“Yea, and all things denote there is a God; yea, even the earth, and all things that are upon the face of it, yea,and its motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator.” — Alma 30:44
Throughout my mission, I have longed to experience those moments you hear from return missionaries. You know, like when a missionary is prompted to turn down a street or knock on a specific door, and they find a family or person that is seeking the truth. I remember hearing stories like that, and yearning to be in that person’s shoes. I pined for that feeling of complete and perfect love for another person, and seeing their lives change before you eyes.
Now, as an actual missionary, I have realized that a day in the life of a missionary does not consist solely of these moments. We do a lot of “winging.” Those miracles do not simply fall into our laps. We work earnestly to knock doors, schedule appointments, pray and seek for inspiration, and talk to everyone. Some days are a lot harder than others. But, what I’ve realized is that those moments that return missionaries always focus on are the moments that changed their hearts on their mission. Those experiences aren’t told to receive glory or praise for what they did; rather, they are told because they magnify the feelings they had in those moments that changed their lives forever.
This Saturday was one of those harder days. It was one of those missionary days when you come home and your shoe soles are worn down a little more than they had been that morning. We tracted and knocked nearly all day long, with little success. The only time in the day we weren’t knocking was when we went by to visit a recent convert, Antonio. He had been baptized only about a month ago, and he is an angelito sent from the heavens. A few days earlier, we had come over with the elders in our ward to paint his bedroom that he’s renting. We didn’t have enough time to do two coats, so he finished up the job when we left. Well, when we came by to drop off some food that was left for him in the church kitchen, he showed us through his window the outcome of the paint job. Light gray splotches had scattered across the old wooden floor, but as our gaze moved upward, we saw that all the walls and the ceiling looked brand new. Pictures of Christ had been newly taped to the walls for decoration. I looked over at a vase he had, that was filled to the brim with water, as two flowers stood against the clear glass.
Antonio caught my gaze at the flowers, and began talking about how he takes care of them. As he spoke, he began to describe how the flowers are a gift from God. He cupped the petals delicately with his hands, and smiled as he explained that God is so good to give us these beautiful creations. While he spoke, tears brimmed my eyes. A familiar, overwhelming feeling came over me, and I felt the love of God swell within my heart. It touched me that this humble, angelic man saw God in the simplest things. I suddenly became extremely grateful for the opportunity I had to know people like Antonio. It gave me more joy and hope to continue helping others feel the love that I was feeling right then.
This experience was a reminder to me of the love that my Heavenly Father has for me. Although the miracles we hear of do not happen often, we can see the hand of God in all things. As we seek to see God in the simple things of our everyday lives, we can continually feel His love for us, and have gratitude for the things that we have.
Les quiero muchisimo!