Dear Mom and Dad:
The work is sweeter and greater than ever and I love teaching more and more with each visit. I know that when the time comes for me to go that it's going to hurt quite a bit. I love these people so much. They are so incredible. They have so much to offer even when they don't own anything because they are so wise, so sacrificing, and have a different perspective than us. It does require a heck of a lot of getting out of your comfort zone and trying very new things but if you put your faith in the Lord to learn about and love a different culture, you receive so much!!
I think I mentioned this, but I have a list of people I want to talk to and visit after the mission. How selfish of me to never have shared the gospel with as many people as possible. I really want to challenge you and Dad to start praying a looking for opportunities to share the gospel. It IS the greatest joy, Mom. I love you so much and when I have something that is precious and I love it, I want to share it with others. Imagine eating the yummiest cake ever--and maybe you have feelings to eat it all yourself because we have those craving moments, but if you could see the expression on someone's face when they taste it and fall in love with it, you'll see that you would never want to keep a cake to yourself again. I thank you for making the us, your children, the best converts I know. Hna. Marler, our President's wife, said that--"the most important converts you (me and hna. smith) will ever have will be your own children. Whether you realize it or not, you signed up for a mission for the Lord upon having us children and raising us in the gospel. Your example has been an amazing form of missionary work but I really challenge you to pray and ask the Lord to help you recognize the people that need this gospel to heal the wounds that come from life. He will lead them to the living water through you. Being an instrument in the Lord's hand doesn't just reach the lives of others; it helps refine us as well.
As far as news about when I get home--WHAT THE FLIP! WHAT in the world. It's so crazy to hear about that news and just gotta ask you, how'd you find out? It's ok if not many people come to the airport. I do want a picture though and as long as you and Dad are there, that's all I can ask for. Tell Dad he's a rockstar and the funniest and smartest man I know. Tell him to get in shape as much as he can in the next 2 months because I'm going to try to whip him in basketball with all the energy I've got know. You two are the best folks I know!! (:
Tell hi to Hannah and all the Egberts, to Lee and Lori for the sweet Christmas card, and the Grovers as well. We have a great ward, we really do. I don't know if I'll be attending our home ward or singles ward or a college ward when I get back, but if I'm at home, tell bishop I want a calling upon stepping off of that plane. I'll leave with you for visits or any other sisters that need it as well. We're going to have so much fun building up Zion!!
Last note, I think I've avoid thinking about it but I have to face the reality of setting up jobs and signing up for classes. I'm going to talk to President this week about signing up for classes but what is your opinion on looking for work? I think I told you awhile back about going into teaching, but I don't know if you remember about that. I'm trying to work with a counselor about my options on changing my major and everything but it's difficult to start everything anew. I don't want to make a rash decision and want to be sure that teaching is what I want to do--because Jessica Evans and Christian Garcia have made it clear that those who aren't serious in the teaching program get booted out basically. So. Any ideas, thoughts, or inspiration? Thanks for helping me with my life decisions.😁
Well, I've got ten minutes on the computer left and want to look for a talk on lds.org called "becoming a consecrated missionary" by Tod R. Callister. Love you so much and give my love to dad with a big hug that lasts for 10 seconds. haha.
Your daughter Hali