Apr 21, 2015

04/20/15 Suiting Up to Come Home

I don’t really know what to write. I mean I’ve only got one week left and you all seem to know how missionary work runs out here. I mean nothing too new. I did get the money which I can’t thank you enough for - but that is awesome that you all did some family history work. You have no idea how pumped I am to do family history work when I get home. I figure that will be the equivalent to "missionary work" as well as working with the full time missionaries.
So I got a suit to come home in! And because the dollar is stronger than it was when I got here the exchange rate was even higher than normal, so with that I used the extra money to get Elder Mbikayi a suit as well, all that remains are the souvenirs. Thanks for the list, I’ll organize it and get all that I can next Monday.
As for the work, we've just been working super hard and I’ve been having a fun time dealing with all the amis and teaching them - just doing my best to help them progress. Early this week I kinda got "depressed" you could say. Just watching the calendar and seeing that all this was ending. It felt like I had no control over what was happening and the clock was ticking too fast! We often refer to the end of the mission as someone "dying" - at sometimes it felt like I was actually going to die or something. So finally Thursday night, I read a conference talk by elder Holland and thought about the whole situation and I decided I need to square my shoulders and think positively. The next morning I woke up and accepted the fact - I thought to myself, "my mission is ending and there is nothing I can do about it, but it’s necessary that it ends. After all, if the mission doesn’t end I could never get married or do temple work or raise a family. So yes, the badge is coming off soon - but for now it’s still on, so keep working, Johnson". That day I pulled out my suitcase and started arranging things. It just felt so much better to accept the fact and move on. 

Another life lesson I learned from my mission, it’s often better to accept what is happening in life and move on than stay stuck in the past. Elder Holland said in a talk a long time ago, that we look back on the past to reclaim our burning embers of experiences both good and bad, not the ashes. BUT then we look to the future and move forward. How true that is, living in the past, even the happiest and best past shouldn’t substitute living in the "today". So that’s what I’m trying to do, living in the "today". But I’m really grateful that today I’m still a missionary haha.
Well I wish you all a very happy last week of separation. I'll be on my way home, as my companion put it, in the "twinkling of an eye". (That’s a lame missionary joke by the way, y'all better get prepared because I’m full of them haha). I love you!