Saturday, December 31, 2016

Good Bye 2016 and Hello 2017

It's been a several months since I last entered anything on our mission post.  Last time was in August when I had my second Lymphectomy which came back not like we had hoped so two weeks later on 15th August I had a single mastectomy and two lymph nodes removed as well as reconstruction was started.  I was to be in the hospital two days and 24 hours later they surgeon who is an amazing woman and surgeon sent me home as I was not experiencing any pain.  In fact, through all three surgeries I never experienced pain, not pain medication; discomfort at times yes but nothing to warrant pain medication.

This cancer journey has been a blessing and I am grateful for what I and Elder Morley and my family have learned that our Savior atoned for each of us individually, the Atonement is real, personal; he chose to take what pain I should have experienced so I could recover and heal quicker and continue on in His work.  I am humble and grateful beyond words for his eternal, personal love.  Each time I partake of the sacrament it had become so personal to me, He did do it for me, for you.

I am now 4 1/2 months since the surgery, we were able to at five weeks continue our mission visits and teaching.  I will have my implant the end of February.

We passed our year on the 28th December, it's gone by so fast, we have six months left and we are wanting to do all we can inviting others to come unto their Savior.  We have been visiting a young couple with a now a two year old darling, active boy for 11 months now. She had been taught the discussions but just couldn't understand and connect what was taught to her so the Elders asked us to visit them and read the Book of Mormon with them and what a testimony it is to see it open up hearts and minds as she now has an understanding of the gospel and the scriptures.

In the summer we had a feeling to repeat the discussion but this time to invite her husband to sit in on them.  He is a member and holds the office of Teacher but has been less active for years and had picked up some habits but a great young man.  Since we have given them both the discussions he has quit his tea drinking, they are attending church and with the help of former and current Ward Mission Leaders, she has set her baptism date for 4th February 2017.  She has such a testimony, she never had any word of wisdom problem, no immoral, she was pretty much living the standards of the church.  We love this young couple and he was afraid when his wife gets baptized that they wouldn't see us anymore but we assured them they will see us seeing they will be working towards a temple sealing in 2018.

We have also been visiting and teaching under the direction of the bishop an older couple in their 60's, she's a member and he lost his membership several years ago and has never made an excuse to why, he took it and paid the price.  He is such a humble man, he knows the gospel but his bishop asked us to give them the discussions as well which we have.  We still visit and always leave a message.  They too have become good friends with us.  When I was down with my last surgery, she was wanting to see me but that night was busy packing for her early flight out but then a knock at the door and there they stood with her famous peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.

We have had many opportunities to visit and teach many in our stake; some accept the invitation to come back and others not but we stay in touch with them and they know we care about them.  Christmas time was a good time to visit each one and take them a little goodie, many sweet times with many of them.  We are visiting two families with the Elders, love these young men as we feed them lunch every Tuesday then correlate our work with them.

We are serving as District Leaders since October and enjoy our couples in our district.  We enjoyed attending 6 of the 8 wards Christmas parties which gave us an opportunity to mingle with the ward members.

Now on  a personal note.  We have two grandsons serving missions.  My youngest daughter's only son William is serving in Scottsdale Arizona and will be out 6 months next week.  He has grown so much  and has had many baptisms.  He was hit while on his bike but was protected; his left wrist was inured but after a couple of weeks with a brace on it he's fine.  The guy driving the car did't stop as they Elders had the right of way and luckily he was not going fast.

Our other grandson, Kyle who is the only son of my second son just arrived in NY NY North Mission on the 27th December, the mission posted pictures of the group arriving in NY and it was so fun seeing pictures of Kyle. Both of these boys have grown up together and now to share in serving missions.  Our family gatherings are a bit lonely without them but they are also a blessing.

I bear testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  He is our Savior and Redeemer.  The Atonement is real, it is for each of us.  I know without a doubt Joseph Smith was and is a prophet who was called and ordained int he pre-existence to bring forth the restoration of the gospel and of  the Book of Mormon.  I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God that it contains the fullness of the gospel.  Reading it this year has witnessed to me that it was talking of our times as I was compared what I was reading and what was going on in our world.  It is so clear that if we strive to be our best and live the commandments we will be blessed but those who are rebellious and fight against the truth will be destroyed.  We know the end and who will win and like Elder Holland has said, why wouldn't you want to be on the winning side?

We were blessed to have Elder Ballard speak to us in December, how blessed to be in the presence of an apostle of our Lord.  We have been so blessed in serving this MLS mission.  We have been able to still interact with our family, attending concerts, our family gatherings, farewell, setting apart.  This is truly an inspired mission for seniors.  As Elder Morley and I reflect back on our call, the Lord knew we needed to stay here for if we had been called away from our home I would not have been diagnosed early with my cancer as I was, it would have spread so I am so full of gratitude to a loving Heavenly Father and his son, my Savior Jesus Christ for their tender mercies.

I hope and plan on being better at keeping this blog up to date for the next 6 months.  A belated Merry Christmas and a Happy 2017 New Year!

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