by Faith St. Clair
Here I am again, literally at the 11th hour. Please don’t think that I put this blog last on my list or anything. I usually spend my two weeks in between pondering, sketching, writing, re-writing, and doing it all over again before I post on my scheduled day. I often even see if my editor has a moment to look at it, but alas, a vacation, a funeral for a mother-in-law, a nephew leaving on a mission, a flooded house and political and organizational havoc at work have all led me astray these past two weeks.
I’ll keep my reflections short since that seems to be all the time I have.
My Nephew left on his LDS mission last week for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and I think I was more proud of him than his own mother (maybe not, but that’s how I felt).
I am a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and so is my husband. My brother (also a convert, of course) was the first link of our ancestors to go on a mission. Jason, his son, is the first in our posterity. What joy and excitement it was to see the gospel literally roll to all nations as Jason sky-walked out of our sight and into the world abroad, carrying a great message and a choice spirit.
This was my first experience sending off a missionary. I think what made it all the more exciting was the hurdles of disappointment that precluded his departure.
I have two sons, neither of which chose to serve a mission. My first son had his call to the West Indies and just hours before leaving for the temple, he said that he couldn’t do it – he wasn’t going. My other son found things within the world to keep him more interested than the gospel – soccer over seas, music, screenwriting, more soccer and a girlfriend. They are really great guys, whose company I really enjoy, but the ache to see them not take an opportunity of a lifetime or to declare a casual commitment to the gospel is often more than I can cope with. I do have to remind myself that we all have to go through the refiner’s fire and I have faith in their futures (even if that faith is more of a trickle than a waterfall on certain days).
My brother and sister-in-law were more joyful to have Jason leaving to serve a mission than they were sad to see him go. Jason has a twin brother who chose not to leave on his mission. Instead, he will be married on August 9th.
The pulls of joy and pain are always at polarized ends and they are always constantly working.
Today, I’m glad to be pulling on Joy’s team – even in the midst of wet, pulled up carpet, tools, papers and dust everywhere.