This has been such a great week. Today we get the opportunity to go to the temple! It's been so long, it feels. I anticipate a fresh new start upon entering the temple doors. I've thought about how lucky I was before my mission to have the opportunity to go to the temple at almost any given time.
I feel like I'm learning and really grasping the idea of my purpose as a missionary. I've been thinking a lot lately just about how incredible this work is. Everything goes according to God's plan. I thought of this quote that I heard in the MTC this week, and it's really played a role in my work this week:
"Recall the new star that announced the birth at Bethlehem? It was in it's precise orbit long before it so shone. We are likewise placed in human orbits to illuminate." ~Elder Maxwell
We are placed in human orbits. I know that everyone I've been given an opportunity to encounter on my mission was placed there for a reason. I'm in XiZhi for a reason. I'm companions with Sister Peng for many reasons. We've had many many many many incredible, and perhaps even "prepared" investigators that wouldn't progress after two visits... for a reason. We've also been rejected and criticized day after day. But I know it's all for a reason.
I've learned that my purpose is to do what God wants me to do. That sentence has so much meaning to me. If there's one thing I've learned since the day I submitted my mission papers, it's that I want to be who God wants me to be. I fall short many times, because I'm human. But I have developed so much faith in the Atonement of Christ. I know that through Him, I can be who God wants me to be. I know that our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ, and help them prepare for baptism - but the most important part of that statement is to "invite". I'm here as a servant of God to invite everyone to listen to this message. Sometimes people won't accept. God has given everyone their agency. Abinadi was a very successful missionary because he invited. He declared the message to everyone, and really did what God wanted him to do. Yet, he saw no baptisms from his efforts.
But we are "placed in human orbits to illuminate". I know that throughout my whole life, I have been blessed to have people put into my life that have influenced me. Those people, whether they know it or not, have guided me to where I am now. I know that the same applies as a missionary. I have no way of knowing the results of some of the things I have done these past 9 months. But I know that when I am doing everything I can to invite, then I can trust that God is making up for the rest.
All is well~