"You are good. But it is not enough just to be good. You must be good for something. You must contribute good to the world. The world must be a better place for your presence. And the good that is in you must be spread to others..." Gordon B. Hinckley

Monday, April 21, 2014

Pocatello! Week 10

Hello. Happy Easter... well, the day after. But anyways! I love Easter time. I love my Savior, I love the fact that He loves us enough to do everything He has done for us, and I love that He has risen again, and because of Him, we too can be resurrected after we die. We will live again because He did first. Here in Pocatello they do this thing called, "Walk With Christ." They set up the whole building with different people dressed up and acting as different individuals in moments of Christ's life. We walk to different rooms and learn about Christ's life; his birth, ministry, etc. It's incredible. I felt such a spirit as I walked around that church building and learned more about my Savior. We took Jared and his family. They loved it. I felt such pride as I looked at my right shoulder and really reflected on the name that I bear. I wear Christ's name on my shoulder everyday. I have the honor and privilege of representing Him, my elder brother. I feel so blessed. I love him. I love my Lord. Friday I was able to be on exchanges with Sister Riding. Sister Jacobson went up to Highland. I love them both. It was a special day... as Sister Riding and I were eating lunch she received a phone call. She got her visa and will be going to Brazil on April 29th! Ah. She is such a loving, Christlike, charitable soul. She reminds me of you, mom - so beautiful inside and out. The people of Brazil are so lucky to have her. I know the people of Idaho have been lucky to have her around for as long as we have:) During this Easter time as I think of Christ, my heart is full - full of His grace and love. The fact that I know my Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, loves me and knows me and died for me and was resurrected so I could have salvation and live with Him again just makes me swell with joy. I love Him. Love doesn't even express all the feelings I feel toward my Savior. And I love my Father in Heaven for loving me enough to send His Only Begotten Son to die for me, as imperfect as I am. It touches my soul. All throughout the scriptures Christ is found saying, "Come unto me." He wants us to come to Him. He wants us to lean on Him, He wants to mend our broken hearts and our fragile spirits. I hope you've gone to lds.org and watched, "Because of Him." It's such a beautiful and inspired 2 minute video. Saturday was fantastic. Jared, my wonderful 9 year old friend, was baptized! It was such a peaceful setting. His father was able to baptize and confirm him. So lovely. So special. That night we took Miko to the "Walk With Christ." It's amazing... the faith she has. She came from China where she wasn't taught about God or Christ at all, and here she is - reading the Book of Mormon, praying, feeling the Spirit. After going through the "Walk With Christ" we were able to view paintings of Him. I asked her, "What do you think about it all?" And she said, "It is wonderful. Just wonderful." And Sister Jacobson asked, "Which room did you like best?" And Miko just smiled and said, "All of them." She is such a tender soul. I love her. I feel blessed to have the opportunity to teach her. Sunday Dustin, a 11 year old that's getting baptized this Saturday, walked all the way to church alone. What faith he has! I just couldn't stop smiling when I saw him at church. I am so proud of him. I know Heavenly Father is, too. My heart is full. I've been pretty sick lately, but I know that the Lord will sustain me as I strive to do the best I can. I love my Savior. I love this work. I love helping others come unto Christ. I know He lives. I know that my Redeemer lives and loves me too. Ether 12:27 reads, "And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness, I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." All things are possible in Jesus Christ. He has overcome the world. He has overcome all of our trials and pains. We just need to ask Him how we can, we just need to ask Him to help us. I testify that He will. We will feel His love and strength. I love you. I pray for you. All my love and prayers, Sister Mork

