565

565.  That’s how many days I have been set apart as a full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. FIVE HUNDRED AND SIXTY FIVE  That is a lot of days!  A lot of days filled with joys, tears, laughter, disappointments, miracles, and everything in between.  I have seen myself transform.  I have seen lives change.  I have seen people’s hearts soften.  I have seen souls come to light up as they realize with excitement that they have finally found the church Jesus Christ himself is leading.  I can say nothing less than that every single day has been nothing short of a miracle.

So why does it have to end?!  My answer came through the words of one of the Lord’s modern-day apostles:

In light of what we know about our eternal destiny, is it any wonder that whenever we face the bitter endings of life, they seem unacceptable to us? There seems to be something inside of us that resists endings.

Why is this? Because we are made of the stuff of eternity. We are eternal beings, children of the Almighty God, whose name is Endless and who promises eternal blessings without number. Endings are not our destiny.

The more we learn about the gospel of Jesus Christ, the more we realize that endings here in mortality are not endings at all. They are merely interruptions—temporary pauses that one day will seem small compared to the eternal joy awaiting the faithful.

How grateful I am to my Heavenly Father that in His plan there are no true endings, only everlasting beginnings.
~President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Grateful in Any Circumstance

Amen, President Uchtdorf!  I am so thankful to know that just because I have come to the end of my full-time missionary service in New York, it does not mean that my service is over.  It does not mean goodbye forever to the people that I love.  Instead, it’s a beginning 🙂

New York, you will forever hold my heart!

Never forget, THE CHURCH IS TRUE!

And I’ll miss you! ♥

–Sister Kasparian

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Who Are You Passing By?

Here are some conversations Sister Newson and I have had with people on the street lately:

Sister Newson, holding out a card: Hello!  Would you like some Christmas cheer?

Man walking by: NO.

Sister Newson: Are you sure?

Man: Yes.

*keeps walking*


Me: Hello!  We would love to share this short video with you about Jesus Christ and the peace we can find from Him this Christmas season!  Would you say that He has played a role in your life?

Man: Nope.  Not whatsoever.  And I’m not interested.


Sister Newson: Hello!  How are you doing?

Man in his yard: Fine, thank you.  What are you two doing out today, going for a walk?

Sister Newson: We are!  And we are spreading the Christmas spirit about Jesus Christ!  We have this card that will lead you to a great little video about how He is the true gift of Christm–

Man: *walking away* I don’t have time, sorry.

Haha!  And there are more where those came from!  Seems like Rochester needs a little bit more of the magic of Christmas, wouldn’t you say?

As I’ve had many experiences like this lately, my heart has been hit with a kind of sadness I can’t really explain.  Not because people are rejecting me, but because ultimately they are rejecting Christ.

As missionaries for His church, we are literally called by a prophet of God to represent the Savior Himself.  And I just think, how would these people’s responses be different if Jesus Christ was literally right there asking them the same questions?

What would your response be?  Are you passing by Him without a second thought?  Are you too busy for Him?  Are you simply not interested in Him?  If He were here on the street, would you care to stop and hear His message?

I can’t imagine how the Savior feels, having literally suffered the pains, sorrows, sins, and afflictions of all humankind (2 Nephi 9:21, Alma 7:11-12) and having so many people simply not even care.

And the amazing thing?  Despite how many people reject Him, deny Him, ignore Him, mock Him, disregard Him, or think He simply doesn’t matter, His arm of mercy is still extended to ALL of them.  (Alma 5:33).  Every single one of them.  No matter what they have done, He still reaches out to every individual soul on this earth and offers them His healing hand if they will but repent and turn unto Him. (3 Nephi 9:14)

Isn’t that the most beautiful thing you have ever heard?!  I know it is for me!  I have felt His healing hand in my life and I know that His love is the BEST GIFT I have ever received.  It’s for that reason that we keep spreading His name.

So for those of you who already know and love Jesus Christ all the way to those who don’t care one bit about Him: Learn of Him.  Put in the time for Him.  I promise you, He is there.

This Christmas season, don’t pass Him by!