March 7, 2016

California, I love you so.

​As hard as I try, I don't think this email will even come close to express how full my heart is right now. Can't really believe that this is it and I'll be home Wednesday night

I won't turn this into a novel, but just wanted to share one last time with all how grateful I am for each of you and how supportive you have all been to me the past 17 months. It's amazing to look back at my first day in the MTC, first day in the field and now. There's still so much that I need to learn and understand but I'll always be thankful for this life-changing experience. I know that I'll still have trials and challenges but I know that the experiences that I've had-the good and the bad, none of them have been wasted and that the Lord will use all of these things I've learned for what he has in store.

There's so much that I want to say, I've been feeling so peaceful and calm this week until I woke up this morning and now I'm a nervous wreck to see you all so soon. My mind is all over the place but I know that it's time for me to come home, I know that it's time for this next chapter and I can't wait for it.

I love my mission so much. I'm thankful for every area I've worked in, companion, investigator, member and nonmember that I've had the opportunity to meet and cross paths with. All the tears and laughter. Prayers of gratitude and prayers of desperation offered to a loving Heavenly Father. I know that I am his child. I know the gospel is true. I know that Joseph Smith really did see the Father and His son, Jesus Christ. We have a prophet on the earth who leads and guides us so that we can return safely home. I know that as we keep the commandments, we will be happy and we will stay on the path. I know that Jesus Christ lives. I know that He atoned for each of us for everything. Not just our sins and transgressions but our pains, insecurities, weaknesses, worries, doubts and fears and everything in between. It's through him that we can become a better version of ourselves, we will find the best parts of ourselves as we follow him and let Him make of us what he needs. If I only learned that on my mission, that would be enough. I love him and I'm thankful for this opportunity to serve as one of his representatives full time, to wear his name on my chest and to say that with confidence. He has been with me every step of the way and I'm thankful that He has become a personal friend with whom I share a close relationship with and want to live my life better because of what he has done for me. 

I love you all, thank you for the kind and encouraging words, especially these past few weeks. I will see you soon!

All my love, for the last time,
Sister Kelly Allen 


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