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Pocatello! Week 9

So I guess I just want to say, I love you all. Lately it's really been just hitting me - trials. Trials are for our benefit. How else would we be able to grow and learn? When we endure hard times it makes us more empathetic, more compassionate, more loving, more Christlike... and if our challenges draw us closer to our Heavenly Father and allow us to become more like Him, how blessed are we to endure! We're better able to help others that are forced to push through similar afflictions. We can better assist and encourage them. It's beautiful really. In Mosiah 24: 10, 12-15 it says, "And it came to pass that so great were their afflictions that they began to cry mightily to God.... (and) did pour out their hearts to him; and he did know the thoughts of their hearts. And if came to pass that the voice of the lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me; and I will covenant with my people and deliver them out of bondage. And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage, and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions....yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord." He did strengthen them so they could stand the burdens. He didn't just take the trial away. And something I've learned is that praying to have a hard trial taken away doesn't help us at all and that isn't the purpose of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Because He did endure everything we've endured we can be strengthened through Him, through the trial. We can be made whole, complete, stronger. I am so grateful for that knowledge. Monday we invited two young girls to be baptized and they accepted! How glorious! And then Miko, the Chinese foreign exchange student we've been teaching has been reading The Book of Mormon and praying and wants to be baptized! It was a beautiful day spent among beautiful people. Tuesday we had Zone Training and Sister Jacobson and I did a training for the other Elders and Sisters in our zone on how the Atonement of Jesus Christ can help us during hard times. I love the Savior and I am so grateful for everything He means to me. He is my rock. He is as real to me as any person I can physically touch, if not more real. I know that He lives and I know that His Atonement is a force that I will forever be indebted to Him for. Wednesday we saw Dustin - 11 - and planning on being baptized in a few months! I love that kid. He is so alive and ready to follow the example of Jesus Christ in being baptized by proper authority! Helping others come unto Christ is such a blessing. Seeing the miracle of change in others is one of the greatest things I've ever had the pleasure of witnessing. Thursday we saw Mamie and taught her about the Plan of Salvation. She is learning so much and it's so exciting! She wants to discover if this gospel really is Christ's church and committed to pray and ask Heavenly Father if it is. I know that she will receive confirmation from the Holy Ghost and feel that peace, which will testify to her that this is His gospel. Friday night Hannah got baptized! She's 9. The baptism was so beautiful. She was dressed in white and when she came up out of the water she couldn't stop smiling! The Spirit of love and peace was so strong. Saturday we saw the Caudillo family and this next Saturday their 9 year old son, Jared, is getting baptized. We've been teaching him and seeing the peace that comes from learning about these things is such a transformation. Sunday was church! I love being able to attend Christ's true church. I love the peace and love I feel. I know that this gospel is true. I know that Christ is leading the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and I know that He is at the head of it. I love my Savior. I feel blessed and honored to wear His name. I love you and I pray for you. Remember who you are. You are a child of God. You are His. You are priceless. You are special. Never forget that. All my prayers, Sister Mork P.S. "Come unto Christ and be perfected in Him." Moroni 10:32. Perfected means to be complete. Through Him we can be made whole. Let Him heal you

