Monday, September 28, 2015

Pictures Rose for every thorn!

Hello all! Maddy has the selfies down!

Helped decorate for RS dinner.

A little doodling to laminate and use for discussions!

Yep...that's my mission!

There is a Rose to every Thorn!

Hello Everyone! 

Headed on my fourth month in the mission field? Where has all the time gone? I am looking forward to General conference this weekend! It is like Christmas for the missionaries! I am so excited to hear from the prophet and his apostles and find out the new Elders in the quorum of the twelve! Isn't it comforting to know there is no questioning about the organization of the church? I am telling you what, everyone should serve missions.... The greater understanding and comprehension of the gospel you are able to gain through a mission is incredible and is a knowledge I will be grateful to have for eternity! That being said.... What a week it has been! I will admit I am feeling overwhelmed with what to share.... So much has happened! I will do my best with the time I am allotted. 

 We had ALOT of meetings this week. Which is super great because missionaries love meetings because we get to be spiritually uplifted and edified. We had a training meeting all day on Tuesday and I learned so much about how to become a more focused diligent missionary. I am so far from perfect and the lord is helping me and teaching me along the way! It amazes me that the lord sees us not for who we are, but who we can become. Isn't that powerful? He knows our full potential.... He has the road map to our success... Why is it often times so difficult to trust in his plan? And that my friends is the purpose of why we are here in this life. To learn... To grow. And to TRUST IN HIM. The simplicity, yet complexity of the gospel amazes me.  

Well, I can say I am a firm believer of opposition in hard things. Life in the mission field is like an emotional roller coaster. Sometimes your up... And sometimes your down.. But always before you can go up... You must first experience the low. I would say that is one of the hardest parts of being a missionary. Also the greatest way to build a testimony. I often question, why are weaknesses and trials given to us? Why do are we given trials that often seem to heavy to bear? It's because this life is a test. I was reading in alma 62:41  and it talks about the people being humbled in their afflictions. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. I CHOOSE how I will be affected by adversity. I love the quote by someone I can't remember but it's written in my scriptures....but it says "surely these great adversities are not without some external purpose or effect. They can turn our hearts to God. Even as adversities inflict mortal hardships, they can also be the means of leading men and women to external blessings." There are reasons for the trials in life. God didn't send his children to Earth to let them suffer. He loves each and every child individually and that is why.... He allows us to go through challenges so that we may grow closer to him! 
Yesterday we had the opportunity to meet with our new investigator Rose. She has been faithfully reading the Book of Mormon and when we arrived at her house she had two pages full of questions for us! Rose is a very successful woman and is a pharmacist and has her Ph.d in medicine research? Anyways... Super smart. She has been a catholic all of her life, however recently she has begun to question some of their beliefs. Over the past few years her life has seemed to fall apart, her health is escalating and because of such she was laid off from her job and now she is struggling to find the light at the end of the tunnel. She asked us specifically, "how do people of your faith view trials, and how do we overcome them?" I was then able to bear my testimony of the purpose of this life and it's not because the lord is punishing us... It is because he loves us and wants us to turn to him. We set up an appointment to teach her the first lesson on Sunday evening in the bishops home. The lord has prepared Roses heart to hear the message of the restoration of the gospel. Last night she texted us saying " thank you sisters Parke and Plomgren for your help and inspiration. Maybe being in Illinois isn't as exciting as China or South America, but sometimes I think there are more souls here that need saving. We are too focused on material things vs. celestial atonement and redemption."  The lord is preparing people to receive this gospel. Now is the time to go out and find them!!

I testify that true joy and happiness is found in the gospel of Jesus Christ. How grateful I am for this humbling opportunity to serve the Lord with all of my heart, might, mind, and strength. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. He is the light of the world. I rely on him for strength in all things. I am grateful for modern day prophets and revelation we receive. Please make General conference a priority. I know that as you do, you will be blessed.

Hope you all have a wonderful week!! Enjoy conference and share the happiness with others!! The world needs the gospel!!

Sister Parke  

Monday, September 21, 2015

Pictures the Pathway is Bright!

A little down time at Red Mango.

Yummy huh? why so serious? :)

We study study study!

Sweet Genevieve's Baptism day!

Love her family!

She is adorable!

Still hooked on the basics. 

The Pathway is Bright!

Hello Everyone!! 

