Monday, January 27, 2014

My 1-Year Mission Mark

Hello everyone!!

This week I got a little sick one morning.  I received a priesthood blessing and did quite fine though!  We had another impressive week - still continuing to find the gems out here in Norway!

As for my home, I received a letter about my brother receiving the Melchizedek Priesthood this past Sunday.  As my mom wrote me, she explained that it as my '1-year gift' and the news of it continues to bring me to tears.  I am so grateful for the love our Heavenly Father has for us and how He can use us and shape us into special instruments.  I am so grateful for my family and the examples we get to be to one another.

On Thursday, I was officially able to say that I've been on a mission for a year!  Crazy to accomplish something like this!  On my year day, I was able to receive a package from my homeward, and a couple letters as well!  It felt like it was really my birthday on my year mark!  I was just grateful to see that I've been able to work so hard over the past year.  It's been incredible growth!!

In the past week, we had some pretty good experiences.  We have 3 guys from Romania that we have been teaching the gospel and the basics of the Norwegian language to.  These guys have shown up to all the activities, church, and have even met with us.  They are incredible guys!  They told me that they don't think it is a coincidence that we met.  Interestingly enough, the first time that I contacted them with my former companion - one of them rejected me and continued to walk on.  Another one of them stopped to talk and told me that when he first met me he observed me and saw that I was a very open-minded guy.  He felt like he could talk to me.  Who would have thought that someone who has faith in something is open-minded!?  Especially a missionary for that matter!

On the flipside - we also were on our way home this past week when a man walked up to my companion and began to speak to him.  The guy was a little drunk and proceeded to walk with us.  He was trying to argue with us as to how the world could be created by a God and different things about nature.  Of course, we just listened to him ramble on and as we parted ways, I asked him if he would like a card.  He started shouting profanities at us while a group of young kids on the other side of the street starting laughing.  At that moment, I immediately thought of the Savior and everything He had to endure.  I was so grateful that I could find myself in that situation being an example of a believer.  We may have to endure some uncomfortable situations, but never as uncomfortable as what the Lord went through.

He was a very real man that lived on this Earth.  I am given strength every day in my thoughts and prayers of Him.  I am so grateful I can wear a badge that bears His name, as well as my own.  It is very empowering to be a Disciple of Christ.  Regardless of what we have to endure, it is always completely worth it!

I hope everyone has an extremely good week!

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