"What I would like to share with y’all, especially those who just recently came home, is that you are loved for what you have done for our Savior Jesus Christ"
Texas Dallas Mission: May 1, 2013 - November 10, 2013
Why I decided to serve:
When I was 16 years old, I was able to serve a mini mission for my stake. The sisters got the chance to serve in Nauvoo. I never thought about serving a mission before. Well, being able to serve in Nauvoo every summer from the age 16-18 definitely planted a seed about serving. Then going to school at LDSBC and living so close to Temple Square in 2010, made it grow. I knew by 2012, when I was 20 years old that I was going to serve a mission. I started my papers in November of 2012.
Dear Sister Davis,
You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Texas Dallas Mission.
My thoughts and feelings about my mission call:
- Man, it's going to be hot
- Texas? I have family in Texas!
Favorite scripture before the Mission:
1 Nephi 3:7
And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.
Favorite song before the Mission:
"I’ll Go Where You Want Me to Go"
Favorite verse: Verse 3 -> There’s surely somewhere a lowly place in earth’s harvest fields so wide. Where I may labor through life’s short day for Jesus, the Crucified. So trusting my all to thy tender care, and knowing thou lovest me, I’ll do thy will with a heart sincere: I’ll be what you want me to be.
Furthering my covenants
Day I entered the temple: March 15, 2013
Temple: Nauvoo Illinois
How I felt when I entered the Temple for the first time: I was really nervous because I was furthering my covenants, but the one thing that stuck out to me when I met with my Bishop and Stake President was they both told me not to pay attention to what’s going on, but the pictures around me, and the feelings that I felt as I was there.
Time in the MTC: May 1, 2013-May 13, 2013
My companion: Sister Maren Otto
So my time in the MTC was really rough. I ended up getting sick while I was there. Something that always made me happy was seeing my friends there as well. I had 2 of my friends from college in the MTC the same time I was. They both were going to different countries. One went to Brazil and the other went to Norway. This guy right here, is a good friend of mine. He is from my ward back home in Iowa. We entered our papers in the same day and he entered the MTC a week after I did. He came home from his mission about 4 weeks before I did due to medical reasons as well. It always made me smile when I saw him because it definitely helped with any homesickness I had.
Trainer: Sister Emily Heath
First Area: Garland 1st Ward
Favorite Experience: My trainer and I were going to our ward mission leader’s home for dinner. It was the first time that we were both meeting him and his family because we were opening the area. Well I had to go to the bathroom really bad and I had this brilliant idea to pretend like we were contacting them. I really just wanted to practice contacting. Well he caught on to our joke and slammed the door in our face. It was my first official slam in the face. Yes, he did open the door and let us in. His kids were laughing so hard. His wife was as confused as could be. It was awesome.
Companions: Sister Emily Heath and Sister Helene Nance
Ward: Garland 1st Ward
Favorite Memory: So this picture right here is one of my favorite memories from my second transfer. As you can see there is candy and tons of food. We are working on our nightly planning and Sister Nance and I were getting really tired. Our trainer let us take a break to go get food out of our cupboards and so we just started goofing off to keep ourselves awake.
3rd and 4th transfer
Companion: Sister Kaylee Allen
Ward: Sherman 1st Ward
Favorite Memory: This picture right here is a picture of Sister Allen and me on our preparation day. We had this brilliant idea to whiten our teeth. Worst idea ever. It was disgusting, and we couldn’t talk to each other for about 2ish hours. We just sat in our room writing letters to family and friends. We also were writing in our journal.
5th Transfer (Final transfer)
Companion: Sister Kelsey Kerr
Ward: Allen 7
Favorite Memory: So I don’t really have a favorite memory because I only served in this ward for 2 ½ weeks. Something that does mean a lot to me though is being able to see one of my investigators from my last area get baptized the day before I came home. It meant so much to me because she was supposed to be baptized the week before and it was devastating to me because she started smoking, so they had to push back her baptism at least one week. It taught me to love her, but it also taught me to work harder. It was so great to see her get baptized right before I went home. It was a great way to end my mission - even though it was early.
