Sunday, May 31, 2015

#ShareGoodnessSunday :)

Today was awesome, because I got to see this awesome lady!
She gave a fabulous farewell talk today about charity.

"And charity suffereth long, and is kind, and envieth not, and is not puffed up, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil, and rejoiceth not in iniquity but rejoiceth in the truth, beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
Wherefore, my beloved brethren, if ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth. Wherefore, cleave unto charity, which is the greatest of all, for all things must fail—
But charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him." (Moroni 7:45-47)
In church, we often hear charity defined as "the pure love of Christ." Which is true. What does that mean though? A lovely Young Women's leader of mine once said that charity has 3 parts: Love of Christ, Love for Christ, and Love like Christ.

Sarah happens to be one of the greatest examples of charity who I've met. She has a firm testimony of Christ's love for each of us, and in everything she says or does, she reflects that pure love. The people of Cincinnati are so blessed to have this ray of sunshine coming their way!

I'm so excited to be reporting to the MTC with her in 24 days! It's time for us to share the goodness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ with all the world!
Have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Saturday, May 30, 2015

#ScriptureSaturday :)

"What a blessing it is to have the account of the mission of our Lord and Savior declared in the Book of Mormon to add a second witness to the doctrine declared in the Bible." Elder L. Tom Perry

I know that the Book of Mormon is another witness of Jesus Christ! The truths of the Book of Mormon are dear to my heart, and they give me such peace, because they are the doctrines of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Our Heavenly Father loves us! He sent His son, Jesus Christ, to atone for our sins and afflictions so that we could return to live with Him. We can return to live with our Father in Heaven. Forever. It's wonderful! We can have peace and JOY! The message of the Savior's mission to help us to return to our Father is all over the pages of the Book of Mormon. That is why I find such peace.

I used Elder Perry's quote to honor him, because he passed away today. I am grateful for the wonderful example of strength and kindness which he gave us throughout his life. I will miss hearing from him, but I know he is resting in peace!

I couldn't figure out how to get the video to show up on my blog, but the church posted a great video tribute to Elder Perry. Here's the link :)
Have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Friday, May 29, 2015

#FamilyFriday :)

I love my family :)
I am so blessed to have such a wonderful family. I've grown up in a happy home with loving parents and siblings. We're not perfect, but no family is. Even the happiest families have imperfections.
Take Lehi's family in the Book of Mormon, for example. There was the time when Sariah murmured against her husband at the thought of losing her sons as they went to retrieve the brass plates (1 Nephi 5). There were all those times when Laman and Lemuel murmured (Most chapters in 1 Nephi and some in 2 Nephi). Lehi even murmured when Nephi broke his bow. (1 Nephi 16). They weren't perfect. They were, however, exemplary. Lehi and Sariah taught their children righteous principles. They followed the Lord's direction into the promised land. Their family was great!

My family is pretty great. I am blessed to have such great friends as relatives. I know I always have them there when I need love and support through hard times. In fact, I have their live and support even when it's not a hard time. I have their love and support always and forever!

They're also super fun and kind of crazy. (I mean, they are related to me.)
In honor of them, here are some pictures from over the years!

Have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Thursday, May 28, 2015

#ThoughtfulThursday :)

It's easy to make quick judgments about people. It doesn't take much effort to assume the worst and be cynical. I've found, though, that most of the quick and easy things in life lack the quality found in those things which take more time and effort. Quick judgments are cheap, and most often wrong.
When we take the time and make the effort to better understand those around us, we can find that all people are of infinite worth. We don't know what everyone is going through, and we can never fully understand another person's trials. Everyone is dealing with his or her own challenges, though.
If we can all be quicker to serve those around us than we are to judge them, we can all have a greater quality of life. As we all lift each other, even if we have our own trials, we will all find ourselves together on a higher plane.

I found this story truly inspiring. Let's all look to lift.
Have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

#WorthyWednesday :)

At EFY the summer before my senior year of high school, I decided to set a goal to go to the temple at least once a month that year. The Denver Temple had just announced open baptistry days during the Summer, but I was not sure how I would find chances to go once school started.
Fortunately, Heavenly Father was way ahead of me, and He had already inspired the temple presidency to organize a few open baptistry days each month during the school year. So I had the wonderful opportunity my senior year to go at least once a month, but usually more.

When I got to Provo, the temple was even closer and I got to go do baptisms once a week! What an incredible blessing and strength it was to spend so much time in the Lord's house! I spent many mornings in that baptistry, including the morning before I opened my mission call. That was such a special day, and the time I spent in the temple only made it better.
I was blessed to go inside the Denver Temple to receive my endowment on March 6, 2015. I am so grateful for the blessings of greater understanding and spiritual strength that I have received as a result of the covenants I made that day. 

