Wednesday, November 19, 2014

You Better Believe It

I feel like I should start off every weekly email with "guess what???" And then list off all the random, crazy, stupid, funny, amazing, downright wicked stuff I've managed to learn that week.

Here's my chance:

First: you can annihilate an entire 8 generations of fruit flies living and reproducing uncontrollably fast in a small sister missionary's apartment (because of one freakin pineapple trying to get ripe) using the back end of a blow dryer. Plug that baby in, wait for the little pests to come flying around, and then dtttttttzzzzzzzz....they're toast before the other end can even shoot em out. OK.....stop judging....gotta do whatchya gotta do:) you know you wanna try it now......

Second: giving companions tutorials on how to use sock buns will inevitably turn into "wanna see the Princess Leah look??" My excuse: two demos is better than one. The truth: I'm a straight up Star Wars nerd.....#thanksto6brothers #hatersgonnahate

Third: while waiting for dinner to be put on the table at a part-member family's home, if I'm bored and then get handed a handful of mini marshmallows by the kids, I immediately go into entertainer mode and start taking bets on which marshmallow trick shots I can make. I proud to say I've mastered the off-the-wall-and-into-mouth dare and the 10-in-a-row mouth catch. #swag

Fourth: to avoid awkward and confused looks while backing a companion out in the FREEZING cold weather.......pretending to assess and check the tire pressure works like a charm. Yea........this is my life:)

Fifth: running out of gasoline on Sunday is NEVER a good idea. All I'm gonna say. Thank heavens for investigators who are close by, have gasoline lying around in the garage, and who could use a lesson on keeping the sabbath day holy......even if it's in a VERY indirect way:)

Sixth: 7-11 isn't kidding when they say that their hot chocolate is EXTREMELY hot. #stillcanttasteathing   #andthisiswhyidontdrinkcoffee

And last but not least, giving away a cards with your number on it is NOT always a pleasant experience. SOML. Example this week (talking to an attractive young guy who stopped to talk with us): 

"Do you have a church you go to?"

"Sorta, I'm a 7th Day Adventist"

"Oh ok, well could we give you our card? It has our website on it with some information you might be interested in and we can give you our number too if you'd like so you can call us with any questions you have?"

"Sure, I'll take your number, but I'll tell you right now it wouldn't be for that reason..."
*wink and sketch smile* that point of COURSE my hand is already extended with our card (and number).......GREATToo late now. We finished off that convo pretty quick and luckily he hasn't called us yet. If he does....

"hey elders, guess what?? We have a referral for you!!" 


On Tuesday, we took Katy (the one who's parents won't let her be baptized so she's waiting till she's 18, but who attends seminary, mutual, and church more often then active members;) and her friend Andy to the baptism of an investigator in the other ward. It was SUCH a unique experience being with them and seeing their faces light up as they watched another take this big step. Andy kept saying, "He looks SO happy!! How is he so happy?! He's just SO happy!" We challenged him that night to baptism, and we'll see what he says this week when we meet with him! AHHHHH!!!!!

Prem and James also had dinner with us this week and we talked about receiving answers to prayers. Prem is SO close!!! SO close to getting his answer!! He's trying to read 100 pages a week (!!!) from the Book of Mormon……and get this…..he’s reading through ISAIAH right now. I swear….my investigators are SO much better than me in SO many ways.


And THEN….there’s Patrick. Patrick is VERY scientifically minded and has deep DEEP thoughts about God and the universe. Example……..

Patrick: “God is too magnificent to be comprehended by the finite mind. And kind of like how a molecule within the ocean is coursed by the pulls of gravity and the currents of the waves, we’re that molecule. And the water….it’s in us. It’s there…..but we’re bound by the forces of nature and the mind of God. You know what I mean??”

---> (O_o) <---




BUT, as we were sitting there… mind WAS totally opened to the magnitude of God's power, as Patrick talked about belief in "frequencies" of faith, being mentally "on track" to discern God's patterns in life, and other scientific reasonings behind our purpose here on earth. We shared parts of the plan of salvation with him, and he left telling us, "I thought that tonight was going to be really weird and not worth my time, but I learned a lot. There's something about what you're teaching that's different. There's more to this!"

