So…during his time home, President Freeman (1st Counselor Stake Presidency), took over the weekly interviews and all that good stuff which proved to be a very inspired decision. Austin's Grandpa is the Stake President and Austin really needed the separation of Grandpa/Stake President - which would have been a very difficult thing to do. President Freeman was truly a blessing. He taught Austin so much, and I know that he helped him get ready to head back out in so many ways - that was exactly what he needed.
Being home was a struggle. There were many times when he didn't know if he wanted to return - making that decision was a constant battle - and one that took a lot of prayer, thought and strength to make. He knew what he would be walking back into, and that was hard. He knew that it would be the best for him, but he also knew how difficult a mission is. Keeping the adversary away from his thoughts proved to be more difficult than he realized it would be. But, he also knew that the Lord would help him overcome and make the correct decision.
When Austin first came home, his Mission President contacted the Stake President (Grandpa) and told him that he didn't want Austin to resubmit his paperwork, he wanted Austin to return to their mission. That really made Austin feel good - knowing that he was wanted/needed and that the Mission President wanted to make sure he went back to Seattle.
Once Austin made up his mind to get back out - there was no changing it. He was determined. I know that because of all the special experiences he had, both physical and spiritual, he knew what needed to happen. It was evident of the influence of the Spirit because he was happier and spiritually stronger when he made the decision. It was truly a tender mercy/blessing to witness.
Once he got the go-ahead from all the different Doctors that were needed, it was a Tuesday evening - that Thursday he had his final interview with President Freeman - and the letter was sent to Church Headquarters letting them know and within 24 hours we had notification of travel itinerary - we got the news on Friday that he was leaving the following Monday! We had only 4 days! Good thing he was pretty much ready!
We were so blessed to have witnessed so many tender mercies, many blessings, and many miracles during his time here at home - which was a total of 4 months (126 days to be exact).
We are so grateful to the Lord for helping our family be strengthened during this difficult time. We are so grateful to the Lord for all the many blessings poured down upon us - and especially to Austin. We are grateful to the Lord for giving us so many tools that help us learn and grow spiritually - so we can gain a stronger testimony of Him.
I am grateful for our Savior Jesus Christ - because of Him, we can have eternal life, we can be forgiven of our shortcomings and sin, and we can be made new through Him.
Documented: April 2014