I'm halfway through my mono (hopefully) and this has been a crazy month and a half. Ever since I stepped off of that plane and into my mother's open arms, I've been an emotional wreck. This has been one of the hardest trials I have ever faced. For a long time, I asked myself, "Why me?? I was ready to go!!" It was so hard for me to be so excited to go and so excited to finally get my life going. I was so excited to serve the people of Bakersfield, CA, and more importantly to serve my Beloved Heavenly Father. I was so frustrated that I was "one of those people" that came home wayyyyyyy too early. Am I planning on going back out?? ABSOLUTELY! I have watched so many of my friends and peers leave to serve their missions. I've been so jealous because I was supposed to be out in the mission field by now!!! I would've been out for almost two months! Why did the Lord want me to come home of all things???
Well.... today I received my answer. But first, let me tell you a little bit of background. So when I got off of the plane I was so sick. My temperature was very high (It was about 100 degrees fahrenheit), my tonsils were so big that I looked like I had just had my wisdom teeth removed, and I was so weak and tired. I promise I'm not over emphasizing. It was horrible. I couldn't hardly swallow water, let alone any kind of food. The lymph nodes in my stomach were so swollen that you could feel them and they made me nauseous every time I would eat anything. Let me tell you, it's been one of the worst experiences ever. With all that said, I was near tears when I saw my mother again. I had talked to her on the phone the day before to tell her I was coming home and it was definitely one of the most bittersweet phone calls I've ever had to make. I was so disappointed in myself for having to come home. I missed the mission field and I missed my companion, Sister Jacobs. Well to make a long story short, I've been released from my mission until I get better. So I'm hopefully headed back out to the mission field at the end of this month or the first of December.
While I've been home, I've had to learn patience. I've had the chance to talk a lot with my sweet mother and her experience with her trials. I've been able to accept and love the small things in life that I had previously taken for granted. I've been able to learn how to crochet (and I'm currently working on a King size blanket) and it's so fun!! I've been able to think about my purpose as a missionary a lot and I've had the chance to talk and encourage my friends who have just recently gone out on missions. I've had the chance to help my sweetheart get ready for his mission (and we'll be leaving around the same time this time.... YAY!!!). I've had opportunities to edit books and to improve my own study skills. I've had so many opportunities to learn and to grow. I haven't enjoyed it very much, but I've certainly enjoyed the extra time at home with my sweet family <3
So my purpose in writing this... well... I've discovered my purpose why I came home. The Lord hasn't given me an answer of why I'm home and I think that was His purpose. I've had to contemplate and ponder whether or not I should really go back on my mission. I've had so many moments of self-doubt. It hasn't been fun. But the reason I'm home is because the Lord is testing me to see if I'm really committed to His work. And I am. I want to be a servant to the Lord for 18 months. I'm willing to make that sacrifice. I want this.
A song that I heard today really helped me grasp my purpose... it helped me to realize that the Lord has been mindful of me and that he is not punishing me for anything... he's really helping me to grow.
Some of the lyrics say:
"Sometimes He lets it rain,
He lets the fierce winds blow.
Sometimes it takes a storm to lead a heart where it can grow."
Listen to it for yourselves. Trials of faith come to those whom the Lord trusts. I know we all can grow from hard trials. God has built us to do hard things. We are His children. He hasn't sent us here to fail. Do your best and ask your Heavenly Father for help. I promise His help will come. You can do this <3