The Plan of Salvation (in the mission field)
This week, in teaching the plan of salvation a ton, I thought about how, as missionaries, we pass through our own mini plan of salvation in two years (if one is an Elder) or a year and a half (if one is a Sister).
Before this life, we lived with our families. We did not fully understand life and how to fully enjoy the gospel. We received an opportunity to go to a place that was specially prepared for us. In this place, we would gain the title “Elder” or “Sister”, pass through many experiences, develop more faith and obedience, and help others along the way.
When we arrive, we receive someone to help us, to guide us (a Mission President and a Senior Companion). We learn more deeply about the gospel and how to really love our Savior. We create friendships and families to help us make it back. We have these experiences to grow and to learn. We are given our agency to decide how we will perform: to help others to come unto Christ or to waste our time by fighting with the rules, leaders, and the will of our Heavenly Father.
As we pass through this time in the mission field, we experience our own personal Gethsemane, as Elder Holland once said that we watch others make decisions, and sometimes, we have to suffer with them when they decide not to repent. We struggle with our companions and other missionaries. All of this is to help us to rely on the Lord, to put our trust in Him.
After all of this, we know that our lives in the mission field must come to a close. For some, it is their exact date. For others, it comes a little sooner or later depending on what is occurring at home. All missionaries come to an end of their full time missionary service, and we end up waiting for our final judgment (interviews with Mission and Stake Presidents). In our interviews, we pass through the resurrection where we take off our nametags and become our ordinary selves once more. The difference is our spirits have become stronger. To our Mission and Stake Presidents, we present our book of life (what we learned and did in the mission field). They give their “judgment”, and we receive our reward.
Our reward depends on what we did in the mission field: Did we talk to everyone we could? Did we obey every rule? Did we go the extra mile to help someone in need? Were we a good companion? Did we become more personally converted to the gospel? What is our reward? A clean conscience. Satisfaction that we helped at least one person. A greater love and appreciation for the scriptures, the leaders of the church, the gospel, and for our Savior. Spiritual growth and maturity. A lot more temporal and eternal blessings.
We pass through all of this and more, so the question is: what will you do with your mission?