Friday, December 21, 2012

Adjusting is a part of the Journey

To start off, you must know that this is not Sister Mason.  This is merely those who have the privilege of writing about such a wonderful Sister.

How lucky we are to have someone that makes saying goodbye so hard.  Though we all know that this is just a short goodbye, it doesn't change the dreaded reality.

Sister Mason was set apart as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints by President Johnson on November 13, 2012.  She was given a wonderful blessing and was well prepared to start this new chapter of her life.

Kelsie made her journey into the MTC on November 14, 2012.  This day was filled with very strong emotions as we all knew what was to come. Well prepared for the quick unload and rush of the MTC, we decided to take our time and enjoy a meal and visit to the Provo Temple.  With a few pictures to capture our last moments together, Kelsie started saying goodbyes.  Though it was hard, Kelsie was very strong and held her composure.  Sister Mason was escorted to the MTC by her sister Shaylie, along with her Mother and Father.  As we drove up to our assigned unloading spot, she was greeted by two young missionaries.  Before we knew it, all her bags were unloaded and she was ready to go.  With last hugs and words of encouragement, Sister Mason was handed over to do the Lord's work.

Sister Mason spent three weeks in the MTC.  She was well prepared from many dreaded stories that she had heard, but she enjoyed it!  She was able to spend Thanksgiving there and had the privilege of having Elder Holland and his family speak.  Kelsie had two wonderful companions, Sister Young from LA, and Sister Watchline from Chicago.  Though the days became repetitive at the MTC, it was a good growing experience for Kelsie.

Kelsie departed the MTC on December 5, 2012.  After a quick phone call to her Mother, She was San Jose bound.  She was greeted at the Airport by her Mission President, President and Sister Watkins.  Sister Mason thinks the world of her Mission President.  Kelsie's first companion in the field is Sister Kim from Korea.  She has been in the field for seventeen months and will be returning home in about a month.  San Jose brought knew emotions out of Kelsie.  "Being a missionary is hard."- Sister Kelsie Mason.  Being away from home during the Christmas season is something that every missionary dreads.  Though every missionary has their struggles, we all know she will get through this tough patch.  Kelsie is never one that wants people to feel sorry for her but I know that your prayers and thoughts are welcomed and appreciated.  Sister Mason would want you all to know that she loves the Lord's work and the people of San Jose.

Kelsie's current address is the following:

Sister Kelsie Mason
2164 Monterey Ave.
Santa Clara, CA 95051

She would love to hear from all of you and could use some words of encouragement during this Christmas Season.  Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Start with a goodbye.

I have to begin with a goodbye because I am leave.
Sounds like an odd way for a beginning, but without a goodbye there would be no story.

Life is never going to be the same after this.

There are moments during life that change who we have been to who we will be and there is no turning back. And I am just on the brink of jumping from my current state to the next.

People ask if I am nervous and to be honest I don't feel nervous- not tonight, I am in the Lord's hands.

I would ask you to wish me luck, but I don't need it. I don't need luck when I have the Lord on my side.


I have left Mom in charge of this blog of mine, shall the games begin!

Friday, August 3, 2012

My first "goodbye"

I could have straightened out this picture, but I didn't want to- it matches the way our vacation went.

In short. This vacation was probably one of my very most favorite. Nothing went according to plan in fact my brothers said that we were experiencing Lake Powell "by fire". Everything that could have gone wrong did including trailer wheels breaking, storms, running out of gas, swimming boats to docks and a dog peeing on Lindsey's purse and little Bentlee's Elmo. But because of all of these trials we had to work together, we were able to be a family- I loved it. Every minute of it. 

And this afternoon I had to say goodbye.

Bryan, Natalie, Niah, Chloe and Mr. Bennett headed back this afternoon and I had to say goodbye. I won't see them again before I leave. Oh, the kids will be so old by then and the little man on the way I won't know until he can walk and talk like a big boy.

Going on a mission became more real to me these last few days. Maybe with time it is just sinking in or maybe I realized that I won't be able to just come see this wonderful family of mine whenever I want. Maybe it was holding sleeping children on my lap every boat ride and braiding my nieces' hair. Maybe it was the way Grandma races me to say "Love you infinite" first or the way Dad squeezes my shoulder when he passes by me. Or maybe it was when I realized that Mom and I have the same laugh or the fresh sun burn that my skin sometimes craves. 

My family is amazing. I am not going to flower it up. It is what it is. And this "it" or my family is the bomb. I know I will miss them- all of them- while I am gone. But then I think of the missionary quote that is all the wall with all the plaques of my brothers from their missions that says: 

"A missionary is someone who leaves his family for a short time, 
so that others may be with their family for eternity."

And the love I have for my family radiates inside of me.
I want others to have that.
I want to share the joy, happiness and peace in knowing that I can be with my family forever.

My name is Kelsie and I am a soon-to-be missionary.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Welcome to Hell?

"Hell"- I used to call it "H. E. double hockey sticks" get it? 
. . . Hockey sticks have a 'L' shape to them. 
I would have felt so guilty saying the word "Hell" back then.
I was such a sheltered child. 

I probably shouldn't kick off my missionary blog like this.
I should probably do some sort of introduction to how I decided to go on a mission, the anticipation of the call, the hours before opening the envelope, learning where I am going and the preparation I have had thus far. However those will be dealt with in posts to come - maybe.

Wednesday at work my high school seminary teacher came to the pool to swim with his boys.
I call him Bro Cow.
Before leaving he came over to me.
"So have you gone to Hell yet?"

I was confused "Hell?"

He went on to explain that Hell is what Satan puts missionaries through. Satan wants to do everything he can to prevent the work of the Lord being spread throughout the world. Fears, doubts, worthiness, questioning, capability; all of these are real feelings and they are all ways to scare missionaries off. Ah yes, Hell.

These feelings are familiar.

I thought going on a mission would be quick and easy. Simple. At least the getting there part. I have wanted to serve a mission for sometime now, and in my mind there was nothing stopping me. Ideally I would get my call, prepare everything I could before leaving and then be on my merry little way to the MTC and then off again to the land of California to share the gospel. . . and that is still the plan, but it isn't as smooth going as I had imagined.

I have fears. I am scared to death quite frankly.
I will be leaving everything I know for eighteen months and I have no idea even what to expect.
I won't be able to go and do whatever my heart desires.
I will have a strict schedule.
I will only have four pairs of shoes.
I don't want to get plump or fluffy or chunk.
I will always have someone with me ALL THE TIME.

I doubt myself. My ability to teach. My strength in the work. My lack of diversity. I even doubted my testimony and the things I know to be true - that one didn't last long, praying stopped that doubt in its tracks.
Sometimes I question if I am going for the right reason. Sometimes I wonder if I would be making better use of my staying home and going to school.
I am going to a highly educated area and I speak with a hick accent. Why would people listen? Am I good enough, strong enough - am I just enough to represent the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?

And I must say they are quite "Hell-like".

"Don't worry every missionary goes through Hell. Satan is real," Bro Cow said.

Then he asked if I knew the story behind Section 52 in the Doctrine and Covenants. . . I didn't another rush of inadequacy rushed through my body. . . "I should know this- I am going to be teaching people things from these books. How am I to teach if I don't know myself?" I thought to myself.

He advised me to read it, but continued to tell me that during this section men are being called to serve missions and to share the gospel. As they are being called they are also warned of the desires and goals that Satan has "for Satan is abroad in the land, and he goeth forth deceiving the nations-"

Reading this section gave me comfort, hope and a sense of peace that I have been seeking.