So being here in Des Moines we have the lucky privilege to just stop by the mission office any time! It's awesome. We go almost every, to get supplies or just say hi. I have really grown to love the office missionaries! Sister Stringham takes care of all the missionaries coming in and going out, and she has a blue sheet that has the next three transfer's arrivals and departures on it. It's not good news when you've made it to the blue sheet... Last week one of the Assistants, Elder Zabriskie, was at Sister Strigham's desk talking with us and said "hey Sister Skaggs, look at this." There was my name on the blue sheet. Not cool! I have three transfers left and plan to keep sprinting to the finish line! I love this too much to get trunky already.
One of the Assistants is going home this transfer so the new one was announced this past weekend so that he could attend the temple and transfer plan this week. It's Elder Banta! I'm super excited because he and I have served together a lot. He came out just a transfer before me and we were both trained in Kirksville. And then I followed him to the Quad Cities for our second areas! He's coming here to Des Moines and hopefully I don't leave! We'll see what happens because transfers are next week.
This past we attended a funeral for a little boy in our ward. It was really sad. There were a ton of African people and they were grieving pretty significantly, weeping and wailing. My heart hurt for them as I heard and saw them cry. They had a time in the service when people could get up and say something. Many of them used the phrase "take courage" as they addressed the grieving family. I don't know if it is an African thing to say but I really liked it. I also didn't know that it was custom in Liberian culture to wear white to funerals... us missionaries were a little out of place.
Nonetheless, we can all "take courage" a little more in our lives. Missionary work, shunning Satan, loving others freely, having family home evening, keeping the Sabbath day holy, forgiving frankly. Take courage! Living the gospel is not easy nor convenient. It takes courage. Daily, hourly, and moment by moment! I have had to pray for courage many times as I have served and every time Father in Heaven has given me more strength and resolve to do that which is required and expected of me. So take courage! Pray for it and apply the two word sermon to any aspect of your life. Blessings WILL come!