Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Alyssa's Email (11/5/14)

This was the best week yet! Thanks for sending pictures, I love knowing what's going on! I miss you all so much. 

I did an English fast for 6 hours! It was seriously hilarious. Everyone was making fun of me a ton because they get the idea, but the direct translation is not right at all. I even had a debate with and Elder, all in Swedish! And we explained to our "investigator" what a dispensation was and all about the apostasy, so that was straining our Swedish quite a bit. A funny Swedish story. I'm doing my flashcards, and Elder Demourdant is freaking out, "You know how to say apostasy?! And essential? Plan of salvation?!? You need to see my flashcards." He goes and grabs them, I read through them and here's what they said "Can you repeat that?" "What did you say?" "Can you say that slower?" "In English please?" I absolutely lost it... That's what the goobers get for not studying very much! I feel like I'm a good example to them, because I work so hard, but I have SO much fun also. You can definitely do both!

I did temple sealings! I thought about how I was a tiny baby! It was so beautiful. I am SO happy we are sealed as a family forever. I am so thankful for that every day. 

I don't even know where to start. We did TRC for the first time last Thursday! We taught an actual nonmember, from Sweden. We couldn't hardly understand her so we didn't know she was a nonmember haha. But we taught her about prayer and I taught her about Alma and their afflictions in Mosiah 24 and she just looked at me with big eyes and said, "I'm going to mark that, I love that." It was really awesome.

As for our fake investigators, I learned SO MUCH. Sam is our investigator from Africa. I taught him about the Book of Mormon and told him how my favorite part was when Jesus came to the Americas and he just loved that idea, that Christ loves all his children, and he would want to visit them all, so I also read him 3 Nephi 16:1-3. My appreciation for the scriptures has grown so much. Quick story:

So Syster Griffes is in my Swedish trio, and she is SO diligent. She works really hard and is always focusing and always is exactly obedient, the things I often struggle with. So I just was comparing myself, and I thought we both thought she was a better missionary than me altogether. But we were all sharing what we learned in personal study and I told them how I was studying based off my Patriarchal Blessing and how much I felt like God was teaching me through the scriptures, and gave a few examples. She just so sincerely told me she was amazed with my knowledge of the scriptures after only reading the Book of Mormon once, and how I receive answers through it. This is coming from a girl that has read everything over and over, and taken an institute class on everything. I am not trying to brag, it's just amazing how we have different strengths, and how we can let God strengthen our weaknesses, I never used to know the scriptures. That was my tender mercy of the week. Along with:

We taught "Haydar" as well. He wasn't interested in anything. He didn't believe in God, he didn't want to pray, he didn't want any of it, until we taught him about the Atonement. "He did that? I can really become clean again? I did some bad things, I feel like I have so much weight on my shoulders. Is this true?" Could there be a better reminder of why I'm here? Brother Whitworth said, "I struggled at first on my mission. I struggled telling people how they need to change, until I had the realization, all I'm telling them to do is be happy." He also pointed out that after 600 years of Christ being prophesied about, the first words out of his mouth were about baptism. If people could only understand that we aren't out to make people like us, count numbers, grow our church, we are out because the gospel makes us happy, and we want others to know that happiness also. The peace, joy, and strength, the hope, the love, the comfort of the spirit, the reality of Christ, the knowledge that families can be together forever.

I love you all so much! I'm super scattered brained so this email might be terrible. I hope you're getting an idea of what things are like and what I'm learning! I miss you tons!

Syster Stetler

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