Tuesday, October 19, 2010
The Humble Life of an LDS Missionary
Elder Guthrie had just enough time to say hello, send us some pictures, write his mission president, and that's about it. His Zone leader called and told him their meeting was to be at 5 o'clock. Since he had to go home and change before the meeting, that left us with about 5 minutes to "chat". As usual he wanted to know the news from home. As usual, there wasn't much to tell him. Deena, Katie, and Mama help by thinking up things to tell him. I asked him 3 times if he'd gotten his absentee ballot and, as usual, he hasn't answered me yet.
He reports that his companion has been out 4 months (nearly equivalent to the time he has LEFT in his mission!!!!!) and that he is a tiny thing. Aunt Deena, stereotyping a whole race, reminded him that ALL Mexicans are little. To which Elder Guthrie responded, "Not this little. He is tiny. I could break him like a twig." I included the picture Jordy sent of him. I think he looks really sweet. I wonder if he knows what a special companion he has? Hopefully his mama can say the same thing.
Also included in the pics are a look at their new home. Missionaries live very simply. I've seen quite a few of his homes now and I am always reminded just how humble a missionary lives. Looking at today's pictures reminded me of the similarities of all his living arrangements. There are several constants: That big, white fan goes where he goes (I don't imagine that is easy to lug around Mexico, but I know Jordy is enough like his mama and would give up many, many things before his fan), there's always an ironing board set up and wrinkled white shirts hanging in a closet, and there's always a desk full of church study materials with pictures of home taped to the wall above it. I imagine Jordy sitting at that desk during early morning study time, glancing occasionally at those pictures of the lighthouse and the people he loves most in the world.
Looking at these pictures reminds me once more what special children my Heavenly Father entrusted me with, and the responsibility we all have as parents to raise them so He won't be disappointed with us. Elder Guthrie has made that so easy for his parents.
Like I said before, he didn't get to stay online for long, so not much new news to report. It does sound like he has much work to do in this new area. In his letter to the Mission President he reported that there were only 25 people in church on Sunday (including him and his companion). Elder Guthrie spoke in sacrament meeting. He told his MP that they were concentrating on getting to know the members and helping in the community wherever they saw a need. I think Jordy is a bit frustrated with the lack of baptisms the past few weeks, but I reminded him that he cannot measure the success of his mission merely on the number of baptisms. I told him that the work he is doing may not yield results while he is there amongst them. It may take months, years, or even decades, but the seeds he is planting will grow one day. I imagine Mexican families decades from now telling of a blond headed American missionary who's influence changed their family forever. I know he changed my life for eternity....a very good thing indeed.