Wednesday, July 9, 2014

President and Sister Tilleman

My apartment

May 26th Email

Dear Dad,
I haven't received a note from you yet so I will just send one on my own. I was pretty bummed when I didn't see a note in my inbox from you...It's been a tough week and I was hoping you'd say something that would help. That's okay though. I know you're probably doing something really important!

So this week...It's kind of hard to explain how I have been feeling. It's kind of like I'm running in place but not like Emily Toia on a tread mill, not that accomplishing. It's kind of like I'm putting all my energy in the world to swim against the tide but the current keeps pulling me out. I don't know what analogy i'm looking for but it's been a tough week. I feel like I am working so hard but I'm seeing not much progress. I feel like I'm almost in a daze. I am trying to be obedient, but I feel like I keep slipping up. I am trying to talk to everyone and find new investigators but by the end of the day it just doesn't happen.  I feel like I am trying so hard to keep my expectations on my mission high but I feel like I am slowly losing the drive.
I have so many feelings and I am not sure how to fix it.  The middle of last week I realized I started to lower my expectations a lot.  I would think of my future and how I was just going to settle for so many things.  I wasn't going to give it my all, I wasn't going to reach all the potential I have in this life.  For example, I think about school sometimes and how I want to double  minor in Spanish and Mandarin.  It sounds pretty tough right?  It is!  but could I do it?  Absolutely.  I would have to work my butt off a long with all my other classes, but I know that with the Lord's help I could do it and I think He would want me too.  But lately I have been thinking, ahh there's no way that could happen.  There's no way I could master 2 foreign languages.  It really saddened me that I was giving up so soon.

I started to pray really hard and seek inspiration on what to do. A talk by Sister Linda S Reeves from the last General Conference really started to open my eyes. She talks all about having a Christ-Centered home. It helped me think about the type of home I want one day and the type of man I will need to marry to create such a home.  It helped me set some higher expectations for myself.  Also, I went on an exchange with another sister and I was really able to help her with some concerns she's having.  It gave me more hope to keep going.  The Lord is looking out for me and He is helping me develop certain skills and helping me use the strengths He's already given me.  I am working very hard to trust the Lord.  I know His expectations for me in this life are high!  He knows I can accomplish so much and He doesn't want me to give up or think I am anything less than what He created me to be.
It makes me nervous I only have about 8 or so months left to be a missionary.  I worry that I will hit a low point again when I get home and I'll end up making a life decision I will always regret.  I'm not sure what to do, Dad.  I am trying really hard and I know the Lord is throwing me little reminders of  His love and He's encouraging me to keep going, but I hate that I've been feeling this way.  I am really pushing myself to raise the bar.  I hope you can ponder my letter and send one back for next week and give me some direction.  Please tell the family to pray for me.  It's been a rough transfer.  Only a few more weeks left and I don't know what's going to happen.
I love you.  I missed hearing from you today!  I pray for you every night and know the Lord will bless you in finding a job.  He' blessed me so much and I am just trying to trust Him.  Proverbs 3:5-6

Love, Sister Emily Dahl

May 12th Email

Dear Dad,
It was so great talking to everyone yesterday! It made me so happy and I loved hearing everyone's voices. I am also very grateful I made it through an hour with out any tears. haha As soon as I started the call Sister Wang put some paper towels in front of me just in case!  The only time I got a little emotional was when I was telling Mom how much I love her.  She's seriously so incredible!  I don't know how she does it.  She is the most Christ-like person I know and it was so special for me to be able to tell her that :) Give her a big hug for me!

SO this past week was pretty good!  Still getting used to the new companion but things are going well.  I pondered a lot this week about why I am still here in Burnaby and why I'm in the position I am.  I really have gained such a  strong testimony of Heavenly Father's plan.  He's so aware of each and everyone of us.  Whether it's something big or small, He's helping us during our time in mortality.  He helps us make decisions and influences us in away that 

1. we can learn and grow. He knows I need to be here still. He knows I need to do my best to help Sister Wang feel special and accomplished in the end of her mission. He knows I can be the one to help her fulfill her calling as a district leader and 

2. we can bless the lives of others so they can learn and grow. He does this through the Holy Ghost. I like to think of President Tilleman as a perfect example. Last transfer meeting he told us, "I don't do anything on my mission unless directed by the spirit. I don't have time for anything else". He is so inspired. He follows the spirit and he knows what I need to still be here. 

I have seen more and more in my mission how Heavenly Father has used me to help others on my mission and it's through the spirit. Whether it's going to drop by someone in the ward who has been on my mind or I write or respond to an email with a prayer in my heart that it will touch their heart. I have seen countless miracles during my mission because I have followed the promptings of the spirit.

I love this concept and I know it'll help you in your new calling as a ward missionary. Get a new ward list and go through and mark everyone you know that is active. Mark everyone you know is a recent convert and who is less active. Prayerfully ponder who needs to be rescued. I think the ward mission leader and all the ward missionaries should do this and come together to give the missionaries a list of who to visit. Also, when you are in lessons with the missionaries, observe their teaching, how often do they use you as a member, are they teaching people or are they just teaching the lesson? Prayerfully ponder what they can do to better use members and in meetings, by the direction of the spirit, you will know how to help those elders see even more success in the ward. I am so excited for the opportunity you have to serve in this calling! You'll love it!
I love this gospel. It makes me a better person everyday and I love the great happiness it brings to me and to others. I love obedience! There is no way I'd see so many miracles and see the influence of the spirit in my life with out emphasizing exact obedience. It's absolutely crucial as a missionary! 

Well I love you and I love everyone at home! I am glad Abi's mission is going well too! :) Say hi to everyone for me!
Love, Sister Emily Dahl

P.S. my wisdom teeth have been bothering me lately... not good!

I Love The Temple

With our friend Xiao.