Dear Sisters and Elders,
I love you and it is my sincere desire to see you successful now and in the future. I thought I would share two totally different messages from fellow missionaries.
I am writing this in hopes that other missionaries can learn from my experience. Unfortunately I was not obedient. The lesson I learned was very costly. Unfortunately it was a lesson learned too late. It wasn’t as if one day I woke up and decided to go to a movie. It started with waking up a few minutes late. Before I knew it, things all caught up with me and it was too late. I was watching TV with members, staying up late, sleeping in or breaking any ‘minor’rule. I learned that any rule broken is too much. I had my limits but I walked the line. I return home knowing I didn’t give my best to the Lord. I want to apologize for all those who I disappointed and to those who followed me. I want to share my experience so maybe other missionaries can avoid what happened to me. I wish I could do it over.
Sisters and Elders, my heart broke when I read those words. Now from another missionary:
Well, I suppose that this is my last email. I've learned a lot on my mission. The church is absolutely true, and Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father have been there for me over these last two years. It's been a progression. I've grown a lot. I've felt the Atonement. I've served every single day of the last two years with all I've got. I'm tired, exhausted. I feel like I've fulfilled my calling. As I think back on that night when I opened up my call...I was called of God to do a job and I'm doing it. And I feel that Heavenly Father has accepted my sacrifice.
My heart rejoiced and tears flowed when I read those words. The truth is: if a person cannot give to each day, as a personal representative of Jesus Christ, the best that is in them, then where or when is there greater motivation to give their best? I have discovered there will never be a place or time that will present greater incentive to be the very best we can be. Each of us should ask ourselves: What pattern am I establishing today that I will surely follow for the rest of my life? Is my pattern this day one of exact obedience? Have I planned this and every day focusing on the key indicators? Do I have the courage this day to open my mouth and ask for referrals from everyone? Do I pray often this day for myself and others? Do I study this day and every day? Did I show my love for the Lord this day by loving and serving my companion and those I meet? These and other questions we could ask of ourselves to see if the pattern of this day was one in when weALWAYS REMEMBERED HIM. If we cannot answer these questions today with a heartfelt yes, when will there be a day of greater divine motivation to always remember Him? Most of the Florida Tampa Missionaries are choosing to establish a daily pattern to Remember Him by striving to do all of the Remember This commitments found in Preach My Gospel? For those few who are not daily observing this pattern I pray you will consider what you are doing to the rest of your life. I truly believe in each of you. I know you can establish a pattern of excellence now which can continue forever. You have my love and confidence.