Well, we are finally here.
Tonight is the night my girl gets set apart as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
That means she gets a special blessing to officially begin her work as a missionary. She will begin to wear her name tag as a representative of Jesus Christ and she’ll be giving up many things as she sets her mind to her new work and living by the missionary rules. I truly believe that when one is set apart (we are set apart of many different callings) he/she is blessed with a certain mantle of love and guidance particular to that calling.
Tomorrow she will begin her missionary service at our “home MTC.”
It is a strange time to be a missionary. We have been reminiscing about when Max was set apart all those years ago. All those emotions jumbled up together, all those gatherings for goodbyes HERE, his farewell at church HERE, so many motherhood emotions letting my first child go and breaking up those five children of mine for the first time rumbling around back HERE.
Times are so incredibly different now. There are no big gatherings. We are not sending off Grace to the MTC (Missionary Training Center), since, during this pandemic missionaries do their MTC work from home. So she will be here with us for six more weeks studying her scriptures and working her tail off to learn Spanish. (I’m sure I’ll have a lot to write about that in a week or so after we have a week under our belts…we have heard the best things about home MTC!) So I’m not hyperventilating in my closet that she’s leaving…at least not yet.
She is so excited to hopefully get to Uruguay at some point, but we expect that she will get a reassignment within the next week or so and that she will serve in the states for at least the first part of her mission.
That will be an adventure to figure out as well!
I love what it says in the missionary handbook about missionary work: “When you serve a mission with all your heart, you help fulfill the two great commandments: “Love the Lord thy God … [and] love thy neighbor as thyself” (Doctrine and Covenants 59:5–6).
“To be an effective missionary, you must be a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ. We invite you to enlarge your talents and skills for the glory of God. Jesus Christ will magnify you. Heavenly Father loves you, and He will help you to love and bless His children wherever you serve. He will empower you and the people you serve, through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, to be truly “converted unto the Lord” (Alma 23:6).
We all already love the people she will get to work with, the people she will meet, the people that will change her life in many ways.
I know we’ll go through some emotional upheavals letting this girl who is so full of light leave us for a year and a half when the time comes.
But for now, I’m just excited.
For her. She is so ready!
For our family to get to be in the middle of this cool MTC experience.
For all she will learn. And for all she will love.
For all the grand adventures, sad and joyful, all mixed together.
She has made it through this waiting game, and she’s as ready as someone can be in the midst of a world pandemic to get busy!
Love you forever Grace Jam!