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Mission Accomplished

Pitchers put service first, find success in majors

Published: Wednesday, May 14 2008 11:55 p.m. MDT

LINDSTROM DESCRIBED HIS mission experience as \"irreplaceable.\" He

credits his service with helping him develop relationships and people

skills, and the fact that he was sent to the land of his ancestors was

a bonus.

     

\"That made it even more exciting to go over there and teach the people,\" he said. \"That's my heritage.\"

     

Guthrie said the work in Spain was difficult. He wasn't able to

teach as often as he would have liked, but the scarcity of listening

ears taught Guthrie humility and reliance upon gospel principles, which

in turn strengthened his own beliefs.

     

\"It made us realize that sometimes all you can do is pray and

have faith and work as hard as you can ... and hope for miracles,\" he

said. \"Obviously I grew in testimony and conviction of the gospel.\"

     

For Guthrie, his mission was an opportunity to take a two-year

hiatus from personal concerns. Being able to focus on others was a

respite.

     

\"That's something I don't think you can duplicate,\" he said. \"All

you're expected to do is go out and find people and teach them by the

spirit.\"

     

Upon their returns to the United States, both men found the shift

from outward to inward focus to be one of the most difficult

transitions.

     

\"Those two years, you're so unselfish,\" Lindstrom said.

     

But because Guthrie and Lindstrom both returned with promising

right arms intact, baseball was waiting for them, and it was time to

start focusing on the game they left behind.

     

The two men maintained similar perspectives on their future.

     

Guthrie returned 20 pounds lighter and with no expectations when

it came to his athletic career. But his ability quickly returned, which

he counts as a blessing. Guthrie resumed his career at Stanford

University in the fall of 2000, and the following year he married Jenny

Williams, whom he met at BYU and wrote to throughout his mission.

     

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