Exactly one week ago today my sister Olivia embarked on an eighteen-month assignment to serve as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the France Paris Mission. We'll be posting her weekly reports home over on her blog, and I think you should read it not only because she is my best friend and I'm biased, but because she's also one of the wisest women I know. Her capacity for soul-swelling insight has been a refuge to me my whole life long, a constant reserve of bon mot and savoir faire that never fails to shape and move me. The people of Paris are the luckiest.
The whole year and a half thing can some mornings feel far too long and more than I'd like, but I'm glad and grateful for this weekly dose of wisdom that is if anything only magnified by her work and calling.
On Sunday I went to watch talk that Elder Bednar gave entitled The Character of Christ. He said that the defining element of Christ's character is that in the midst of struggle, while most people would turn in, Christ turns out. He turns out in compassion and love even when things are tough. This is now going to be a lifetime goal for me—to turn out, when we have the tendency to want to turn in. To help others and focus on the good. Learning about Christ and how to be like him is such a privilege and I need to remember that and really take what I have learned and make it real. Life is all about turning—changing, and turning to goodness and truth and God in order to become better, so that we can better love others.