Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Week 63


This week was so great! Sister Sibley was emergency transferred to another area, so it's just Sister Hadzik and me here! We had to do a lot to get Sister Sibley ready to go. We went through the area book and wrote down her whole brain haha. It's sad to see her go, but I'm confident she will do wonders for the people in Greensburg. Sister Hadzik and I are doing well alone here so far! Of course it's a bit stressful to have such area and not know where anything is, but the ward is a wonderful help! Funny story though--we got lost on the way to church and finally realized we were driving away from our house for a good 10 minutes...oops! 

President Donaldsen from The District came and gave us a I've never filled up a notebook so fast!!! We immediately implemented the things we learned, and now we have someone who is SO SINCERE set with a baptismal date of May 30!! He is seriously so cool. He reads so much, and he prayed about the Book of Mormon and said he's never felt anything like what he felt before. We're so amazed at the rapid progress he's making! It's honestly because he's sincere in his's as if we literally do nothing as missionaries except show him pictures in a pamphlet haha. Of course we do more than that, but it has been so smooth! 

Something cool has happened today! We met a boy a few weeks ago who was pretty interested in learning about our message, but didn't have a working phone and didn't know of a specific time we could set up an appointment. We continue to see him places and share little bits of our message. As we started emailing, he walks into the library and tells us he's had a horrible day so far. We ask him about what's going on, and he shares with us his desires to support his daughter, but is just having a really hard time. We just turned to him and bore our testimonies of God's love for His children. We promised obedience brings blessings spiritual and temporal. We promised God would take care of his family's needs as he accepts and acts on our message. We told him it's not a coincidence that the day he needs help most he runs into us. God put us in his path. I am so grateful to have the opportunity to build my brothers and sisters up. There's a special feeling that comes when we strengthen our brethren. :) I am so happy!!

Something I loved learning about is how we access the Atonement through ordinances. In D&C 84:21-22 we learn this. Substitute the word "Atonement" for "power of godliness." "Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the Atonement is manifest. And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the Atonement is not manifest unto men in the flesh." How powerful is that? A man must be called and ordained of God in order to perform saving ordinances such as baptism. This Priesthood was restored to the earth when Joseph Smith was visited by John the Baptist and later Peter, James, and John. This is true!!!! For those who have received these ordinances through the Priesthood, listen to the Lord's advice to Emma Smith in D&C 25:13, "Wherefore, lift up thy heart and rejoice, and cleave unto the covenants which thou hast made." May we CLEAVE to the sacred promises we have made with God. Cherish them, remember them, and LIVE them. 

I love you all!
Sister Sparks

newspaper clipping from community cafe. 

 Downtown Pittsburgh

 I love her!!!!

 last FHE to get ice cream. walked in the rain for sooo long haha. we were SOAKED


 The Wilsons'

Week 62

Hello, everyone! I'm so happy today! This has been a wonderful week here in MONONGAHELA, PENNSYLVANIA. That's right, I'm back in the middle of nowhere! Well, it's in Pittsburgh, but it feels so different then State College!

I'm here in a trio with Sister Sibley (6 months out from Arizona) and Sister Hadzick (1 year out from temple square, originally from Germany). I love them both so much! I have had officially 11 companions on my mission so far and will gain another one next transfer. So crazy. President just can't find someone to handle me!! Maybe I need to try to not be as weird (WIRED--for those who know Miranda Sings).

There were Elders here in Mono before too, but their area was closed, so we're taking it over. Our area is now HUGE! We will be going on a lot of splits with members of the ward. I'm excited!

I'll share a quick cool experience. We received a referral from our ward mission leader for the owner of a little punk store downtown. We went and talked to him, and he only met our ward mission leader 3 brief times, so he really had no knowledge of the Church. We were able to not only teach him about the Restoration but also two teenagers who were in the shop. It was such a great experience. We all worked together to bear witness of the reality of the divinity of Christ and His living Church on the earth today. I absolutely love bearing my testimony to others! We have an appointment set up with one of them this week! SO COOL.

We also met with a lady from Russia last night. From what my companions told me, it has been really hard to teach her because her children are always running around. She just never seems to be able to pay attention. We half expected our lesson to go the same way, but it was completely different. We sat at her kitchen counter and read 2 Nephi 31 with her. Her 11 year old was sitting on her lap silently. Her other child was in another room watching tv. There were no distractions. We read about baptism and explained this important ordinance. We  bore testimony of Christ's Atonement and God's love for His children. Her heart was changed. Her eyes were filled with tears as she listened to us and the Spirit. She is preparing for baptism :)

I am so so so so so grateful for the experiences I've had on my mission. It blows my mind how many people really are searching for truth, but they just don't know where to find it. I'm so privileged to be a set apart servant of the Lord. I know we speak with the power of the Spirit because of this sacred calling. Wow. I am so happy! Welp, that's about it from the Magic City. Have a great week!

Sister Sparks

457 Fair Aly    New Eagle, PA 15067

Another trio!

cute achievement girls. two on the left are investigators!!

 chewing flowers

 cleaning a house 

  celebrating click days!