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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Ten Random Minutes: Sad Missionary Moms

This is as tough-love post. If you get your feelings hurt easily, either gird up your loins and trudge forward, being willing and ready to forgive, or don't read this post.

Consider yourself forewarned…..

Okay, I'm straying from the Facebook topic. If I have time to get back to that today, I'll complete those thoughts then.

I think for today, with my ten minutes, I want to throw a bit more of a preface out there.

I have a peeve. I'm not sure how or why I have this peeve, but I do. I know I used to do it, and maybe I still do at times, but somehow I've learned a bit of how to overcome it. I think it's from being married to the kind of guy who doesn't do this.

In short, I can't stand it when people sit around and gripe or moan or complain about things just to gripe or moan or complain.

Let me clarify…..I think it's a complete waste of time to just sit there feeling sorry for yourself with no intentions of doing anything to make your situation better.

Let me clarify further…..I miss my daughter. I do. But, the alternative, that of having her come home, would be MUCH worse! I love what she's doing and where she is. I love that she's touching lives and having her own changed at the same time--exponentially. I love that she's serving the Lord and growing closer to Him and really creating a relationship with Him. What could be better than that?….Being home? NO WAY!

There are times when I chime in on my Facebook wall that I miss her. I do. No question. She's one of my very dearest, closest, sweetest friends, but I'm not going to sit and perseverate on the idea that she's gone and "woe is me," etc. What a TOTAL waste of time! So, I can promise you that, while I may write that, I'm not sitting there wiping my face on my sleeve, dripping saltwater on the couch. It's really just because some Taylor Swift song has come on the radio and my daughter has entered my mind.

Lately, I've run across a lot of crying, wailing missionary moms. Don't
get me wrong. I don't mean to criticize. Everyone deals with stuff in different ways, and if that works for you, great. But, eventually, you've got to put your big girl panties on and leave your kid to the Lord and His teaching. Yes, every situation is different, but regardless, when he/she accepted that call, Heavenly Father promised that come what may, He's got his/her back. Trust!

In this day, we are very close technologically to everyone. You know lots of things that are in my closet, and I know some of what's in yours, but sometimes there has to be a distance. For example, my daughter's Mission President is in our Facebook group. Not many greater men exist, as far as I'm concerned. What a privilege for my daughter to get to serve under such a man's leadership. Because he's in the group, I could, at any moment, Facebook message him and ask him the scoop. I could tell him how I feel things should be. I totally could, and I'm aware of this power that Facebook has given to all of us. But, when my daughter submitted those mission papers, I committed that this was her baby--not mine. She belongs to the Lord, not me. I need to take a few giant steps backward.

No, I am not the kind who likes to sit around feeling sorry for myself. If there's something I can DO to feel productive and something I can DO to help alleviate those feelings, I will. I have heard the words: "Wow! My mom was never that involved in my mission" from a few people. Back in the day of handwritten letters, envelopes, and stamps, they couldn't be. But when I receive a transfer letter about my daughter from the mission home, it encourages us to "be a part of your daughter’s missionary service by writing to your daughter’s investigators and new converts, and express your love and your testimony of the Gospel."

This gives me an opportunity to be an influence for good on my daughter's mission. Am I in her face trying to control her actions or what happens to her next? No. I figure, I am not involved in "my daughter's" mission. I am, however, involved with the Philippines Olongapo Mission. I care about the people of that area of the world, and I care about those who serve there. I want to see everyone there succeed.

Because of that, there have been experiences that have opened up. There have been things to do. There have been wonderful experiences. Do these involve my daughter? No, not directly, but they do touch the lives of those she serves and those she serves with, and therefore, yes, they do involve her.

If you're sitting around missing a missionary, isn't that wonderful? Wonderful that you have that kind of bond in a world where so many don't….but seriously, would you ever want to deny him/her this experience? This once in a lifetime chance?

If you're looking for something to do to get past those feelings, get up and do. There is so much good to be done, and you have so much good to give. Use your energy on blessing someone's life instead of feeling so sorry about yours.

There are missionaries everywhere. There are some who receive nothing from home. There are some for whom there is no "home." Have you wondered about them? That is where your energy can be well spent. Then, there are those your missionary rubs shoulders with daily--people they teach, members in the ward they're serving in. How can you buoy them up? How can you let them know that you know they exist and that you care about them.

There really is so much to be done. This is just one small way to keep the good going and growing in this world.


Shelly said...

I was reading the Ensign today Julie and was thinking of you already when I came across this scripture D&C 58:27 "men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness." Sometimes it is simply through a simple action that we can do that someone else is unable to do for themselves that day. Thanks for the inspiration!

LeAnn said...

I love these 10 minute posts; I might try it sometime.
I can't imagine moaning or groaning over having a missionary in the field. I found it the most uplifting to have a missionary out serving. We sent out 4 children and I felt so blessed the whole time they were there.
Blessings for the 10 minutes of thought.

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