You wouldn't believe how much "snö" there is here! It has been snowing for DAYS and it doesn't stop! There are snow piles of like 10 feet everywhere and there is probably 5 feet of untouched snow. Even native Norrlanders are amazed and saying this is a ton! It's beautiful, but it makes missionary work a lot harder. The buses are late, we pushed cars out of the parking lot yesterday, and like normal humans, the Swedes are not out during a crazy snow storm. Also, I am developing Norrländska, just how they speak here. There are a few different dialects, and this is, of course, my favorite.
Investigators: There will not be a baptism this week, for Henry. We are just trying to keep meeting with him, and figure out if this is still something that he wants. Terry is Anna Newell's (President Newell's wife) friend. She is like 26 and super cute. She is really searching for the truth and has wonderful, very sincere questions.
So she invited us and the elders over for dinner with some of her friends. We taught her, ate, then went to a hockey game! (Yes, I called the mission president for permission) and it was SO fun. Our lesson went great, dinner was fun, she made some traditional Swedish food (potato pancakes). It was really cool because we didn't even talk about religion, but afterwards that couple was like "you can come over and do your thing anytime." It's cool to see the doors you open by just being yourself. So the hockey game was nuts! They sing/chant the ENTIRE thing. Dad would have loved it, we walked in and they were playing Crazy Train. All the sudden they started chanting "OY OY OY OY.... Cause I'm LULEÅ, I'm dynamite... LULEÅ, and I´ll win the fight!" Hahaha. TNT was replaced with Luleå. It was so fun. But unfortunately, we barely lost in overtime. Also, dad, one of my investigators explained how his life by quoting White Snake. So all that 80's music training is really paying off on the miss. Haha.
The language.... I am starting to get really impatient with what I don't know. I am starting to understand people a lot better, but I just get so nervous to speak. An Elder that got here a month ago is just incredible. His grammar is perfect, pronunciation, and his vocabulary is huge. Everyone asks him if he's from Sweden, and it's so rare that you don't have a heavy American accent, even after being here a really long time. So I am learning that I can't compare myself to people. And that's a hard thing to do.
Something spiritual... We had an awesome district meeting again. I loved it. We talked about desires, our desire to come on a mission, and how to act according to that desire. I really like what Elder Elinkowski said when a missionary asked him for advice on how to be a better missionary and he said "I could give you advice, but it doesn't really matter what I think. My best advice is: Figure out what you want, figure out what God wants for you, and then don't be swayed." I think that really applies in regular life too. Figure out what you want, what you really want, see if it's in line with God's will. Then don't be swayed. In Lehi's dream those who partook of the fruit "heeded them not." It was cool because I have seen that Elder placed in tempting situations and he says something like "No, that's not my style." And I respect that a lot. He knows what he wants and doesn't sway.
Transfers are coming up on the 18th and we are a little worried because I had a bit of trouble breathing when the Zone Leaders came. I love it here. I have never felt so much love as I feel in this branch. I really just want to stay and continue this work here, but I know whatever happens will be for the best.
Well I love you all and I hope you have a really great week! =)
Syster Alyssa Stetler
Taking in a hockey game