You are loved, individually and perfectly, by a Father in Heaven. He created this whole earthly experience for YOU, so that you could learn and grow and become who He knew you could become - someone magnificent and powerful and perfect. He knows exactly what will bring you the most happiness.
Do you believe that? Do you honestly believe that not only God exists but that He is your Father?
This knowledge has helped me overcome so many struggles throughout my life. Knowing that there is someone BETTER and WISER and STRONGER than me who not only loves me but is cheering for me has helped me pick myself back up from the lowest of lows. He's real, He's here, and He loves you.
I have seen this love changed thousands of lives - but more specifically and personally, the lives that I am surrounded by every day.
This week we met a lady named Kerey. She was a former investigator of the sisters in Le Mars, but when the sisters got taken out of that area, there was no one to visit her. While we were talking to a lady in one of the wards about people she might know that would be willing to hear our message, she gave us Kerey's number.
We called her up and set up an appointment that day. It was amazing. We walked into this old woman's house, full of little trinkets and the smell of cigarette smoke, and sat down at her table, where her Book of Mormon was placed. She opened up to us, with gratitude pouring out of her, as she told us of her adventure with the missionaries.
Her love for the missionaries was so evident, and through tears she practically begged us, "Don't forget about me, don't forsake me. I need the spirit you all carry. I can feel it when you are near."
That moment changed me.
Moments like that happen all the time. As I saw the hand of the Lord working on our area this week, I was changing. We tried several different former investigators, looking for those prepared by God. We ran into a lady named Noelia, who welcomed us into her house with open arms. We sat and talked and met her children. Her daughter Gracie was enthralled as I shared my simple testimony of the Savior and how through Him, we can be saved.
Later in the week, we sat with a 16 year old young woman, who just sobbed as she asked us, "Why? Why is my life like this? Why can't I just have a normal life?!" The only words I could muster without shedding tears of my own were words of our Savior, Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. I was filled with that love, the love I mentioned earlier, in such a pure and obvious way. I felt God's love for His daughter. I felt it.
Yeah, this life is hard. Yeah, being a missionary is really difficult. But it's worth it. This life is worth it, being a missionary is worth it. Because miracles happen all the time. All the time. If you can't see them, take a step back. Only through our struggles and difficulties can we recognize the blessings. We can't grow without pain.
If you are doubting the existence of God, I plead with you to not give up now. Hold on. Because His love is real, I know it is. It has changed me, and it changes every person I meet every single day.
You are loved - and never, ever forgotten.
Hermana Brie Gould