Friday, December 12, 2014

The Story On How We Met & Returning With Honor.

While investigating the church at the tender age of 20, and reason I say tender is because I was still a bit naive as to what was to come next after my conversion. Was I going to further my education? Get married? Because as a latter-day saint woman we are encouraged to marry while we're still young, and to multiply and replenish the earth (in other words...pop out as many kids as we can!) In all honesty I didn't really pay any attention to the whole multiplying & replenish the earth thing, and I'm so glad I wasn't a teenage bride. All I wanted was to find my purpose in this life, heal from my demons, have a stronger love for The Lord in the right church, go to college, get out of the small town I grew up in, and eventually meet Mr. Right.

Well...all of the above happened except not in that order. I did end up finding what my purpose was in this life in a church that I know is true, and based on the Savior, and even though I didn't graduate from college, I did put in a couple of years in, moved away from my small town in Texas, and eventually found the right guy! 

Thing was is that I had to experience a lot, and date a whole lot in order to find the right guy. 

And I mean a lot! No seriously...a heck of a lot!

Without giving too much detail I'm only going to write what's appropriate, and probably the nitty gritty in a later post (or in a book when I'm like 70 when everyone is senile, and losing their sight). 

I was investigating the church at the time, and since sisters missionaries taught me what the gospel was all about I had no idea that there were also male missionaries in the church who served. In all honesty my focus was on God, the gospel, and becoming a better person. I had no interest in the male missionaries...not really anyway. I had to contain myself in the very beginning when I met the missionaries. There were moments when I had to contain my composure, especially when it came to how pushy one particular sister missionary was, and how I felt a little uncomfortable around the male missionaries. That's when I realized I needed to give these missionaries the benefit of the doubt, and trust in the Lord to find my way through this unfamiliar church with girls and boys my age sharing the gospel. 

Enter Elder Jorgensen...
I recall Elder Jorgensen always being shy around me, almost careful to the point where if he said something it would hurt my feelings. Well...that did come later. He was new in the mission field, and I don't think he had a clue as to how to approach me in getting to know me as a person. I don't think it helped having the sister missionaries tell him that I was a tough cookie, and that this one has issues, and needs major help in converting. Who knows what they told him, and at that point I really didn't care because my focus was on finding my way to God. 

There was one evening where all the single adults including all the missionaries went to the bowling alley with us for our weekly family home evening. I was still investigating the church, and continued to attend these gatherings so that I can get to know more about the church, and also get better acquainted with other people my age. Well, there was an incident where I was taking score, and doing a perfectly good job at it when all of a sudden Elder Jorgensen leaned over as if to observe me, and said, "you need to add these two numbers together." I allowed it to hurt my feelings, and it really annoyed me! Here I am trying to have a good time, and relearn taking score when it came to bowling because the last time I had bowled was back in high school! All I remember is that he was in my way, in my business, and I didn't like it. I have to say that throughout the time I was getting familiar with this church that my mood was always ornery. I know that Satan used that as a tool to try me, and test my actions so that I can stay miserable, and not lean towards the light of God. That whole night was no fun for me, and I know that I made the choice for it to be. I know that had I knocked that chip off my shoulder sooner that nothing would have bothered me, and that I probably would have enjoyed myself bowling with a bunch of missionaries. It was all me, and after I came home that night I felt bad at how I mistreated the Lord's missionaries. 
^^^ My Baptism Day, circa May 1992-Left to right: Frank (investigator), Elder Ralphs (elder who baptized me), Sister Lee, Ahmad (investigator), Muah, Sister Lloyd, Sharon & son Chris, Elders Wright, Jorgensen, and Brantley^^^

Time went on, months passed, and I continued to attend church, and work out my demons. After six months of prayer, and attending church I ended up getting baptized, and chose all the speakers for my baptism. I had grown close in sister/brotherhood to the elder who baptized me because it seemed as if we had a lot in common, and since Elder Jorgensen was still in the house I decided to have him give a talk on the Holy Ghost. It was a beautiful baptism with a spirit so strong. I was overwhelmed at how many attended my baptism. Our small chapel was practically filled, and I was ecstatic afterwards! I saw myself slowly changing, and saw the male missionaries in a different light. They didn't get on my nerves anymore, and I looked at them as my brothers. 

Especially Elder Jorgensen. 

We had a very special friendship throughout his mission. One that was innocent, respectful, and happy. I loved how he treated and fellowshipped others, and how he bore testimony. He was genuine though and through, and could tell he was on board for the right reasons. The reason I know this is because I was in the same area as him for at least 10 months, and his behavior, and the example he set as a missionary was that of love, kindness, fearlessness, and honor. Every time I'd run into him at Stake Conference I would observe his actions, and saw how he always had a smile on his face. Shaking hands with practically every member and their families. I saw how fun he was with little kids, and with the elderly. He truly was a unique missionary that impressed me when it came to the way his example was in serving like The Lord.

When it was time for Elder Jorgensen to go home I heard a knock on my door, and it was him (along with two other missionaries) telling me that he had served his time, and that he was returning home back to Utah. I wasn't sad, or anything. I was actually happy for him mostly because he looked happy! He was always so jovial on his mission, and that is saying something. He never caused harm to anyone, or broke any of the mission rules. He returned hone with honor, and I was so happy for him. 

I never thought in a million years that I would end up becoming best friends with him throughout his mission, let alone end up eternally with the guy.  I am so grateful that the Lord put him on my path as an elder in the church, and friend for those two years while he was a missionary, and as a dear friend for an entire year before we got married. I am grateful that the Lord blessed me with a boy that served Him honorably for 24 months without any issues. I know that I could have chosen someone who didn't serve honorably, and that's a whole different story which I may write at a waaaaaay later date, but by the grace of God it was a lesson to be learned, and an experience that taught me a lot, and I count my blessings for listening to the spirit, and following my heart. 

Because I ended up with the best, and didn't settle for less! 

**The photo is an oldie back when we lived in San Antonio from 2003.

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