Some weeks are harder than others. That is just how the mission goes. This week was one of those harder weeks. At the beginning of the week, we had three people with dates set to be baptized within the next three weeks and by the end we now have zero. Dan will still be baptized but he did not come to church so we will have to wait for him. Majid is in Germany, Arman moved to another area. Several investigators slipped through our fingers and our area that had a lot of work to do at the beginning of the week, is now struggling to have more than one investigator progressing. A lot of misfortune hit us throughout the week……………..but………….with great trials comes greater blessings, so I’m excited for when those come.
The week started off superb, with a lovely pday to a fortress island in the Stockholm archipelego. Through the week, we taught some fantastic lessons, met some wonderful people (people are just the best. We are all so unique it is brilliant) and found two new awesome guys we are going to be teaching.
The first is Fabulous Secka, a street performer who is starting to use the Book of Mormon to help him write lyrics. The second is John, a young normal Swedish man who we talked to for 40 minutes at his door. But, there must be diversity in all things and so trial after trial hit us….which we do not need to dwell on. But hey, missionary work is awesome, I would not trade it for the world, and even when bad things happen, the blessings always outweigh and I love it so very much. I get to wake up and just serve people. Its the best. I love it. Now go, read some books!
And from the letter to me, his mom. I asked him to list five things he missed from home and five things he loved about Sweden.
Five things I really miss from home:
1. family, of course.
2. Being able to read literature. I will read a lot more after my mission than I did before.
3. Shakespeare/ Black Swan.
4. Jet. (our dog) Border collies are pretty much the most common dog here so i see several every day.
5. The gorge, our view, our backyard, the river. Could you maybe send a best of selection of pictures of Oregon?
Five things I love about Sweden
1.I feel like I am still at home. The same plants and trees grow, the same weather. Sometimes you forget you’re in Sweden. When I’m doing service of whacking down stinging nettle and blackberry bushes, or on a bus down a deep forest road, it does not look any different than home. Also, nature is a sacred thing here. People on the street do not believe in God but when you start talking about nature they start tearing up. They aren’t religious but yet at the same time attached to God in a way they are not aware of. They all have a spiritual bond with God’s creations.
2. The people. Swedish people are just a whole bunch of Hufflepuffs. The rest of the world laughs at Sweden because it doesn’t do anything loud and annoying but it is because Sweden does not need to. They are all just humbly happy, always the first to help, to think of others, and never to flaunt anything. Essentially they are Hobbits. Now, like Hobbits it is hard to get them to go on an adventure, say change their lives to accept the gospel, but every so often you find a stout hearted Took who is willing to cross the river and leave The Shire. and then there are the Persians and Arabs and Africans who I LOVE TO DEATH .
3. I don’t even have to miss Trader Joe’s because in Sweden it is EKO FÖR ALLA! (organic for everyone as the billboards say) . Some missionaries don’t like this and waste money getting crap at the American store in Stockholm, but I love Swedish grocery stores. Also everything is pear flavored and fish is plentiful.
4. Swedish villages are untainted by any outside force. They have their bakery, their town hall, their svenska kyrka, their red and white and yellow and blue cottages, their old cobble stone roads and no sign of the 21st century. It isn’t put on, its just Sweden.
5..Everyone here reads. Even the silly shallow Swedes are deeper than most people. People are always reading on buses and tågs here.