February 19, 2018
If anyone has been counting- It's been 18 months, even a little bit more than that actually.
Words can never ever say what I've felt here.
Neither is man capable to make them known, for they are only to be seen and understood by the power of the Holy Spirit, which God bestows on those who love him, and purify themselves before him;
This week was a teary one.
I'll be honest I'm not absolutely sure if they were tears of sadness or tears of joy, but I am sure they were tears of love and gratitude.
I was driving through Fresno earlier this week and I swear they could make this into a movie because as I looked out the window with tears streaming down my face I had a very real desire to simply let Fresno soak into my skin. I wanted it to be a part of me.....and I'm not sure if somehow that Fresno air has gotten into my skin but I am absolutely positive that Fresno people are forever stuck inside my heart.
I was so blessed enough to begin this week with the missionaries that departed earlier this week. They are truly my best friends. I love them.
We were able to go to the temple where I cried with them and President and Sister Mackay joined us. Also there was Sister Ounsevath and when we walked out Shannon had randomly felt prompted to go to the temple as well. The idea of spending eternity with so many of these best friends is my favorite idea of all time.
We all went out to get ice cream together, felt blessed to be friends with each other, street contacted some people, and went to the Mackay's for dinner. We participated in this horrific tradition called 'cutting mission ties' and we talked about mission experiences, all the way from the embarrassing times we fell asleep in appointments to the conversion of our converts.
We bore testimony together and cried some more-we shared our love for the people, our love for each other, and especially our love for Christ.
The Elders left to go sleep at the assistants house, we spent more time with the Mackay's and finally we came out with the truth, that despite our squirmy faces whenever the 'M' word was brought up, we in reality did want marriage advice. They delivered.
We stayed up late some of the sisters got in some last-ditch attempt sit-ups, and we talked more about the things we finally sort of felt okay talking about.
We woke up the Elders came back over and we had breakfast. We talked about who had talked in their sleep that night (apparently me). We let the Elders know who we had pegged as the first to get married out of them all. We laughed a lot, we played jenga, we felt weird.
President allowed us to sing 'Called to Serve' California Fresno Mission style. One of the Elders said a prayer and then 'it' hit. After that prayer there was a literal weight in the room, a moment when what hadn't felt real for so long finally began to feel a little real (even for me.) After that closing prayer there was only one thing left for me to do and that was to say goodbye to some of the best missionaries the universe has ever seen and I've ever known. I watched each of them leave the Mackay's house, give both the Mackay's a hug and then I watched them leave and it broke my heart.
However, I trust that the Lord has a plan for each of them and I know that because I know that because I've continued to experience a part of the plan He has for me.
I won't say too much right now but I will say THAT I KNOW I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE HERE THIS WEEK AND I KNOW THAT I'M SUPPOSED TO BE HERE IN THE NEXT WEEK.
Honestly I've felt the work of salvation in the most pure and the most raw form in the last week.
Of all of the things that I have experienced out here, the most powerful thing I've experienced out here in this place I love is the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
I've seen Him enable, heal, redeem, love, strengthen and transform my converts, companions, members, and friends.
I've felt Him enable, heal, redeem, love, strengthen and transform Sister Rendon.
I know that my mission was divinely designed for my salvation because as I sought to truly lose myself in this work I found my best friend of all, His name is Jesus Christ.
And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
Not only did I find Him but I also found myself.
To my dearest family and friends. I know that you will be seeing me soon, but please don't expect to see the me that left. I am different. As I have said I have been transformed.
Yet that being said I feel in this moment that I am more me than I have ever before been, and I really like that.
I love you all.
Please read your scriptures.
Please say your prayers.
Please go to church on Sunday
and then please come find me on Monday.