I testify that the temple is the House of the Lord! The blessings of the temple are beautiful and eternal. As we live worthy to enter the Lord's House, we can receive greater joy than we could have ever imagined!
Have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

#TestimonyTuesday :)

I love this scripture! One morning in seminary during my freshman year, our teacher was sick and couldn't find a last minute substitute, so we joined another class. That morning they were working on memorizing this scripture as a group. The teacher pointed out that this is one of the fairly rare instances in the scriptures where an exclamation point is used. So this is a pretty fervent statement-- "That He LIVES!"

It is my testimony that Jesus Christ lives!
He lived, He died, and He lives again.
Because of His life, we may all learn truth.
Because of His death, we may all find peace, and even joy, in our trials.
Because of His new life, we can all return to live with our Father in Heaven and our families.
For this testimony, I am eternally grateful!
For Jesus Christ, I am eternally grateful.
Have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Monday, May 25, 2015

#MissionaryMonday :)

One of my fabulous friends from school challenged her Instagram followers to join in on #SpreadTheSpiritWeek, and I decided to take her up on it on Instagram and Facebook. Then I figured that I could also do that on here. :)

" Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts. And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost." Moroni 10:3-4, The Book of Mormon.
I know that the Book of Mormon is truly another testament of Jesus Christ! I am so grateful for the light that this book brings into my life, and I am so excited to share it's message of hope with the people of Mexico!

Follow @always.a.missionary on Instagram and join in on #SpreadTheSpiritWeek!
Share goodness!!:)
And have joy!

<3 Hannah Jo

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Called to Serve!

Once upon a time, I was a freshman in high school and I determined that I should prepare to serve a full-time mission when the time came. I was pretty pumped about it for the next couple years, but that initial excitement was nothing to the excitement I felt when this happened:

As I heard the announcement, something in me clicked. Up to this time, I knew that I needed to serve and that the age at which I could do that would be 21, but somehow it never really fit together. I wasn't worried about that, though, because it seemed so distant.
When President Monson made this announcement, I knew it was for me. I shouted for joy and ran around my kitchen. Seriously, my parents can attest to that. I was running around my kitchen going "YES! YES! YES! YES! YES!!!!!"
From that time on, my preparation took on a new sense of urgency, and I could not wait to get out on my mission!

So fast forward to my first year at BYU. I knew I couldn't submit my mission papers until February, but I started working on them in October because I was that impatient. Eventually, February hit, and my papers went in!

This was the day that happened :)

I was so ready to know where I would be spending the next 18 months of my life. It seemed like my call would never come. After a super long 13 days...(my friends who waited 3+ weeks hate me right now) I received my mission call! 

"Dear Sister Clark:
You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the México Ciudad Juárez Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 18 months.
You should report to the Mexico Missionary Training Center on Wednesday July 8, 2015. You will prepare to teach the gospel in the Spanish language."

I was pretty much SUPER PUMPED! Except I was a bit disappointed that I wouldn't be leaving until July. I really wanted to leave in June. Nevertheless, I accepted that this call to serve came from God through His prophets, and His timing is the best timing, no matter what I think would work out best.

I finished up my semester, and about a week after I got home, this nifty email from the MTC showed up in my inbox. They said that if I had any Spanish speaking abilities, I should call them. So I had a language proficiency interview with someone at the MTC, and he said I am ready for an advanced class! Whaaa?! So I'll only be in the MTC for 2 weeks. I'll be in classes as if I were going English speaking, except everything will be in Spanish the whole time. Yeah, apparently I learned some stuff in high school and in my Spanish 205 and 206 classes at BYU this year! Then about a week after that interview, I got a call from my stake president informing me that this change would also entail a change in my report date and MTC location. So, I will now be reporting to the Provo MTC on Wednesday, June 24th!

With that, I have to bear my testimony that the Lord is so aware of us. He knows what I need, and He knows what the people in my mission need. When I was called for July 8th, He knew that my Spanish would be sufficient to change my report date to June 24th. He knows what we need, He knows what we are capable of, and He knows what we want. He will grant us our righteous desires as we continue faithfully in His work!

I can hardly wait to begin my full-time missionary service! I know that my Savior lives! I have a testimony of His love for each of us, and I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to share that knowledge with the people of Mexico.

Have Joy!

<3 Hannah Jo