This week is one of my happiest weeks EVER as my daughter Ashley is coming home from her mission Tuesday! In last Thurssday’s email I explained just how much I have loved getting Ashley’s weekly emails she’s been sending home over the last 18 months because they share the cool life lessons she has been learning along the way. In honor of her coming home this week I decided that throughout this week I am going to be sharing some favorite snippets from Ashley’s emails with all of you. I think you will LOVE them. I am going to post them in the chronological order because it will really illustrates the growth that takes place over the course of 18 months when someone is focused solely on serving others.
Below is Part One of a Five Part Blog of snippets from Ashley’s emails (note they are in her exact words and punctuation…hashtags and all 🙂 :
———END OF WEEK ONE (MISSIONS ARE HARD): JANUARY 21 2015
Thursday: worst. day. of. my. life. And the longest…FOR ANYONE WHO HAS THEIR MISSION CALLS: MISSIONS ARE HARD. Like, you think you know… but you have no idea until you actually get out here! I definitely thought I knew what I was getting into. Dude. Just make sure you are doing it for the Lord and all of the right reasons! Because there is absolutely no way you can make it through even a week in the Mission Training Center if it’s for anything or anyone else!
Friday: I’m learning so much patience. With myself mostly…. If you don’t have faith on a mission you’re toast – Learning a language is harder, feeling the spirit is harder, everything is harder. SO FAITH IS KEY!!!!
Saturday: Best day of my life!
Sunday: Just know i could go on for days about how great it is, and hard it is, and funny it is! The emotional rollarcoaster is so real! But for the most part it is SOOO GOOD!… Missions are amazing! love you all so so so much and miss everyone like crazy!!!!!!!!!!!! But a mission is exactly what I am supposed to be doing right now! I know that!
———A FEW WEEKS LATER (ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING) FEB 4 2015
“Some people see the glass half empty. Good people see the glass half full. But extraordinary people are just grateful for the glass!”
Heavenly Father will never take our trials or hardships away from us – But He WILL give us the strength to carry our burdens! Geez i love that guy. Keep your head up, chin held high, and walk through Heck with a smile!…Attitude is everything…the gospel is amazing!
ONE MONTH MARK: (EXACT OBEDIENCE BRINGS JOY) Feb 11 2015
This week our District goal was EXACT OBEDIENCE! yikes. ya it´s harder than it seems! But it was so good! And the blessings are real! Our first morning we had that goal I was asked to say the prayer for district meeting… and in my prayer I asked to bless us to have fun while still being exactly obedient. tee hee when i said that everyone started laughing!! look... it´s possible to have fun while being exactly obedient!! Holy cats read ALMA 26!!! It talks all about how the gospel is full of JOY!!! and how HAPPY it makes people!! It says happiness and joy like 10 times!! Look… if we aren´t laughing and having fun everyday…we´re doing it wrong! The whole point of Heavenly Father´s plan is HAPPINESS!!! Hence, the Plan of Happiness!!! COME ON! THATS SWEET!!! I think we sometimes lose sight of that and think of the “rules” that we follow. But in reality the whole point of this gospel is to make us happier than we´ve ever been before! So it´s okay to have fun and laugh a little..All while being exactly obedient!!! 🙂
———THREE MONTHS IN – (REFINER’S FIRE) APRIL 21 2015
COOLEST STORY EVER ALERT***
In a Book of Mormon class at BYU they kept talking about the refiner’s fire. One girl wanted to learn more about what that meant… so she went to a legit silversmith place to watch as they refined the silver. First, the silversmith held each individual piece of silver over the fire BY HAND, not a machine. Then when they were ready, he took them out. The girl asked, “when do you know when it’s ready to be taken out?” and the silversmith said, “When i can see my reflection in it.”
…… DUDE! COME ONE!!!!! SO COOL! God hold each and every one of us over our own “fires” or trials and afflictions by hand. He watches us carefully and is always there. Then once we endure our trials well and with patience, and actually start to “reflect” HIS countenance, we are ready to be taken out of the fire.
———FOUR MONTHS IN (POWER OF ENTHUSIAM) MAY 4 2015
This was the BEST WEEK OF MY LIFE!!!! Can we all just take a second to LOVE THIS GOSPEL!!??? gosh dang it!!! THE CHURCH IS TRUE! #knowit #liveit #LOVEIT!
**Tomorrow I will share some more snippets of her mission so watch for Part Two.
~Amy Rees Anderson