This week was full of hard work and many miracles! Sister Plomgren and I have been extra busy with setting and reaching new goals each and every day! Since we both are incredibly new missionaries there is so much to learn... And so many ways to grow and improve! It is very exciting and stressful... But it's a good stress! Wow.. There is so much to catch up on... So I will just dive right in!! 

Genevieves baptism was beautiful.... The spirit was very strong and seeing Josh (brother Crenshaw) being worthy to baptize his little girl was the best part. They were all so happy. It was a very neat experience because many of their relatives are not members of the church and it was a great missionary opportunity to identify the spirit that was felt. We are hoping to start teaching lessons to the Crenshaw family to ensure that their testimony is firm in the faith! We have dinner with them tomorrow night. I am looking forward in helping them strengthen their testimony in Christ as a family! The gospel is centered around families and nothing can bring a family closer to happiness than the gospel of Jesus Christ!!  Speaking of families...

We had a really good lesson with Maddy this week! We discussed the importance of building our foundation on Jesus Christ and remaining firm in the faith! After a lot of studying, it came to my understanding that... The church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is really a form of to scaffolding to help members gain and maintain a strong testimony of Christ. If you think of our testimonies as a building... We base our foundation on Jesus Christ and then build it up. The church is the scaffolding that helps to build and support the building. The whole purpose of having the gospel here on the Earth today is to help each of us to know our Savior and come unto him to gain eternal life. The time is now to prepare. We are blessed to have the scaffolding and support of the church, but after this life... The temporary structuring of the church will be taken away and we will be left with our building constructed of a personal testimony! When I realized this, I truly came to understand how important it is to have a strong personal testimony of Jesus Christ. I felt as if I were not the one teaching Maddy, but the one learning right beside her! One of life's greatest experiences is helping someone to strengthen their testimony, while also strengthening your own. Maddy is really diligent in her desire to learn and know more through scripture study and prayer. We have set the date for her to be baptized the last week of December. Sometimes is so frustrating because she wants to be baptized so badly right now... But I honor her for showing love and respect towards her parents by acknowledging them in her decision. However... Little baby miracle. Maddys mom invited us over for lunch on Saturday because we offered to help in her garden. MADDY was out of town for the weekend visiting friends off at school and so this was a wonderful opportunity to get to know her parents one on one! I brought over the hand blender that mom sent me and we made some delicious squash soup. (: We had nice lunch and beautiful day working in the yard with Maddys parents and got to know them MUCH better. Sally and Tony (Maddys parents) are definitely feeling much more comfortable with the missionaries and started to ask a few questions about missionary work and the church. Sally invited us back ANYTIME and we are working on getting them to church... The wonderful miracle about it all is that they are WILLING to have the missionaries over and are curious about the gospel. I know the lord is softening their hearts and putting off Maddys baptism really may be a blessing in helping them learn about the gospel! 

So since Buffalo Grove is STRONGLY Affluential, the people hear are very hard hearted and unwilling to learn about the gospel. It can be quite discouraging at times. However, I find joy in HOPE... And HARD WORK. In president Uchtdorfs conference talk... "The infinite power of hope" he says that, "Hope is manifest in confidence, optimism, enthusiasm, and patient perseverance." So I WILL not give up nor become discouraged... Discouragement always results in a lack of faith! 1 nephi 7:12 Yea, and how is it that ye have forgotten that the Lord is able to do all things according to his will, for the children of men, if it so be that they exercise faith in him? Wherefore, let us be faithful to him. Through God all things are possible. He is softening the hearts of the people here in Buffalo Grove and I bear witness that he is preparing his children to receive this message of the restored Gospel. The time is now to hasten the work and prepare for the second coming of the Savior. Although the work is difficult, I find joy in knowing that the Lord is aware of me and he will not let me fail. Even if people are not accepting the gospel, he is proud of me. I am learning and growing in ways that I never imagined. I am grateful to God for his loving patience and all that he is teaching me through this experience as a missionary. Although I may not always acknowledge the change in the moment or going when going through a difficult time.. I have come to  recognize that amazing things Happen when we hand our lives over to the Lord. 

This week I focused a lot on the importance of faith. Faith is the reason I am here serving a mission. Many times people cannot understand the reasoning of why a young man/woman would leave everything behind for 18-24 months at such a critical time in life to go to wherever they are sent to teach the gospel. The answer is simple. FAITH. Faith in Jesus Christ. Faith in his infinite atonement. Faith that Joseph Smith is a true prophet of The Lord and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. And no matter what the circumstance, faith always requires sacrifice. It is the POWER of faith that helps me to get through each day. Faith that the Lord will provide a way and prepare the hearts of the people. Faith that the work in which I am engaged is true. And it is through that faith that I have come to KNOW that these things are true. It is so incredibly importance to build a foundation of FAITH in Christ! I know that as we never let our faith falter, our testimony will always stand firm! I have a testimony of this gospel. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. I am grateful for the Book of Mormon. And the guidance and revelation I am able to receive each and everyday! 

