Tuesday, July 25, 2017

July 25, 2017

It has been a great week and Sister West and I actually just got out of the temple! We are emailing from the temple guest house and it has been a great day so far.

We were let in twice this week when we were trackting! The first lady that let us in was 91 years old and was at home with some of her daughters. She was going deaf so we had to talk really loud as we were talking to her. The second lady that let us in later in the week was another woman in her 90's. She had to grab a huge magnifying glass to try and read the Book of Mormon that we gave to her and told us that she can only read if she shuts one eye, uses the magnifying glass, and squints. She wasn't interested in learning more about our church but I asked her if we could be of help and she asked if we could just stay for a few minutes and drink lemonade with her. It was so cute, so we sat and talked with her for a bit and she told us about her family and where she grew up. When it was time for us to go she didn't want us to leave and started showing us around her apartment and the pictures of her kids. She asked how long we would stay in Finland and I told her that I only have about a week left here. She teared up and wished me a safe trip home and told me that although she wasn't ready to hear about the gospel that day that she hoped to see me in heaven. I gave her a big hug before I left and Finns really don't hug strangers but both Sister West and I felt like we had become great friends with her in just the short amount of time that we spent there.

The scriptures talk about how the Savior ''went about doing good.'' I have not really had investigators to teach this transfer but I know that I am still doing my best work and that we can really make such a difference in other peoples lives simply by being kind and spending time with others. I know that we too can look for our own way to go about doing good.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

July 19, 2017

Another great week in Espoo! Sisar West and I had the opportunity to teach the English Sunday School last Sunday. The topic was ''Work and Personal Responsibility''. It was really great preparing throughout the week to teach because it helped me to better see the joy that comes from hard work. I have definitely felt the most joy in my life when I have been working hard and relying on the Lord. 

We had another great dinner with our favorite neighbors, the Perkins this week as well. We ate with them and two Finnish church members. We got to hear a little bit more about the history of the church here in Finland. The church here is still pretty young and so it has been so interesting to hear stories of people's parents joining the church and hearing how much it has grown over the years. 

Sister West and I bought donuts this past week to celebrate my 18 month mark as a missionary. The next day I realized that it was actually my 19 month mark! So after we realized that we had to go back to the store to buy more donuts of course! I can't think of a better way to have spent the past 19 months than to be here in Finland teaching people about Christ. 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

July 11, 2017

This transfer is going by so fast! Last Wednesday we headed over to Helsinki for our ''Meet the Mission President'' Zone Conference. It was great. The Auras are incredible people. They are Finnish and have both served missions in Finland when they were our age. We greeted them one by one at the very beginning and then the meeting began. Sisar Aura addressed us first and spoke in Finnish the entire time. It was great and I could feel her love for us as well as her strong testimony of the gospel. President Aura, we actually refer to him as ''L√§hetysjohtaja Aura'' or ''Mission leader Aura''. He spoke to us in English and we got to know more about him and his family. They both spoke of how excited they were to be here and that they couldn't wait to get to know us better. I love them already and I am excited for all they will accomplish. 

We also had exchanges this week with the Sister Training Leaders! It was fun doing work with them and showing them around our area.

We met some interesting people this week. One sticks out in my mind. We met a man that was actually born in New York and he stopped us on the street and started talking to us. He asked us who we represented and I told him about our church and that we were representatives of Jesus Christ. Then, he told us a story about how he ran away from the police and how he outsmarted them by running into the forest. He told us that we were brainwashed and that the Kenyans in Finland knew ''the truth''. And because he had spent time with the Kenyans he now knew the truth. (He didn't tell us what that meant.) At this point he jumped on his bike and said that the whole world would know about him in a month and then he biked away dramatically. 

So it has been another good week. I have met a lot of interesting people and I love serving here in Espoo. 

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

July 4, 2017

Happy 4th of July! Weirdly enough they don't celebrate it here in Finland. But I will be buying a burger today in celebration. 

Well, it is official. We have a new mission President! The Watsons are back in Utah with their 6 children and 26 grandchildren and I am sure that they are very happy. The Auras are back and we are going to a ''meet the Mission President'' Zone Conference tomorrow. I have met them twice before and I know that they are very kind people. I am excited to get to know the two of them a little bit better. 

Change is sometimes hard but it is also what helps us grow. I loved serving with President and Sister Watson but I also know that all of our mission calls are from God. I know that the Auras were called of God to be the new leaders of the Finland, Helsinki mission and I am excited for all of the good they will do as well. 

This past week I have really noticed that so many little miracles happen every day. This past Sunday was my last fast and testimony meeting in Finland. I got up to bear my testimony of the Savior and I also spoke about my love for Finland. I LOVE Finland. I really do feel like this place is my home. The members here are amazing and I have become a better person over the past year and a half. We also had the opportunity to have dinner with the Perkins again! They invited another American along as well and it was a really great chance to get to know them all better. We had an amazing week and I know that no matter our circumstance we can choose to be happy. We can choose to be grateful for what we have. I know that through our Savior Jesus Christ everything will work out.