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Pocatello! Week 8

Jesus Christ. Just two words, but so much meaning. Lately I've really been thinking about my relationship with my Savior and everything He is to me. He's not just some great man that lived long ago. He lives now. He is my older brother and He loves me. Because of the sacrifice He gave of His life, we can all live again. We can be strengthened during our trials. We can be made to be more than we could be with our limited capacity. In life, we don't need to go through it alone. We have Him and He is enough. He is more than enough. The grace that we can obtain through faith and desire to become more in and through His Atonement is difficult to explain, unless you've experienced it yourself. If you haven't experienced the strengthening and enabling effects of the Atonement, I invite you to do so. God is there. He is willing and eager and ready to listen. Because of Jesus Christ we can talk to our Father in Heaven, be cleansed of our sins, and return to live with Him again. Oh how beautiful that knowledge is! Monday night we met with Kaj, the 9 year old boy that was recently baptized, and I asked him,"Kaj, why do we have the 10 commandments?" And he so smartly said, "To help us live better lives." Okay wow. Someone gave the best answer ever. He's just the sweetest and so right! The Commandments are there to help us achieve success and growth and peace in this life. They help us draw nearer to our Heavenly Father and become more like Him. Tuesday we had our first district meeting as a new district. Elder Wilkinson is our new district leader and he is fantastic. He is concentrated and determined and focused and we're blessed to be under such fantastic leadership. We also got 2 new sisters in our district and they're beautiful inside and out! I love working alongside such fantastic people in the Lord's work. Sister Jacobson and I saw our 14 year old investigator after district meeting. She is so sweet! We shared a scripture in Alma which speaks about the beauty of nature and how our loving Heavenly Father created all things. Everything around us - in nature and all - testifies that there is an Almighty Being that has created all of this for us. I then shared an experience of a hike I went on with dad and how beautiful all of the nature is. When you're outside in the middle of nature, just breathing in the fresh air and gazing at all the creations around you, you can't help but feel there's something more, something spiritual. She teared up and her mother who was with us broke down in tears. They've been having some serious family issues, especially regarding fathers. We then looked at that beautiful 14 year old and said with all the assurance of our souls, "There is a loving Heavenly Father that knows you and loves you. Talk with Him. He can help you." That conversation was inspired. Sister Jacobson felt inspired to share that scripture, I felt inspired to share that experience, which in turn allowed them to open us and express the hard times they've been going through. The gospel is not a weight - it is wings. It allows us to fly through trials with someone much greater than we are. Then we left and went and saw Jamie, the 14 year old boy that's hopefully getting baptized this month! He's the best. He's so fired up and read to become apart of the Lord's church. Seeing the light and excitement in the eyes of people that are ready to follow Christ and obtain the happiness he so badly wants to give them is so awe-inspiring! Then we saw RC, a wonderful, kind man who's been visiting with missionaries for a while now. He is fantastic! We talked about faith and shared Alma 32:27. We must act and then after the trial of our faith we will see the blessings that Heavenly Father desires to bestow upon us. The past 2 weeks we haven't been able to meet with him. Everything had been going wrong - plumbing, etc. and finally we got to see him! He said, "It's interesting. Right as I begin to meet with you girls and learn more about the gospel, all these things are happening." SO RIGHT. Whenever anyone tries to go toward Christ and do what's right, there's going to be opposition. Satan doesn't want us to be happy, but if we push forward and rely on Christ, we can pull through! Then around 8:30 pm we had 30 minutes before we needed to go home. We decided to go and see if we could contact Kelsey - a sweet girl we haven't seen in a while - and we saw her! So grateful! We haven't been able to see her in so long. Blessings and miracles happen when you're obedient. You're able to bless lives. Wednesday was a beautiful day. We went contacting and so many people shut doors in our faces. But then that night we saw a girl we haven't seen in a while. At first, she didn't want to talk with us about Christ or His gospel at all, but as the weeks have gone by, she's warmed up to us and the Spirit has opened her heart and we were able to talk with her about Jesus Christ, His gospel, and the fact that she is a daughter of God. It was a blessed day. Then that night we stopped by this family's home. They had been arguing and fighting and crying and we asked if we could share a message. The mom said, "I would love for you to bring the Spirit into our home...Enter at your own risk." And we did. We came in and shared a message. All the sons and the husband sat around us and listened as we shared a scripture and the feeling of the entire home changed. No more fighting. No more tears. No more unkind words. Laughter and words of love and appreciation proceeded the spiritual thought. It wasn't Sister Jacobson and I that changed the environment.. it was the Spirit of our Heavenly Father that helped this family. I am so grateful to be apart of a church that emphasizes so much on families, that helps us come closer together and become united in love. Thursday we saw "The Testaments" and I totally cried. Movies that allow me to feel the Spirit and really think of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ just warms my soul! I love my brother. I think about the day when I'll finally be able to thank Him for everything He has done for me... It will be such a blessed day.. Friday was a growing day. Read Alma 34 38-41. It's fantastic... (well, all of the Book of Mormon is...) In Preach my Gospel it says, "As we obey God, He blesses us. He gives us power to meet life's challenges. He helps us change the desire of our hearts. Through faith in Jesus Christ, he can heal us, both physically and spiritually. As we repent, our view of ourselves and the world changes. Our desire to follow God grows stronger and deeper." Christ gives us the strength to be more, do more, become more. Saturday and Sunday we had General Conference. I am so thankful to have a prophet on the Earth today. I am so grateful to know that these men talk with God and that the words they deliver us are the exact words He would tell us if He were physically before us. Mosiah 16:9 says, "He is the light and the life of the world; yea, a light that is endless that can never be darkened; yea, and also a life which is endless, that there can be no more death." Christ is the light. He is there for us always and I am so grateful for that knowledge. I love my Savior. He is everything to me. I love you! I pray for you. Love, Sister Mork

