Three years had passed since the first time I considered serving a mission. In those three years, I did a lot of great things. I graduated from BYU with a degree, I moved back home, bought a car, I got my first full-time job, etc. My life was going well but I knew there was something more I needed to do. I figured I needed to go to grad school and further my education, but every time I would decide on a direction to take, I lost interest and had no motivation. It was weird but as I look back, I've realized that is how the Lord tells me something isn't right.
In the last year, there were multiple times when I felt a nudge toward a mission, but since I had received an answer previously, I would just brush it aside. After I used that excuse several times, I moved on to the excuse of "I'm too old to go on a mission" or "I have a good job and should be going back to school soon" or anything else I could think of until I ran out. I talked with my mom about all of my fears. I felt as though I needed to go, but I was scared. My mom simply reminded me that the Lord prepares a way for us to accomplish what we need to. Boy is that the truth.
I decided that if I was going to receive an answer if I should serve, I needed to put into practice what I did three years before. I met with my bishop and started the process. And just like three years ago, I didn't tell anyone but my parents. I did not want anyone's opinion or thoughts on the matter. I wanted to do what I felt was best for me. As I moved through the process, it was much different than before. I felt excited and ready. I also had a distinct feeling that the Lord was requesting me to serve. He would be fine if I didn't go, the work would move forward, but He was asking for my help. I've never felt as though a mission was required or that I was under an obligation to serve but I'm grateful for that peaceful confirmation that I received.
The papers were submitted. I didn't know where I would serve, but I knew that it would be where I was needed most. A week before my assignment arrived, I told my siblings about my impending call. Everyone was happy for me. I was happy, too...but I couldn't relax until I knew where I was going.
Please don't send me to Russia...or the Philippines...