As many of you know, I live in Florida with my husband and son. But, before Elder G reported to the MTC, we all got together at my parents new house in Utah for a family reunion. My parents celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary on the 13th of May, and we all got together as a surprise for my mom. I stayed with them for a total of four weeks in order to be there for the Elder’s sendoff and everything. Below are some pictures from some really fun few weeks.
Elder G is studying his Japanese and loving life!
At the anniversary party. Mom wanted a picture of all the siblings, so here we are. Even Elder Josh is represented. From left to right: Rachel, Jacob, Michelle (holding Josh), and me (Sarah)
Elder G is such a funloving, silly young man. I think he was trying to make the nephews laugh in this photo.
This photo was actually taken on the way back from NE, after he was set apart. His countenance is different don’t you think? Anyways, our car broke down outside of Laramie WY, and while Mom was calling the tow truck, Shelly snapped this photo. What a great natural backdrop!
Before he left, Shell and I thought it would be great to host him a holiday dinner; since he is going to miss American Christmas and Thanksgiving. SO, we made ham, green bean casserole, Mom’s stuffing, and pumpkin pie. Elder G was in heaven. I even pulled out my Pandora stations and played very missionary appropriate Christmas music to set the mood. What a fun night!
This photo was taken in Council Bluffs Iowa right after Elder G was set apart. In his blessing, it talked about learning the language, blessing the people, and through his diligence and sacrifice, bringing people to know Christ. What an amazing experience to be there and watch the Lord’s chosen being set apart to fulfill their missions for Him! Great testimony building experiences.
This is the Sunday before he reported. His mission plaque was mailed to Bishop Cox in the Plattsmouth Ward, but since Elder G would be returning to the Utah ward, we got to take it with us and he got to see it early. So, I snapped a picture of him with the plaque before Mom handed it over to the Bishop in Bear River City.
The week prior to his report, Elder G was set apart and waiting to go. SO, he chose to pass all of his time at the Brigham City, Utah LDS Temple serving in the house of the Lord. We all took turns going to the temple with him. It was great to go the temple with my youngest brother and reaffirm my testimony of forever families. The temple really helped me feel closer to my brother and my family and helped remind me that no matter where we are in the world, we are a forever family. It was such a great few weeks with him and I am so grateful that I was given the opportunity to spend some quality time before he ventured out on the Lord’s errand.
I know “that the Lord given no commandment unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the things that he commandeth them”. Elder G mission will not be easy, but it will be so worth it. And I commit to strive a further the work of the Lord here in Orlando. I would hope that all reading this blog would look to Jacob’s example and know that there are so many things we can to do to boost others and strengthen God’s children. We are all on missions for God; it’s what we signed up to do in the preexistence. It’s part of God’s plan. I know that Heavenly Father loves me and will be mindful of Elder G on his mission. I know that Heavenly Father loves my family and watches out for them. I know that Joseph Smith restored the gospel of Jesus Christ to the Earth. I encourage all who have this blessing in their lives to share it. For those of you reading who are not of our faith and would like to know more, please visit http://www.mormon.org or ask your LDS (Mormon) neighbor. They would be happy to answer any questions and set you up with the local missionaries serving where you live. For those who were once of our faith and are not sure they still believe, search your heart and know that God loves you, mistakes can be forgiven, and that this is a best blessing you will ever have in your life. Don’t throw it away.
I love you all and pass on the love of Elder G.
Til next post…