When we first arrived for our mission, we had a definite answer. As most of you know, we made the decision to sell our home and all of our possessions in order to go on a mission. We were really happy with this decision, realizing that those possessions were literally weighing us down.
So we took the council in John literally to: “Go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor … and come and follow me.” (.)
So, when people asked, as they always do “what will your plans be after your mission is over, we happily answered that we were heading to Uruguay for a year.
And then we were going to explore other communities around the world, just to see if there would be that ‘perfect little place for us’.
But something happened along the way. An opportunity opened up that made it impossible to move away from lovely La’ie after our mission ended.
We enjoyed our mission here so much, and my husband definitely found himself to be right where he wanted to be doing exactly what he wanted to do.
But I am a planner. And this was not the plan. I found myself feeling displaced. Lost. Homeless. And Alone.
Alone because my family is so far away. Alone because poor Ron couldn’t’ figure out why his wife was weepy every Sunday. Alone because the plan that I had researched and written out was not happening.
It takes a while to let go of some dreams. It is especially hard for someone as driven as I am.
Ron and I are currently reading the New Testament. This last week we came across the following verses in Matthew:
Matthew 8: 19 And a certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.
20 And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.
It struck me that this is what I felt like. I had a bed, to be sure – but it wasn’t MY bed and it certainly wasn’t MY house. It wasn’t MY decision to be here.
And that’s why I’ve been crying every Sunday. I wanted to make the decision. I forgot that at the start of this adventure that I had made a far more important decision to be a disciple of Christ. And being a disciple of Christ is not meant to be comfortable or easy. But it always ALWAYS comes with blessings.
I mean, look at me, stuck in a sweet little apartment on one of the best beaches in the world only a 5 minute walk to a magnificent temple of the Lord and spending my days at The Polynesian Cultural Center.
Poor, poor Nina.
And you know when I had my light bulb moment? Yesterday, attending Sacrament meeting. We have been assigned to a student ward, but a couple of months ago the bishop of my home ward, Laie North 4th called me in and asked me to serve as their Sunbeam teacher.
Now earlier that month Bishop had stood up in Sacrament meeting and clearly and firmly said to the congregation “stop saying no to callings. Stop it!” So when the call was extended, I said….’yes sir’.
And yesterday, after a particularly weepy sacrament I realized that these tears were tears of joy. I love my ward. I love the members, I love the bishop, I love my adorable little squirmy class of Sunbeams. People here know my name….my real name… Not that being Sister Jones isn’t an honor, but somehow being called Nina makes me know that I am finally HOME.
Christ’s invitation to become his disciple is universal. He extends it to everyone. His call and promise is “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” ().
La’ie is my place of rest….. How long, I have no idea. But home is definitely where the heart is, and my heart is here.