Upon turning five years old, I decidedly told my mother ,"When I grow up, I am going to be a sister missionary [for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints]." From that time on, I was very serious and resolute in my decision and preparation. I even put pennies and coins in my "piggy bank" and asked her to save them for my schooling and for a mission. When I was about ten, I asked her how much money I actually had in my bank account. Ya, I was kinda crushed when she told me that I had less than a hundred dollars. Haha, cute.
Since then, I have continued to have a strong desire to serve a mission. I still have a few years before I can turn in my papers. While I am very excited and am preparing to serve, I am not positive as to whether I will go or not.
Through many meaningful conversations with one of my close friends, I've come to realize the importance of living and fulfilling things in the present. I told this person about all of the things that I wanted to do in the future- serve a mission, earn my degree, become a marriage counselor,etc. While it is wonderful to dream of things to come, and to set goals in life, I was basing my happiness on the completion of these things. I felt that WHEN I became older, and more experienced I could THEN make a difference. My friend helped me to see that it is possible to make a difference NOW. What a realization! I am so grateful for learning this. My life has become so much more fulfilling as I have tried to find purpose in what I am doing right now. While I still look forward to the great things that I plan for in my future, I am enjoying the present. I think about why I do the things I do each day, and if they connect with the goals that I have. By this, I spend most of my time doing worthwhile things and cut out those things that won't provide true satisfaction in the long run.
Also, I have become more patient with myself. I realize that the most important thing in life is to be striving to improve little by little, in the small daily things that I do. I will never be perfect, and I will never be satisfied with how much knowledge I have obtained. I've come to see this principle as a wonderful blessing. It is by relying on my Savior daily, and by seeking after His words and knowledge that I will improve and grow closer to Him. Without my innumerous weaknesses, I don't know if I would ever be humble enough to come to Him. It is only through Jesus Christ that all of my burdens can be lifted, and my weaknesses made into strengths. It is by Him that I can make a difference. This is so beautiful to me.
My Savior, Jesus Christ, has blessed me with His love, infinite mercy, comfort and peace. I have been healed by the sancitifying power of His Atonement, and I have experienced brief moments of the most incredible joy and peace. Now, my desire is to share this hope that I have found with others, in small ways. This is one of the ways that I feel that I can make a difference.