|My new companions!|
Coming home from a mission is a lot more new than I thought. In all honesty, I have just been so incredibly happy. My whole mission I heard all these horror stories about coming home. Here are a few things that I have found false for myself:
Myth: You feel the spirit so much less when you come home.
Reality: As I have studied the scriptures, gone to the temple, and spent time with my family; I have had the voice of the spirit just come clearer and clearer.
Myth: It's so much harder to share the Gospel when you go home.
Reality: So far its been way easy! I have been able to go to lessons with the missionaries to teach and it is so great. I also still find joy in just opening my mouth and meeting new people everyday.
The trip home was hectic but fun! My flight was the first one to leave. President went in with me and was helping me get through (around) the line. Elder Taylor was the next flight so we got to go through TSA together. We met this cool Chinese guy that didn't speak much English and gave him a mormon.org card.
I was the last one on my plane and they were about to leave without me. I got on, and all 23 rows of people were staring at me. It was cool though. Being 20 in a suit and a name-tag, I am used to being inquisitively stared at. I met this cool girl from Queensland, Australia who was sitting next to me. She had just visited Yellowstone and stopped into temple square while she was in Salt Lake. She asked some questions about being a missionary and prophesy of the last days. Luckily I knew all about being a missionary, but I knew less about the last days... We don't normally teach that in the discussions.
This awesome family from Salt Lake took me to Chick-fil-A during the layover of my second flight. They were the family I was praying for during the first flight because they had a baby that cried the entire 45 min flight. They noticed that our flights left close to the same time so they invited me to come eat with them. All I ate for breakfast was a granola bar and a cheese stick, so they were definitely listening to the spirit. I thought I would never get hooked up as a missionary again. I was wrong. I went out with a bang and a chicken biscuit sandwich for my last hookup.
While I was sitting at the gate and getting on the plane, things started feeling like home. I saw camouflage hats, boots and belt buckles and it was extremely refreshing. On the plane, I met a school teacher from Seattle that grew up in Omaha. I could see why she considered herself a Seattle person, but there was definitely a part of her that was still Midwest. When I saw the Tulsa skyline, things started to really become real.
My plane landed, I walked down the hall while finishing some conversations, and the next thing I knew I was through the sliding doors with my family. I felt like I never left. Everything since then has been a blur and I have loved it all.
I have been spending time with my brother and screen printing with my dad. Eating good food is part of my family culture, so I have been doing a lot of that too. I don't know how this works, but this morning I saw that I have lost 10 pounds... It's probably all muscle. I just need to do more morning workouts. I don't have jump ropes, cinder-blocks and old dumbbells anymore, so I am going to have to figure something out.
Being a missionary was one of the best things that has ever happened to me in my life. But now, I am thinking that being a returned missionary is one of the best things that has ever happened to me because this is where the Lord wants me to be. Life is so amazing whether its missionary life or life as a tee shirt disciple.
3 Nephi 5:13
"Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life."