Wednesday, January 30, 2013

My Path to Becoming a Missionary!

If you haven't noticed, my choice to serve a mission was pretty sudden. Er, uh, VERY sudden.
If anyone had asked me in October of 2012 (when the age for LDS young women to serve a mission was dropped from 21 to 19), I honestly would have shouted a big ol' HECKKKK to the NO (maybe even with different word choices). The story started one day (around late October) at Indiana State University in Cromwell Hall...

I was working front desk, when two twenty-ish year old Missionaries (now known as Elder Parker Anderson and Elder Kaleb Davis) from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints AKA LDS Missionaries got on the even elevator. I shouted to them to stop by the front desk on their way out. They had never met me because I hadn't attended church in Terre Haute for months... Bad Kait... They stopped by, and after exchanging names and hometowns, we realized Elder Anderson knew my family! After some irony, jokes, and laughs, we exchanged numbers, and they went about their day. I never thought those two missionaries would affect my life so much...

A few days later, I got a text from those same missionaries asking if I could attend a lesson with them, I agreed and headed over to HMSU to meet up with them. The lesson went well, nothing special, nothing terrifically spiritual. While walking back to Cromwell, I had this really funny feeling. Super funny. I didn't understand it. (SIDE NOTE: I just remembered that I tweeted and said "I feel... Weird" after that lesson and found out it was the 25 of October! #winning) The funny feeling was that I felt like I was supposed to serve a mission. Why would I, the girl who hadn't been to church in months and was always against missions, feel like I needed to leave my school, my awesome friends, my job, and my family for 18 months just to go across the country (or possibly across the world) just to talk about Jesus? I could go across the hall and talk about Him if I wanted to... I sent my parents a text about my thoughts and then decided to suppress the feelings.

That next Sunday, I missed church. Again. I got a text from the missionaries asking me why I wasn't there (usually this would have made me very mad because I hate being micromanaged, but I was fine with it for some reason...). I explained to them I had an allergic reaction to a diet soda that I was given on accident (which was true!), so I didn't make it.. I asked them if they would be able to give me a blessing that night. They agreed, of course, and I met them in the lobby of Cromwell that evening. After talking for almost an hour about life, they needed to go, so they prepared to give me a blessing. Elder Davis offered, so I agreed. Just before, I told them I was having conflicting feelings about serving a mission.. I felt like I should, but I totally didn't want to.

Elder Davis started the blessing, mentioning my health, but really focused on my decision whether to serve a mission or not. After skirting around his words for about 20 seconds, he finally said the words "Your Heavenly Father wants you to serve a mission." The most overwhelming feeling came over me. It was true: the church, those words, everything. I finally had the "burning in your bosom" feeling that I had always read about and heard about in Young Women's. It was the most comforting and energizing feeling I've ever experienced! We all said amen at the end of the blessing, I stood up, looked at them and said "Okay! Let's call my parents!" My mind was made up: I had to serve a mission.

There is one thing I want to emphasize: I had ZERO desire to serve. I didn't want to! At all.. But I felt the call to serve, so that's exactly what I started preparing to do. The adversary certainly tempted me to change my mind and not serve, but I still felt that this is what I was supposed to do.

I got my call to the California Fresno Mission on Friday, January 11, 2013. I report to the Provo MTC on February 13, 2013 and could not be more excited!
The Gospel is true, and I cannot wait to let everyone hear about it!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

"When Ye Are In The Service Of Your Fellow Beings Ye Are Only In The Service Of Your God"

I'm gonna be a missionary! Waddup?!
22 days 'til I report to the Provo MTC! 21 days 'til I'm in Utah! I'm so excited!
Here are my addresses as they stand now. They will be updated as we receive more information!

MTC Address (Feb 13th - Feb 26th)
Sister Kaitlyn Audrey Marler
California Fresno Mission
Provo Missionary Training Center *
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604
United States
*Mailbox number will be updated when we get it!

California Fresno Mission (Feb 27th- August 2014)
Sister Kaitlyn Audrey Marler
California Fresno Mission
1814 N Echo
Fresno, CA 93704
United States

My beautiful mommy, Connie Marler, will keep you all updated so you can contact me over the next 18 months! Thanks, Momma!
Look out, California Fresno Mission, Sister Marler will be headed your way soon enough to do the Lord's work!
I'll soon post about how I decided to serve a mission.. It's a pretty fun story!
Love always,
Cali Kaitlyn