Monday, November 7, 2011

Serving a mission and I love it!

Hej Familj!!!

This week has been awesome!! I know, I know, I say that about every week... But it is all so true! We have had some great teaches and found some new great investigators! Today, we are resting from our labors though. No basketball or football or traveling to Stockholm! We woke up this morning, exercised, got ready for the day, had our personal and companion studies and headed into town!

We were able to finally go in all of the shops we pass everyday during our contacting hours. Not too much exciting to say about the stores... They are all pretty much the same wherever you go here in Sweden. We did however find an item that Äldste Maxwell and I had to pry ourselves away from. Can you guess what it was?? If you guessed what I am about to tell you I will be absolutely shocked because before coming to Sweden I never even knew that these things existed. Okay, enough suspense... It was a soft "jumper-like" sweatsuit. I hope you can get the picture in your mind... It is basically like footie pajamas for adults except it has a zipper that goes all the way above your head and it is meant to be worn out the door for everyday activities. Crazy!! Haha, the first time I saw one was when we were contacting... I was shocked. At first the thought was, "that is crazy.. why one earth would you dress like that." But the more and more I saw them, the more and more the idea seemed appealing. haha Seriously though, these things are crazy soft. They have pockets and a hood (that zips up). I decided that I wanted to get one for fun, and possibly for lounging around the college apartment at BYU. Anyway, when we were out looking at the shops we came across the most beautiful one we had ever seen. It was blue and white (BYU colors!!!) and was the softest material I had ever felt. I was instantly in love with the idea of purchasing it. Then I looked at the price tag... 1500 Kr!!! That is basically 250 US Dollars... Yeah... I really wanted it, and the temptation of a credit card was almost more than I could handle!!! Luckily, I got out of the store and cleared my head with some fresh air. Haha, but I would be a liar if I said I don't want to go back and get it. Hopefully it goes on sale after Christmas! :) Anyway, I guess you could count that as a culture e-mail story from me. We are seeing more and more of those things out on the streets. Do they have those in the states?? Just wondering!

Lets see, other things that happened this week... Oh! My doctor appointment.. Okay, so when I got there the Doctor was pretty shocked because he had not received my papers from the hospital in Örnsköldsvik. (I called them a while ago and they told me they were sent.. grrrr... anyway, its all good..) So, after expressing his disappointment he examined me. My reflexes were all good and my strength and balance were fine. He felt that it was nothing seriously wrong, and that it was most likely stress. He did say however that due to my symptoms we needed to be sure and not risk anything. He scheduled an MRI for my brain and spinal column. He called Örnsköldsvik the next day and got my paperwork. He then gave me a call and told me that they had not checked me for a tick bite. He told me that in a few days I should get a letter informing me when my MRI will be and he also said that I needed to go to the clinic and have them draw some blood to test for a tick bite. We went today to the clinic, and he will be calling me with the results when he gets them. So, after talking with Sister Newell she felt that I had a good doctor who was checking out all of the possibilities. I am in good hands! Hopefully the blood tests and/or the MRI will show something and I can get some help! I am very calm about it all though. Sure, at times it does get to me, but I know that God is there. I know he is watching over me. I will get through this! No doubt! :) :) So, I hope to have even more news for you all next week! Thank you for your prayers!

So, I should probably get to the e-mails now! First off is Dad! I love you Dad! Okay Innebandy is basically like floor-ball. Every player has a stick and there are two goals on opposite ends of the room. (they are pretty small goals) The main goal is to make as many goals as possible before the time is out. Haha, pretty normal. They are incredible here though.. They can throw the ball up and spin around, catch it with the innebandy stick and fling it at the goal with laser-like accuracy! Pretty cool! Swedish food is very, VERY healthy! haha So, I am in good hands when I head over to member dinners. The deserts are sometimes a little unhealthy though... haha :) So, that TV in the kitchen sounds like a really awesome tool for being uplifted and inspired. We truly do have some very inspired leaders in the church. I am working at the moment to memorize a part of Elder Holland's Safety for the Soul talk. So awesome!! Wow Dad, thank you for your story about your conversion. You know what, I really need to sit down and talk with you.. and with Mom.. I have so many questions for you two! I feel like since I have been out on my mission that there are so many things I want to ask. We will have to have some Dad/Son activities when I return! :) Sounds VERY good to me! :) I love you! Thank you for your e-mail Dad! You are right, FUN IS COMING! In fact, it is already here! Okay, have a fantastic week Dad! I love you!

