Tuesday, December 16, 2014

December 15: Holy cow-- I'm an Israelite! .... Sister Andelin's Last Letter as a Full Time Missionary


We worked our booties off this week and were so incredibly blessed.

We had the most lessons we've ever had.

Set 3 people with a baptismal date for January.

Had Taylor's baptism and confirmation on Saturday. Beautiful service!

Found some really cool potential new investigators on the streets.

Had a really cool mission tour with E. Lawrence and his wife.

Had my departing interview with President.

Spoke in both wards' Sacrament meetings yesterday. And various people that I've taught and served with throughout the valley came and supported me!

And then Sister Reed got her transfer call--- she's havin' a baby!!!!!!

I can't think of a better way to end than have an awesome week like that!


I'd like to make a shout-out to the Holy Ghost! Hey! Thanks for everything, buddy! You're pretty cool. Sorry you're frequently over-looked! You're kinda like the sound/lighting guy for a theatrical play. No one thanks you for your service or recognizes your service, until you're not there. Then they beg for your help. 

Alright. Maybe you're wondering why I wrote that I'm an Israelite. Well that would be because, Sister Lawrence gave us a 2 1/2 hour lesson on the House of Israel at our mission conference. It was pretty legit. I'll have to share more with ya about what I learned. But a common misconception in our faith is that we are "adopted into the House of Israel." Which you CAN be, but more often than not, you are a LITERAL descendant of Israel. That is why in our Patriarchal blessings, we are not assigned lineages, we are declaredthem. Unless you're a gentile and then in your blessing, it specifically says that you are adopted in and that you will receive your blessings through Abraham. I never knew this! 

So as missionaries, we are LITERALLY gathering the descendants from Israel. She talked about how those of the House of Israel are the believing blood. And that because of their faithfulness in the premortal existence, they were selected by God to be born into these blood-lines, because they have the greatest chance of accepting the gospel and returning to live with Him. They are a covenant-making people. The more they have in them, the higher chance they have for accepting the gospel. Now this isn't to slight the Gentiles at all- God doesn't love them any less- and their opportunities to join the gospel are the same as anyone else; however, they typically don't have any interest. There was one missionary in our audience who used to be a Gentile but was adopted in. It has become an inside joke in our companionship now, that whenever we get rejected by people, we mutter under our breath "Gentile." Haha. Probably blasphemous. 

I also learned that Ephraim was one of the lost tribes of Israel. But has been found first, because their primary role is to gather Israel.

Also- no other religion can relate and link the Old Testament to the New Testament, to our day like we can. 

Cool stuff, cool stuff.

Well. I love my Las Vegans. They are some of the most beautiful people I've ever met- member and non-member alike. President Ahlander told me in my interview, "You left home to come on a mission. Now you're leaving home, to go back home." I started crying because I realized this really has become my new/ second home. I love these people. I love those that I serve. It's kind of funny because, in all honesty, I hated Vegas at first. I thought it was too hot and too ugly. But then I met the people. (And then it cooled off exponentially. Haha) And I fell in love. 

I've been surrounded with the absolute best of the best of mankind. I have the best mission president and his wife in the world! I have the best leaders. And the best missionary friends. They have literally been some of the best human beings I've ever encountered.

But the people I've come to know the most in the last 18months has been my Savior and my Father (and the Holy Ghost) (Can't leave Him out)(But he isn't a people. He's a personage.) I love the Lord. I love His work. I love serving Him!

I know that I was supposed to serve a mission at the exact time I Ieft. And I got called to the exact place I needed to be sent. I have had some of the most sacred moments of my life out here. I've also had some of the most humbling. And hardest. And best moments. I've had times where I was too exhausted and too weak to get up off my knees, so I stayed there. For a long extended period of time. Pleading with the Lord to give me the strength I needed to get back up. And He did. Somehow, I got back up. And pressed on.

I've had some of the funniest experiences of my life. I don't think I've ever laughed so much-- the good hearty side-aching kind of laughs, where eventually your face starts to hurt because you've been smiling so big and then it becomes all the more funny because you say in your mind (or outloud) "My cheeks hurt!" And you think of butt-cheeks too. 

Love you all!

Sister Melissa Nicole Andelin.


Elder Andelin and I at the mission tour!

Taylor's el was reading his scriptures when we walked into the lesson! haha

My crazy girls!!!

I love Tay!

With my girls!

Love this family! They took my comp and I out for brunch

Tay's baptism!!!

This is how we are 99% of the time

Karyn and her crew! They came to my last Sacrament meeting

Momma Paul

Sister Brook and Dennis!

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