Tuesday, March 10, 2015

You're Gonna Miss This

"There's a country song for that" could adequately describe just about every aspect of my life. Even on the mission, after 18 months of being country music-less I still get those feel-good songs running through my head. This week was no exception. 

"You're Gonna Miss This" has been playing in my mind over and over again as  I am coming to grips with the fact that this chapter of my life is about to close. 
AM going to miss this. That fact was made even more apparent to me as we sat in a mission-wide conference this week with Elder Zwick of the 70 and were taught by him and other leaders for almost 5 hours. 

Sitting there, soaking up every ounce of spiritual sunlight from that inspired man, I realized just how precious this experience is. The love, power, wisdom, and inspiration that he shared with us, left me feeling so overwhelmed with gratitude for this gospel, for the Spirit, for this work, and for my chance to be a part of it. I'm going to miss this.

And as I realize that this mission of mine is about to all be over, I wonder sometimes if I have done enough. I was wrestling with that thought during the meeting with Elder Zwick and felt like I wasn't receiving much of an answer. However, in his closing remarks, after hours of previous instruction, he said, almost out of the blue, "If you do your best and then get on your knees, every night, sincerely asking, "Lord, wilt thou accept the best that we gave today?" then it will be enough." 

The Lord answers prayers.

President promised us that if we came to that meeting with questions of our souls, actively seeking for answers, that we would find them. I found mine. As my mission comes to a close, I realize that it is enough, not because of my own efforts, but because HE makes it enough. He fills in where I can't. He magnifies me when I'm weak. He accepts all of my offering and appreciates every sacrifice I make for Him. It is enough. And I am SO grateful for priesthood leaders and the Spirit that bring answers from the Lord to each of us!

The rest of our week was kind of a blur. My poor companion was sick for 3 days with a head cold and we were cooped up indoors for most of that time so she could recover. Despite getting a bit stir crazy, it did offer me some much-needed time to think about and process my life and how it's all about to change....and to clean the apartment:). #tendermercies

We also closed out the week with yet another blood drive and this time around it was a huge success! We had multiple non-members and investigators come, some with member friends, and a lot of ward members turned out to support us. One ward member commented, "It's just so good to see the missionaries doing all kinds of things to help out in the community and give us members opportunities to serve as well. This is the kind of thing that makes me realize that missionary work can be fun and creative and well....easy!"

Mission Accomplished:)

I also had the opportunity yesterday to bear my testimony one last time as a full-time missionary during Fast and Testimony Meeting. It's kind of heartbreaking.....so no, I didn't make it through without crying, in case you're wondering:). 

As a missionary, you get to bear testimony so often yet somehow it never gets old. It still gives me a rush every time, because every time I testify, I rediscover just how true, and powerful, and glorious this gospel is! I only have one more week of being a missionary, but that testimony--that conviction--I know, will go with me beyond the paths of this life as a full-time representative of Him, because it has become who I am. 

I KNOW that this gospel and the church is espouses is true. That, in my mind, is undeniable, because I have LIVED it. I have witnessed it, preached it, sacrificed for it, embraced it, acted upon it, and learned to LOVE it. That is the gift given to each of us from Him, who's church this is, if we will but act in faith. He promises that He will manifest the truth of this gospel to us, if we will but ask, and then live according to the knowledge that we receive.

I plan to do that and much more for this last week of my mission, and beyond!!!

Onward and upward,

Sis Anna Parker
guess who I saw at mission conference?!?!? #besties

What I do when my companion is sick and I get stir crazy cooped up in the apartment for three days...... :)

What we do in Chicago when the weather gets up to 45 degrees!!! #balmy #doorswideopen

What Hispanic investigators feed us.....after we've already had dinner at another members' home. #getonourlevel #nowthatsatorta:) #SOfull