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Pocatello! Week 7

Hello my loved ones! So this was a growing week... every week is a growing week in the mission field though;) So Tuesday 3/25 was wonderful. We had our last District Meeting as a district because Wednesday everyone left for different areas for transfers. It was sad to see those wonderful elders leave, but it has been such a pleasure to work with such fantastic children of God. Sister Jacobson and I are staying for at least another six weeks! Yay! Anyways, while I was reading in District Meeting I came across a scripture where Christ said, "I came into the world to do the will of my father because my father sent me." It just got me thinking... why do I do anything I do? Why am I serving an 18 month mission? Because my Father in Heaven sent me and I want to serve Him. I want to serve Him and show Him how much I do love Him. I want to show Jesus Christ, my selflessly loving and merciful brother that I love Him by teaching our brothers and sisters about Him and about His true church restored on the Earth today. Is everything I'm doing today and tomorrow and everyday aligned with the will of my merciful Heavenly Father? My purpose as a missionary is to invite others to come unto Christ. What a blessed commission I have! It's interesting having the title of a missionary. Some of the best moments are when we finish a lesson, the investigator says the closing prayer, and they thank our Lord for sending the missionaries. Last week one of our investigators - so sweet - said, "Thank you Heavenly Father for sending Sister Mork and Sister Jacobson to help me." Oh how my heart sang! I feel so blessed to be able to serve these wonderful people! Alma 26:16 says, "Therefore let us glory, yea, we will glory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God forever. Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his mercy, and of his long-suffering towards the children of men? Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel." Thank you Ammon for saying exactly what my heart so earnestly wants to explain. I can't say what I feel. My heart is consumed by all of these emotions. Joy, hope, faith, love, desire, etc. Then Tuesday night was amazing. We went over to the home of the Lackey's, a wonderful couple in our ward, and talked with Miko, a Chinese foreign exchange student. She's 17 and because she's from China she hasn't had the opportunity to learn about Christ's church so we invited her and she said yes! So we then talked with her and taught her the Restoration. We taught her about how she is a daughter of God and what a Spirit filled that room. She didn't know. She didn't know that she had a loving Father in Heaven that was aware of her. When we said, "Miko, your Heavenly Father loves you. He is always there for you if you pray and talk with Him. He wants to help you," a smile of just full excitement and hope filled her eyes and face. We then spoke about how the gospel really does bless and strengthen families. The teachings it's based on helps families grow so much! We taught about Christ and His love for her and that He died for her because of that love. She just smiled and smiled and smiled and I couldn't stop smiling! Think about it: You have a Heavenly Father that loves YOU. You have an older brother who died for YOU so YOU can return to live with your families again for all eternity after you die and so YOU can repent and be changed to become more like Him everyday! What blessing and tidings of joy this gospel brings! We testified that this is Christ's restored church. He is the head of this gospel. This is His church and His church has the proper authority of God to act in His name. I just love Miko and love teaching her! She is adorable. She is my sister. Wednesday was an emotional day! So Dad you wanted to hear about what a day in the life of a missionary is like. Here we go!:) 6:20 I crawl out of bed, happily, and start the day with prayer. Best way to start the day! Then I put on my tennis and get ready to work out! 6:30 we go for a run, stretch, etc. It's cold, but good! Love getting that fresh air in our lungs. 7 We shower and get ready for the day! Eat breakfast and be presentable for the day! YAY! 8 We have personal study where we can study the Book of Mormon and other gospel books. It's one of my favorite parts of the day. I love having the opportunity to study and gain revelation from my Father in Heaven for myself and those that live in my area. I LOVE IT. 9-11 We have companion study. We sing, pray, read in the white handbook, read Adjusting to Missionary Life, talk about what we learned in personal study, plan for the day, go over 12 weeks, and close with a prayer. 11-12 we have lunch! 12-5 we go out and teach and meet people:) 5-6 we have dinner, usually at a member's home and we share a spiritual thought and leave with a prayer. 