Thursday, July 9, 2015

Week 69


This week was great! I literally love our ward soooo much! They are HILARIOUS! We teach a Book of Mormon class each week, and this week I honestly was trying not to crack up. We were reading 1 Nephi 3, and we were focusing on the principle of faith. Somehow the conversation went from faith to, "Now what I'm wondering is why did they bring tents? What kind of tents were they, and how many did they have to bring?"  "Well what about their teeth? Wouldn't they be all gross? They would have so many cavities." "No, it's all about the gum disease." Hahahaha I just die! I love them all so much! 

This week we had plans to do service at St. Vincent de Paul's, but a series of unfortunate events happened, and we weren't able to. It worked out perfectly though because we got a call from a lady in our ward who really needed help at that moment. We got our work clothes on and helped her load tree branches into a trailer . It was cool to see how God's hand was in that day. Everything cancelled which made us pretty sad, but then we filled the day with a really meaningful activity! 

Thursday was a complete miracle day. We went to one of the sketchier parts of our area, it we came out alive, so there's that. Just from being there for 3 hours we set an appointment with people we haven't been able to get a hold of lately, teach another lady about the Book of Mormon and committed her to read it, and found a new investigator! 
We had met this younger woman probably 3 weeks ago, and she was very interested in learning about the Book of Mormon, but we could never find a time that worked for us to stop by. We left it alone for a while, and then we ran into her at the store. She expressed she was looking for help because they needed food. We promised we would try to help, but then we weren't able to go to that area for about a week and a half. During this time we gathered up all the food we could find and put it in a box and then into our trunk just in case we would see her randomly. SO a week and a half later (which was this Thursday), we stopped by her house, and she wasn't there. Her father answered though, so we talked to him. We were walking off the porch, but we really felt like we needed to just give the father the food we gathered. Right before he shut the door, we hollered, "Wait!! We have food for you!" He was so thankful and welcomed us right in! We were able to teach them about the Book of Mormon!! Her mother had read a couple of chapters already and invited us to come back :) We were so excited!!!!!

Saturday we taught two young girls about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I haven't taught many children on my mission, so it was a pretty new experience for me. In Preach My Gospel, the book Missionaries study from, President John Taylor said, "It is true intelligence for a man to take a subject that is mysterious and great in itself, and to unfold and simplify it so that a child can understand it." I'm not saying I'm intelligent, but I am saying Heavenly Father has helped me understand this message over the course of 18 months of study, that I felt confident in simplifying so these little girls could understand. It's hard to express in words how I felt, but it was a neat experience for me. These little girls glowed! They loved what we taught, and they came to church the next day. We are so happy!!!
  
I spoke in church yesterday! The subject I was given was how knowledge prepares us to serve God. It was an AWESOME topic, and I learned a lot! It's a bit hard because I really wanted to prepare for the talk, but there was never time haha. I pondered the subject of course, but I basically just got up there and talked about the revelation God had given me on the subject. It was super cool because I never felt like I ran out of things to say. I'm grateful Heavenly Father helped me organize my thoughts and present the message. I also remember feeling a distinct warmness inside. I'm grateful for the Comforter who is sent from God to help us in all situations. 

Well, that's all the writing I have in me today! Actually I'll share a scripture I read this morning. Alma 28, "2 And thus there was a tremendous battle; yea, even such an one as never had been known among all the people in the land from the time Lehi left Jerusalem; yea, and tens of thousands of the Lamanites were slain and scattered abroad.

3 Yea, and also there was a tremendous slaughter among the people of Nephi; nevertheless, the Lamanites were driven and scattered, and the people of Nephi returned again to their land.

4 And now this was a time that there was a great mourning and lamentation heard throughout all the land, among all the people of Nephi--

5 Yea, the cry of widows mourning for their husbands, and also of fathers mourning for their sons, and the daughter for the brother, yea, the brother for the father; and thus the cry of mourning was heard among all of them, mourning for their kindred who had been slain.

6 And now surely this was a sorrowful day; yea, a time of solemnity, and a time of much fasting and prayer.

11 And the bodies of many thousands are laid low in the earth, while the bodies of many thousands are moldering in heaps upon the face of the earth; yea, and many thousands are mourning for the loss of their kindred, because they have reason to fear, according to the promises of the Lord, that they are consigned to a state of endless wo.

12 While many thousands of others truly mourn for the loss of their kindred, yet they rejoice and exult in the hope, and even know, according to the promises of the Lord, that they are raised to dwell at the right hand of God, in a state of never-ending happiness."

After reading that, go to LDS.org and watch "Because of Him" 
Because of Christ, we can overcome physical and spiritual death-- two things that would keep us from living with God again. Rest assured there is a resurrection and a life after we pass from the earth. If we live righteously, we need not fear death so much or have as much pain as the Lamanites did at the death of their loved ones. Yes, of course we would mourn if one of our family members died, but we would have a brightness of hope that we would see them again and that they are in a state of peace and happiness. 

I hope that made sense! Okay well I love you all, and I hope you all have a chance to come to Pennsylvania because it is the best place on earth!!!!!!!!!!
Love, 

Sister Sparks 

One of my favorite people EVER!!! Linda

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