24 Aug 2014

Family Thoughts - Julia Peel

As well as keeping you up to date with Elder Teals Adventures, you may have noticed we have been adding in other information. When a young man or woman goes on a mission, they are busy learning, growing and are occupied with a myriad of new experiences. Meanwhile the parents of missionaries find themselves with a little more time and a feeling of emptiness.
Over the coming weeks I have asked some missionary parents to share their feelings. There are over 80 thousand missionaries in the world now, that means a lot of parents are both dealing with and enjoying having kids on missions. Hopefully these "Family Thoughts" posts will:-
  • Strengthen you if you are in a similar position.
  • Prepare you if you are about to be a missionary parent.
  • Help you understand if you just want an insight.
At some future point I will write my own experiences as a missionary Dad, but first up is Julia Peel
We have got to know Julia quite well in the last weeks via social media, as her son Elder Peel is with Elder Teal in the MTC. They have become good friends, but it could be confusing if they ever served together with rhyming names !
Julia Peel
"As a convert, I know first hand the value of missionary work. Without the missionaries, I don't know that I would ever have had the opportunity of finding the life that I now have. A life of purpose, that helps me know where I came from, why I am here and where I am going. It's a knowledge that shapes everything I do.
As a mother, I want to do everything I can to help my children reach their full potential. I have taught them what I know and believe...that nothing is impossible for them if they have a relationship with their Father in Heaven and their Saviour, Jesus Christ. This applies to us all.

My son has always wanted to go on a mission and I have always hoped that he would. Neither of us pretended that 2 years apart from his family would be easy, but there are two main reasons why he made the decision he did.
Firstly, their is nothing of more value a person can do than to lead another soul to the saving power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. To give the hope of a joyful eternity, free from death and sin, with those we love forever. My son knows that making this a priority in his life for the next two years, will bring him and others insurmountable happiness.
Secondly, in those efforts to show others how to find the Saviour, he will be blessed with comfort, guidance, enlightenment, strength, peace, fulfillment and joy. These will be given to him by Holy Ghost who is sent from our Father in Heaven and he really will not miss our family as much.
This is what makes the difference between my son moving to another country for 2 years and my son going on a mission. For me personally, to see my son develop strengths that he never knew he had such as learning another language, developing greater compassion and greater self reliance, I feel that he is beginning to fulfill his potential and is doing so in a very unique way. There is a saying about losing yourself in serving others, it's not really losing in the way some might think. There is nothing lost in loving our fellow human beings. We are all created by one God, our Father in Heaven. We are brothers and sisters.
Whilst I will miss my son more than I can put into words, I will not begrudge the time I will miss with him because in that time he will be reaching out to people such as me. The experiences he will have over the next 2 years will stay with him forever and will shape the man he will become. What more worthy reasons could we have for the brief separation and how joyous the reunion!"
Julia's Family blog too, they can be found HERE


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