This week has been a very exciting week for me. As of last Monday (July 1st) I officially became one of the missionaries for the California Carlsbad mission, and that has introduced a few new things into my life here.
First and foremost I got a new Mission President. His name is President Kendrick, and...well...I haven't met him yet. Though I get to this week, which is exciting! Another thing that has changed is my expected release date. Originally my release date was expected to be June 2, 2015, but when the mission changed, and us missionaries from the old Riverside mission were put into the Carlsbad mission, our transfer cycle did not line up with that of the Carlsbad mission. What this means is that while we were still in the middle of our transfer cycle, the Carlsbad cycle had just finished, and because we are now part of the Carlsbad mission, ours finished as well...just...earlier than expected. So to make a long story short (too late), I will either be coming home earlier, which lands in May, or later, which will push my release date into the middle of June, all depending on which transfer cycle I decide to end my mission. I have not quite decided which is right for me, and have been seeking inspiration from above about which is the right course for me, but in the end it was quite the shocking realization that this needed to be a choice in the first place.
In other news, this last weekend I officially had my first baptism as a missionary! It was such a wonderful experience, and the Spirit that was there was so full of love. The man of honor is a wonderful person by the name of Eric, who is a close friend of some of the members of the ward. He has such a strong testimony of the gospel, and I know it will only get stronger as time goes on and he grows even more as a member of the Church. I am so blessed to have been able to be a part of this wonderful event, and it is an occasion that I will not soon forget. Something else that is exciting is that we have two more baptisms scheduled for this next weekend, a wonderful mother and daughter by the names of Gina and Zoe respectively. The are such amazing daughters of God, and I can feel of their spirits and their desire to choose the right as I get to know them better. Exciting things are happening, and I can plainly see the Lord's hand here in Murrieta as He progresses his work of salvation.
It is such a joy to be here in the Carlsbad mission serving God and being His instrument as He works His mighty miracles. I have grown so much as I have been here, and my faith in our Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ has grown exponentially, and in ways I could not have before comprehended! There is no doubt that this Church is the true Church, and that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has once again been restored to the Earth to bless humankind.
A scriptue that has been on my mind a lot recently is Proverbs 17: 22, "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones." And it is such a true scripture. A positive attitude can brighten even the darkest days, whereas a bleak perspective can make any day into a horrid experience. Being happy is crucial to being able to accomplish anything, whether that be school, a job, missionary work, or anything else. I have been trying to keep a happy outlook, and I have seen the blessings that come from being joyful.
I'm excited to be here! The Church is true!