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.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Its beginning to look alot like Christmas.

Hello Everyone!

I know you're probably thinking, "What? Christmas? It's SEPTEMBER!" But believe it or not it IS beginning to look and feel like Christmas here in Illinois! One of our investigators had us help them put up a Christmas tree since she didn't have room for it in storage. The weather also thinks it's going to be Christmas soon (it was 40 degrees when we went running a few days this past week). A member also fed us pie for dinner. For the midwest, that isn't actually related to Christmas, but for this west coast girl, it is! They have pie here ALL THE TIME! I've had chocolate cream, banana cream, coconut cream, berry, strawberry rhubarb, pumpkin, and apple pie so far. None of those were repeats either! So much pie! Also Sister Barret and I are also what we've decided to call "Chr-unky" where you're trunky for Christmas. We may or may not have watched "Joy to the World".... I plead the 5th! haha

The work is going so well! Kelly and Mark came to churh 3 SUNDAYS IN A ROW!! Apparently this is a huge deal because people don't usually do this. So exciting! Also it's been so awesome to watch how the spirit has changed them. Kelly takes our lessons so seriously it's adorable! I love it so much! She tries to help Mark with the things we teach her. People always think SHE's the member, but she's just the sweet investigator :)

This past week we had President interviews AND exchanges. Both of them went so well! I really loved being able to talk with President 1 on 1. My exchange went well. I stayed in the area and Sister Barret left! This is a big deal because I had to lead the Sister Training leader around and lead all the lessons and everything. Also I drove for the first time on my mission! I was nervous, but it turns out I didn't forget how to drive in the past 2 months. That's good news! The exchange turned out to be really good for me to see that I have grown more than I thought. I am actually a fully contributing missionary! Who knew? It was great for me to build my confidence in the Lord's ability to build me up. I know on my own I'm week, but if I let Him be my pal, Holy Toledo! Things go great :]

I know I say this nearly every week, but that's because every day it's reaffirmed to me that THE LORD IS TAKING CARE OF US! This week we have 5 Mondays, so our money has to stretch a tad farther than normal, but guess what? We've been getting fed more than normal :) So that's a blessing! The Lord truly takes care of our WANTS as well as our NEEDS.

So funny story: This past week we decided to go visit a less active we tracting into (they had moved without telling us where) and the husband answered the door this time. We were totally talking to him when he says, "Well I've got to go give the wife her meds. Okay." and closes the door awkwardly on us. IT WAS SO FUNNY! Sister Barret's face was just like, "Wwwwhat? Is he coming back? Was that a goodbye? What just happened?". I had a SUPER hard time not dying laughing. That's another thing I didn't expect to have to learn: how to not laugh when you feel like laughing. Funny things happen to us all the time! It's fun :p

Today I've officially been in Paris 2 months! Crazy! It's so awesome how much things have changed in the past 2 months. I've loved watching people change and grow. I've decided my favorite thing about a mission is watching people take steps on their own! I love when they choose to obey commandments without us telling them, or they notice other things they need to change without us pointing them out. It shows that the spirit is working on them and that's the most important thing!

Something that I've been thinking about lately is how just because we change our actions, it doesn't mean WE'RE changed. That's why short diets don't work in the long run. We truly need to be changed, not just in the moment. It's far more effective to change someone's nature, and as a result to have their actions change than it is to change their actions and hope their natures change. I've been thinking about that with myself and my struggles. I'm trying to find ways to change my nature so that my actions will change on their own, and not the other way around. If you want to change, and are trying to change, this is a great way!

So this past week we helped the branch with a float for the upcoming parade! It was fun. Who knew my Student council float skills would come in handy on my mission? I sure didn't! It's been really neat to see the small and simple ways that the Lord has been preparing me for my mission! It's very comforting because if He's been preparing me to serve a mission, I know He's preparing me for the things that lie ahead. We have no need to fear! He'll help us and prepare us for our future if we let Him :)

I love you all! I know the Lord lives and loves us so much! I know He's just waiting for us to keep His commandments so He can bless us and help us! The church is true and such a blessing! I hope you have a wonderful day :)

Lots of love and support,
Sister Edgel

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