Sunday, January 15, 2017

The day will come when they will rise up and call you blessed...

My job in the mission office is several parts. Ordering mission supplies, pamphlets, Books of Mormon, all in different languages, etc. You should see the wall of copies of The Book of Mormon stacked in their respective country's language! I was amazed how many we had, and we don't even have all of the languages. I also enter baptisms and call missionaries to get their paperwork to me after the baptism happens. Most of the time I get the records a few days after the baptisms, but sometimes, it takes weeks to get the missionaries to bring them in or send them. I have about mastered the baptism entry and record keeping.

This week has been full of learning the ins and outs of how to record and send referrals of new investigators to the missionaries and order mission materials for the missionaries to be able to hand out to their investigators. Then I make sure the stuff that is now being shipped in is the complete order, then I count it and then those records are filed or handed to the right people. The sister that is teaching me (Sister Horne) has the patience of Job! She is very kind and tells me I am doing okay. I feel very inadequate on the computer.

When I am caught up with the things I do, or Sister Horne is not there for more lessons, I fill in where there are needs. I help the secretary (Sister Hyde) go through files and shred old ones, or we make up "quit smoking" booklets for the missionaries' investigators who want to quit smoking, and I help Elder Gray with filing his car reports. I have gone with him to drop cars at the dealer to get repaired or pick them up. We went and picked up a car an hour and a half away on Thursday and I drove our car home and Brent drove the other car. I followed him home. We have been here three weeks and I had driven TWICE before! TWICE!! On the wrong side of the car, and the wrong side of the road! THAT was a new experience! I got stuck at a light once and in finding Brent again, got honked at once and a finger flew up once, well, that I saw, but I made it home with no scratches or dents ... to the car anyway.

We went to a beautiful park for a picnic on Saturday evening with our new friends, the Hydes. They had been there before and saw kangaroos and thought we would enjoy seeing them. There was a lake and picnic tables under trees. We had a nice dinner and visited and then walked around the park on some paths and a bridge on the side of the lake, and then we saw our first two kangaroos of the evening, a little one and another just a bit bigger. As we walked on we saw a couple of really big 'roos with smaller ones in some trees. Like deer, they come out in the evening to graze on the grass when it gets cooler. They didn't seem to care that we were there unless we got a little too close. It was really fun to see them hop. They hold their massive tails up and off they go effortlessly! We came back to our flat and topped our evening off with a bowl of ice cream and a game of cards. We have taught them how to play "Up the River Down the River", our family's favorite!

When we got to Australia two days before Christmas, there was a Christmas party the night we arrived and we received a little gift from President Vidmar and his wife. It was a pin for Brent and a necklace for me with the mission "Coat of Arms." With them we got a quote that is amongst a collage of pictures of our family, soon to hang on our wall. I love that it is mixed in with the pictures of our kids and grandkids because I believe it to be true. It says: "Your absence is the most powerful testimony you will ever bear to your posterity. The day will come when they will rise up and call you blessed because you were gone for a season. Those grandchildren (and children) will never pray as hard for you as they do while you are serving a mission." ﹘ David A. Bednar

I remember praying for my children who served missions to be strong and faithful and obedient. It is hard to be away from everyone, missions are hard, but I am grateful for all this modern technology (even if I do struggle with it) because I get to see my family often. And I do feel your prayers, and I am grateful to be here with my eternal companion and grateful for his love and patience. I am not grateful to cook dinner every night or make lunches every day, but I can do it! I love you all!

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