Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Temporary Mission Reassignment

Hola Familia!
I think I am making the phrase "this was a great week" a cliché but it has definitely applied to every week I have been here!  Especially this week because I found what is going to happen to me and a little bit of what the Lord has planned for me.  I found out like I said before that I didn't get my visa and was put up for a reassignment.  I then had to wait a long four days until they had made reassignments and then had them approved.  So on Friday morning this last week I FINALLY found out where I got reassigned to.  Drum roll.....Salt Lake City Mission!!  I am heading out to the field on this upcoming Thursday.  I have heard some fun facts about the Salt Lake Mission like that it is the highest baptizing mission in the world and that I will have the chance to go to General Conference and shake the hands of all of the General Authorities!!  I am so stoked to have gotten this opportunity to serve instead of chilling in the MTC for the mean time and look forward to what the Lord has in store for me in the field!
Thanks Dad for sending me the BYU Football Shirt!  I actually was sitting at a table outside while the BYU vs. Washington game was going and could hear SO much noise coming from the stadium.  It was fun to think about all the great times I had at those games this past year.  I then quickly figured out that the noise from the game was distracting me and I had to move away to a more quiet spot to continue studying.  I hope that the team steps it up; I heard that they are having a rough start.  Anyways, this last Sunday I got to call home!  Wow, what a treat that was.  It was so good to hear your voices, Dad and Mom, and appreciate all the kind words you said to me.  I am EXTREMELY blessed to have your support and love and appreciate the wonderful examples you are to me.
So my companion, Elder Zylstra, left today for the Provo Mission (he was temporarily reassigned also) and I am with another Elder in my District named Elder Brewer from San Diego, California.  We laugh because outside of missionary work Elder Brewer and I would have been friends!  However, I miss Elder Zylstra so much and am grateful for all the wonderful, enriching experiences we had together.  We hit occasional rough spots but quickly came out of them and became better missionaries because of it.  That is one thing I have really learned is that I should not be ashamed or regret my past because it has made me who I am today.  It would have been better to not have made the mistakes I made, but I am who I am today from what I learned in overcoming the mistakes.  Overall, my experience here at the MTC has been amazing.  I have never felt closer to God in my life and have really anticipated every opportunity I can get to study the scriptures.  I know the scriptures are the word of God.  The scriptures provide opportunities for me to feel the Holy Ghost who then has brought stories and people to life.  I  am then able to get answers to pray and find good missionary work scriptures.  We are all so blessed to have such easy and plentiful access to the words of God!
One quick thought I had this week as it pertains to conference which is coming up soon.  There seem to be points and subjects that are referred to often throughout a given conference.  I have been reading past conference issues and discussing them with my fellow elders.  One thing we noticed is that they don't talk about not getting tattoos or body piercings or even the word of wisdom all that much.  Their greatest focus is on doing the small daily things such as praying and reading the scriptures.  I wish that I had more time to talk about this but I have 45 seconds!  Just ponder on that as the next session comes up!

Elder Janis

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