|"Be still, my soul: The Lord is on thy side" |
- Katharina von Schlegel, b. 1697. Be Still, My Soul (English Hymnal)
This is a personal story of how I have learned more about having peace, being still. I received my missionary calling in October 2015 and my journey to get to the Brazil MTC started only in February 2016, a little under a year ago. This months were filled with anxiety and also much excitement to became a missionary. My way to the mission field was quite different than most of the missionaries. First I went to my home country MTC, after that I started my mission in São Paulo, Brazil as a visa waiter missionary. I served for 3 months and the VISA came, it was quite a challenge and experience to focus on the the work and forget about the VISA, especially when your friends let you know that one apostle just visited the mission you were called to. I've learned that "by small and simple things are great things brought to pass" (Alma 37:6); by small and simple means the Lord fulfill His promises, I soon learned that I needed to have that experience in São Paulo as well. When I came from Brazil to the US, my first stop was in Orlando, Florida. I have never been in an international trip before. After a 12 hours flight, even though lunch and dinner was served, I was considerably hungry. After landing and checking in my luggage to Phoenix I needed to look for my gate. Well, I talked with one of the airport agents and she instructed me to take the train and go to the other side of the airport and look for my gate number and I would be able to find it and so I did. After catching the bus I forgot I have checked in my luggage because everyone was with theirs and took me a few minutes to figure that out in my head. On the way a man told me that he had a friend that was a member of the church and that he went on a mission as well, I was very amazed with the amount of people calling by Elder and a few "Welcome Home!".
Little they knew that I was still going to my mission and being by myself gave that impression, I can't deny also that it was a great comfort to hear that. After that I finally got my boarding pass and went to the right gate - getting there a family with a kid was waiting to fly to Phoenix and one of them told their little boy to ask me If I was going home, I explained that I was going to start my mission after waiting a few months for my VISA. They called me to talk with them and I explained where I was from and etc; they offered me some Chinese food which I enjoyed and so needed. In the plane they were right behind me which make the flight a lot more fun. In the end After all those hours I just ran to find my luggage and my mission president, expecting to find them again to say thanks. Unfortunately I didn't see them again but it was great to know that I am part of a bigger family, this experience reminded me of so many different scriptures, the Parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10, or Matthew 6 when the Savior teaches "(...)Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body(...)", all this small things helped me to build up a testimony, that trip wasn't just a trip it was a lesson to me about learning how to "Fear not" because He is with us. It is my testimony that the Savior lives and loves us, He has a purpose for us, He has a plan for us! I learned and acquired a testimony that in many occasions when we expect things to happen fast or in our timing we just need to "Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10)