Monday, January 19, 2015

Week 30, Member Present Lessons, Wonderful Willing Members AND Naked Polar Bear Plunge Swedish Tradition Pokes My Minds Eye Out!


Hur är det med er!! Det var länge sen!! Just kidding because I just wrote on Friday so this letter will probably be a little bit shorter but I actually still have quite a lot of things to say which is always a good time. First I would like to say that everything is going well here and we are both staying on the island but the zone is changing quite a lot this transfer... not that it matters to us because we literally see eachother so as long as neither of us move our world doesnt change much haha. We do, however, have a senior couple that we think is coming in this week and are going to be the new branch president so we hope that he can speak a little bit of Swedish otherwise this branch might cry just a little bit on the inside. I dont know how many times I have talked to a branch member and they just tell me we need a Swede as the branch President and they tell me to get someone from Stockholm to come and I am just thinking (what can I do? I have no power whatsoever so I just sort of nod my head and just wait it out haha). But stay tuned for an update with that.

Missionary Version of Polar Bear Plunge
Yesterday we were able to run the meeting again this time with most of the branch but apparently when the Stake calls and says "take care of it" the branch just steps back and so that was a fun job but really not hard because it was fast and testimony meeting so we didn't have any talks or anything like that. We decided on a new vision and a sort of "new initiative" for ourselves for this upcoming transfer. We decided that we really want to infuse the branch into the work by getting as many member present lessons as we can. We have a teaching pool now so we are able to use the members more for these people that are able to set up these appointments and not just say "sväng förbi" That is no fun to hear as a missionary haha. But we are going to get as many of the branch members as possible in on this as much as we can and see if we can't make our lessons go as much like Preach My Gospel as possible in order for them to really make some progress and move forward. It's actually super exciting to see the positive reaction and willingness of the branch now that most of them are back from their trips.

If anyone wants a Swedish culture shock this week we decided to do some language study on the beach because we wanted to get out of the apartment a little bit. That sounds like a good idea right? Except that day was the naked polar bear plunge tradition of the random family and old people on the island... my minds eye has never been so severely poked out haha. But yes that was interesting to experience for en väldig kort stund.

I guess since I said that I should redeem myself with something spiritual right? Haha anyways I was reading in the Doctrine and Covenants and in chapter 122 vs 8 it says "Manniskosonen har stigit ned djupare än allt detta. Är du större än han?" Sorry I dont have my English scriptures on me. But that is something that I have seen in missionary work. Christ had to go through everything and suffer more than everyone put together and sometimes we have to suffer just a little bit to catch a glimpse of the whole thing and appreciate what he did for us. I have a testimony of that. That Christ took upon himself all of our sins and that sometimes we have to sink below things in our lives sometimes but that it will never be anything that we cant leave on his shoulders. :)

Thank you for everything all of the support and prayers and thoughts!! I know that it does a lot of good and this branch needs a little love! Ha en härlig vecka även de som börja skola igen, och Rachel bara ha det kul din sista termin i gymnasiet du är nästan färdig!! Jag Älskar er och saknar er!!

Med kärlek,

Äldste Israelsen

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