How does one even start their last email as a missionary? I'm not really sure, but here I go! Ah, here we are. 18 months later. So many things are the same, but so many things have changed. And how grateful I am for the changes that have happened over the past year and a half! Not only do I know who my Savior is, but I know Him more deeply than I thought possible. I've come to know that He is real and that the Atonement isn't just an event that happened over two thousand years ago, but it's an event that can take place in our lives every single day. If you read my letters, you know that prayer has become something that is fiercely important to me. Every morning my heart is so full of gratitude. Gratitude to my Heavenly Father, my parents and family, and especially to my older brother, Jesus Christ. I reflect back on my mission and just sit in awe at how I was able to do some hard things. JESUS. That's how. I know that He lives. I've learned that all things are possible through Him.
There are a lot of things that I've learned on my mission. Ahh too many to list in this little email. While teaching seminary this morning, I realized how up until my mission my whole life has been about ME. Me, me, me... no wonder I was miserable sometimes. I've learned that the only way to be happy is by losing yourself in the gospel. I've learned to trust that God's plan for me is much more grand than anything that I could plan for myself. Boy, am I so thankful that He has it all under control because goodness knows that I sure do not about 90% of the time :)
I know that the family is the most important unit in Heavenly Father's plan. I know that families can be together forever. It's no longer just a primary song that I sing, but is a fundamental truth that is ingrained on my heart. I've met some amaazzzing families here in Wisconsin and I've learned so much from them. I've also been around a lot of families whose situation makes me heart broken. I have seen so many families that the world has destroyed, but I know that the gospel can heal them; I know that Christ can heal them.
Well this is super crazy and I'm so excited to share all that I have learned with you in a few days! Sad to say goodbye to this wonderful place, though. I love Wisconsin and all the members, missionaries, and people that I've met here. This has become such a sacred place to me. It's true that ending a mission is harder than starting one. There is just so much happiness here and I can say with all my heart that this is the best thing that I have ever done in my life. I know that this happiness will continue... maybe in different ways, but this mission and the Gospel of Jesus Christ will forever bless my life!!
CTR. Be good. Say your prayers. Can't wait to squeeze you in a few days! I LOVE YOU.
"Behold, I answer for you; for our brethren, the [Wisconsinites], were in darkness, yea, even in thedarkest abyss, but behold, how many of them are brought to behold the marvelous light of God!And this is the blessing which hath been bestowed upon us, that we have been made instruments in the hands of God to bring about this great work". -Alma 26:3