For starters, I FINISHED THE BOOK OF MORMON AGAIN. Oh my gosh! That book is seriously my favorite! Every time I read it, I feel like I'm reading it for the first time. I always learn so much and strengthen my relationship with my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. As I read the closing verse, I thought "wow, this truly is the word of God". As I thought that, the most amazing feeling came over me. I got goosebumps and just felt so happy and warm. The Spirit testified to me that it really is true - the Book of Mormon really IS the word of God. I encourage and invite everyone who reads this to get a copy of the Book of Mormon and read it. If you've never read it before, read it! If you've read it a million times, read it again! I promise you that it will help your life more than you can even imagine, because if the Book of Mormon is true, than everything this church believes, stands for, and teaches is true. Therefore, there is so much power in this one book! READ IT READ IT READ IT. And give it away as gifts for Christmas to people. Help bring others closer to Christ by giving them Another Witness of Jesus Christ.
So basically I'm convinced I'm serving in Narnia. Really, it's the most amazing winter wonderland here! I feel like I'm walking through this frozen land trying to warm up the place with talk of the Savior. And as we all know, in Narnia the people are scared to be different. They're scared to talk about Aslan the Lion because they're scared of what others might think or about what will happen. Well, I feel like it's that way here. C.S. Lewis made Aslan to be a type or symbol of Jesus Christ. And it is just amazing to me how many times we'll be talking with somebody and they will be so kind and friendly and then as soon as we mention Jesus Christ's name or as soon as they see His name on our name tags, they turn cold and run away. We've even had people say "sorry, I just read your name tag and it says Jesus Christ and I don't believe in Him" and then they walk away. It makes me so sad. But that's why it makes it even more sweet and wonderful when we talk with people who are open to our message and want to learn more about Christ. I LOVE being here during Christmas time. I wish I could just teleport you all here for 5 minutes so you could see how gorgeous it truly is. I love being able to talk to people about Christ during the Christmas season when we celebrate HIM. I feel closer to my Savior here than I ever have before in my life. We've read the Christmas story every time we've visited members this month. It's incredible how strong the Spirit gets every time. I think about what it would've been like to be there with the shepherds and have an angel of the Lord come to me and tell me "You're Savior is here! He is here!" Surely, I would've cried and been so overwhelmed with emotion and gone to Him. Well I wasn't there, but I'm here now. And I get to stand as a representative of that baby born in Bethlehem who came to save the souls of men - not just because I'm a missionary, but because I'm a member of His church. And every member in His church is a representative of Him in all that they do, whether they realize it or not. What an exciting time to be alive! The Savior of the World is coming again! And we must ALL help prepare the way for His second coming. And the BEST way to do that is to bring others to Him.
This week has been really good. It was Finland's Independence Day which was fun. But it was also really weird because we weren't allowed to contact people or tract, so we spent most of the day at home. Ugh, it was the worst! It's crazy how when I'm home all I want to do is just get out and work and preach the gospel! Oh the members here are the greatest! We have grown SOO CLOSE with so many of them these past couple weeks! They truly are becoming my family here and some even call me their child :) or their sister :). It's so cute. And they are all so excited to have us over for Christmas and take good care of us. I love these people with all of my heart. It truly is amazing how the church is so world wide, and that it really is the same everywhere you go.
We had an interesting experience tracting. We knocked on a door and a woman answered. All I got to say was "hei" before she SLAMMED the door with such extreme force that I thought the whole apartment building would collapse, and then she started yelling at the top of her lungs things like "Israel" and the "bible" and "Hallelujah" and then she started chanting and it scared Sisar Lund and I so much that we ran up the stairs. We made it about 3 flights up and then we stopped and we could still hear her! We just couldn't help but start laughing! So many crazy things happen to us missionaries. I wish I could write more of them but then I'd be here all day.
So Sisar Lund and I got a Christmas tree! We found it and okay, we may or may not have just taken it out of the ground. But it came out with one tug and could've easily been mistaken for a weed. We hung our earrings on it, cut a star out of paper, strung buttons on it, and it's the greatest Charlie Brown Christmas tree ya ever did see :)
BASICALLY, the church is true! I love being a missionary and telling people about my Savior. What a wonderful time of the year this is - when we can pause and reflect on all of the amazing blessings that we have, when we can stop and focus on our Savior. REMEMBER THE MEANING OF THE SEASON.
HYV'ÄÄ JOULUA (Merry Christmas!)
Sisar Nielsen - ps. We were tracting and I slipped on a hill and fell. My hat fell over my eyes so I couldn't see and I fell on my hands and just grabbed for anything I could to stop me from falling down this steep hill. My companion had already made it to the top and realized I was no longer beside her and she had to come back down and rescue me. So pretty much I ate the snow and almost died. Oh the things I do to take these people the word. Good thing the CHURCH IS TRUE :)