Friday, October 30, 2009

My Missionaries.

I had the opportunity today to attend a special Zone Conference/Mission tour. Elder Bruce C. Hafen was there to speak to the Appleton/Green Bay/Wausau zones. And it was absolutely fantastic and had me thinking about all the missionaries in my life that have influenced me. Whether it was in the past 12 hours or the past 21 years, each one of these missionaries and many more have helped me.
Here's my dad. My first missionary influence. Because of him and his missionary experiences, (can't forget his song, either) I learned service. I've always been exposed to having 'missionary moments' and things like that with him. Not only was my dad a missionary then, but he's been a missionary now and has been my whole life. He's always spreading the gospel wherever he goes. Whether he's on the phone with a Customer Service rep from Dell, or someone he'll meet on an airplane, he's been a great example.a> Dawna Jensen. She was a sister missionary in my area for a long time. Probably longer than she wanted, but I was grateful for her. She was such a great influence for me at my young age of 13. I couldn't have asked for a better friend than her. She was always so willing to help me in whatever I was doing. She showed me how AWESOME sister missionaries are and was the perfect example for me. I can't stress how great she was! The impression she instilled in my mind is just not expressable. She's my favorite and THEE best sister missionary ever!
Jenny McGraw. What can I say? This woman is full of pure joy and selflessness. She's just so happy and is more than willing to serve. I love reading her letters and seeing her strength. She's taught me a lot about being adequate and relying on the Lord. The people of England are certainly blessed to have her there with them for 18 months.
Elder Wilkins and Elder Yates were the missionaries in my area after I got home after my first year of college. Because of my nutso track, I didn't have a lot of friends and they became some of my best. They also were just a fantastic companionship to watch. They gave so much service and had a great knowledge of the gospel. Their testimonies were absolutely amazing, in addition to their incredible understandment of the Atonement.
Elder Stoker and Elder Valentine. Yes, that lady in the picture isn't Elder Valentine, but I didn't have one of him. Haha. But these two Elders played a part in my preparations for a mission. They were there when I opened my mission call and even though they were late, I refused to open it unless they were there. They challanged me each week with new studies and I'd have to report to them. They taught me so much about accepting others and helping each other through difficult situations.
My cousin Alex. He was the first person that I ever had to send out on a mission. And even though we're cousins, I was definitely emotionally attached to him. He was my best friend. And his example to serve a mission was so great. And even though I miss him like crazy, I've just seen the immense growing that he's done in California. It's so impressive how much he's changed. For the better, of course. I just am so proud of him!
Ryan Corob. Ryan and I met in college through my cousin Lauren. And Ryan and I haven't even known each other for a year, but he's affected me more than I ever expected. Ryan just left the MTC and is serving in Slovenia. He, along with Jenny, just have showed me how important relying on the Lord is. Ryan has such great endurance even though things are hard for him. He isn't giving up. He's still determined to be a great missionary.
The Barretts. I cannot say enough great things about these wonderful, amazing people. They truly are inspired and have been called of God. I know that my life has been blessed by having them here. My life has been changed because of them. I will never be the same because of them. What great missionaries these people are! I absolutely love them and will forever cherish their wise counsel and wisdom that they've provided me with. Oh yes, and Todd's great too! :-)
Elder Bruce C. Hafen. Today at the Zone Conference, he taught me so many new principles that I'd never thought of before. Not only about missionary work and the outlook on that, but about the Atonement and the Restoration. I know some people think he's out of touch and doesn't know what he's talking about, but they are sorely mistaken. This man has EVERY idea and knows what he's talking about. The spirit he brings is unmistakeable. He's truly been called of God to bless the our lives.


  1. You always make me cry!!!! I'm not sure I was really as good as you say I was ---- you do make me feel like a million bucks every time though. And you make me realize that all that time and my efforts in Gresham & area wasn't as fruitless as I sometimes felt back then! And just for the record I hope you know I LOVED (& still do love) Gresham Wisconsin and part of my heart is still there! Will be forevermore!!! I love you Sammi and I am so glad you have so many missionary examples, you too are one that could be added to the list and you don't even have that black nametag yet!!! You are (&will be) a remarkable missionary for the Lord and so many others! Washington Kennewick is one lucky mission to get you! You Rock!!!

  2. You're so cute, I just love you. And you ARE worth a million bucks plus MORE!!!! No, your efforts were definitely NOT fruitless!

  3. Sammi,

    Congratulations on your mission call. I dunno if I've talked to you about it before haha. Kenniwick is a great area. My uncle used to live there, and I was able to visit him during the time. You'll love it.

    Anyways, We haven't talked very much lately, but I wish you the best.