Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Call

We received our call on December 8, 2015.  We were so excited because our son Conner in Hawaii, got permission from his mission president to call us on the phone when we opened our call. We were able to share it with family in our home, and it was such an amazing experience.

In 2001, my brother Lee and his family went to South Africa for 3 years. While he was there, Steve said he'd really like to go there and visit. I said the only way I'd go to Africa was if the Lord called me there, thinking that would never happen. When we were waiting for this mission call, Steve said, I hope the Lord sends me to Africa! I was convinced we were staying in the United States.

We were called to the Kampala, Uganda mission, which includes Uganda, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Djibouti. We are definitely going to Africa, but from what we have heard, Uganda is the Pearl of Africa. We are told the people are so loving and kind. We have been told that it is safe, and the people are thirsting for the knowledge of the Restoration. We are thrilled to be able to serve a mission in Africa. We have already felt an incredible amount of love for the missionaries who are serving in this mission, although we haven't met them yet. It's wonderful to see how the Spirit of the Lord is in this work.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

A Choice Week

On Sunday was our youngest son, Conner's, mission farewell. He has been called to serve in the Hawaii, Honolulu Mission. There was a brother in our ward who had just been baptized with his wife about two months ago, who was the first speaker. He gave a talk on the Atonement, and bore his testimony. Then my sister, Erin,  and daughters Jessica, and Kaylea, and I sang "Precious Savior". I felt so grateful to be able to sing with my family. Conner then spoke, and the spirit of the meeting was so strong. He truly will be an amazing missionary.

On Monday, Steve got a phone call from President Uchtdorf's secretary, asking us if we could come visit with him on Wednesday. That was the day Conner was supposed to go to the MTC, but we were able to set it up for 9:30am, and Conner didn't need to be at the MTC until 12:30pm. 

We had Jessica and her two girls in town for the farewell and to drop him off. We also had Kaylea, Kirby, Steve, and Sarah. It was so good to have our entire family together. The only person missing was Chris, Jessie's husband. But he did write Conner a letter. We took everyone out to dinner for family night on Monday night, and my heart was full. It's been full and overflowing for the past few weeks now... :)

On Wednesday Steve and I met with President Uchtdorf. It was incredible. President Uchtdorf  was very kind. He kept expressing his gratitude for our preparedness. He told us to give our son Steve a big German hug, when he found out he had served his mission in Germany. He called Steve as a mission president, starting July 1st, and called me on a 3 year mission as his companion. I think Steve and I were both in awe, and didn't know what to say. One thing that has concerned me since we thought Steve may be called has been my lack of experience. I have prayed a lot about it. I know the Lord will qualify me for the call, but there's just this nagging little voice in my head, wondering if I really can do what is needed for the missionaries. Well, as President Uchtdorf was talking to us, he turned right to me and said, "Don't compare yourself to other sisters in this calling. You are good enough, that is why the Lord has called you to this position. Be yourself, and it will be good enough. Trust your instincts, the Lord trusts you. "  I've always believed that, but it helped me to know that the Lord knows what's in my heart. After our meeting, he stood up and gave us each a hug.  He was happy to hear that we were on our way to the MTC that day to take Conner.

We weren't all able to drop Conner off, but we did all meet at the Brick Oven for lunch. It was just my kids, because Kirby went home, and Sarah had to work. But it was awesome, because it was all of my kids, and grandkids. We went to the Park below the Provo Temple grounds to take a few more pictures, and then Jessica stayed there while we took Conner. Avery, our granddaughter, went with us to the MTC, and cried as we drove away without Conner... We all cried as we drove away without Conner, but he was so excited to go, and we were all thrilled that he is going to serve a mission.

In the meantime, we have received emails from the church, and have started the paperwork to serve our own mission. We have already done the dental, and most of the medical. We have an appointment scheduled for next Friday, where we will get our "official" picture taken.  We are waiting for a letter from the first presidency that will be our "official" mission call. Once we receive that, we are able to tell people about our mission call. Our next stake conference is in February. At that time they will release Steve, and call a new Stake President. 

Life is GREAT! I am amazed how blessed we are. I feel like the windows of heaven have been opened and the Lord is pouring out a blessing "that there is not room enough to receive it!"  It is amazing to see how he has been guiding our lives to this point, and I can't wait to see how it all turns out. 

Monday, September 28, 2015

Interview with an apostle

Steve got a phone call on Wednesday from Elder Ballard's secretary asking if we could come and meet with Elder Ballard on Thursday.  He called me at work and said I should sit down before he told me what was up.  Both of us had to juggle our schedule to get off on Thursday for the appointment. I dressed in a suit, and was getting all sorts of questions at work about where I was going dressed up so nice. Steve called me that morning, and said that it had been postponed because of some family emergency, and we would go on Friday instead. I had to endure questions from co-workers for the rest of the day on how nicely I was dressed. Apparently, Elder Ballard's secretary called Steve and re-scheduled three different times.

Friday, Steve and I were both off work, so it turned out nicely. We were told to drive to the underground parking right under the church office building, and tell security we had an appointment with Elder Ballard. Well, we did, and she couldn't find our name. She looked under CALLINGS, and then looked for an appointment with Elder Bednar. By the time she figured it out, we had a line of cars waiting all the way up the ramp and onto the street. It was kind of embarrassing. We went to the waiting area in the Church Administration building and ooohed and aaahed as different important people walked past us. The most memorable was Elder Neil L Anderson, who waved to us as he walked past. We kept saying this didn't seem real. In fact, neither of us could remember Elder Anderson's name because our minds were in such a whirl.

When it was time to go to Elder Ballard's office it was pretty quick. He told us that Steve was NOT being called as a mission president, but they are looking for 165 new mission presidents, and they are interviewing 190 men.  He said if Steve is not called, it is not because he isn't worthy, but because of many other factors that they look at. He proceeded to ask a lot of questions. He was straight to the point and very business like. But in the end he recommended that we get our affairs in order and that he would recommend that we are called on a mission. He said to expect a phone call from the office of the First Presidency sometime in October, and if we did not hear by November 1st to call his office back. In November, if we made the cut, one of the First Presidency will call us on a mission,  at which point we can tell people that he is going to be a mission president. We would not receive the call in the mail telling us where we will go until later. And then we will be given a private tutor to help us learn Preach My Gospel. We will go for  training in June, and leave in July for which ever mission we have been called to. So we still have MANY months to prepare, IF we are called on a mission. 

As we were leaving, we had a member of the seventy approach us in the parking lot, and asked, "So, How did you do?" It was pretty funny. I think we were in and out in 15 minutes, but what a neat experience to spend time with an apostle!