My parents have been called to be the mission president and companion of the India Bangalore Mission of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. My little brother Michael has also been called to serve a mission in Brasilia, Brazil. They both leave for their missions on June 23.
Each night that I put my two boys to bed I sing them a few songs. One night this last week I found myself singing this song I learned in Primary many years ago (actually about the time my dad was called as Stake President so I would have been about 11):
We'll Bring the World His Truth
We have been born, as Nephi of old,
To goodly parents who love the Lord.
We have been taught, and we understand,
That we must do as the Lord commands.
We are as the army of Helaman.
We have been taught in our youth.
And we will be the Lord's missionaries
To bring the world his truth.
It has been kind of emotional for me as my parents prepare to leave for 3 years to a country almost exactly half way around the world. Sometimes I think of the sacrifices (and I am not even the one leaving) - big things my parents might miss like Rhianna and Rand's baptisms, births of other grandkids, deaths of their parents who are all in their 80s, weddings of my brother and sister - and small things like just being able to easily talk on the phone. Again some of those are just potential happenings, but I will miss my parents. But then I think also of the great service that my parents are so prepared to give. They have learned to work well together. They have great leadership experience. They have both studied the gospel and taught it to us and many others for years.
I am grateful to have such good parents. Last summer we were on vacation for about 6 weeks, and about 4 of those weeks were spent with my family. I now am thankful for that time we had even before anyone knew of this call. My dad also mentioned he was grateful for the timing the brethren gave to Michael's mission. He could have left anytime after May 1 - but leaving the same day as my parents will allow all of us to have another family reunion at the beginning of the summer. My parents have had other blessings as well as they are preparing to leave their home and work. And so though there are elements of sacrifice, I am trying now to focus more on their service. I have enjoyed learning a little more about India and the people there. I am grateful to have a testimony and understand why my parents will serve. That is perhaps why I felt that song again - my mom and dad are both the "goodly parents" who taught us and now also the missionaries who will "bring the world his truth."