The Dreams of a Missionary
It’s what every missionary dreams of. The moment of walking off the plane and having your family cry as they embrace you for the first time in years. The big party thrown by your friends because they are so proud of you returning with honor. Having your home Ward listen with eager ears as you recount stories from faraway places. All of that hard work, sweat, and tears all ends in celebration. But what if you had to go through it all and have disgusted faces to come home to…?
My story about coming home
So I was in my 5th transfer. It was the 2nd week into it, and I started having really bad stomach pain that I couldn’t control. I went to the emergency room 3 times within 48 hours because it was bad, and the doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong. They kept telling me I had kidney stones. I knew that there had to be something else wrong. Well that Saturday, I called my Mission President and asked if I could call my parents and talk to them about me possibly coming home. He told me that that would be a good idea. I did not want to come home but the day before I decided to come home, my Mission President’s wife and I had a talk. She said something that really bothered me. She told me that “a lot of sisters will realize a mission is not for them and they will try and find ways to go home. It looks like to me that you are doing that. You need to decide now if you want to go home or not. Keep in mind that there is no such thing as an honorable or dishonorable mission.” That stuck out to me because I wondered then, “what’s the point of being out here?” It bothered me because I KNEW I was serving honorably and she took that away from me. I didn’t really have a closing interview with my Mission President. I left the next day to go home and be with my family.
Favorite scripture after the mission
3 Nephi 5:13
Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life.
Favorite song after the mission:
"God Be With You Til We Meet Again"
My thoughts and feelings when I came home
When I decided to come home from my mission due to my health, my Mission President gave me permission to call my parents, and I asked them what their thoughts were about me wanting to come home. When I came home and saw them, it was hard. Don’t get me wrong, I loved seeing them, but I felt like I failed them. They never once made me feel like I failed. They were so proud of me. My Stake President and Bishop were so proud of me as well. My first Saturday home, I went to a Relief Society activity with my mom and everyone welcomed me home except one person who judged me because I came home early. I again felt like a failure. It was hard to face. I cried. I wanted to be back on my mission. I worked so hard to go back on my mission. When I got the news that I wasn’t going back out, I was devastated. It was very hard for me to hear that I wasn’t going to finish. Now that I have hit 4 years of being home, I look back and am so grateful for the experiences that I did have on my mission.
What my journey has been like since coming home
Closure: I feel like honestly I haven’t received closure until I created this PowerPoint. I have been upset because of multiple different reasons. My health had returned at the end of September, and to find out that my gallbladder had shut down 5 years ago, and the doctors didn’t catch it on my mission was hard. As I go through my experiences that I had on my mission, I’m just grateful that I went.
I feel like I did experience a time of inactivity more when I moved to Utah. I struggle with feeling judged, because I DID get judged. I’m honestly scared to share my story with my friends because I don’t want them to think that I am a failure. I haven’t really been open about serving a mission.
What I would like to share with y’all, especially those who just recently came home, is that you are loved for what you have done for our Savior Jesus Christ. It has, and still is, taking me time to realize that I served with all my heart. I have felt like I have failed Him. If you feel like that, it is the Adversary telling you that you are. Don’t listen, because it’s not true. Get on your knees and pray to Him and ask Him yourself if He is pleased with what you have done.
I know that my Savior loves me. I know that I did what I could. I know that I am a Daughter of God. I know that the 6 months that I served is all that was needed. It took me some time to know that. I was talking to a sister on Temple Square one night and she told me it doesn’t matter if you serve the full amount or not, you can still relate to other missionaries. When she told me that, I thought about my mission call where it says “It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 18 months.” I know that I helped more people than I could ever imagine when I got home. I know that I have planted a seed in the hearts of many people on my mission. I am so grateful for the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.