Hello Everyone (who reads this blog)
This weeks message might be short and sweet! The thing is so much happens in a week and my time is limited to share. Therefore, only the major things that come to my mind will be included.
This week has been an interesting one for sure. I've been hitting some road blocks and really reflecting on why I am out here. It's funny with missions because there are so many ups and downs! The mission makes me feel somewhat bipolar to be honest haha. But it's cool because when you're being worn out you are able to rely on the Lord to help you find the strength and motivation from deep inside to press forward.
I expressed my frustrations to my companion and as we talked it helped me work through my difficulties. I am thankful the Lord lets us work in companionships to learn and grow. The main thing I've noticed from this week is that these challenging times are really stretching me for the better. I feel like someone in a very mild version of a renisanse (sp?) stretching/pulling torture machine! haha A mission is quite the strain on your physical body and your mental capacity! Each day stretching you a little bit more and more! But the difference between the torture device and a mission is that at the end you aren't a tattered dead person. You are a polish/defined human being who has willingly took upon themselves a challenge to become the very best they can be through our Savior Jesus Christ.
Monday we had Zone Training which was very inspiring/uplifting! It was all about Love and how that was the most important thing we could do for the people of NY. I thought about the attributes I came out to the mission field with. I know I am here in NY because I love people. Although I'm not perfect at it or the way I teach the doctrine I genuinely love the people. I know Heavenly Father will help me improve and grow.
My time is short because I am on a public computer right now at the library in Manhattan! So I will include two more thoughts before I run out of time.
The first being that I just went to a session at the Manhattan Temple! It was awesome! I love the Manhattan temple because the interior design is gorgeous and they have some gorgeous murals painted on the walls and pictures hung that captivated me =) Not to mention I love going to the temple and reflecting in the peace and quite. And trust me, in NY city you appreciate that silence!
The other thing I wanted to share in my last 15 minutes is about church on Sunday. During the sacrament meeting I was thinking about how I wanted the lord to help me become my best self. In my mind I wanted him to tell me when big way I needed to improve. As I sat there I had this analogy develop in my mind. It was that of a rock. It begins jagged and rough. That rock is us as humans. The rock is submerged into the stream of water. The flowing water is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As we submerge ourselves in the Gospel of Jesus Christ gradually we are refined! We become polished and smooth. However, we must remember it is a gradual process. The Lord is not going to chip of a chunk of our rough edges because he know that will hurt us or we will get offended. Yet as we embrace the basics of the Gospel we can transform our lives to become our best selves. Furthermore, if we take the rock out of the routine of the Gospel of Jesus Christ we hault if not stop our refining process entirely. The world of day to day morality is not going to help us become better/smooth. If anything it will add to our sharp edges. However, even if we have taken ourselves out, someone else took us out, or we were never in to begin with, the living water of Jesus Christ is always available to ALL of us. At anytime and any place. The sooner we emerge ourselves, the sooner we allow the Savior's hand back in our lives to sooth our pain, to polish ourselves, and to continually become the beautiful stone we have the potential to become!
I love you all very much! I appreciate your support. Each week when I go to church to take the sacrament, read my scriptures, pray, serve, and love I am going to keep in mind the polished stone I want to become. I encourage and invite you to do the same. Give the Gospel of Jesus Christ a fair chance and I promise you you will feel the blessings and love pour out from Heaven that I can't even begin to explain!
I am thankful to be called as a full time missionary regardless of the daily ups and downs. I can cope with them because of my Savior and because I know this is his work. He went through so much agony and pain for me. If I am going to represent him I need to be willing to do the same (obviously not on the same scale) ;)
Peace and Blessings! Peace and Blessin's!
Sister Emily Johnson