Monday, September 23, 2013

name my blog post something clever - i cant think of anything hahahaha

We received word of an all-sisters meeting last Tuesday and that it would be taking place in Göteborg which means that we needed to sleep over somewhere that night so we could make it on time. So we cancelled our lessons that night and went down to Malmö for a sleep-over so we could take a 4 hour train ride up the coast to Göteborg early the next morning. Sleep-overs on the mission are relatively the same as they are at home. Facials, lots of talking and catching up with other sisters, and sleeping on the ground with a tiny blanket and no pillow. (AKA broken back and neck, wishing that you would have just slept in your own bed).
We woke up the next morning at 5:30 am, got ready fast and got on a bus and decided to get off a bus and take a short cut to the train station. Not smart. We ended up going in the opposite direction, missing our train, having to pay for a new train ticket with our own money (probably explains the money I used on your card this week... #sawayy (sorry)), and showing up an hour late to our meeting. HAHA. We are losers. But it was an amazing meeting with President and Syster Newell on faith.
Syster Richins and I decided that we have faith in what we believe and we are working hard, but we could put them together. And if we put them together, that means that we need to be 100% obedient so that we could expect (have faith) that success will come out of the work we are doing. We were EXACTLY obedient the next morning with every little thing, and within an hour of us getting out to start proselyting, we received 8 numbers (Which is usually what we receive after a whole day of contacting). The little miracles from being obedient are incredible.
I received Morgan Evans letter this week from our new ward brochure and he said "we have 15 baptismal dates and are planning on getting 10 more next week." h a h a h a h a. IN OUR DREAMS. Our goal for the whole month is to get one baptismal date/have one baptism. Hardly a difference between the work in Madagascar and Sweden. But the work here is still moving forward! I have such a deep love for the people we meet with right now and the work we are doing here in Kristianstad. Syster Richins and I have been trying to talk to EVERYONE we see and I mean EVERYONE. Have I mentioned that contacting is the worst ever and that it is so awkward? Because it is. And if someone randomly came up to me on the street and said "Hi we come from the US and we are wondering what the meaning of life is to you" I would be a little freaked out as well. We get weird looks, people laughing at us, people telling us to our faces that we are weird and shouldn't ask people personal questions. But for everyone that says no and for every time we get laughed at, the ones who do accept make everything WORTH IT. And as awkward as it is. I. love. contacting.
We contacted a couple who are in their 60's- really cool people, and are both total Swedes- natural, stubborn, and atheist. They don't believe in God but they were surprisingly very interested in what we had to say. We, in short, gave the plan of salvation lesson and the man, Bo, started to tear up and began telling us about their son who was really sick when he was little. Bo's sister, who was living in the US was very religious (could be mormon, not sure), but she had a lot people in her church pray for him and sure enough, he received the medicine he needed and got better. He still didn't think that was from God but we testified to him that it was. After our conversation I said "I like you two together!" And the woman, Peela came in for a hug and said "I really like you two girls too". As we pulled out of the hug her husband again had tears in his eyes and gave us each a hug. It was a tender moment and then we parted ways. They didn't want to give us their number but we gave them a card and they said they will call. I am sure they thought about that experience all night, well at least I know I did. And if I don't see them again here in Sweden, I hope to see them in Heaven.
 30 arabic Books of Mormons that we received in a package this week. I am pretty sure we only ordered 10, so the Lord must know something we don't. Haha.
My Journal entry from yesterday morning: "This morning I was studying- reading my scriptures and I decided to go stand outside for a little. I walked out on the balcony- its the first time I've really noticed how cold the cement is on my bare feet. Fall is here to stay. The clouds above me are dark, but the sun is shining over Sweden and it is oh so beautiful. I was enjoying looking at the sky and the trees until I looked across at the apartments on the opposite side of the street to see a full on naked lady standing at the window. No fear there." Hahaha. I'm not kidding. It was hilarious. And it's not the first time. We have opened many doors to men in their underwear or girls just in a t-shirt.

This month my Christ attribute has been HOPE, which you all know. The beginning of the month was really hard for me to have hope. I was getting discouraged with myself and others and I didn't understand what hope was and what it is. So this week in my personal study, I read a number of scriptures that talk about hope and what I got from what I read is that hope means a lot more than what I thought it meant. From what I read, I summarized into my own words:

Hope is trust. It is moving forward. Hope anchors our souls. It is confidence, optimism, enthusiasm, it is patient perseverance. Hope helps conquer. It is peace for the future. It is faith. Hope overcomes. Hope lifts. Hope inspires. It is believing and expecting. Hope is excellent. Hope is graceful. It is lively. Hope is being steadfast in Christ. It is loving God, and it is knowing that they will comfort you. Hope is more than believing something you cannot see. Hope is a testimony. Hope is meek, it is humble, it is not vain. Hope is charity. Hope suffereth long and is kind. Hope believeth all things and endureth all things.

Last night we spent two hours tracting in the rain. We knocked on more than 80 doors and out of all of that we received 1 number.

I love you all. Have hope. Congrats Hannah and Spencer Baxter! And BTW. That video you posted of us speaking Swedish is HORRIBLE! hahaha I promise I can speak the language better than that! To prove my point: A lady we contacted this week thought we were from Sweden even after we had been talking to her for a good 15 minutes. :) haha

XO Syster Christensen

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