First off, I just want to apologize for my last email ...this week was a lot better:)
A mission is different from anything I ever thought it would be- it's amazing, emotional, strengthening, enabling, and empowering, but it's also...kind of just like life. Like really. Something I've realized is that every single member of the Church, no matter where they are or who they are or what calling they have, we all have the same path to follow- that is to be more like Jesus Christ and be worthy to return back to our Heavenly Father's presence after this life by living the gospel and keeping the commandments. It's that simple. For the most part, you and I and President Monson all live by the same guidelines of life. And it's all intended for us to the happiest, most productive and most Christlike people we can be:)
I've almost been out 6 months, and it's gone by so fast! It goes by so quickly, and sometimes I feel nothing's changed. For instance, I still love sunsets and stars and cool clouds. I still eat oatmeal every morning. I get slightly distracted whenever I see a cute horse or dog while we're walking. I'm still imperfect and have a lot of weaknesses. BUT, there have been some changes, and for that I am grateful. I've thought a lot about the principle of repentance this week- I used to think it was a big one time event that was saved for when you did something really, REALLY wrong, but that's not what it's for...in Preach my Gospel, repentance is the process by which our thoughts, desires, deeds and actions change to be more in accordance with the Lord's way. Repentance is a way of living, of continually refining and changing ourselves to be more like Christ..it's not just a effort of desperation when we've finally pushed ourselves to our knees.
For all of us, I know that we may not feel like we've improved, or that we've fallen from that spiritual high that we once had...we can get it back!! And we can always start over and we can change...it's never too late. The Lord wants to help us and actually, if you look back and think and ponder, I promise that you have changed and that you're better than you think you are:) There's a difference from the weaknesses of mortality compared to willful disobedience. (PLEASE REMEMBER THIS:just because you made a mistake does NOT make you a bad person! As long as you have righteous desires and love for the Lord, you are on the right path, even if you may stumble occasionally:)
This week is transfers. I've been with Sister Caoile, my trainer since the beginning of my mission, and so we know that one of us will be transferred. At first I was getting a little anxious about it- I was afraid of being separated from her, to lead the area, to have to really push myself, or maybe to move away from this ward...but then I was just like "Heavenly Father, Thy will be done...and I will follow it." I have never felt such strength and confidence and comfort...you would have thought that turning your will over to someone else would be so enabling? But it is because it's our Father in Heaven! He knows us best, He will never leave you, and again His commandments are the same- if we follow Him and keep His commandments, He will bless and help and strengthen us. It's a beautiful process and it doesn't just apply to missionaries. It's the same for you too:)
Maraming salamat sa inyong lahat!! Sobrang magaling kayo! Namimis ko kayo, pero alam ko po na dito ako para sa dahilan ng Diyos. Alam ko po na sobrang mahal Niya tayo...huwag na forget that!:) (Translation: um....wait, this is hard to transition lol....thanks so much to you all! You're amazing! I miss you, but I know I'm here God. I know that He loves us...don't ever forget that!)
Love you all and keep to the faith!! Do everything you can to have the spirit with you completely every day! If you need to make changes, CHANGE!! It's not worth it to spend one day being unhappy, and it's always within our power to change it:)
Sister Allen :)