Time flies... when you're Mormon!

I can't believe it! Today, I've been a member of the Church for 4 YEARS! OMG!
When Eloy and I worked together at the good ol' Merv (mervyns'), I would always see him reading. He would sit on the couch, in the lunch room, and read True to the Faith or The Book of Mormon. I grew curious (I was actually being nosy) and started asking him questions. They one day, he came to work in a really good mood, super energetic, and he asked me if I wanted to go to Institute. I was thinking, "A Mental hospital? What are you trying to say?" lol. Then he explained what it was and I agreed to go. So we went, with TAMI T, and after we went and ate sushi. Well... they ate b/c back then, sushi scared me. That night I remember telling Tami that I wish I could have a boyfriend like Eloy.... lol. Anywho... Eloy then invited me to go to the Nativity set. Then, he got brave, he asked me to meet with the Missionaries. So I did. BUT... I told him, if or when I meet with them, I don't want him there. For 2 reasons...
1- I didn't want him thinking I was doing this for him
2- I was kind of ashamed because I didn't know that much about Christ or Heavenly Father... or ANYTHING!

I met with the missionaries frequently during a period of 3 weeks. We would meet like 3 or 4 times a day. During this time, Eloy was preparing to serve a mission, he would be leaving for the MTC on February 2. As I continued to take the lessons, he would tell me to send him pictures of my baptism. Little did he know... hehehe... I actually got baptized 2 days before he left. I have a conversion story on my computer... maybe I'll post it later.

(Me in the pimp suit)
My baptism was amazing. The spirit was so strong! Elder Welper baptized me and Eloy confirmed me. The missionaries sang my favorite hymn, "I need thee every hour". It was the easiest and fastest hymn that I had memorized and the message is so true. I would sing it so much during the week, my sister picked it up. lol. I felt like I had this bubble around me and it wouldn't let anything negative hit me. I miss that bubble... lol. Bubbles are cool.
Man, time flies. I miss that feeling... you know, when you feel the Spirit so strong for the first time, and you don't know how to react, and the only thing you can do, is cry. After I got baptised, the missionaries told me that for each lesson, their goal was to make me cry because they know if I did cry, I felt the spirit. Everyday I would wake up looking forward to meet with my missionaries. They were the best!!!! I had/have such a strong love for them. I remember one time, the missionaries were supposed to come over to teach me (at the time, my sister and I were living in a duplex together) but we didn't have anywhere to go and we couldn't be alone with them at our house, so instead of having a lesson inside the kitchen @ the dining table, we took the table to the outside patio and had it out there! Super funny...

(Elder Welper, Myself, & Elder Graham)
Once Eloy left on his mission, I didn't really know anyone who was a member. I felt alone, like nobody understood me. I grew really close to my missionaries. They became my best friends. No matter what I needed, they were there. I struggled with a lot after my baptism but I knew there was someone I could always turn to... them! They played a trick on me once... I called them one day after transfers and they said they both got transferred to Manteca. As they were telling me, I was balling my eye balls out... I was mortified. The I heard someone laughing and they told me they were just kidding... so I hung up on them and didn't talk to them for a few days. They tried to kiss my butt by giving me fudge as a gift. The thing is, a member made the fudge for them so they put no effort into it... SO IT DIDN'T COUNT!

Within the first year, I went inactive but then I started going back to church about 7 months later. That was the first Christmas that Eloy was gone... and he know I wasn't doing well. He called me on Christmas day and put me in my place! From there on out, I did fine. I went back to church, started meeting new people, and gained a very strong testimony on why I need Heavenly Father in my life. I've met some of the most amazing people these past 4 years. The Bogren's- I LOVE THEM! Everyone from TMC (The Mormon Crew...lol) , The Doughty's, The Reed's, The Campbell's, The Romero's, and the list goes on and on. The great thing about these people is they are just like me. They all know what I know... probably more!

So, as I sit back and reflect on the past 4 years, I think to myself "How have I grown?".
And the answer is... HOW HAVEN'T I?

My testimony is indestructible.

How grateful am I, to have the true gospel of Jesus Christ in my life. How grateful and I, for my eternal companion, who has been by my side, through the whole time, from baptism to eternal marriage. Because of the gospel, I have a stronger love for my family. My mom, my Dad, and my sisters. I feel like I value them more now than ever! How grateful am I for The Temple. For the opportunity it gives me to serve my Heavenly Father and to be able to have an eternal family. I know that it is the home of the Lord. I know that this church is true. I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God and as we have a living prophet on the earth today. And I know that my redeemer lives.

I cried while writing this...


HollySomm said...

Dre! I absolutely love you. You are such an example to me. I'm so happy to know you. I had know idea that you and Eloy had this special bond before you were married. That is such an amazing thing to have in your life. He gave you the greatest gift of all, The true Gospel of Jesus Christ. And you have forever to share that with him. That is so awesome. I love you so much! And I miss you.

The Rawlins Fam said...

I hope you keep a copy of this entry in your journal! What an inspiration you'll be to your future children! I remember the first time, Tami T brought you to the YSA ward. Actually, I first met you at Eloy's farewell. Anyhow, your smile always lights up a room, and you always share strength with your shining testimony.

I'm so happy for you and the way your *love story* has unfolded!


Luv, Em (Paul, Amy and babyGIRL2)

Dione said...

You are so cute Drea :) Thanks for writing this, it was so fun to read, I'm so proud of you! Miss you.