Wednesday, July 1, 2015

My last day, my last sharing, and my last testimony as a missionary.

This morning I woke up and had a tremendous sense of gratitude fill my heart.  It would be the last day I would spend in the mission home.  I thought about how many times I have lain in this bed in the early morning hours and had spiritual insight given to me in dramatic ways: trainings clearly come into my mind that I would be giving that day, things to say to help missionaries, and insights into my own struggles that were amazing answers to prayer.
So many memories were flooding my mind this morning and every one of them I remember feeling the Lord was showing himself to me because He loves His missionaries, love me, and needed me to be able to do my job with his blessing. 
How many times have I rolled over in the morning and prayed in this room and felt light given, knowledge imparted and strength granted so I could get up and go.  How many times have I laid there and looked up at the ceiling and thought of all the things I’m so grateful for, or cried about something.  And how many times have I come to this room, exhausted and just been so glad to get into the bed and give it all to the Lord and rest.  As I thought about it all this morning I thought about all the Dymocks will go through in this room, and all the mission presidents past who have prayed, wept, and called down the powers of heaven to help them in this bedroom.  I felt kind of like all of those experiences were showing themselves to me and I felt so grateful.
I feel this is a sacred home.  I can just imagine 30 years of spiritual light being shed on the mission presidents in various ways.  The Lord truly has revealed himself to me in this house, especially in the living room.  So many testimonies have been born in the living room: departing missionaries full of strength and confidence as they have finished their service and felt the Lord’s gratitude, and incoming missionaries who have born humble testimonies who have been full of trepidation and exhaustion. It is such a sacred house.  I’m so grateful for all the spiritual experiences that have happened here for the last 30 years and for all that the Dymocks will experience in the future. And now we are leaving.  My heart is so full of love and gratitude for the Lord and all he does to help us when we try to serve him.
The last post I shared was what my last training was when we had, “Muffins with the Mullens”.  But we also gave the missionaries our, “last advice.” I thought about what I would leave them with.  I felt I had shared my heart and mind with them completely, so what could I possible say.  I decided to try to summarize what I have learned on my mission. This is knowledge that goes deep into my heart and I thought it would be the best thing to share.  Here it is:
First: You can’t see the way the Lord sees.  You just can’t.  You’re not as good as he is.  You don’t understand the way he thinks and you don’t have the perspective he possesses.  You aren’t capable of seeing, understanding and knowing all that God does.  Just accept that and trust him.  That is my first bit of advice, just trust in the Lord.  He knows, sees and understands better than you.  He is aware of you and He does have a plan.  Just decide you’ll trust him even though you don’t see the plan, and then you don’t have to worry about everything else.
Next is repent.  I don’t mean just repent for sin.  Repentance is for anything you need it to be that takes you away from the spirit.  It’s allowing the atonement to work in your life to change you.  Repent of needing to be the center of attention, to be seen of man, needing your own way, to be right, for fear, hardness, bitterness and even worry.  You can repent of all of it and give it to Christ. It means change every day from what the natural man pulls you too.
I don’t think of, “I do so much and Christ does the rest.”  I think of Christ and I as a team, joined at the hip.  He is the strong, best, part of us.  It’s not fair, but I hand him all of that pull of the natural man I go through during the day.  That pull to be: negative, critical, prideful, fearful, etc.  I give it to him, hand it to him, slide it over to him, and ask for his atoning blood to be applied in my life.  He is the strong, capable, good, part of us.  I just accept that I am the weak link, and let him have all that is trying to get at my heart that may defile me.
When I live with Christ like this; wanting to constantly change to be in line with God, then I become empty of myself.  God can’t do a lot with me if I am so full of myself. I have to get out of the way for him to be able to do anything with me.  That change; called repentance, empties us of ourselves so we can create a place for God.  When we are empty of our expectations, our fear, need to be valued, our judgments, our irritation, anger, and needing things our way, then we have made a space for him.
Then the third thing to do is wait.  Wait on the Lord.  He can’t give you everything at once.  Not because of him but because of you.  You learn line upon line.  He will give you layers of understanding as you stay soft and open creating a place for him, and then wait.  The first layer may just be the whispering of, “hold on, stay with me, I’ll get you there.”  The next spiritual whispering may be pray to see blessings.  Then what may come to you is another layer of something that you need to repent of to stay soft and open.  The next thing he may teach you is to be grateful and think and pray with gratitude in your heart.  After you’ve worked on that for a while you may receive the layer of stop seeing through the world’s eyes and valuing the things of the world.  Then you may come to accept the Lord’s will and just value what he has given and feel grateful for all He has done for you.  And then when your finally there, you’re at peace, he gives you the answer, the healing, the clam comfort.  And you know it’s going to be ok, it will all work out in the end, that’s when you’ve changed in a sacred way.  This kind of change is hard fought and it is absolutely sacred.  Sacred because of the price paid and the work the God head has done for you to receive it.
When your there, at peace, knowledge, and strength, then you’ve had the mysteries of God unfolded to you.  He has revealed himself to you and then you’ve bonded yourself to him.  You see more like He sees, you understand a little more like He understands, and you know more of what He knows.  You’ve allowed Him to reveal himself to you and you’re bonded to Him.  What a beautiful process He allows.  It takes spiritual work on our part and His. 

So Trust in the Lord, Repent, and Wait. Pay attention while he teaches you in layers and gets you where he wants you to go.  This is the gospel of Christ.  My testimony is God lives.  I don’t need to know everything I just need to Trust, Repent and Wait while He does his work in my life.  I am deeply grateful for all he has allowed to happen to me, to our missionaries, to our converts and to our members in the Washington Spokane Mission over the last 3 years.  Love to you all.  


  1. Thank you so much for your love and care for my missionary Elder Christopher Johnson. Best wishes and prayers for you and your family!

  2. Thank you so much for your love and care for my missionary Elder Christopher Johnson. Best wishes and prayers for you and your family!

  3. Thank you for sharing these beautiful thoughts. I have personally been so inspired by the sacred things you have shared on this blog. They have helped me so much in my own life. Thank you for caring for my son, but also for being the conduit for many things that the Lord has wanted to tell me. I am so grateful for your willingness to share what the Lord has been teaching you. I needed it, too.

    God speed,
    Rachel Keppner

  4. Your blog has been one of the blessings we count from our son's service. It has been a tremendous comfort to know that he has been in your care and teaching. He will return to us this Fall and we are excited to see the man he has become.Thank you for all the Love and Understanding you have poured into our missionaries. May God continue to bless you in your new adventure!

    Travel Gently,
    Heather Rich

  5. I have loved your blog!!! Thank you for sharing your wisdom!!!!