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My Heart Could Burst!

My Heart Could Burst!

Editor’s note: Many are familiar with my daughter, Sara Arkell, also known as The Piano Gal. Sara has been called to serve in the New York Syracuse Mission. This is a series on her weekly letters that we will be posting on the site for those who wish to follow along with her mission. You can read her previous emails here.

My oh my what an amazing General Conference this weekend!!! My heart could burst! I absolutely LOVED every second. I hope every single one of you got to listen in. If not, DO IT as soon as you possibly can. It was so wonderful! 
I had so many takeaways! And it was crazy because 2 questions I had taken to this conference hoping to have answered were literally said WORD FOR WORD. It was so cool!! I felt like they had written their talks specifically for me because it was that exact. 
I wanted to share a few things that really stuck out to me! 
  • We can build joyful, happy lives because Jesus Christ is our strength. I absolutely loved this thought from Elder Uchtdorf!!! 
  • “Being a disciple isn’t cheap because the companionship of the Holy Ghost is priceless.” This quote from Kevin W. Pearson was mic drop worthy!! So so good. 
  • I loved Steven J. Lund’s talk! This was my last General Conference as a full-time missionary so the things he said about how to stay strong after an incredibly spiritual experience like a mission really helped me! Keep doing the things that have been so powerful to you already. Loved that 
  • President Nelson’s whole talk on Sunday morning was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. I loved his thoughts about overcoming the world! He said that keeping covenants makes life easier & I agree! He also said it is so much more exhausting to seek happiness where you will never find it (the world). This was so profound! I know happiness comes from the gospel so why should I spend time trying to find it elsewhere? 
  • I loved Ryan K. Olsen’s talk about how Jesus is ALWAYS the answer. 
  • 18 new temples announced?!! The work is hastening! EEK I loved this so much! 

Basically, if you can’t already tell haha, I LOVED General Conference. I was so overwhelmed with gratitude to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I wish everyone I met out here in New York could see the bigger picture of what it’s like to be an active, covenant-keeping member of the Church because I believe everyone would come running!! JOY IS FOUND HERE  and I know without a doubt that President Russell M. Nelson is God’s living prophet today. I can’t deny that!! I feel the Spirit so strong listening to him speak. 
My heart is so full of gratitude! I’d love to hear conference takeaways you got, too, if you want to share. Have a great week!

Elder Evan Arkell’s Letter

For the first time, I decided to include Sara’s brother’s letter. Elder Evan Arkell has been called to serve in the Argentina Bahia Blanca mission and is currently in the Mexico MTC for training. He should be heading to Argentina on October 10th:

Hola Hola!  This week’s email is gonna be a bit short just because the days here are basically the same thing over and over with some highlights here and there. 

We have had some really good devotionals this past week. On Sunday, we had two. The first one was about studying the scriptures and how doing so is one of our greatest weapons in the mission field. I really felt the spirit and can testify that it is true. In Ephesians 6 it says that the Word of God is our sword. Alma 31:5 it says, “And now, as the preaching of the word had a great tendency to lead the people to do that which was just—yea, it had had more powerful effect upon the minds of the people than the sword, or anything else, which had happened unto them—therefore Alma thought it was expedient that they should try the virtue of the word of God.”
It is actually really fun here. I am having a really good time. Teaching is getting way better. I am able to speak without it being scripted word for word. Actually, we were teaching outside on Monday and a bird pooped on the head of one of the Hermanas in our district. She didn’t realize it until an hour later. Twas hilarious.
Last night my companion and I taught a lesson and it didn’t go all that well. We couldn’t stop laughing. We invited the “investigator” to church and then she asked were it was. My companion accidently told her that we have church in an autobus. We were laughing for two minutes straight. 
5 of the 10 Elders in my district have buzzed their heads. And I am proud to say that I am one of them. It’s nice. honestly, waking up in the morning and not having to do anything with my hair.
Also, apparently here in Mexico every day they celebrate a different saint. So there are cannons going off every like 10 minutes. Today had been almost nonstop  though.
My awe of Christ, this Gospel, and the Book of Mormon is growing and I love it.
¡Adios! Sé que Jesucristo vive y nos ama. Sin Él, no podemos nada. Él es nuestra fortaleza, esperanza, y canción. Recuerden, Jesús es nuestra luz. Él será para siempre.