Missionary Stories of Strength: Came Home Early – Went Back Stronger

Missionary Stories of Strength: Came Home Early – Went Back Stronger

Come Home Early Go back Stronger

My son reported to his mission Aug 2013. Six months later, in March 2014 he was sent home the week after his first baptism due to a change of heart. He realized as he prepared to baptize this woman he taught to gospel to, that he had not gone about things properly. He realized he needed to do some work to earn the privilege of serving a mission the right way. After a talk with his MP and a week’s wait on the official word from SL, he was informed he was being sent home for six months. It was a devastating blow for all of us but I was proud of his choice to set things right. Going to church that first Sunday was rough.

Our Stake Pres spent a lot of time explaining the process to us of getting him back in the field. He said,”You hold your head up high when you walk into church. Be proud of your decision and the man you are becoming. If people ask why you’re here, you tell them you’re working on getting back out on your mission and leave it at that. It’s none of their business.” I know that our Stake Pres faith in my son was an integral part of getting him to go back out. Six months is a long time at home for someone who wants to go back out and serve but Satan is working hard to discourage them and convince them they can’t. But with a great support system of family, church leaders, and mentors in the ward, I’m happy to say he returned to service in Sep 2014. This is an excerpt from his email this week:

“I’ve changed a lot too. It’s cool for me to see me do the same thing spiritually, that I’ve done physically. I tore my knee up, had to have ACL replacement surgery, rehabbed it, recovered, and came back bigger, stronger, and better and played college football. I’ve done the same thing with my spiritual journey. I go out, not prepared, heart in the wrong place, weak and not spiritually strong. Go home, rehab spiritually, recover, get it together, and come back to serve Him bigger, stronger and better.”

This is my son singing/rapping to his version of I Hope They Call Me On a Mission that a member from his first mission area shared with me.

I love this kid and I’m so proud of the man he is becoming!! I wanted to share this in case anyone else is going through the same worries, fears, and doubts. Our Savior has a plan for each of us and we need to remember that as members of his church we can’t judge another’s path. We all find God in our own way and I’m so thankful for my testimony of that!

Click here to read 8 powerful reminders for missionaries who come home early.

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  1. Love this young man, and am grateful that he loves the Lord. I know this video is getting a lot of views in heaven, heads bobbing and faces smiling. I know mine did! 🙂

  2. So I glad I saw this today. Love this guy. Wishing him the best. I’m so happy he made it back out. Never saw this video of us thanks for sharing.

  3. So happy he is back on the mission. He deserves to be back out there. I know from my time serving with him and being around him that he was the realest missionary I’ve served with. Happy to see this video of us too, never actually seen it before.

  4. My son just came home after 4 months on his mission. He has a story very much like your son’s. He had a constant nagging and felt like anytime a baptism fell through, it was because of his unworthiness. He couldn’t ignore it. He went to his mission president who wanted to keep him but found out from SLC that he needed to go home for 6 months. My heart aches because he loves his mission so much. He has amazing stories (many of success) and has been telling us everything about his mission all the time. He wants to be there and I wish he could be there but know there’s a reason for him to come home and look forward to this beautiful time of preparation with him. It seems right now that it’ll be a very long 6 months but in reality, I’m sure it’ll fly and I’ll be sending him back with plenty of tears on my cheeks.
    Did your son return to his original mission? I missed if you said that.
    Thank you for sharing this inspiring story. I needed it!

    • My son’s being home for six months was a long, difficult time for him. All he wanted to do was get back out on his mission and he felt like it was impossibly long to wait. The adversary works very hard to convince them they can’t do it and that it’s too hard. But I’m here to tell you that the time he was home was the best six months of his life for him. He truly converted to the gospel and took that time to focus on himself and his relationship with his Heavenly Father.
      He was in a strange situation since he was in Colorado Springs awaiting a visa to serve his mission in Brazil when he was sent home. After his six months at home his visa was still not ready so they reassigned him to serve in Phoenix and finish out his mission there. However, I believe most missionaries who are serving where they were originally called when they go home, return to their mission to finish.
      My best advice as a mom of a son who was home is that you just remain positive and remind him of his terrific choice to be brave and go through the repentance process. It takes a lot of courage to do what these boys did and it proves their hearts have been softened and they want to truly do what is right and that is AWESOME!! My love and prayers go out to you and your son.

