So it turns out that the temple closed for a couple weeks on Saturday so I came back from Vava'u on Friday so we could go to the temple (the group that's finishing) and then everyone went back to there areas but I'm staying with Sister Bever and Sister Paletu'a in the office since I was serving off the island. It was definitely bitter sweet leaving Vava'u, my companion and the other two sisters there (who she's going to stay with) were crying and then all the workers started joking with me and asking me if I was finishing and told me not to cry. It was funny. Inoke was supposed to get baptized but he had some problems still with the Word of Wisdom so I'm excited to hear about his baptism in a few weeks! But it was hard leaving that beautiful island and even though I was only there 5 weeks I'm going to really miss those people!
I just want to thank my Heavenly Father for the many opportunities and blessings He has given me this past year and a half. Tonga has become a part of me--a true home away from home. I will never forget the things I've experienced here, the lessons I've learned, the people, the food, the language, the smiling kids, the warm air, the dirt roads, the broken slippers, the Tongan hymns, the fallen tears, the many laughs, the many prayers, the changed hearts, the unfeigned love, the big spiders, the wandering animals, the wonderful companions I've had, the missionary attire, the black name tag, and most importantly the Spirit that is on this island. They will forever be in my heart. This was all for Him. The One who gave His life for us. I read Mosiah 4 this past week and I invite you all to read it again. The Tongan people truly live this chapter. I hope I can have that type of charity in my life.
I am committing now to all of you that I will do my best day in and day out to continue to serve my Lord for the rest of my life. Although I will be taking off the tag, His name will always be engraven on my heart. And I know that as I continue to keep my covenants I will receive power and help from on high in a world that doesn't seem to believe in such a thing.
I already know it's going to be a real culture shock going back, haha! But I am excited to reunite with all of you! Hope you have a week full of LOVE and JOY and PEACE. I'm excited to see my beautiful family here in Tonga this week, and hope they can feel a little bit of what I've been able to experience this past year and a half. I LOVE YOU ALL. Thanks for the support and love and prayers!! I could not have asked for better family/friends.
OFA LAHI ATU KIATE KIMOUTOLU...Tau toki sio ehhhh
<3 Sister Reid