Tuesday, July 7, 2015


Various people have asked me if "I am sick of my area" or "If I desire to leave Italia Centro". I have two answers to this question. One: sure, I would love to get to know somewhere else, but two: no. I am not sick of my area. I have discovered that if I am feeling sick of my area, I have forgotten the depth of human suffering in my area. There is always someone who could be relieved by the gospel.

I had a defining conversation a few weeks ago--it was the kind that seems like no big deal when it happens, but then later on as you think more about it you realize it that it changed the way you see the world. It was with Elder Peña from El Salvador--during transfers we and a few other missionaries were waiting around at the terminal for traveling missionaries to arrive, and we were talking about the way we work. I mentioned my tendency to buzz around relentlessly trying to knock a million doors and have a million discussions. Urgency is good, right? He smiled and basically said, "Good, but what are you urgent about?"

This was a very good question. I soon found that whatever I was urgent about I was "perfectly wrong" as a child Mara Wilson puts it in Miracle on 34th Street. I reached my physical limit and became exhausted. I have been thinking a lot since then about the meaning of the word urgency. I have urgency in the first place, but what am I urgent to get done? If what I'm doing is destroying me, I must not be doing it how God wants...
The fact is, as a missionary I need to have urgency, but urgency about the right thing. Urgency about the spiritual well-being of the people in this little slice of the world I've been given. Not urgency to have x number of discussions or to meet quotas. If I'm trying to meet a quota just so I can report it contently that night, I'm doing it for me and not for them. Urgency for these people and their happiness. Their understanding of Christ. Their salvation. So I've physically slowed down a little bit and everything's going a lot better for us.  Hermana Badu says hi. :)

-Hermana Tolman

Me and Miryan on the 4th of July. It was freezing cold outside ha-ha
Armoa Family on the 4th of July
Me and Olga and her youngest child and Hermana Armoa last night!

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