On Friday sister Plomgren and I had a wonderful morning and afternoon.. All of our appointments followed through and the sun was shining! Later that evening the storm rolled in... Literally, raining buckets!! Our appointment for the evening unexpectedly fell through. Here we are... Sitting in the pouring rain wondering where on earth the Lord would have us be. I was so tempted to just head home for the had been a loooong day and I was tired and hungry. BUT it's those moments that you truly push yourself that the Lord provides miracles. And that we did see! We decided that despite the rain we were going to do some contacting in Walmart... Of all places! Keep in mind that sister Plomgren is scared to death to talk to strangers... So it's usually me doing the talking/contacting... But tonight I had the strong impression to take a step back and let her guide. At first it was extremely hard for her.... But SHE DID IT. And guess what? We made a contact!!! We got his information and we are scheduling to meet with him next week! However, it wasn't the contact I was excited about.... It was the fact that sister Plomgren faced her fear and had courage!! What seemed to be a horrible night turned into a wonderful learning experience. I am so proud of my companion!! I love her!! 

Last Monday we were over at a members home doing laundry, one of her friends came to the house and Sister Brady introduced us. She started asking about missionary work and what exactly we do. She didn't seem too interested so we just kind of brushed it off and didn't think too much of it. Well...this morning we woke up to a text from sister Brady that was a forwarded message from her friend (Rose) saying that she is going through a hard time and felt prompted to go to the website and that she found a lot on there that was interesting and very comforting. She wants to know more about the Mormon church and she ordered a Book of Mormon online!!  Today we are taking over a Book of Mormon to her with sister Brady's testimony! Hopefully we will be able to get a return appointment and teach her more about the gospel!! It is moments like these when I know for a surety that the lords hand is in this work and is preparing the hearts of the people. 

That about sums up my week!!  Hope you are all doing well!! Thank you for all of your love and support. Your prayers are definitely felt!! Have a wonderful week!! 

Sister Parke 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Pictures Brightly Beams our Fathers Mercy!

Breakfast out for P-day :)

I pass this "Parke" sign everyday in Vernon Hills. 

First Zone Conference

Love my Sister missionaries!

A windy visit downtown!


Hello Bean! So glad my jacket came in the mail today! It's getting chilly!

Brightly Beams our Father's Mercy!

Hello family and friends!! 

Wow what a week it has been! It is the middle of September already?? I can't believe time is passing so quickly!! General Conference is right around the corner and I am SO EXCITED. It's like Christmas for missionaries. (: The fall season has definitely hit in Chicago and things are starting to cool off! I am a little nervous for the winter... But everyone is saying it will be mild because of the El Niño effect...whatever that means? Haha I don't really care, just as long as it is warmer! (; well I've lost count of how long I've been out here in the field... It feels like I'm in some weird time zone..l but it's the best!! (:

We have a baptism this week for a little 8 year old girl named Genevieve! When I came into the ward her family was struggling with getting to church. Over the past few weeks they have been extremely diligent with coming to church and Genevieve is SO excited to be baptized! She is the cutest little girl! Her mom, Vivian, is so sweet and cares about her children so much! I know that she knows how important it is that her daughter is baptized!! I am looking forward to Saturday!! 

So one of the recent converts in our ward became inactive right before I got into the mission field. Sister Meili and I tried contacting him at Least every other day and always tried stopping by his house... And of course no answer. After multiple times of trying without success we just gave up. It had been eight weeks since anyone had seen or heard from him. For some reason I felt the need to stop by his house today.  So while out to our appointments I told sister Plomgren.. "We need to stop by this house... I guarantee he won't be home and he won't answer... But I feel like we need to try one more time." So.. Here we are, standing at the door... I rang the doorbell. Nothing. I knocked on the door. Nothing. I looked at my companion and shrugged snd we started to walk away, "well, it was worth a shot, see I told you, as usual... No one answers."  Just then... The door opened! And it was him!!! I think my jaw dropped to the ground. Not only did he answer the door.... But he invited us in--his mom was even home so we were allowed (miracle)-- So we went inside and talked with him for awhile and got to know him better. Turns out that it was his BIRTHDAY. He told us how he has been struggling lately with some medical issues and hadn't been able to interact with others on medication. We shared some scriptures with him and he said, "I always knew during the hard times God was there for me." We invited him to come to church on Sunday and he committed to be there, sadly he didn't come.... But nevertheless...Heeding spiritual promptings as a missionary brings forth miracles!

