Saturday, March 24, 2012
Chapter 4: Inner Peace
It's been two weeks since my mission papers were sent in, and I still have yet to find that big, white envelope smiling up at me from my mailbox. Over these past days, my feelings about my mission call have seen every color of the rainbow, every measurement of the Richter Scale, every letter of the alphabet, every musical pitch, every country in the world! During the process of completing my papers, I genuinely didn't even care where I would be called to serve. All I wanted was to go out and teach like the crazies. The excitement of having made the decision to go was all-consuming. Any mention of missionaries or the Gospel sent me into an excited tizzy. That was the first stage.
The next stage required a little more effort to get my endorphin fix. Pinning pictures of missionary tags on my Pintrest board was no longer enough. I wanted to imagine what my own mission would be like, but I couldn't ever get past walking through the doors of the MTC (Missionary Training Center), because what I'll be doing there depends on whether I'll be learning a foreign language or not. For a while I was able to satisfy my desire to imagine by reading other missionaries' blog posts from all over the world.
Stage three found me doing indexing and family history work to keep my mind off of imagining myself in Germany. I knew that once I started envisioning myself somewhere-- anywhere--, I'd be disappointed to be called somewhere else. In the end, I know I'll love my mission no matter where I go, and I know I'll be excited. But I live in fear that the glorious moment of opening my call will be ruined with even the briefest moment of disappointment. So it's best not to have any expectations at all.
About two hundred stages later, every day becomes more and more a struggle to achieve Mission Call Nirvana. I try closing my eyes and "ohmm"ing. I try mental flashcards of every possible area I can think of and what makes it special. I try to keep an open, clear mind. Mostly, I try not to think about it. But from every side, my chi is disturbed by the question, "So, did you get your mission call yet?" Or "Do you know where you're going yet?" Or "When do you leave?" Or "Where do you want to go?" (That one's the worst.)
"I want to go wherever the Lord sends me." No one ever wants to hear that one, but I repeat it anyway, hoping that if I say it enough, the inner peace will come and when my mission call sends me to Provo, UT or Boise, ID, I will be thrilled beyond belief! That's the goal.
I hope my call comes today, but if it doesn't, I guess that will give me more time to practice patience and achieve inner peace until I can (in the words of Master Shifu) "harness the flow of the universe."
I only wanted the first few minutes of this video, but... ya know... I don't know how to get that....