Hey.... world! (I guess this isn't being sent to my family anymore.)
So. I'm back. This isn't exactly harvesting in the potato fields of Idaho anymore, but I will still continue the accounts of my harvesting on a less than full-time basis. Just because I've successfully completed 18 blissful months of spiritual bootcamp doesn't mean I can coast to the finish; I've got the rest of eternity to go! And Heaven knows that I'm still on a mission; I will always be seeking to invite others to come unto Christ, and I will always be seeking to better my own spirit. I just got transferred, remember?
And what a transfer. New area, new companion (or lack thereof), new language, new customs. I've entered into a strange world of holding babies and hugging people of the opposite gender, and where people watch pictures move in magical, metal boxes. I seem to be a bit out of my element, but as I study the culture of my new environment, they seem not to detect as much that I'm an awkward, scripture-preaching returned missionary.
Except for that one guy at a young single adult ultimate frisbee tournament who kept touching me on the arm that pointed out I kept backing away from him without even realizing it. Oops...
Haha but other than that and just a few other minor post-mission quirks, I've been fine with the transition! I've been blessed with wonderful family and friends to talk to when I feel like driving my head through the floorboards for lack of structured time, and I've also been blessed to find things to keep me busy to avoid the aforementioned feelings. I know that the promises our Father in Heaven has made to take care of those who serve Him and His children are true! In my personal studies, I've felt revelation pour into me of how to proceed and what to do, just like it did on the mission! My questions are being answered one by one, and my concerns are being addressed, or at least given peace to counteract the stress. I know I'm being watched over, and I feel the Spirit as strongly as I did while I was serving the Lord full-time. It all depends on what you do with the time you're given!
With that said, I have seen a pull to gradually fall back into who I was before my mission. To sink; to forget. But as L. Whitney Clayton said when he toured the IPM back in February, "Success is doing the small things well." I've noticed that as I start my days with a good personal scripture study, as I keep praying, as I seek the Spirit's guidance continually throughout the day, I can keep building up that spiritual armor around myself to keep from forgetting the wonderful lessons I've learned and the incredible blessings I saw and people I met on my mission. Though it does kind of feel like my mission was just a dream, not only have I been able to see the change in myself, but mission memories come back and solidify themselves bit by bit as I do the small things and as I share those experiences with others. The Lord has given me so many miraculous missionary opportunities since I've been back, and it's been such a tender mercy!
So, hello, World. It's good to be back! Even though I apparently have a hard time letting your boys tap me on the arm still (seriously, I had no idea!), I'm ready to take you on! I know that I can do anything with my Savior at my side.
1. 4 hours of ultimate frisbee :) It's good to be back!
2. The Sacred Grove: one of my favorite places in the world