The Sky is Closer to the Ground

I’ve said a lot of stupid things in my life…but saying “the sky is closer to the ground here” may make the top of the list. It really is though! the clouds are lower! Will SOMEONE please do some research and tell me why so I can stop feeling like chicken little?
The surgery was epic. For those of you who know what happened when I got my wisdom teeth out this was similar. Except subtract clothes, turtles, potatoes, and add big scary knives, hospital gowns, and a missionary name tag.
Basically I freaked out when I woke up 😛
On the Plus side I got to see my mom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was basically the best thing ever. I mean seriously what missionary gets to see their mom and have their mom make them potato soup during their mission? Am I blessed or am I blessed?
So pretty much I’m having a good time 🙂 Transfers are in a little over a week. Which freaks me out. I’ve been on my mission almost 5 months already. It doesn’t feel like that. It feels like I punched my brother and grabbed my suitcase yesterday.
(Someone punch him for me)
I want to share one thing from this week that really has changed my mission (besides being cut open).
I said goodbye to my mom on Wednesday and it was one of the hardest things I’ve done. It was a thousand times harder than saying goodbye the first time. She gave me a hug and then boom, gone.
I cried.
Then I started to pray and I haven’t really stopped since Wednesday, but I realized quickly praying for relief wasn’t really helping. So I started following the advice of one of my favorite songs. I started counting my blessings and naming them one by one.
As I did the pain of saying bye to my mom dissipated and was replaced with gratitude for the life I have. For the ward, the zone, the district, for my companion, my family, my friends, my mission President and His wife. Basically…everything.
I cannot express enough how truly grateful I am for the life I live and for The Gospel and Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Nothing brings me more joy than Jesus and you. All of you. And so many more.
I serve for YOU. I serve for CHRIST. My heart and my life belong to you and Him. I can never repay the goodness you have shown me, the lessons you have taught me, and the love you have given me.
And none of us can ever repay our Savior for His atoning sacrifice.
Are we blessed? or are we blessed?
I don’t remember when….but we went to the temple twice in the past few weeks! The first time was one of the few times missionaries in the Maryland Baltimore Mission get to go to the temple to do an endowment session.
Cool thing- I forgot to bring the name I had been given by someone in the mission so the temple provided a name! Not only was the girls name Emma (my baby sisters name) but her birthday was on March 3rd, 1837. My birthday is on March 3rd, 1997. She was also born in Germany where my dad served his mission. Coincidence? I think not!
So I was frantically tying to memorize all her information before we went into the session. I also memorized the contact information that was left on the card. The name had been submitted by a woman who lives in Rockville. So I memorized her address and name. I wen home and I wrote her a letter about how grateful I was to have been proxy for Emma.
I’m still waiting for a reply but it was such a cool experience! It is one of countless circumstances where He had told me through some obscure way that I am where I am for a reason.
The second time we went to the temple was with Jacky! We went and did baptisms for the dead and boy did Satan try to keep us from getting there. Jacky had an emergency at work and we almost were unable to go! But Heavenly Father provides a way. Even at the recommend desk in the temple complications arose that delayed us a good half hour. (During which we saw President and Sister Christiansen and all the missionaries going home this transfer!)
Nonetheless we finally made it inside. As I sat next to Jacky by the font we looked at the names we had been given. They were names that had been submitted by local members and one of hers and one of mine were sisters. Again, coincidence? I think not.
As we left the baptistery a temple worker stopped Jacky and explained to her that she had just done a great deal of work that those who have passed away could not do themselves. She cried.
As we walked out on the temple grounds all I could say without crying was how proud I was of Jacky.
The work just keeps going around my friends. We all help each other in this great mess we call life. Our Savior Jesus Christ places people in our path to help not only us, but those we will interact with in our future.
All of you have helped me in some way or another become the kind of person I am today. In doing so you have helped Jacky. You have helped those she helps and so on.
How blessed are we? To be involved in such a great a work as this?
We also had a mini missionary this week! Her name is Sister Baker and she reminds me so much of Bella.
She’s sweet, quirky, helpful, honest, loving, kind, and quiet.
Also creative! Sister Franco showed us how to make crepes and Sister BAker replicated the recipe when we got home!

“Low confidence often derives from an experience that caused you to doubt yourself. I think that it’s 100% an inner struggle. People can bash on you and people can adore you, but all that affects your confidence is how you let it change your view of yourself.

A strong confident person is someone who understands who they are. Seriously if everyone saw themselves as God saw them do you think they would ever lack confidence or courage?
I think the order of the Young Women values is interesting. We know that faith is the first principle of the Gospel, and we know that our testimonies sprout from our faith. The next value is Divine Nature.
Faith in our Heavenly Father  gives us an understanding of our divine nature which enables us with confidence.
I’ve fallen back on two things my entire life. When I didn’t know anything else I knew that Jesus Christ is my Savior and God is my Father.
On faith in those two vital doctrines I was able to continue pushing forward. I have never doubted myself because I know I don’t rely on myself! A child relies on it’s parents for everything and God has told us to become as little children.
When you do that and become reliant on Him, you will never lack confidence. You will know YOU are a DAUGHTER of GOD and He loves you. In that you will find greater power than you ever could have imagined.”
Stay strong my friends. Be you. Be Brave. Be Beautiful.
Love, Sister Johnson

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