It is a beautiful thing for a mother to watch her child make big decisions. Especially when you get to observe them claim light and guidance from Above in the process.
And recently Grace has made a pretty huge one. Well, I shouldn’t say “recently,” because this has been a long time in coming. She has thought about this her whole life, specifically in the last few years, and there have been several times she has come to me with a gigantic smile, a beautiful light about her, feeling so excited about that prospect. One of those times in particular was last year surprisingly right smack dab in the midst of when she was trying to decide where to go for college.
But those are all her stories to tell. My side of the story is that it has been pretty cool to watch from afar. Going on a mission is a scary decision: turning in mission papers and being willing to serve anywhere in the whole wide world for a period of 18 months of your life (24 for young men). And especially now, when hoards of missionaries are being sent home and being reassigned, so much uncertainty with travel, etc. Definitely takes a giant leap of faith. But after much deliberation on dates, some beautiful guidance from above, and so much light shining from her as she worked to figure it out, Grace turned in those papers last week. And oh boy, that huge smile on her face was pretty glowing!
I was so wrapped up in Lucy’s surgery and recovery that it hardly registered that that call could come this week. Life is coming at us fast these days I tell you! Grace was checking her phone constantly for notifications. On Tuesday morning it still hadn’t come yet, and she was miserable about that. She was thinking it would come in the morning or not until next week. But guess what? At around 4:00 in the afternoon, right as Claire and I were leaving the dentist, it came. From there it was a whirl of excitement for all of us, the whole family on FaceTime together begging her to open it right then and there. Ha!
But she was level-headed, wanted to have a few family and friends come over and read it together. Gosh she was so calm. And SO HAPPY. Which did wonders for her mother’s nerves.
Dave printed that thing out without looking, and we gathered on the back porch, my heart PUMPING hard, dying wondering where she would be for the next year and a half, but Grace as cool as a summer’s morn, GLOWING with happiness, her calm reaching out and calming her mother right down 🙂
And then she read that thing. She has been called to the URUGUAY, MONTEVIDEO MISSION.
Are you kidding me?? Not in a million years would I ever have guessed that spot in the world. But yet it seemed to suit her perfectly right at that very moment. Her departure date is September 15th and she will be learning the Spanish language…and all of that is dependent upon the state of the world at that time so we will see how that goes. She may have a reassignment in the states for a time if things aren’t opened up by then.
But man, SO EXCITED for this glowing girl of ours!
We spent the next hour (and most of every hour after that), learning so much about Uruguay, diving into it’s government, its history, it’s geography.
(The internet is awesome:) Did you know Uruguay’s national anthem is over five minutes long (the world’s longest)? And that every single house has it’s own unique name? And that it is considered the “least corrupt country in Latin America”? (nice news for the parents). It has a literacy rate of 98%, one of the highest in the world, and it’s the second smallest country in South America?
Nothing like a mission call to give you some motivation to find out everything you never knew about a country where your daughter will be living.
As I looked at the flag I love that it has that sun up in the corner: Light. To me, a symbol of where Grace has looked for guidance and inspiration.
There is so much more to say, but for today I’ll just say that I’m so happy for this girl, the direction and guidance she has reached for and found, and all the grand adventures that lie ahead.
It won’t be easy. There will certainly be many ups and downs, heartbreak and pain along with all the beauty. But man, she’s going to learn a lot. And we are already all falling in love with the people of Uruguay we have never met, but who will teach her so much, and love her too.