Dear Elder Dahl:
You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Arkansas Little Rock Mission.
As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, it is expected of me that I will serve a two-year mission. (Yup! The "riding bikes, wearing name tags, and knocking on doors" kind of mission.) But this isn't something I'm doing because it's expected of me. This letter didn't just come in the mail as a surprise. This is something that I've planned on, looked forward to, applied for, and chosen to do. I'm doing this because the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ has blessed my life SO much, in SO many ways. I'm serving a mission because I can't think of a greater honor or responsibility than being able to play a part in someone's story of finding and enjoying these blessings, too
And yes, that means being away from my family, away from social media, away from my hobbies, postponing college plans, and giving up a lot for two years. It means getting doors closed in my face, riding a bike through the humid south, and not getting to sleep in. It's not a super easy choice, but I can't imagine anything more spiritually rewarding or personally edifying. I'll enter the Missionary Training Center as... me. And I'll come back home in two years as a better me. With increased faith, new stories to tell, powerful friendships, and having "made a difference" of eternal value to those I encounter, and to myself!
I really would not be doing this if I didn't know for myself that what I will be teaching is true.
I do believe it. I'm eager to share it. I'm excited to develop my love for the people of Arkansas. (And Missouri, Tennessee, and Mississippi, should I end up serving there... parts of those states are within the mission boundaries!) These next two years are gonna be tough. But my Savior has been through harder things, and I've already enjoyed blessings far greater than the difficulties that I will encounter. I'm excited to serve my Savior, and to serve with Him in His work. I'm excited for the people who will change my life, and for the opportunity it will be to watch the Savior change their lives. There's a lot to be excited about.
So here's the plan. I have one day per week where I can send and respond to emails. While I'm away, my Mom is going to be posting my weekly emails here on this blog. I should be able to send and include some photos, too, assuming no technical difficulties occur! So, with fifty two weeks in a year, for two years, there should be 106 posts on this blog before I'm back. (104 + this post & my testimony post.) It sounds like a lot, but it'll go by fast!
Serving A Mission!
What's all this about? As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, it is expected of me that I will serve a two-year mission. (And yeah, the "riding bikes and wearing nametags and knocking on doors" kind of mission.) But this isn't something I'm doing because it's expected of me... I'm doing this because the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ has blessed my life SO much, in SO many ways. I can't think of a greater honor or responsibility than being able to play a part in someone's story of finding and enjoying these blessings, too.
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(After June 20, 2017)
Elder Oliver Wrigley Dahl
Arkansas Little Rock Mission
905 Kierre Dr
North Little Rock AR 72116