Monday, August 29, 2016

week 95!!!

Hi, Mom.

Okay, first of all, I got the package (like I usually do after I say that I know it's waiting for me, but it's just not in my hands yet, haha). The other three missionaries that I live with basically went ham on it, only to find nothing of interest (to them, anyway). However, I was more than willing to share with them what was in it (with the exception of the money, of course, hahahaha). Regardless, I'm extremely grateful, and it almost scares me to believe that it's the last package that I'll receive before I go home. Every package that I've received in my mission has made me think of how I don't seem to deserve that kind of spoiling from back home when there are missionaries with families that are barely scraping by when it comes to money.

Something's been stirring in my heart... For quite some time now... And it's something that's brought me to tears a couple times... It's something, if I remember right, that a good friend of mine and a really strong missionary told me... And it's this: We can't save everyone. Five weeks left in my mission, and I can't help but think about all of those people here in my mission... All of those innocent people... That (1) I may never in my life get to see them again, and (2, and this sincerely scares me, to be perfectly honest) I possibly may never see them again at all, either. I apologize now if this sounds a little too dark or negative, but once I come to gain the personal testimony that I have of this Gospel, it's also made it a hundred times harder for me to believe that despite all of the liniency in the Plan of Salvation that there may still be people who won't inherit the Celestial Kingdom. I guess you could say that that's when you come to know just how true this Church and its teachings are when you feel that these people are more than just our weekly or even monthly goal (a number, if you will). I've come to love my mission more than I could've ever imagined, and I've come to love these people and desire their salvation more than anything in the "world" (by that, I mean, more than any worldly desire I could have, like money, for example). I pray (more than I ever have before) in my heart that these people, especially the people (missionaries and others alike, to be more specific) that I've come to not only know, but love as well, that I may see them again... Someday... But, to not end on a seemingly sour note, I couldn't tell you guys just how grateful I am for this once-in-a-lifetime chance that my Father in Heaven has given me to meet such amazing people, and for the testimony that He has blessed me with. I love you guys more than words can describe, and despite having only 5 weeks left, I still miss you guys a lot. Until next week, never forget how blessed we are - all of us are - to have this restored Gospel, and for it to be a part of our lives. Take care!!! And thank you... For everything.

Con Sinceridad y Amor,
Elder Conner Duane "Poderoso" Parke