“He Won’t Forget Your Work,” Ensign, July 2019
Several months ago I had a dream where, sitting in church on the last row as usual, and with no intention of participating, my vision changed. I saw that scattered among the congregation were other early-returned missionaries. A desire to help them grew in my heart as I looked around. I knew that sharing my experiences could be a way of ministering to them and helping them continue along the covenant path despite this seeming speed bump along the way.
Through this dream, Heavenly Father let me know that He cares. He appreciates the righteous service we gave as missionaries, no matter how long our full-time service lasted. “God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which you have shewed toward his name” (Hebrews 6:10). In my article (see page 45), I share a scripture story and the experiences of other early-returned missionaries that can help you as you navigate this unexpected and difficult road. I also love how Alex uses a story from the Book of Mormon to help us see that even for those who return home early for worthiness issues, there is still hope (see page 42). And Alec shares how he discovered a new mission after he returned home early (see page 48).
In digital-only articles, you’ll read how Emily transformed the feelings of anxiety, fear, and hopelessness she experienced into a personal and sacred joy. Austin shares how he discovered Heavenly Father’s plan for his life. And Kevin, a professional counselor, offers suggestions on how loved ones can support those who struggle with an early return.
The reason we each returned doesn’t matter as much as what we do when we return home. With the Savior’s help, we can heal, progress, and continue to find more joy in our eternal journey.