Early Returned Honor

Doctrine and Covenants 124:49


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Skipping the Hard Parts

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Twice a year, my piano teacher would have us learn a piece to perform in a recital. My preparation for these recitals varied. Sometimes I could have played the song with my eyes closed. Sometimes I was not so prepared.

For one recital I learned “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Well. I say “learned,” but I don’t think it’s the right word. I didn’t practice as much as I should have. The day the recital came, I still had a difficult section at the end—five measures—that I couldn’t get through. I hadn’t practiced it because I felt it was too hard. And now it was too late. Right before I was supposed to play—I mean right before, like on my way to the piano when it was my turn—I asked my teacher if I could just play the final note and skip that part that I didn’t learn. Continue reading

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Dear Early Returned Missionary: What I Wish I Had Known When I Came Home From My Mission

Dear friend,

I wish we could have this conversation face-to-face. This post is the reason why this website was started. There were things that I wish I had known when I came home. I wish I had known someone who could sit me down and tell me things that would have helped to spare me from the agony that I felt for so long. I can’t physically sit down and talk to all of you, although I would if it was possible. So, instead, I’m writing this letter. Even if it’s not the same as a personal conversation, I hope it can help you as you adjust to coming home. I have thought and prayed about this message for a long time. I hope that the thoughts here will be helpful to early returned missionaries, but I also hope that some of them will be useful to those who had the blessing of being able to complete their time in the mission field. Continue reading