKay to write a letter to church headquarters, asking for permission for me to have a release date of June 24th. Ughhhhhh! Now, I was back to being able to go home June 24th without any problems. But something in my heart told me that by the time my return date would come, I would regret not staying for as long as I could. Without me asking, President Clayton asked me if I would like to call my mom and talk it over with her. Like I said to you Mama, NEVER would President Kahnlein have let me do something like that; but it was the best thing for me. Talking to you helped more than anything and I felt really clear about my thoughts and what I needed to do.

I have remembered my promise that I made to Heavenly Father, "Not as I will, but as thou wilt." I asked him if He would like me to serve until August 5th and I feel really good about it. Even though I would like to come home for summer time, road trips, friends, fun, work, etc., I feel like this is what I'm supposed to do. Six more weeks will fly by and what a blast to be able to get released here in SD and go straight to the beach house in Newport to be with the family!!! I have faith that all will work out and that I'll never regret the opportunity I had to serve a bit longer. 

I know that if we humble ourselves, leave our nets and follow our Savior, we will be blessed and constantly guided by the spirit This mission has been FAR different than what I had planned, but I wouldn't change any of the experiences that I've had for the world.

I wish I had more missionary/investigator updates but nothing new has really happened this week. My main focus right now is helping my companion understand why she is here and get her going. She is incredible and has so much potential! She is an amazing missionary and has a beautiful testimony. Her family is from the Dominican Republic but she was born and raised in Queens, New York. She is a native speaker, 23 and has a beautiful spirit.
We get along great and I love her dearly.

Congrats Tay Tay on getting accepted to USU!! That will be such a great experience for you! I hope you have a Happy Birthday this week! I sent you a little something today. :)

Thanks Mama for helping me yesterday! You are wonderful and I hope you and dad enjoy your Cancun get away this next week! Love you cuties.


Hermana Pendleton

1 comment:

  1. Happy you found clarity, Katie. And so glad you are blessed with a great mom…and an MP who let you talk to her when you needed to most.