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Monday, June 2, 2014

"Something has Changed Within Me..."

With Sister Motto and Elder Spencer at Mission Leadership Council (the three moms are good friends!)

So I don't know what happened this week.  It all started on Monday and throughout the course of the week was strengthened.  But I really have experienced, as Alma poses as a question in Alma chapter 5, a mighty change of heart.

It was really hard for me when I first came into Salzburg.  I was Freiburg homesick, I was going through just a hard time on my mission.  The hard stuff just seemed to get harder and harder, especially the past few weeks!  I still talked to people everyday and did my work, but I just felt like I wanted to be somewhere else, that I didn't want to be here.

What helped me through that time was every day I looked for one thing that I wouldn't have experienced that day if I wasn't here.  It really helped.  But it was still hard, just to know that I didn't have the desire to be here!  I mean, I was happy, of course, I am on a mission.  But I felt like my heart wasn't here.

  I was so scared when I first got into Salzburg, that when transfer calls came around, I would still always have this deep down desire to be transferred.  I was tired of feeling that way, of wanting to give up because this area was hard for me to love.  I just did not want to leave Salzburg having it feel like a relief, but I wanted to leave Salzburg crying because I love Salzburg so much.

It really bothered me that I wanted to quit!

But I feel like I have come out of this really long tunnel.  This really long hard time.  My heart has changed!  It's not that I was bad before, it's just that I am better now!  I have been thinking about my investigators more, thinking about the members here more, not just more, but they are who I think about!  I am here, my heart is here, and it is the most beautiful feeling I could ask for.

The other day I actually prayed, from the bottom of my heart, that I can stay another transfer.  Not because I think I know better than God, I know He will send me where I am supposed to be (If there's any missionary that understands THAT principle, I do haha), but I just wanted to express the desire of my heart to Him.  That I desire to be here. 

Of course I could feel bad that it was so hard.  I mean, in those hard times, I had a hard time talking with everyone, being courageous and sitting down next to that person on the train to engage in a conversation.  But that's the past, I can't change that, and in a way, it wasn't that I was bad.  I am just a better missionary now, I am more fully converted.  I have learned an even better right, an even better way of living.

Anyways, sorry to rant.  I am just so excited to be here!  In mind, in heart, in strength, in everything! 

Church was good.  Yesterday there was a point where I was sitting on the ground in the Foyer before sacrament started, looking at a boy in our ward's Star Wars trading cards with him, and a girl in the ward came up, sat next to me, put her head on my shoulder, and I just thought about how much I love them.  I really love this ward.  We unfortunately had no investigators there but hopefully next week.

So speaking of right and wrong. I was talking to a guy, Martin, on the Sbahn the other day on our way home from MLC.  We were talking about life, religion, you know, the usual stuff that missionaries talk about with people. He was a really cool guy.  We start talking about why we have religion, why I do what I do.  We got on the subject of right and wrong, and who God is. 

Martin shared his thoughts of how he really feels there is no right and wrong.  That we are just supposed to live and do as we feel.  That we need to just be in the moment, that assuming things are right and wrong, black and white, limits our understanding and perspective.  He talked about how there is no black, white, grey, there's just life and what we have now.

I obviously shared my thoughts and beliefs, and he politely let me know he didn't need any new ideas or things to consider, but that he was happy with his life.  I gave him a card and we went away from the conversation great friends :)

But it made me so sad.  How unstable is a world where there is nothing definite.  That there is only the fleeting moment that no one can in actuality grasp, because as soon as you reach your hand to do so, that moment is gone and a new one has started.  I remember in one of my theater history classes we mentioned that thought.  That as soon as you think of a moment, that moment is gone, so in actuality you can never know you are living in the present, because the present can only be lived in!

How sad is it to not have anything to work for.  Any reason to raise your bar, raise your vision, and move forward?  I just was so sad for Martin, because there IS so much more!  There is more to this life!  And I know that it will take something not very comfortable to open his mind and heart to that concept.  

I just feel so blessed to have been raised how I was raised.  To know truth, and to also have been raised to thirst and strive for truth!  I love this work, I love these people!  I love that I can talk to them all day long and point their eyes towards heaven!  Sometimes they only take a fleeting glimpse and then look back down at their shoes.  But sometimes they stay, and they move forward, and they progress.  That is the best feeling as a missionary.

Anyways, this week was REALLY good.  And I can tell this next week will be really good.  I haven't changed the work, we are doing pretty much the same stuff.  But the work has changed me.  And I love it!

Love you all!

Go make a friend today!

Sister Henry
PS   Oh gosh, don't worry about me being brutal (on herself above).  I don't think I have been bad at all!  I think I have done great here in Salzburg!  I have been doing my best this whole time, but now I get to do even better! 

It was really hard for me the past few weeks, like it was all I was thinking about.  There were times where I was truly dragging my feet, which is okay, that was just a hard time, but the hard time is over and I am happy to be here for these next 6 months.  

I didn't mean for it to sound brutal. I think I have been doing really well.  I am glad I am getting molded.  Sometimes I am afraid I am not changing ;)

Well we are going to go shopping for Sister Clark today and just have a nice, relaxing pday.  Love you!
I am going to be teaching my voice class this week, so just put the singing stuff in it's own email with the subject line that it's the music stuff.  That way I don't have to worry about opening it on Thursday.  Also can you send me a copy of For Good?  I am singing it with a member at a ward family home evening.

Austrians are funny!


  1. Even when she has had a hard time she is still smiling and sounds so positive and upbeat. An incredible young lady you have there.....Jackie

  2. Bless her heart. I hate to think of any missionary feeling like that but I'm glad she is still there better and stronger! I love this missionary!


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