On Thursday we met with Maddy, she was able to come over with us to sister kappelmans home for dinner--butternut squash bisque soup with grilled cheese on homemade bread (I just about died)-- aside from the paradisiacal food it was an amazing experience. Sister kappelman is a convert to the church and brother kappelman joined recently two years ago. She was able to share her similar experience with Maddy and really connect with her. We had a good discussion about baptism and testimonies! Maddy is so strong, even though she is facing hardships in her life right now she turns to the scriptures and prayer to receive comfort. She told us of an experience she had where she came home crying and feeling overwhelmed.., she felt prompted to read the scriptures and she turned to mosiah 7:18-19; 33. She said she felt a peace wash over her and she knew it would be okay. Maddy is such an example to me. I love her so much! I never fully understood the love a missionary feels for an investigator until I met Maddy!  I testify that I know Maddy is one of the people I was supposed to teach and help bring to the light the gospel, it is one of the best feelings in the world... Knowing you helped someone grow closer to the Savior!  We are working with her parents and I have faith they will be receptive to the gospel!  Maddys mom is really starting to warm up to me, and always invites me over to come help her in the garden and sends me home with lots of veggies. So I'd say I'm a pretty happy missionary with all these organic vegetables. (; Although there are hard days, it's always days like these when all the pieces come together and you feel the greatest joy in the world. It's indescribable. I'm a missionary, I love the work I am a part of mostly because I love my Savior Jesus Christ. If you want to be happy, and help others find happiness... Share the gospel!! It's as simple as that. 

Sunday we met with Victoria in her home. It was wonderful to meet with her and her less active mother was there so it was great to have her warm up to the missionaries again. Victoria has really been struggling with knowing if there is a God, she doesn't believe in life after death because she doesn't want life to continue beyond the grave. She didn't understand the importance of Jesus Christ and so we had the opportunity to testify and teach about the Savior. She really opened up to us and started crying about her life and said she felt so lost and alone and overwhelmed. I testified of the atonement and how Christ knows and understands those feelings and her burdens can be made light through Jesus Christ. The spirit was so strong... And I cannot deny the power of God and his hand in missionary work. We testified to Victoria about how faith requires action... And in order to know God is there she must act on her faith by studying, pondering, and praying. She still seemed unsure, however we are praying for her heart to be softened. We have seen great progress with her over the past few weeks and hope she is willing to act on the desire to learn more. 

So we went on exchanges this Friday and Saturday and I was able to spend two days in downtown Chicago!! I absolutely love the city!! So many people from all over the world!! We rode the L for quite a bit talking to people, handing out pictures of Christ and placing book of Mormons! We also sang hymns in the train station for about an hour and caught some attention handing out cards. A man came up to us and told us we sounded like angels! Another man came up and asked if I was single or "available"! Ha not quite. 😝 Ahhh I am in love with Chicago! The people, the smells, the music, the LAKE, the buildings and the FOOD. Yuuum. Anyways. We had a great lesson with a man named Gabe on exchanges, and we committed him to be baptized next month! Yay! They do say miracles happen on exchanges!! 😀  

Zone Conference was AMAZING. So many answers to questions and prayers. Learned a lot about a change of heart and teaching in the Saviors way. It truly is incredible to me how the lord entrusts 18-19 year olds to do his work. It is powerful to know that I am the Saviors hands outstretched to others and as I give God my weaknesses he will strengthen them to help me to become an effective instrument in his hands! As I missionary I see SO many weaknesses that I have, but it is through those weaknesses that I am able to draw closer to God. I have gained a greater knowledge and understanding about repentance and the atonement. Often I view repentance from a negative aspect.... But really... Repenting... Each and EVERY Day is how I become more like Christ! Repentance and being forgiven of my sins is not the only aspect of the gospel. It is about the change of heart and having the desire to do good continually! Striving to constantly become better and the missionary God needs me to become!  Over the past... Almost three months... On my mission I have experienced the opportunity to realign my will to Gods will and pray for a softened heart so that I can acknowledge the Lords hand in all things. One of the elders in my district said, "in order to change, we need to take it to God, then serve God." How true that is. I have a testimony of Christlike service. I know that missionary work is important. God does hear his children. God does know each child individually. He loves and cares for each one of us. I know this gospel is true. I am grateful to be a representative for my Loving Savior in proclaiming this gospel!! 