6-9 we go out and teach more. 9:30-10 we go over the day and plan for the next day. 10-10:30- we get ready for bed and write in our journals and pray and get some sleep! YAy! So Wednesday we met with many different people. It was a day of teaching and learning. As a missionary, you're able to enter into so many different homes and meet so many different people. The incredible thing is, is that - no matter where you are in life, no matter what you're circumstances are, the gospel and it's teachings can help you. I love being able to show people how the light of Christ can brighten even the darkest moment. He is light, and light and darkness can't co-exist in the same allotted area, so shine His light on your demons and force them to disperse! In 2 Nephi 26:9 it says, "But the Son of righteousness shall appear unto them; and he shall heal them, and they shall have peace with him.." I love that. Lately, I have seen Christ everywhere. Whenever I'm having a hard day and feelings of despair creep in, I picture my Savior walking alongside me and I can't help but smile. He is my best friend. (Besides you, mom & dad;) Close second!<3) Wednesday we were in charge of speaking at a Young Womens/Mens activity. It was on missionary work. All of these younger kids opened up fake calls to go on missions, and as they read the words on the sheet, I was overwhelmed with the memory of when I opened my call, when I read the words of where I would be laboring for the next 18 months for my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. A moment such as that is unforgettable. I'm just so humbled by this experience and so eager and excited for those of my friends that will serve missions! What a blessing it is. Then that night we saw Miko again. We taught her the Plan of Salvation, which answers the questions: Where am I from, why am I here, where am I going after I die? Such a powerful and beautiful lesson. Before the lesson we asked, "So Miko, did you pray and read the Book of Mormon last night?" And she said, "Yes. I did." "How was it?" we asked. "It felt... good. I felt Him listening. I feel happy." AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! That was hands down one of the best moments I've ever had. Talking with this sweet, beautiful daughter of God and just being able to feel the love that she felt from her Heavenly Father just left me in awe. She can't speak English very well, but the Spirit and love we felt in that room was so overpowering. I love her and I'm so grateful I have the opportunity to teach her! I felt like King Benjamin when he said in Mosiah 3:4, "For the Lord hath heard thy prayers, and hath judged of thy righteousness, and hath sent me to declare unto thee that thou mayest rejoice; and that thou mayest declare unto thy people, that they may also be filled with joy." Thursday we went out and contacted and met a lot of people. Great day of work! Funny note: So mom, I got the curry that you sent me (thank you so much! you're the best mom ever) and I tried to make it.... hahaha it was so burnt. I miss you curry, Dad! You make it the best! Sister Jacobson tried it. "It's not too bad...." She said. hahah I love her. Friday we fasted. Hannah, the 9 year old we've been teaching, hasn't been able to contact her Grandpa who lives far, who they want to baptize her. And we fasted that we would be able to solidify a date and guess what! We did! Later that day we saw Hannah and come to find out, she had finally talked with her grandpa and she'll be baptized on Aril 11th! YAY! Then that night we were walking, it was 8:30 pm, and we were trying to find one more person to teach. We're supposed to be out until 9pm and it's amazing the miracles you see when you're obedient! Sister Jacobson and I were walking alongside each other in the dark and I just could help but smile. You know when a moment is just so blissful that you want to snap a picture of it? It felt like that. We were able to see Matt, one of our investigators! We haven't seen him in a while and it was so nice to catch up and see how he's been doing and share a scripture of love. I love this work! Saturday night we were able to see the General Woman Broadcast! So wonderful! How blessed are we to be able to live in a day and age when we can hear and watch the words of our Lord be spoken through the mouths of His servants. I think of Mosiah 2:41, which says, "And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold they are blessed in all things both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it." Sunday we had church, which I love, and it snowed!! Proverbs 3:5 is uplifting. Sorry I'm running out of time to write, but I just want to say: I love you all! God loves you. Moroni 8:3 from me to you; "I am mindful of you always in my prayers, continually praying unto God the Father in the name of his Holy Child, Jesus, that he, through his infinite goodness and grace will keep you through the endurance of faith on his name to the end." Love, Sister Mork