Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Letter

This is not a letter from Taylor but it is about the last letter she sent.  It is a copy of a post on her cousin Abigail's medical blog.  Abigail is Taylor's cousin.  She battled cancer from the age of 18 months until  just past her fourth birthday.  She passed away this last summer.  After reading this post I just thought how intricately the Lord is involved in our lives and the lives of others.  He is aware of each one of us and often will bless us through the words and deeds of another.  Especially in the case of a missionary.  Their sole purpose is to bless the lives of others.  I just assumed that Sister Goss would bless the people of Cape Verde.  How tender that her first act of blessing another as a missionary came to someone so close to her heart and home.
Sister Goss was on a church history tour when she was notified that Abigail's passing was eminent .  More specifically a testimony meeting at Adam-ondi-Ahman.  The above collage is one she made depicting that day.  She said that receiving the news at that time and in that location really brought home the purpose of Christ's Atonement, especially His resurrection.  She was deeply moved by the convergence of events and the hope that He affords each of us in this life.
Sister Goss took a floral design class her Senior year. We stayed up all night to make this arrangement for Abigail's funeral service.  We tried to include some of her favorite things.  We hope she liked it!  Now onto the post from Abigail's mom…..

The Letter

Posted 16 hours ago
The past few days have been really, really nice. Not necessarily outside weather-wise, but inside. I have had some really beautiful days in my heart. I have felt so much love for the blessing of being able to home-school my children and spend time with them; something I was not able to do very well during Abigail's cancer journey.
And then yesterday got even better. I got a letter from Abigail. Let me explain.
For those who don't know, I'm a Mormon. A lot of my family is, too. One of my nieces just recently started her "mission," a period of 18 months where she will teach others about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. They begin their training in a central location called the Missionary Training Center, or MTC. Missionaries can write and receive letters and emails, but they only phone call or skype twice a year with their parents, so there can be a sense of homesickness at times.
Through modern-day revelation, I know that Abigail is a missionary, too. Perhaps in the Spirit World version of an MTC. She is teaching about faith, repentance, and other necessary ordinances. She is also learning; although what, I couldn't say, because she's perfect in my eyes. :)
My niece's name is Taylor, but while on a mission you refer to her as Sister Goss. Funny, that would be Abigail's missionary name too. Sister Goss. Has a nice ring to it.
Taylor wrote a letter to her mom, which she then shared online. (I have permission to share it with you.) As I read it, I could hear Abigail saying it to me. It was a letter to me. I never expected to get a letter from Abigail, and I know I won't get any phone calls or see her in 18 months, but I believe Abigail must have been whispering some words for Taylor to include in her letter. It brought tears to my eyes. This is a portion of what she wrote:
"Mom!!!!! The MTC is so amazing! Please don't worry about about me mom, I am so happy and I feel wonderful...I haven't felt homesick much at all. I have really tried to forget myself and focus on the Lord and his work and it has blessed me so so much! MY testimony has grown so much already, I feel like a different person. I seriously love it here and I hope you know how much I love this gospel...

Love, Sister Goss"
Thank you, Taylor. Thank you, Abigail. What a sweet, tender mercy from the Lord.
During hospice when I rocked and rocked and rocked Abigail, I had felt to write a short note on my cell phone from Abigail's perspective to me and Aaron. The crazy thing is, somehow I put a lock on that particular memo, and I can't remember the password so all I can see now is "Dear Mommy and Daddy." But I clearly remember one line I felt impressed to write.
"I am so glad you failed in your attempt to keep me here."
Now I'm crying. But I know Abigail is where she's supposed to be. I am so happy for her and I know she is happy. Beyond happy, really.
A beautiful day in my heart.

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