Next we have Matt! I love you Matt! That new Young Men's Presidency sounds great! Make sure to get to know them and be friends with them. You will love mutual activities even more! How is the weather here in Sweden compared to the weather in Montana?? Well, we have not had snow yet! In fact, it has been extremely warm lately! I guess it is just waiting a bit before everything turns white and fluffy! I will let you know when we get some snow... Haha yeah, I remember going into Mom's room and asking her for money to go to Dairy Queen. I understand now why she always gave us the money to go. She wanted us to spend more time together!! Isn't that awesome! I really appreciate her for that. She knew that our time together was precious and she wanted it to be fun for us! We have a great Mom and Dad! So your BYU applications are coming along?? Fun! You are going to thrive in the college life! I know it! There are sooooo many friends just waiting for YOU. Speaking of waiting for you, how did you get sooo many tardies in seminary?? I don't remember having that many.. Maybe my teacher understood that I gave you rides and was waiting for you to get you instant carnation breakfast drink.. hahaha ;) I love you Matt! Have a great week and I can't wait to hear more exciting news next week!

Okay, now it is time for Mom! I love you Mom! You had SO MANY trick-or-treaters!! 300+?!?! Wow! I guess the new house location is more popular for that. The Swedes don't really do that.. Some do, but not many. Well, I hope that your Mexico trip goes better this time! Have fun and get that relaxation in! :) 11/11/11?!?? Wow, that happens once a century! I will have to do something special to celebrate! :) Speaking of dates... Christmas IS coming up, like you said! I am not sure I really need much.. but I will put my thinking cap on and let you know! Thanks! Just for the record, I really don't know how Matt got that many tardies in seminary!!! I think brother Sheldon might be mistaken! ;) Haha, anyway, thank you for your shout-outs to our members and to Äldste Maxwell. They are ALL great and I love them very much! Friends for life! :) I guess they are just SOME of the blessings of missionary service! Well, I love you Mom! Once again, have fun in Mexico and tell Landon hello and that I LOVE HIM!!! :) I love you Mom!

Now, time for a Spiritual Thought! I was impressed this week by Joseph Smith's prayer to the Father when he was suffering in Liberty Jail. In D&C section 121 we read, "O God, where art thou? And where is the pavilion that covereth thy hiding place? How long shall thy hand be stayed, and thine eye, yea thy pure eye, behold from the eternal heavens the wrongs of thy people and of thy servants, and thine ear be penetrated with their cries? Yea, O Lord, how long shall they suffer these wrongs and unlawful oppressions, before thine heart shall be softened toward them, and thy bowels be moved with compassion toward them? O Lord God Almighty, maker of heaven, earth, and seas, and of all things that in them are, and who controllest and subjectest the devil, and the dark and benighted dominion of Sheol—stretch forth thy hand; let thine eye pierce; let thy pavilion be taken up; let thy hiding place no longer be covered; let thine ear be inclined; let thine heart be softened, and thy bowels moved with compassion toward us. Let thine anger be kindled against our enemies; and, in the fury of thine heart, with thy sword avenge us of our wrongs. Remember thy suffering saints, O our God; and thy servants will rejoice in thy name forever." (D&C 121:1-6) Joseph, and the many faithful Saints at the time went through many trials and tribulations. Today, we continue to press forward and fight the battle. Perhaps not in the same way as the early Saints, but in ways that are challenging for us in our days. Job loss, economic problems, emotional trials, health issues to name a few. We sometimes wonder why, and for how long we must fight and battle. I know, as part of my testimony, that when we get to the point when we allow our trials to be a turning point, meaning we turn ourselves to God the answer is always the same. "My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high..." (D&C 121:7-8) Those words, spoken by the Father of us all to his son Joseph Smith are words that are continually being spoken by that same father to us today as we pray and seek help. Are we listening? Do we believe Him? I know that my Father in Heaven loves me. He has helped, and IS helping me through my trials. We are NEVER alone in this life or in the life to come... Our Father would not do that to us. I love you all very much! You mean so much to me! Thank you for your support and love. I hope you all have a fantastic week and find many opportunities to do good! Until next week!!

Trogen och Stadig, Är Jag Redo!!!!!
Faithful and Steady, I AM Ready!!!!!

Äldste Kundis :) :) :)

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