Thanks for the update! I loved hearing about Rachel's birthday!! Give her a BIG hug from Aunt Jess for me okay?? And Happy Birthday to Trace and Heyden too!!!! I would send you guys awesome Norwegian stuff, but.... you'll just have to wait about 14 months ;)
This last Tuesday, we had a district meeting and we focused a lot on how we can help our investigators get baptisimal dates. Since we don't really have investigators now Søster Peterson and I were thinking, "ok, yeah, this will be useful in about two or three weeks..." But we decided on the number 3 for this transfer! We will have three investigators with a baptismal date by about the middle of February. Hopefully... :) That night, we had Tegn Språk class, taught by Casper of course, and before it started, his friend, Ronnie,*(also deaf) showed up. Casper had us all sit down, and then started going into a lesson! He was telling Ronnie all about the Book of Mormon, and how important it was to read it. He told him about Joseph Smith, and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We could understand most of it, and put in our input where we could. Then we started to see Casper do the sign for baptism, and we were like, "What the... Casper! Slow down buddy!" haha! After he explained baptism and why it was important, he motioned to us, and before I knew it we were inviting him to be baptized! :) It was incredible! The look on Casper's face when Ronnie said yes was priceless!!! He was BEAMING! We set a date for February 15th.
Later that night, Casper texted us and asked if he could give a talk on Sunday! So we asked the bishop, got it all arranged, and on Sunday, he gave his talk in church! (With Søster Peterson giving the translation) He spoke (signed) about the love of Jesus Christ and how he had seen it help him in his life. One line from his talk was, "Faith in Jesus Christ has helped me to be a better missionary. I LOVE being a missionary!". I was so proud of him! He really is an incredible missionary already. We skyped with the Bergen missionaries again and taught the deaf investigator they have there. Before too long, Casper was asking HIM the baptismal interview questions and helping him to understand anything that was confusing to him! It was just so fun to be a part of!
On Wednesday, we had our P-day in Bergen and went on a GORGEOUS hike to a lookout point that overlooks the whole city. After P-day was over at 6:00, we went on splits, and I was put with Søster Grubaugh, who I had had contact with before the mission, but never actually met. She is AWESOME! She and I went out contacting to a place that actually didn't have that many people, but we felt really good about going there. We ended up finding one man who we had a really great conversation with, then found out that he already had a Book of Mormon, but hadn't ever met with missionaries before! So we taught him about the Plan of Salvation, then set up an appointment with him! Sometimes as missionaries, we want to talk to as many people a day as possible to increase our chances of finding someone who will listen, but the Lord will sometimes send us to find the one who needs it, even if they're in an almost deserted part of the city.
The missionaries from the North Zone, and the West Zone (about 40 missionaries, half the mission) all came to the conference on Thursday, then the missionaries in the other two zones had their conference the next day on Friday. Elder Kopiske and his wife spoke to us. He is an area 70 from Germany, and he is so funny! He opened the conference by asking us to write down a question that we had, then told us that we can't learn what we aren't ready to recieve. He then just had a few people ask questions and then held a disscussion with us. It was really cool how he did it, and the question I had writen down at the beginning of the meeting was answered. But I never asked it. I wrote down the question: "How can I really know that I have done my best?" And It was actually something his wife said at the end in her really broken English. She said, "I am convinced that we can do something small everyday." And she is completely right. I can try as hard as I can everyday and never really feel like I've done my best, but I CAN do something small everyday. Something that seems small to me, can have a big impact in the long run! :) Grakum actually just sent me an email that talked about just that! The little things we do every day like writing a note to someone, or doing little acts of service can make a BIG difference in someones life!
It was so great to be in Bergen and see lots of the missionaries from my group! Total from our MTC group, there were 7 of the 15 there! It was awesome! We went back to the airport Thursday night, flew back to Stavanger and got on the bus to go home. WARNING: This is the funny and kinda gross story for the week :) We were on the bus on the way home from the airport, and about halfway home, there were three VERY drunk girls that got on the bus. (I guess they have a tradition here in Norway where ever Thursday night of your Senior year you go out and party... I dunno...) I didn't really notice because I was in a conversation with Elder Duncun, one of the Zone leaders. All of a sudden we hear, "Mister Duncan! What can ya tell me about Jesus?!" in perfect English. We ended up having a surprisingly good conversation with this girl about what she thought about the gospel and were about to get her number, when one of her friends started saying that she didn't feel so good... Before we knew it, she was throwing up all over the bus!! It got all over my shoes and Søster Petersons shoes and a little on Søster Petersons suitcase... just all over! It was SO DISGUSTING!!! After she threw up, she wanted to get off the bus so she staggered over to the door, and ran into it. The bus was still driving, but at the next stop, all three of the girls got off the bus. It was SO gross!!!
Okay, enough about that one... Other than that, the week really was incredible. In personal study this week I've been reading the last few chapters of 1 Nephi. There is actually a verse I read this morning that I wanted to share with you guys. It's 1 Nephi 21:2. "And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me;" I thought about how people always say that we are instruments in the Lord's hands, but they never say what kind. It's totally a sword. :) We aren't just instruments in the Lord's hands, we are swords, and he has us in the shadow of his hand, by his side. Just thought that was a cool little mental picture :)
Welp!! I love you all!! Have another fantastic week and keep being fantastic missionaries!! :)
Ha det kjempe godt!