Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Leave it All on the Field

Can you feel it? Can you feel that crispness in the air that feels like Fall? You know what this means?!!!!  GOOOOO TEAM! But, now it is a little different... this year I don't have the stench of sweaty football gear reeking from the back of our suburban. This year, my Friday nights will not be spent juggling dinner on the road so we can get to the game before kick-off. This year I won't have to keep hand warmers in my purse and stadium seats in the trunk. This year my "running back" is playing "offense" for the Lord's team!

It's an awesome team! They have a super great training program down at the CCM (MTC) in Mexico! And when it was game time... my boy was shipped back up to Arcadia California, where he met his coach, the Mission President!

We have equipped him with safety gear... scriptures, Preach My Gospel and other good literature (in English AND Spanish!) along with good shoes, a decent bike and several suits, ties, and white shirts! He was as prepared as he could be... but are you ever completely prepared for a mission?

And now, once again, I am his biggest fan...his loudest cheerleader...the Mom in the stands praying for his safety and success!!! I have to tell you that I cheer loud...really loud! In fact, one time on a particularly awesome play, I got especially boisterous... (my poor husband) I was so excited...after I apologized to the folks sitting in front of us... they looked at me and then their hands flew up in quick gestures to each other. I realized they were deaf...and this was a really good place for me to sit from then on  ;)

My son's "Half Time" is coming up!!! In high school, at half time, my son would disappear into the locker room with the rest of the team for a half time pep talk from the coach... now, halfway through his mission, I hope he will be getting a "pep talk" from his Mission President! I hope he has "team mates" surrounding him encouraging him and I hope that he can be that team mate that says "C'mon, we've got this!!!"

The last thing our Stake President said to my son after he set him apart as a Missionary, was "Leave it all on the field." This means: don't hold back, put it all on the line. At the end of the game you want to know that you gave it your all!!!"

Which Jersey will you wear? Before their missions, these kids were athletes... now they are serving on the Lord's Team!!! GOOOOOOooooooo TEAM!!!


~Heidi Chapman

Monday, August 18, 2014

Seven Shirts

Please welcome Guest Blogger and Missionary Momma Ronda Merrell! Ronda is a mother of four and grandmother to one adorable grandson, thanks to her daughter. She has 3 sons, two missionaries, one in Rancho Cucamonga, CA and the other in the West Indies and a 14 yr old missionary to be at home ;) Ronda is pretty infamous at work for all the cookies she makes. She is a Labor & Delivery nurse. Ronda has been the ward organist since she was 14 yrs old!

As I was pulling my son's shirts out of the dryer, I felt the Spirit prompt me that I should write down a few of my thoughts. I have been feeling overwhelmed with sadness about my son leaving, even though this is what we have worked, prayed and hoped for since he was born. I know that Satan wants me to feel despair rather than joy, so I am determined not to let him win. This is our second son to leave and I know I'm not alone in having 2 missionaries out, so hopefully you will understand my feelings. I hope you can read this poem. I've only ever written one other poem before and I've never edited a picture with text, so I'm not sure how this will turn out. I hope you like it...

Small Revelation

I have been struggling with something for 11 months now. I have been trying so hard to understand why this church that I belong to...this church that has taught me that families are forever, brings me The Family: A Proclamation to the World, , and encourages my family to have Family Home Evening each Monday... has me willingly deliver my child (because that's what he is!) to an MTC to be trained to teach the Gospel to people IN ANOTHER STATE.... and in some cases ANOTHER COUNTRY! With very little communication and NO physical contact!!!

I've gotta tell ya, it shook my testimony a bit, drove me to my knees to plead with my Heavenly Father for understanding! 11 months later, I was ready for the answer.  It came in a quiet moment on a Sunday morning. A quiet whisper, more of a feeling than words spoken to my mind....

"Even Heavenly Father had to withdraw from His son for a time so that He could bring salvation to the world"

Oh could I have been so selfish? He would never ask me to do something that he wouldn't do Himself.  My Heavenly Father... a perfect parent. He loves my son more perfectly than I am able! *SIGH*

I shared this little bit of personal revelation with my missionary last week...his response...

"It's not just what Jesus needed to do for us, but he also needed to grow himself. I have grown more personally than I can ever imagine to change someone else. I just do what The Lord tells me and let him change people and try my hardest to let him change me in the process."

WHO IS THAT KID???  It's happening son is leading others to salvation, and my little boy --deep breath-- my little boy is growing up. Just like my Father in Heaven knew he would.


~Heidi  =0)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Let it go; let her go…

by Guest Blogger, Beth Meise

That is the lesson I am having to learn through this mission experience.  She is my baby, my last.  I was a better mother to her than to the other two just because I had learned by practicing on them.  I shared all my best advice and wisdom with her.  There was a time when she disregarded it all but that was then and this is now and I have let that go.
Now, I have to let her go.  I have to let go of my need to supply her every need.  She can buy her own granola bars; she can find her own quotes.  I have to let her go so she can learn how to use those wings of hers that have been kept gently folded in for so long.  I have to let her go so she can learn to turn to her Heavenly Father, not me.  She needs to be “let go” so she can learn how to recognize, trust and rely on the Spirit.  He will teach her things I cannot teach her as she gives this time to Him.   And she will change as she sees others’ lives change because of this gift she is sharing.
The days and weeks seem to go slow but when I look back and realize how many months it has been since I hugged my girl, it’s gone amazingly fast.  Oh, how I long to hug my girl.
But I can’t.  She is wrapped in someone else’s arms now.  One who knows her, is watching over her and loves her more than I am capable of.  She was His daughter first.  His love is greater and deeper and more pure than mine.  I know this because I have felt His love for me, another of His daughters. 

I don’t count the days or weeks until she is home again.  My heart can’t go there.   Besides, I feel that would be selfish on my part.  I don’t want to make this time go by faster.  I want Heavenly Father to take His time, the time necessary to help her grow and learn and become who He wants her to be, who she is meant to be.  His plan for her is greater than anything I could ever imagine.  And it can’t be rushed.  I know this.

And so, I must let it go.  Let go of the worry and the need to connect and the frustration when I don’t get pictures or a detailed email.  This is not about me.

I must let her go knowing that someday, what will be returned will be of far greater value than anything that can, or ever will, carry a price tag.  And I will be right here waiting, patiently.

This is not my time anymore.  This is His time with her.  And I am letting go.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Mommas Hastening The Work

Do you know how much I LOOOOOVE MISSIONARY WORK!?!?! It has been so fun hearing the sweet testimonies of all the MM's and their missionaries. I want to share it with the world! How can we share this enthusiasm and Hasten the Work???

I have an IDEA!!!

This is a fun and easy way to share "the good news" in your area and to include everybody.... future missionaries, full time missionaries, MM's, RM's, people that love missionaries, investigators… anyone that loves the gospel or would like to learn more!

Could you be a ChairMomma? Or a ChairMomma committee member??? YOU BET YOU CAN!!! Send a message to the Mommas Hastening the Work FB Page if you (sing with me now) " want to be a missionary NOW"

Now you might be worrying that you've never done a fireside before... FEAR NOT!!!  We will be there to help, we will even hold your hand (virtually) if you like :).  We have created a detailed planning template that will guide you through step by step. 

I want you to know that I know that together we can not only Hasten the work, but we can have fun doing it!!!