Have a wonderful week!! I sure love you!!

Sister Parke 

Monday, September 7, 2015

Pictures Molded as Potter's clay!

Saying goodbye to Sister Meili

Hello Sister Plomgren!

My new comforter to keep me warm here in Chicago.

A butternut squash lover's dream!

Sister Kappleman sure has a green thumb!

Molded as Potter's Clay

Hello there everyone! 

So I survived transfers! My greenies name is Sister Plomgren, and she is AWESOME. She is from San Francisco, but has gone to school the past year at BYU HAWAII!!! How cool is that? Guess what she was studying? Nutrition! It's like a match made in heaven! Ha! So if you didn't notice from the pictures.... She is super tall! It's great! I have a model as a companion. (: She hates running... But it's okay because her walking pace is just about my running pace with how tall she is. Haha! Sister Plomgren is such a hard worker and we are hittin the ground running... Greenie fire! Since we are both practically brand new. But it's okay though, because we are figuring this out together for with the help of the spirit! We are excited to set high goals and work hard to achieve them! I am so grateful to the Lord for blessing me with such a wonderful companion, I am so excited to learn and grow with her. 

Alrighty... So I just made it seem like this whole thing has been rainbows and butterflies. Let me be completely honest. Training a new missionary.. as new missionary is a lot of responsibility and is incredibly stressful. I began to feel overwhelmed with all of the expectations, and constantly felt as if I was falling short in everything. I began to feel anxious and didn't know if I was going to be able to train and fulfill all of the responsibilities of not only a missionary, but a trainer as well. I humbly fell to my knees and asked the Lord for strength. I felt at peace knowing, I am not doing this alone.  Later that evening I met with brother Obrien (ward mission leader) I was still having some uneasy feelings and felt prompted to ask him for a priesthood blessing. Brother Obrien, a worthy priesthood holder of the Lord, laid his hands upon my head and gave me a blessing from my Loving father in heaven. The strength I received from the blessing was so comforting, all of my nervousness seemed to disappear. Tears filled my eyes as I felt the immense love of my Father in Heaven. I don't know how to describe the peaceful feeling other than I felt a physical load of burden lifted off my shoulders. Although my responsibly remains the same, the Lord provides strength to do his will, I have a testimony that the Lord qualifies whom he calls. It truly is a miracle. This work is impossible without the help of God. I love Matthew chapter 11.  "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." The Lord calls people not for who they are, but who he knows they can become. What a humbling experience it is to be shaped in the Lords hands. I know that as I give my best effort to the Lord in dedication to this work... He will take that imperfect effort and make it whole. 
Although I have only been out on my mission a few short months, I have learned so much. Through times of overwhelming feelings of struggle and frustration, the Lord has picked me right back up when I fall down. He provides the power to overcome, and through these experiences, my faith in then Savior is strengthened. Sure, at times I miss the life I use to live, but then I wake up and realize.... This work I am a part of is so much more important than anything I could be doing for the next 18 months. Missionary work is not my work, it is the Lords. It also requires everything I can give, and I know I will never regret giving my whole heart to missionary work. When in these situations of stress I wonder.... Is there any more left of me to give? God knows my capacity, my ability, and of course he will not let me fail.

Sister Plomgren and I had a great week full of hard work and countless blessings. If you only knew how prevalent the Lords hand is in missionary work... The little miracles I witness each day remind me of whose work this is and what my purpose is as a missionary. We were able to meet with Victoria this week and have a wonderful lesson on faith in Jesus Christ. She struggles to know that there is a God and her self worth. We testified to her that she is a daughter of God... And that he knows and loves her and that he wants her to come unto him. I felt prompted to share with her the song "child of light". The song was perfect and touched her heart, The spirit was very strong and she testified of the peace that she felt. We emphasized that desire to find peace comes through Jesus Christ. Victoria committed to learning more about this gospel and I could not be happier for her. She committed to come to church this Sunday!

