Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Then Comes the Shock


After hearing that I was going to be going to Mongolia, I first thought that this could not be correct—I am not meant for Asia, I need to go to South America. In my mind, it just kept repeating, “Mongolia, Mongolia, Mongolia”. I specifically asked in my application to let me live somewhere that I will better learn about the world that my mother lived in while growing up in Maracaibo, Venezuela. This was meant to be my chance to finally connect to my heritage that I stubbornly refused to learn about as a child. Between every break of thought, it just kept repeating, “Mongolia, Mongolia, Mongolia”.

Mongolia. I did say to myself and the Lord that I would serve unconditionally—unconditionally being anywhere in Latin America, North America, or Europe. I was prepared for a calling to Temple Square, Montana, even the outskirts of Alaska if I did not go to Latin America, but never Asia. Suddenly this country that I knew nothing about became the center of my world and I was overwhelmed that I could not even process it. I think I went into shock.

No, I did go into shock.

After the party was over, I went in my room and pulled up pictures of Mongolia and just cried--there is a real fear of the unknown that I experienced. This wasn’t supposed to be me, I was supposed to be bouncing off the walls excited and overwhelmed about how wonderful my calling was. Instead, the next morning I sat on the living room couch and cried while I tried to problem-solve with Allie all Sunday morning on what my next step would be. There were two black and white solutions: A.) I can accept my call and go to Mongolia or B.) I can decline my calling and not be a missionary. What if I could somehow tell the Prophet that he made a mistake when he approved my mission placement? I decided to go to church to search out the answer to that single question, is it possible to be reassigned?

I went to talk to my Branch President about my doubts and he took me to talk to the Stake President. Little did I know that there was another option that I did not even think about: turning my feelings of doubt and fear to the Lord and letting Him witness to me that this was, indeed, not a mistake and somewhere that I was meant to go. President Dorny gave me this hint about the option and sent me home to counsel with my dad, but he said one thing before I left, “From my perspective, this makes perfect sense and I couldn’t imagine you anywhere else but Mongolia.”

When I told my father about being overwhelmed and the uncertainty of my calling, he asked me two of the most important questions of my life, “Do you believe that the Apostles and Prophets are called of God? Do you believe that they personally know the Savior?” I know this to be true, so a resounding yes, with every fiber of my being. My parents have taught me that we should accept every calling that we are given and that we are to serve with all our might, mind, and strength; how could I be in doubt now? My father was given the comfort that I would be safe, protected, and watched over while I was on the other side of the world, away from his immediate care. My mother told me that so long as I stay within the boundaries that are set and follow the rules, there is no reason to fear.

That was the turning point. That was where I felt that assurance that my family supports me 100% even when I am not quite supporting myself. I went to sleep that night with a calming knowledge that the Lord is placing me where I need to be and Mongolia is going to be the most exciting adventure and place of growth. I am not even there and I am humbled by the magnitude of importance that the Lord has for His children on the other side of the world that he would take a prideful daughter to go and be taught by these amazing people about service, love, charity, patience, and (most importantly) faith.

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