It was such a testimony building experience for me, because I knew that this doctrine could not be created by man. Here's a guy who's mentally gifted, who's studied the elements of science and reasoning, and yet, the simple doctrine of the plan of happiness opened his mind to higher spheres! And we as the missionaries were astounded that he was as mind-blown as he was, especially since we were SO incapable (that’s an understatement) of answering all of his answers with the same depth of thought that he approached them with.

God work’s miracles though….AND we definitely saw one;) Patrick left us that night with, “This s*** is great! It totally makes sense!” Hey at least he meant well;) AND….he wants to meet again.

whatever it takes


It’s been a satisfying week with SO many rewarding experiences that opened my mind to God’s goodness. This work is challenging, but we’re seeing the hand of God in our lives and others on a DAILY basis. You better believe it. 

And…we’re having fun while we’re at it.

What could be better?

Onward and upward,

Sis Anna Parker

....what we do while waiting for investigators to show up.....

it's a real thing.......recreating my halloween costume from 10+ years ago....#tbt

our candy bar poster we made for a wardie......yea....we're that cool;)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Guilty As Charged

Guilty as charged.........yes, I didn't post last week.


It was one of those weeks that just kinda got away from us......nah my fault:) So's my attempt at make-up:

We were sitting in district meeting this past week while our district leader taught about the importance of obedience and submitting our will to the Lord's when one of the elders from the back of the room raised his hand and said, "If I may, I'd like to compare this to my favorite movie.......[PAUSE].......Princess Diaries."

 Did he really just say that??

Straight up

The look on our district leader's face was p.r.i.c.e.l.e.s.s.....nuff said. It was taking everything in him not to burst out laughing but his contorting face just made it harder for the rest of us to stay sober while the elder continued, "Y'know....the whole obedience factor. The way he's always saying, 'as you wish'.....y'know it just shows his willingness to obey her every command."

[awkward silence and confused glances]

Finally one of the elders said, "Ummm....dude I think you're talking about the Princess Bride......NOT Princess Diaries...." and THAT'S when we all lost it!!! bahahahaha   oh my gosh.
funniest moment of. my. life.

geez elders......i worry about them sometimes:P

So anywhos...we've been all over the map this week. On Thursday we were finally able to meet with Dan, the one who said he wants to serve a mission. We brought one of the young women in the ward with us and the lesson went SO well! By the end, after we'd testified of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith, we asked him if he'd pray to know for himself. He responded, "Yea, sure. You guys know it's true, so now I really want to find out if it is too!"


He took a Book of Mormon and agreed to read and pray about it! I swear, these young people are so incredible! They're actively seeking out truth and have such a willingness to accept it when they find it! It's amazing!!

And talking about young people, we also met with Allison, Dave's daughter, to answer her questions in regards to religion and gospel doctrine. She's only a junior in high school yet the questions she kept asking us were so profound and she was so ready to listen and learn.....ah! it was almost too good to be true! We spent nearly and hour and an half teaching her doctrine from almost every lesson as she kept asking questions: "What's the point of having trials?" "What happens to those who don't know about God when they die?" "Why is smoking or drinking wrong?" "Why is the Bible so hard to understand sometimes?" "Why don't we have prophets now?" and on and on and on!!

We were BLOWN AWAY by her dedicated search for truth! And there was no better feeling than when we'd answer her questions and she'd sit back, wide eyed and say, "Yes! That makes sense! I get it! That totally makes sense!!!"

Best. Feeling. EVER.

Basically....she's incredible and we're SO lucky to be teaching her! The Lord really is preparing hears to hear the truth and these young people are proving it!

...........on a more serious note.........'s more on why I didn't get a post up last week. My health issues began acting up around Tuesday when I woke up completely exhausted. I began losing my appetite and the exhaustion continued throughout the week, meanwhile I fainted probably 2 or 3 times before the weekend hit. Then, Saturday morning, I woke up after struggling to sleep and started off the day, but had like zero energy so I eventually ended up back on my bed before starting personal study. I stood up to get dressed before I knew it, I'd passed out.

