Not gonna lie, this doesn't even seem real right now. I can't believe that it's over. I really don't know. I've spent so long being a missionary... The idea that I'm not going to be able to just be helping people 24/7 is a weird thing. So I was told by the Spirit that I need to keep helping people, keep finding ways to give service. It's strange.
One thing I've learned my whole mission is that when I think about myself, I'm sad and disappointed, but when I think about others, I'm happy and fulfilled. I keep finding more and more applications for that.
When I look back and evaluate my mission, when I think about myself, I'm honestly a bit disappointed. I'm not as knowledgeable on the scriptures as I wish I was, I'm not nearly charitable enough, I"m not good enough at feeling the Holy Ghost, and there's a whole score of things that I wish I'd been able to develop more on my mission. At the same time, when I think of the people that have been helped through my service, I'm happy. I've been so blessed to serve in a mission where I really could help loads of people, that's what makes it all worth it.
I don't know, Dad. I really am excited to get home and see you all, but I would honestly be very happy if I was told I was getting transferred out to some outy for the next 6 weeks instead. Unfortunately, President Weir doesn't let people extend. :P I just want to go and do and work, and home... I don't know, it just doesn't seem right that I'm not going to be doing everything I can to help people and solve their problems all day every day. I think I'm going to need to find a job in customer service. :)
I'm keeping a journal, taking pictures, and being good. :) We found out last Monday that hey were closing this area once we leave, because we don't have enough missionaries, so that took a lot of the wind out of us, but we've tried to hook them up with members, our area book is beautiful, and so I think that's about all we can really do now.
One thing I've discovered this week! The LDS app! First thing I want to do (after going to the temple) is find some device that has it. It is the most amazing thing in the WORLD! Senior couples were showing it to me and Elder Loe yesterday, and it was on an Android they'd got for 35 bucks, and if they didn't have a ridiculous data package for their daughter, it would only be 20 bucks a month. So... I'm definitely going to look into that!
Anyway, I'll see you soon! Thursday! :) Love you loads, best of luck this week, and I'll talk to you before it's over. :)
June 7, 2015 Letter
But as far as Tarawa goes...Life continues to be crazy here on the bustling island city of Tarawa! Elder Loe and I are out here kicking trash and taking names for the area book. We got here and the area book (the book with the names and addresses of people we're supposed to teach) was basically non-existent, we had a few names without addresses, and even a boy who was baptized but never received the Holy Ghost who we've been searching for but, without an address, it's hard. Man, back on outys, you just need a name, MAYBE a village, and your good! It's weird to need an actual direction to where the people live. No addresses here on Tarawa, but maps are nice! More than, "Next to the store". Gee, thanks, how many hundreds of stores are there here?!
So we spent the first week cleaning that up, and now we're doing our best with what we've got. So this week we've really been getting to work. Both Loe and I are just... Well, we're outy boys, and we're still working like it. BUT we also have official permission to go anywhere and do anything on the island. So what's our trunky thing we're doing? We met a great investigator at a member's house, asked to go to his house so we could teach the family, and when he led us there it turned out he was in sisters' area. He prayed and received an answer, came to church with his family, and even attended a baptism, all on first invitation, so... We're still teaching them. TRUNKY!!! :)
And a scary thing happened this week... Two guys from our intake went home early this week to go to the summer semester at BYU. And it is SO SCARY. I mean, crud! Those guys just LEFT! And Kiribati... I don't know. I don't think I'll ever be able to explain to anybody back home about Kiribati. It's just... different. Definitely planning on trying to come back when they dedicate a temple out here! (Planned to happen in 10 years! :) ) It's a really special place, with really special people, and I just busted down crying that those guys were leaving it, and I'll be following soon. AAAAAAHHH!!!!! So definitely making the most out of this last week and a half.
It's funny, usually missionaries get super trunky here, and all the RMs ["return missionaries"] in our ward keep telling Elder Loe and I how great we are for still working hard. (Two people have apparently had feelings that Loe is going to be a 70, so I'm excited for his first talk! :) ) But life is good on Tarawa, it's so great having all these RMs to help us teach and find and have a really excellent and spiritual church service with a smack down awesome bishop and loads of people who REALLY GET THE GOSPEL! I mean, on outies you're just trying to barely hash it out, get people to quit drinking and smoking, and here... WOW! Holy Ghost! Outpouring of the Spirit! People who truly understand God and the Restoration and the Plan of Salvation and the Atonement! It is SO GREAT! I'm loving it. :)
I've also almost died because I'm not used to roads. :) But I'm not dead yet, and I think I'm getting used to them again! ("Right, look BOTH ways BEFORE we cross the street, I've got this." ) :) Anyway, life is good, we're working hard, and sprinting it through to the end! I'll be super sad to leave here, but I'll be pumped to see you all again! I may or may not email next week, but either way, see y'all in Sandpoint! :)