On Friday we met with Jenkins. Wow, can I just say that he is the coolest? We had a great discussion with him about the Book of Mormon and how it relates with the bible. He is extremely fascinated with church history and the Book of Mormon and is soaking up all of the doctrine and teachings like a sponge. It is as if he just can't get enough information. He is the most curious investigator with such an intense desire to learn more! His willingness to learn intrigues me and as I study and ponder his questions I am learning and strengthening my testimony as well! Although his intellectual level is far beyond mine... It is amazing how the spirit fills my mouth with answers to his questions and guides me to scriptures to share within the Book of Mormon. He assigns himself "book of Mormon homework assignments" each time after we meet. He is very driven and self motivated. GUESS WHAT!? He came to church!!! So happy that he was finally able to come. He is a very busy man and making the effort to come to church definitely is a great step in the right direction! He wants to meet next week and so we are looking forward to teaching him more!! 

Spent quite a few days this week working with Maddy. Bless her heart, she is going through a rough time right now because all of her friends just headed off to school and her boyfriend is leaving next week to BYU-I. She is staying home and going to a community college to save money for generals and get started in and occupational therapy program. Sound familiar? Yup. Sounds exactly like my life a year ago. It is extremely easy to relate to her and hopefully I am able to offer some words of advice and comfort. It is critical that we keep helping her to strengthen her testimony and turn to God in this time of need. Especially helping her prepare for baptism. We talked with her mom for about a half hour and she is definitely starting to warm up to us! We are working with Maddy to pick out a date that her parents agree with to work towards for baptism. Thankfully her parents are coming to church on Sunday! 

So..... We are seeking out the "lost sheep" so to speak in the ward. A lot of contacting to less or inactive members. I really struggled at first to understand the purpose of this... Because I thought to myself... "They already have the knowledge of the truth.. And they are choosing not to follow. We should be spending our efforts on finding and teaching new people!" But of course, Heavenly Father kindly reminded me..  And I was lead to the talk in last general conference titled "waiting for the Prodigal." I would encourage each of you to study and to read it.  Elder Nielson shares the parable of the prodigal son, one I am sure many of you are familiar with. However, he took this parable and analyzed it from a different perspective. He shared a story of how his sister fell away from her church for many many years, and how she became active once again in the church. His sister describes her experience of "letting go of the iron rod and finding herself in a mist of darkness." Isn't this analogy so true? Are we not all trying to find out way back to God? My eyes were then opened. OUR purpose as members and missionaries is to INVITE. Invite those who are struggling, inviting those who may be lost in the darkness and seeking to find the iron rod to hold fast. We are all in Need of the Saviors direction in our life. My goal on my mission is to help others find it whether they be members, non-members, less actives or just the stranger on the street. We all have the opportunity to share.,. What are we waiting for? 

That being said... So on Saturday my companion and I decided we would give it a go at tracting. The only issue was it was 95 degrees outside and there wasn't a cloud in the sky... It was HOT. After about half an hour of closed doors... I began to question the purpose. Here I am feeling frustrated with the people who reject and refuse the gospel... Struggling to see beyond my imperfect efforts, and feeling as if it will never be enough. It is natural to turn inward and feel sorry for myself, and I wish I could say that never happens. I wish I could say that when faced with rejection I always love and accept the person for being a child of God. Instead sometimes I find myself thinking... Why am I even here? These people don't even care. I'm wasting my time... And then I am reminded whose work this truly is. Ohhhh boy, is the Lord teaching me.  It finally clicked.., like a light switch. This isn't my time. This is the Lords time. Why I am I wasting the Lords time feeling sorry for myself? Get over yourself, and get to work. If I am sad that the people won't heed to the message... Imagine how God feels. He loves his children, and wants them to draw nearer to him. All he asks of me is to be an instrument in his hands in sharing the message. Each day I am humbly reminded... Why I am here... And what my purpose is as a missionary. What greater call could I have than representing the Savior Jesus Christ and proclaiming his message? 

So yes, I love the hard weeks. I love when I am pushed to my limit. Because just when I think that I can't go or give any further, the Lord picks me right back up... Gives me strength, and says try again. Without these difficult weeks, there would be no strengthening nor growth. In ward conference last week President Eyre shared a profound quote, "Living the gospel should inspire, not feel guilty, cause us to be excited... Not overwhelmed." I know the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored on this Earth today. I know that through the power of God Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon. I know the Book of Mormon is true, and because it is true... The church of Jesus Christ is the living gospel today. What an exciting time to be a part of this work. 

I love you all!! Thank you for your support your prayers, they are most definitely felt. Have a great week and I hope you enjoy your Labor Day weekend! sending love your way!!!

Sister Parke