To My Girls
January 31, 2016To My Girls......the Old Guard in the mission office will make a complete change this week. Our
mission nurse friend, Sister Arnold will be forging a new life in North Dakota by the week's end. We will be the last ones standing. Oh, of course, we can testify by experience that it doesn't matter to the Lord who runs the place, as long as they are willing and able. The Schlager's replaced the Black's without a glitch. The Fuller's have replaced the Crow's with not one word of complaint. A new couple has already been called and will replace us in April. And soon.....our names and faces will be forgotten by busy missionaries.
That's the plan. The way it is supposed to work. Who was this mission for? Elder and Sister Seaman. And you and your families. I am asking once more, have you felt the blessings? Have you seen the growth in your mom and dad? Are we all better for this experience? I think we are. I know I am. And I have learned to love it.
When this last bunch of departing missionaries were getting ready to go home, Sisters Pistorius and Hansen and I were talking about going back into the real world where their first name is no longer Sister. Sister Pistorius seemed very comfortable to be called Sydnie soon. As for Sister Hansen, she seemed at a genuine loss. "I don't know what I want to be called. Abigail? Abby? I don't know." I have thought a lot about that. Now, just to ease your minds, she settled on Abby. I know it because I saw it on Facebook. I understand how Sister Hansen, aka Abby, was feeling. Your dad and I can see that happening with us. So, where do we go for answers? To our patriarchal blessings.
It was a beautiful late summer morning on August 21, 1967 when my mom drove me to Snowflake, AZ to get my patriarchal blessing from Patriarch David A. Butler. I was going to be a freshman in high school and my parents felt I was "age worthy" to appreciate the experience. The Butler's had a beautiful yard. Sister Butler wrote in beautiful handwriting as her husband pronounced that blessing on my head. The windows were open and a cool breeze blew through the air.They were so kind and so old. Isn't that a funny memory? Maybe they were a few years older than I am now.
I tell you this little memory and encourage you to go again to your patriarchal blessings. It seems the older a person gets, the more treasured some lines can become. And they may not even be lines that were treasured the last time it was read by your eyes.
As the office staff changes, it makes missionaries more aware that surely, sometime, Elder Seaman and I will hit the road ourselves. Then, they ask, "What are you going to do?" Well, this is all we know for now. We have three months to finish strong out here. Lots can happen in three months. We are willing. And then the rest of our lives, we are wide open for more good adventures. We just want to be left standing worthy when we meet the Lord. We want to be standing there with all of you. Keep up the good work in your own homes. It's worth it. And, just a reminder, you are all choice spirits and love and cooperation abides in our family. I know that because my patriarchal blessing says so.
I so love you Mauriah, Kirsten, Jessica, Lindsay, Addie, and Caitlin!
Mom.....aka Sister Seaman
The Outer LimitsRemember the old TV show called the Outer Limits. It was popular back in the 1960's when we only had black and white TV. What? Oh, maybe that was the Twilight Zone, its been so long I forget. Anyway, it was kind of scary at the time. My grandkids will not believe that the TV was only in black and white and came to us by the use of an antennae (sometimes with foil on them). Lots of static and rolling lines. Hard to believe technology has come so far. The mission has outer limits too. I was in two of them this week.
Most of the missionaries feel that they have been sent to Siberia, when they receive the assignment to spend time in these kind of places. They wonder if they have done something wrong and are being punished for something they did. That is simply not the case. Show Low may qualify as an outer limit, but I know that the missionaries there love to get that assignment.
As near as I can tell, there were two places where missionaries reside that I had not been to in the previous 15 months. One of them is called Maryville and the other is called Marshall, both in Missouri but at nearly opposite ends. Maryville is 1 hour and 45 minutes north of Independence and Marshall is 1 hour and 15 minutes East Northeast. Both towns are about the size of Show Low (10,000+/-) and both are rural and remote. One has a small struggling ward in it, the other has a struggling branch. Definitely not the same as Show Low.
It was kind of quirky that both places, that I had never been before, needed something from me in the same week. I believe that I have now been in 100% of the 110 or so apartments in the mission. Most of them I can drive to without the GPS now because I have been to them enough times. It must be time to go home.
I know that if the missionaries assigned to these outer limit places are hard workers and get the confidence of the members, they are loved and appreciated and the work goes forward and they have a great experience. If they don't work hard, and goof-off a lot, they have a tough experience and bad memories. It is a lot like life. When we work hard and gain the confidence of the people we work with things go well and we are happy. If not, not so good. The outer limits provide an even greater testing ground and also greater blessings.
Work hard my grandkids, even if you get the tough assignments. Blessings will flow.