Monday, May 4, 2015

Week #37 - Humility Opens Doors

Dear Family!!

I really love you guys. I hope you are all doing okay! I've been praying for your health Mom, be prepared for the tidal wave of missionary'll get cha :)  
My New District
I got a new companion, Sister Lightheart and this is her last transfer. I am learning as much as possible from her. 18 months of missionary knowledge? Heck yeah I'll take it! I am doing very well. This past transfer meeting President Richardson pulled me aside and told me that I was not the missionary that had come in...that I had lost my fire, and that I needed to change.  I've been thinking a lot about what he said and realized that he was right. Yes, I had lost some of that fire and realize why; however, I wouldn't have if he hadn't said something. So, did hurt BUT I am grateful for what he said. 

 When I very first came into the mission, I didn't like who I was. I was prideful - I had a lot of anger, and hurt that I didn't want others to know about. I pushed others away, closed myself off, didn't allow myself to love or to have compassion; although, I tried half-heartedly to do the work. I thought how one day I would go home and my family would see me as a RM that had changed so much...I wanted to be THAT amazing missionary that trained after green-breaking and then straight to STL.  I wanted for everyone to believe that I was really amazing. However, over the past 9 heart has healed, my pride has been demolished, and I love who I am. I don't like my weaknesses still, BUT I am not crippled by them and I never will be again. I have finally come to the point where I no longer "aspire to the honors of men"....instead, I just want God to be happy with me. I want him to be able to use me. I want to WORK! Before, I wanted to LOOK like a hardworking, amazing missionary but now I want to BE the hardworking, amazing missionary that God wants for me to be. I don't care how long it takes me because I trust in the Lord's timing and I wait for the moments when He knows that I am ready. I trust Him. I finally trust Him.  

I received blessing earlier in which God told me that He was proud of me and that He was proud of all the hard work, dedication and effort I put in and that He loved me. How could one priesthood leader, called of God, say that I had lost my fire while another said that God was proud of me? I really thought about it. I realized that if I truly believed that these men, who were called of God, were perfect.... then I needed to take a hike, because I was in the wrong religion. God glories in His son, Jesus Christ, because of the Atonement, and that is the foundation of our religion!! These men are CALLED of God, but they are not GOD. Instead of getting angry I tried to understand why I was given these two paths of anger or acceptance, pride or humility, faith or apostasy.  I realized that God was proud of me. He is still; however, He wants for me to get to work and to help His other children receive that same joy and peace that I have received ...I just needed a little kick in the skirt :)

I read the allegory of the Olive Tree in Jacob 5 this week and saw the way the Savior helped me apply it to myself. It mentions how an olive tree will never enter full, fruitful production without the careful cultivation and grafting of other branches. But it also states that if they get rid of all the natural branches it will die. Likewise, in vs 64-66, if one cuts out all the bad branches then the tree will likewise perish. In the end, one must strengthen the good branches until it can make up for the loss of the bad branches and then cut them away: vs  66 "For it grieveth me that I should lose the trees of my vineyard; wherefore ye shall clear away the bad according as the good shall grow, that the root and the top may be equal in strength, until the good shall overcome the bad, and the bad be hewn down and cast into the fire, that they cumber not the ground of my vineyard; and thus will I sweep away the bad out of my vineyard. God is doing this with me. He knows I will not have full production until I am grafted and changed but He also knows that I need some of my natural branches -- the core of who I am -- so that He can strengthen those and allow the good to overcome the bad. I love the scriptures. I received a previous blessing that the scriptures would help me to make my mission a joy. It's true :) The priesthood is real and blesses lives; don't ever take it for granted! 

Hermana Lightheart and I are doing well. It was a little rough towards the beginning, I wonder if she believed she was getting another "greenie" that she would have the responsibility to mentor, etc. because she seemed rather frustrated but after a little bit, things have smoothed over and we are starting to understand each other. I've prayed harder than ever that God would help me to understand her and her needs so that when she leaves the mission field, she goes with a good last transfer that can set the tone for the rest of her life. She is amazing. I feel such immediate love for my companion. We are WORLDS different but I've already learned a lot from her AND she is actively obedient. I LOVE IT!

I guess my miracle is the miracle of "me". I can't ask God for more than to give me a 2nd chance. That is a miracle! Changing me. Helping me. Lifting me. I have a lot of work to do but I have the Atonement...I know I'm being taken care of. How can someone as terrible as I receive such light and joy? Because of my Savior. I love Him so much. So, so much! 

I love you all! You are amazing, your prayers are felt and your letters are received with smiles and joy. Thank you!

Hna Lake

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