Sorry this has taken so long to post; honestly, I've been putting it off for a while now. I can't believe the best two years of my life are already over! I suppose this will be the final entry I'll make on this blog.
My parents came to pick me up and tour the mission my last day; we visited members and people I'd been working with, and I just didn't really want to go. It was super weird seeing my parents meet the mission president!
I'm going to miss being a missionary. I love the having the title, "Elder," and the important sense of mission and purpose. I love the schedule. I love the wonderful spirit that attends that calling. When my stake president released me, and I had to remove the badge that carries the name if my Savior, and mine as His representative, it actually hurt. It's been weird these past few days getting used to being a normal person.
I've now been home and released for all of 4 or 5 days. I'm learning how to cope, but I'm still unconsciously answering the phone saying, "Hello this is Elder Watkins," and I feel funny driving without someone in the backseat. It has been great to be with my family, friends (and girlfriend) again, but I also called 3 sets of elders in the stake, practically begging to go on exchanges and to teaching appointments.
I'm nervous, but excited to move on to the next phase of my life. I hope I can remember and apply the lessons of my mission throughout each new development in mortality.
Also, I finally buckled and got a facebook account, as well as a mormon.org account, so anyone interested may follow me there:
I hope you all have enjoyed following up on my experiences in the mission field. I have been surprised when so many of you comment on what I've posted-- I didn't know I had more than a few readers! I hope we can all press forward with a missionary-like enthusiasm in our work.
I know that Jesus is the Christ, that Joseph Smith was His Prophet, that Thomas S. Monson is the prophet today, and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I know that our Savior lives and speaks to us today. I love this Gospel, and I love this work. I bear my witness of that in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.