The day of my farewell started at 6:00 AM for me, when I was rudely awoken from a deep and blissful slumber by an emotion: Sheer terror.
There's something about everyone on the whole planet coming from all corners of the earth just to hear you give a speech that makes a person a little nervous. I rolled out of bed and began praying in a very panicky way.I prayed for help, for calm, for peace, for the Spirit, for help. And for help. I prayed for lots of help. Then I got up and thought to myself "This is probably what I'm going to be doing every day of my mission: praying for help."
The help came, I tell you. :) Something happened and the document containing the details of my talk did NOT get saved, and I learned this only twenty minutes before I had to get to the church. So it was a shorthand version of the major points of my talk that accompanied me to the stand. I delivered twenty minutes of words from memory and sat down feeling very discouraged. The talk did not go as I had planned.
But here's the amazing thing: afterwards, people came and told me that what I had said had touched them, and had been exactly what they needed to hear.
It leaves me wondering how often the things that go wrong in our lives are actually for our benefit, and for the benefit of those around us. Because I lost my talk, I had to rely more on the Spirit than on myself. And the Spirit took my panicky, shakey self and put words into my mouth that touched others.
Amazing! Our lives are being guided more than we realize. Just watch for it and you will see. :)
Overall, the best part of my farewell was all my family who came from various places across the states to support me. I got to see grandparents from both sides, uncles and aunts and cousins, not to mention my great grandpa and his amazing wife. I'm just so happy to call them family! They are a wonderful bunch and I'm grateful for them and their prayers and love. Family really is a gift from God.
April 16th is coming so soon! Next stop: MTC! :D