From what I'm told, I had some type of seizure (muscle spasm thing...idk what) that lasted about 15 seconds and thoroughly terrified my companion. After I'd laid there for 2-3 minutes, Sis Carroll called our ward mission leader and some other members for help. Basically.....the rest of that morning was a blur. I was completely WIPED. Our ward mission leader and his wife came to our rescue and headed over to make sure I was ok. I ended up resting for the morning, trying to regain some strength, but by noon I was plain stir crazy and against my companion’s suggestions, we went out to work.

Yea, idk if that was the best idea physically, but mentally I was content:) I HATE being cooped up and especially as a missionary....its the WORST:] By that evening, we made it to stake conference where I was accompanied three sisters from the stake on a musical number and THEN.....Pres Woodbury also asked that James Kumar, his brother, his dad, me, and a member who assisted in teaching James come up and do a live case study complete with testimonies. James was the first to speak, and he shared his complete conversion story.

Sitting there, feeling SO physically weak and drained, yet hearing him bear witness of the truth which he's found in the gospel, testifying to how it has changed and continues to change his life, and how he knows of himself that the church is undeniably true......AH!!! I've rarely had a happier moment in my life!! Watching him stand in front of hundreds of people, bearing his testimony with such conviction......I was SO proud! SO PROUD!!!

When his brother (our current investigator) then got up to talk about the changes he's seen in his brother since he's joined the! The spirit was SO strong!! You could just feel the power and love that surrounded all us on that stage!! I then got the chance to talk about what it was like to teach James and that was SUCH a precious moment for me! James really was a miracle in my life and continues to be such a blessing!! Testifying of that to the world from that podium.....PRICELESS!

After we'd all finished our testimonies, President Woodbury got up and said only a few words, "Brothers and sisters, do you feel that? Do you feel that love? Do you see it? Remember what you've felt and seen tonight. The gospel is about love. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen."

Out with a bang! AH!!

It was one of those 2% moments that I LIVE FOR!!

 I don't think I'll forget that night for as long as I live!!!!!!! It was truly POWERFUL!!!! And we also found out that night that......I'M STAYING ANOTHER TRANSFER IN BG2!!!! That'll be half my mission in one area and I couldn't be happier to be staying!!!!! It's almost unheard of for a sister to stay in one area this long, so I know it's a miracle that I'm getting another 5 weeks here!!! yaaaaaaa!!!

The Lord is oh SO good to me:)

The health issues are still a challenge and I don’t know yet what’s going to happen, but I know it’s in His hands. Through it all, I've felt a powerful peace that it's all going to be OK. As I've thought about what to do to deal with these trails, it's been difficult to know what the best path to take is. The medical issues make me feel like I'm incapable and weak….like I can't do as much as I think and wish I could. And it's FRUSTRATING.

However, these trials have been teaching me to rely more on the Lord, to seek His help more earnestly, and to realize that I can’t do this work alone. I’m not meant to do it on my own. And only with His help will I succeed in overcoming these obstacles. I’ve come to realize that these struggles are helping me prove myself to Him. Even when it’s tough, even when it’s not easy, even when I’m exhausted, weak, and confused……do I still give Him my best, whatever that may be? Do I recognize His answers to my pleas for help? Do I turn to Him and say, “I can’t do this alone, so help me do it with your strength”?

Yea, these challenges aren’t easy. They’re not enjoyable. But they’re teaching me lessons I need to learn, and through it all, my relationship with Him is growing stronger and stronger.

I still don't know what’s going to happen or what path I should take, but I DO feel a strong reassurance that everything will be alright.

It’s in His hands.

So onward and upward!

<3 Sis Anna Parker

do whatchya gotta do when you only have 10 minutes to paint your toenails #sismishlife 

ok so we tried to make origami temples on night.....yea.....we followed the same instructions and ended up with two COMPLETELY different temples.....#howdoesthathappen

Sweetie (the doll behind me in pink) said she wanted to take a selfie with us making "cool faces" we did;) #thatshowwedoit #2cool4school

p-day shopping haul.....YES to F21 and BandBW  #shopaholic #lotionaddict

leave it to me to find this shirt in Bass Pro Shops;) Yea...we were like the only two girls in the store #noshame #cowgirlatheart #lovememyguns

don't ask......last district photo   #wthelders #strange