Friday, July 17, 2015

Week 87; July 13, 2015 – Light at the end of the Tunnel

Wow, it’s been a crazy-good week! The work is non-stop here in Borås and we are loving it! 

On Tuesday we helped some older members move into a retirement community. Older people usually have well-made furniture, so everything was really heavy compared to the IKEA furniture we move a lot. But, we had a lot of help, so it went fast. Afterward, we learned how to fill the baptismal font, which was more complicated than I thought it would be. Their font is underneath the floor, so yeah, we had to take panels off the floor to get to it. We ended the night by going to Sweden's most popular hamburger place, MAX, with a young single adult (YSA) from the ward and Elder Blackburn got his first MAX Burger! 

Elder Blackburn getting humbled by Sister Lund at tennis
We met with our friend Mattias on Wednesday and played Tennis with him. The Sisters came too, and Sister Lund kicked everyone's butt’s… She is crazy good! Then the real craziness started, Elder Blackburn lost his wallet. We checked on every bus on the system and we couldn't find it. We even had to get new bus cards. We were hoping we still might be able to find it, but it's not looking good. 

Thursday was funny. We went out early to eat with a member family. When we got there they asked us where our work close were. We were really confused. They thought they had told us we were supposed to do a service project with them. We either forgot, or we didn't hear them, so we thought for a second that we would be digging in our missionary clothes. Fortunately, they had extra clothes and shoes in our sizes. So, the day was saved! 

Later that day, we had one of our best lessons in Borås so far. We planned to meet with a kid by the name of Tommy, but it was hard to set-up a visit with him because his parents were super against him taking the missionary lessons. We were worried he wouldn't be able to come, but he decided to at least meet us and talk. We weren't sure what to expect, but the lesson was really cool. He explained that his parents were passionate atheists and they hated religion. 

Even still, they let him participate in what is called confirmation. Most Swedes do conformation in their teenage years. They take a series of religious courses followed by a test. It's a tradition in the Swedish church, and even if you’re completely unbelieving, most people still do it. It's just a rite of passage for most people. But, Tommy said it got him praying for the first time and he felt the messages in the Bible were true. After he prayed, he really felt God in his life and he couldn’t deny the connection he felt with God. He didn't tell his family and he kept his faith a secret, and eventually he found the missionaries. 

It went well for a while, but his parents found his Book of Mormon, and they were mad at him for thinking about religion. He decided that he would not let that deter his faith and he wanted to keep meeting with us. He decided as soon as he was able to support himself, he will become an active Christian. He hopes to marry his Christian girlfriend and raise his kids in a faith. Seeing young people like him gives me a lot of hope. I know the hope of Sweden's religious future is with kids like Tommy and I hope that we will give him the support he needs to keep his faith strong. I had the strongest feeling as we taught him that he would be an amazing missionary if he ever accepted the gospel. 

The next day we had an awesome district meeting and reviewed the entire Book of Mormon. It was a great meeting and I was able to go on splits that day with the last missionary that Elder Miles had trained, Elder Dickson. We had a great day and ended-up teaching five lessons.

On the way home, I left my jacket on the train. Luckily the zone leaders got it and we decided to get it the next morning. Unfortunately, we didn't realize ‘till we got home that night that the jacket had our apartment keys in it, so we had to go to Göteborg late that night to stay with the other missionaries and get our keys. Luckily, everything worked-out and we got back into our apartment the next morning.   

There is Light at the End of The Tunnel
On P-day we went cave exploring then we hiked to the top of the mountain that was above the cave. It was one of my coolest P-days in Sweden*. Then Elders Farnworth and Blackburn practiced for a special musical number that they will perform in Conference on Tuesday. 

This area is amazing and it’s been one of the funnest parts of my mission. Although, I feel really sad that I'm getting close to the end of my mission. But, right now every day is great, even with all the craziness this week. I want to make sure we enjoy every day we have here and finish strong! 

I Love you guys!  

*(See Elder Blackburn’s mission blog at for more companionship photos)

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