  5. The Lord’s gospel is one of repentance and change. This young man took accountability for his own actions and then made things right. If one of my sons did this I would be very proud of them. When my children own their mistakes and seek to make them right I have lots of hope for them. I know they will be stronger because of it and that they will become more self governed and closer to God. Thats very reassuring.

  6. Absolutely love this!! Truly humbled by this story. These are the types of people who should be embracing and we should never ever turn them away. Anybody can change with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You must be such a proud woman to be the mother of a courageous son.

  7. Thanks for sharing this story. Thought I would share mine as well, which is similar to your son’s.

    I came home early from my mission (I didn’t even make it out of the MTC). When I did I had thoughts of “What would people think of me?”, “How could I show my face at church?” “Should I continue to go to church?”, “What girl will want to marry me if I’m not a ‘true’ return missionary?”. If it was a negative thought I had it and it was a dark time.

    I had the same experience as your son in that my stake president guided me to turning to the Lord and understanding the Atonement, mainly by truly understanding the Book of Mormon. The Atonement changes everything. It changes who you are. It’s often times in the trials and when we think everything is going wrong the Lord is able to do his best work.

    I never went back out due to medical reasons, but the process converted me to the Lord. We all have our own personal missions with coming to and knowing the Lord.

    I’m married now in the temple, with a beautiful family. And never thought I would be blessed the way I am now.

    I wish your son the best through his journey. I agree with his stake president he needs to hold his head up high!

  8. A long, long time ago I was a missionary. Yes, we had a few missionaries that went and came back. Just returning to the mission field makes for a successful mission. If it is meant to be the baptisms will come. If not, the true test of the missionary experience is to help young men and women become mature in the Gospel and willing to serve the Lord for the rest of their mortal lives. Those who have not been missionaries may have a different perspective, but those who have been and returned when their was up, have nothing but admiration and respect for those willing to come home, work on getting better, and returning. They are to be admired!

  9. We are not all prepared as we might think we are for the riggers and demands of the Mission field. I think the lowered age probably hasn’t helped the 18 years old men the time to prepare, where previously they prepared that year waiting for 19. Or its possible they just don’t realize they aren’t as prepared. but that is ok. Our loving heavenly father understands that and has patience with us like we can only imagine. When they go back out, they are full of the gospel so full its spilling over in their words and deeds. Bless them all.

  10. Our son came home after 1month at the MTC in Provo. Although he did not return, he is a wonderful husband, father, and son. Even though it was so devastating when he returned I would not trade the man he has become for the mission, even though I feel he missed out on so much by not serving a mission. He is an amazing seminary teacher, goes out with our Ward missionaries on a weekly basis, he and his beautiful wife fellowship every new member of our Ward. They amaze me. Several of his friends returned from missions but haven’t returned to church. Looking back, I can see that I would rather he come home then try to serve without putting his whole heart into being a great missionary

  11. Bravo to your son for knowing he needed to get things straightened out. That was a courageous thing to do. And good on him for having the patience and determination to do what needed to be done during his six months and getting back out in the field. Good on your stake president, too. Best wishes to all!

  12. Thanks for this article. We just put our son on the airplane today, just shy of a week ago when he returned from the MTC. It’s been great to have loving family, leaders and friends to help this past year. I think the growth I saw this past year also came from having a calling, doing home teaching and going out with the missionaries. He spent time on p-day with them taking them to the grocery store, playing Frisbee golf, soccer, etc. What a great lesson for everyone to love and not judge.

  13. my son came home after 7 month of serving. He released himself as he found that his testimony was not strong enough to handle the pressure.He went home with the option of being able to come back and serve. He has now been home for 6 month. He has been shunned by his bishop and his stake president. No one has even spoken to him or us about this event. He only attended our ward 3 times where after he is now attending the singles branch. It has been/ is very hard to experience. My husband and I are very active and know the gospel to be true. We are still very active and serve in our callings, but there is a bleeding heart inside of me, that are pleading with the Lord for our son to experience that he can be accepted even if he chooses not to go back on his mission.

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