Why Serve a mission?

When I was 15 years old I listened to the mother of a close friend talk about serving a mission. For the first time I remember really wanting to serve a mission when I turned 21. I just had to hear hundreds of missionaries sing "Called to Serve" in the MTC! Time went on, and I prepared for the different eventualities of life. When the age sister missionaries could serve dropped to 19, I was super stoked! I was 19, almost 20! I could go early! Well, it turned out that wasn't the time for me. November of 2013, I felt strongly like I should reconsider the mission idea. I did, and the pieces of the puzzle fell into place :) This is all really nice, but it's not really the WHY, it's more of the HOW.

So WHY am I choosing to dedicate 18 months of my life away from my family, friends, school, and a closet full of clothes to talk to people in Missouri? Well, 33 years ago, 2 male missionaries started talking to my dear sweet Momma. The message they shared with her changed the course of her existence, and our family. I'm so grateful for my Savior Jesus Christ and the knowledge I have of who He is, and what His plan for His children is. I can't help feeling like if I choose not to share this message with others that I'll be ungrateful for the amazing gift that I've been given. I've also been blessed with some talents that I'd like to give back to the Lord. As much as I love my family and the other things listed above, I love my Heavenly Father and Savior more. They have called, so I'm answering.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Remarkably, the Lord works with what I do know and what I can do.

Hello everyone!

I hope you are doing well! Life in Parie is great :) The weather warmed up back to 70 this week thankfully, and we also were blessed with rain. Most importantly, the work is going well! I'm still learning a lot! Remarkably, the Lord works with what I do know, and what I can do. He's just the best!

Sometimes, when you live in a small town, you're driving to appointments and see lots of people on the street, and realize that there's randomly a homecoming parade. True story! It was pretty funny. It's also funny because people cannot hide from us! We will see them at our service, or at Walmart, or somewhere! It cracks me up :p One day we saw these 2 guys out walking their dog like 3 times in an hour and a half! ha ha

This past week I rode a bike as a missionary for the first time! It was so hilarious! I laughed so hard. Illinois seems super flat.... until you're on a bike! haha Also I laughed so hard because I'm sure we looked ridiculous! Enjoy the picture :p It was also super funny because it started raining on us after we left. THE SKY WAS CLEAR! It was the only time that day it rained. SO FUNNY! It was so worth it though :)

The work is going so well! Kelly is so excited for her baptism. This week she said, "I just pray and ask for it to come faster!" Who doesn't want to hear that? It's also been so awesome to watch her husband's heart soften. They're so on fire I love it! That is the best part of missionary work: seeing people change as a result of the spirit. I love seeing people's testimonies grow and their desire to do good increase. I just love that I get to be a part of this work!

So another funny thing about being a missionary is that everyone tells you EVERYTHING! Something that Sister Barret and I joke about is how many ways people tell us people could die. This week we heard about blizzards, snakes, bugs, and the normal illnesses. We also heard about crazy stuff going down in America (we're not really sure what's honestly going on or if people are just super paranoid). It cracks us up. The biggest thing that I've learned from these people is that so much of our fear is unnecessary! If we are truly being obedient and follow God, we have nothing to fear! Everything is going to work out :) Heavenly Father will take care of us. It's funny how many times I have to learn the lesson that God is watching over me :) Have no fear! Instead, be obedient and have faith. HAVE FAITH!

This week was our branch's primary program and it was soooo cute! Sister Barret and I really enjoyed watching all of the cute little kids and their simple testimonies. We also liked watching the little boy who was eating his tie the whole time, and the other little boy who was playing with a string and covering his eyes with his slip of paper. Fun stuff. Kids are the best! Every kid makes me think of my nieces and nephews. Seeing little kids also makes me think about what Christ said about becoming as a little child. There was a little girl we saw last week who cracked us up because she was so bold! She saw us and was like, "What are you doing here?" When we left she asked us where we were going. She was just very truthful. What a great example :)

So a few weeks ago in Fast and testimony meeting, our ward mission leader talked about taking care of the cattle preventing him from reading his scriptures. It was the first time I had ever heard someone use cattle as a reason, so it cracked me up, but then I thought about MY excuses for not keeping the commandments perfectly. It was interesting to think about the example of my parents. I know that some of the commandments they keep because they LOVE them! If we learn how to love the commandments and understand and see the blessings of them, then we won't LET things get in our way. Food for thought :)

Another thing I've been thinking about lately is our desires. We have an investigator who is struggling with conflicting desires of wanting to be a good religous person, and wanting to party and "live it up". Something we've been focusing on is helping her realize that it's all about the big picture. We need to hold onto what we want most, to prevent us from giving it up in the moment. This is definitely something that I'M still working on. I was reading in Ether this morning, and it's so interesting because the Lord asks the brother of Jared a lot, "What do you want? What do you want me to do for you?" I know that the Lord asks us that question every day when we wake up in the morning. "What do you want? What would you like help with?" I'm still working on refining my answers and holding fast to the big picture.

Yesterday we had dinner and family home evening with the Branch president's family. We shared our thought from 1 Samuel 16:7. I love this verse, because it talks about how the Lord looks at our hearts, not our outsides. This is such an important verse for missionary work! We can't tell who will accept the gospel and who won't. Who are we to say, "No, they'd never accept!" I got really emotional because I told them about a young girl in high school who was one of those people that some people passed by and said, "Nope! Not her. She'd never accept the gospel." Well, that person is my Mother. She wanted to badly for SOMEONE to invite her! She wanted to change! I hope that as you've read that someone has come to your mind of someone who maybe you've thought, "Nope! Not them!" You never know. They may accept! They may not, but it's not our place to judge. Everyone deserves a chance to hear the gospel :)

I love you all! Keep on being the great member missionaries, friends, and visiting and home teachers that I know you are! We need more wonderful people who step outside of their comfort zones for the comfort of others :) Have a super week!

Lots of love and support,
Sister Edgel

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