Companion: Sister Bevan
Area: Gresham Stake, Kelly Creek Ward
When I look back 2 years ago my life was completely different.
I didn't know I was going on a mission. I didn't know I was going to be leaving my family for a year and a half. I didn't know I would be pushed to my limits. I didn't know what hard was. I didn't know how many amazing and wonderful people are here in the PNW. I didn't know how many people would become my family. I didn't know how many friendships I would make. I didn't know I could love so deeply. I didn't know what the gospel Jesus Christ offers me. I didn't know my Savior.
There have been plenty of times in the past 2 years I have evaluated my life and have thought "What the heck is going on right now" "What am I doing?" "What's the point?" Like that one time when I was in the outskirts of woodland in a town called cougar and sister phillips and I knocked on a door and a bearded shirtless man answered the door and stared at us and scream and we were so surprised we just screamed back so it was just the three of us staring at each other and screaming. Or the time I was in Portland and an man with a purple cape walked up to sister James and I and told us about light waves and somehow made it all the way down to how the Clackamas country Sheriffs department was apparently in "cahoots with the devil". Or another time when I was biking with Hermana Judkins while I had a concussion and had to stop every 10 minutes so I wouldn't pass out.
But there have been plenty of more times that I have been able to see the hand of God in my life, and the life of others. When Michael, after all he had gone through, finally was baptized. When Tim, after being taught for so long, finally came to church and realized how much it blessed the rest of his week because he'd gotten some spiritual rest. When Bonnie and Noe prayed for someone, ANYONE, to reach out and invite them to church and the same day a member walked over to their house and Invited them to the primary program. When I was broken and didn't feel like I could go on any more, and while Sister Staker was in the shower, I dropped to my knees and said a prayer out Loud and felt the strongest sense of someone hugging me.
I think the greatest reward that I have received though, wasn't something that just happened in a moment of time. As I've been studying the book of Mormon, and applying the principles of the gospel that Jesus Christ taught while He was here on the earth, there's been a gradual change that has come over me and I have felt Gods power in my life.
"Those who find a way to truly behold the Man find the doorway to life’s greatest joys and the balm to life’s most demanding despairs. So, when you are encompassed by sorrows and grief, behold the Man. When you feel lost or forgotten, behold the Man. When you are despairing, deserted, doubting, damaged, or defeated, behold the Man. He will comfort you. He will heal you and give meaning to your journey. He will pour out His Spirit and fill your heart with exceeding joy. He gives “power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.” When we truly behold the Man, we learn of Him and seek to align our lives with Him. We repent and strive to refine our natures and daily grow a little closer to Him. We trust Him. We show our love for Him by keeping His commandments and by living up to our sacred covenants. In other words, we become His disciples."
I've learned what it means to "Behold the Man" or come unto Christ. I have felt the enabling power He gives to us because of His Atonement, and I have seen so many blessings. I have been able to find joy.☀️
-Sister Emma Hansen
P.S. if any of you are missionaries, please put my new email on your list! Jemmaade@yahoo.com