Monday, July 11, 2016

Final Blog Post! Thank You for All Your Support and Prayers

Wow. What a crazy week it has been. We had a really good Fourth of July, we spent time with Ashleyanne and Alexis and their family up in Longview. There is a lake there with a whole bunch of activities and then they set off the fireworks. It reminded me of being at the Columbia River for the festivities. However we did have to leave a little early so we could beat traffic and be home by 11. But it was a good day for sure. A lot of people talked to us as we were walking around. Perks of being a missionary :) 

Then we were able to have exit interviews with President McAteer. That was really good to spend some time with him and hear his advice for me for after the mission. Which is tomorrow. It's been such a fast week, I feel like I was just having pday and thinking about how my last week as a missionary would be. We were able to meet with some awesome people.  We met a lady and her daughter and taught them about the plan of salvation and it was such a great meeting. I loved it. The plan is so important. And families really are eternal. And it's so great telling someone about that and seeing the spirit touch their heart and they feel that it is true. Unfortunately, we weren't able to meet with Jordan but he still wants to meet with us so that is a plus :) 

On Friday we were able to go to the temple!! It was so great to be there, and I saw people from my past areas there. That was a really nice surprise. We have a lot of missionaries going home this transfer so we were large in numbers there. And then we found out that they are combining the Woodland wards for missionary work again. So we were able to prep Sister Mandin a little about taking over the area. So that was good. It really is in good hands, and that is nice to know. 

We spent some time yesterday saying goodbye to people in the Ward and people that we were teaching. It was a little emotional to say the least haha but I feel so blessed to have served with them. I love this Ward and the people here. And all my past areas as well. It's a little overwhelming thinking of leaving but we are just passing the torch and the new missionaries will continue to run. 

I am excited to see everyone at home tomorrow!! But also sad to leave the mission. I have loved serving and bearing the name of Christ everyday. I have learned to love others no matter their weaknesses, to be obedient, and to just be happy. The gospel is happy and joyful and when we live it we are strengthened in the difficult times and live a happy life. I have loved this calling and am so grateful that I was sent just across the state. I wouldn't have changed my experience for the world. 

Thank you for all the support you have given me on my mission. For the letters, emails, and most importantly the prayers. I have felt them lift and help me many times. I love you all so much and will see you soon :) 

Sister Stephens 

The district! Minus 2....

Departing temple trip

All the sisters and sis mcateer

Goodbyes.....the arroyos

The Wilson's

The snows

The Lindsey's

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