Monday, February 2, 2015

I love p days mostly because we have food in the fridge now and I get to email you guys all the crazy stuff happening here in K.Krown. My thoughts are so scattered all the time and I've started spelling everything with k's instead of c's (that's what happens when your swedish mixes with your english) and I hope you guys can understand everything I'm trying to write about haha :)
Last P day we were still feeling a little sick. We basically slept the whole day and then met with and old investigator named Jari. We had a member present lesson with him and that went super good! He's really not super intereted in learning about the church, he just likes having the missionaries over (it's really the spirit he likes, not us. He just doesn't know it yet). We'll be working with Jari. Maybe not as a priority, but we'll be there for him!
We also swung by this woman named viola but ended up having the wrong address for her.. The man that answered the door said that his wife had recently had a stroke and it was sad :( we had cookies for viola, but seeing as we had the wrong address we ended up just leaving them with him. #randomactsofkindness
That night we ate grilled pineapple and bananas. It's like the dessert of champions.
I was able to finish out my journal this last week so it was way fun graduating to a new one! I LOVE FILLING JOURNALS. I'm gonna be bringing home like 20, I write so much every night!
We had to drop our investigator Paulina. She's simply too busy for us. We try and set up times to meet with her and try to help her get ready for baptism and want to get her to church but she just won't. It's come to the point that if we push on her any more she'll be pushed away. I'm super sad about having to drop her, especially since the sisters here before worked so hard with her. But she's just not ready right now. We're gonna keep praying for her and we'll call her about once a month. But visits are probably over. And that's how a missionary "breaks up" with their investigator. It's sad :(
We had pingis on tuesday and I was able to help Ä. Simonson with his swedish which was actually super super helpful for me. Best way to learn is to teach right? Also I'm gonna come home super talented at ping pong. I get to practice every week with swedes and iranians so ya'll better be watching out.
Lots of our appointments fell through this week. They'd call us just before we were supposed to be there and cancel, they'd not be home, they'd drop us. It was super rough. I just wanted to sit down and teach somebody! It's rough having mostly potential investigators or old investigators.
READING IN MOSIAH AND KING BENJAMIN WAS SINGING MY SONG. He was like, "be good to those who are poor because aren't we all beggars? don't we all pray to the same god who givingly blesses us?" It was super good. Reading Elder Holland's talk from this last conference goes right along with it. I've been able to be more mindful of other people's struggles because of reading that, and I've been more able to see everyone I talk with as a child of god.
We had a lesson with this man named Naser. He's from Syria and only speaks arabic. He had his friend there to translate for him, and he only spoke arabic and broken english. HUGE LANGUAGE BARRIER. We taught about the restoration and gave him a book of mormon and a restoration pamphlet in arabic. And then he said something that broke my heart. He explained to us that his wife is still in Syria, and there is a war happening there right now. And because she is a Christian she is a target. He asked if there was anything our church could do to help her. My soul completely shattered. We told him our church probably couldn't do anything to help, but we could pray for her. We told him we could pray right then if he wanted. And he did. So I said the prayer and I was like on the verge of tears the whole time. You get so connected to people on your mission, even those that don't speak your language. They're brothers and sisters, we're all god's children. We continue to pray for Naser and his wife. I really hope she can stay safe.
We taught this woman named Maureen this week. She was on our potential investigator list and we called her and she was totally cool with us coming over. We walked 5 km to get to her apartment and contacted on the way. She let us in and we sit down and start talking and then we're like, "wait. do you speak english?" and she's like, "do you?" turns out english is her first language and it was really funny :) She's from Nigeria and has 3 little kids. Four year old twin boy and girl and a 9 month baby. THEY ARE SO CUTE. They're watching teletubbies as we walk in and it was way fun haha! We start teaching her the restoration and she's like super interested. We tell her about the book of mormon and she's like, "can we read some right now?" We thought she only spoke swedish so we only had a swedish copy of the book of mormon, but we showed her how to pull it up on and read from moroni and alma and gave her some scriptures to read later as well. She's like, gold. I swear. She was contacted way back in 2013 and now we're here telling her the truth. I LOVE MAUREEN.
We were in Kristianstad (they say it like Krih-hwan-staaad) for district meeting. I got Ke-baptised. In other words it was my first experience with kebab. Swedes love their kebab. It was good, but I'm probably not going to eat it for another two months. I think it affected my stomach lining.
Every night we call people from the TU (tänkbara undersökare = potential investigators) list to try and build up our investigator pool. Allred calls this guy and things seem to be going fine, he's asking her how she got his number and she says it was from past missionaries and he's like maybe his dad gave it to them and then suddenly he's like "I don't know how the *cuss* you got my phone number but you don't EVER call me again and you don't EVER talk about my dad. Do you understand?" and she's like pale in the face like, "yes. yes, sorry. we won't call again." the dude like verbally tore her apart. But saying the prayer over the food I was like, "please bless that man on the phone that he'll be able to have a good day". FAST FORWARD TWO DAYS. We're sitting there doing comp study when the phone rings and it's the mission office. Elder Taylor is like, "so sister allred I got a very interesting phone call last night about this guy named lars, do you know him?" and she's like, "the only lars I know is that super rude guy we called the other day." And then Elder Taylor relates this story about how after we hung up the phone this Lars guy felt super bad about everything. And he wanted to apologise. But he didn't know how to get ahold of us. So he went through public affairs and said something to the effect of "I was super rude to this missionary from the Church of Jesus Christ and her name is Sister Allred and I want her to know I'm sorry." and the only phone number public affairs had was the mission office. Turns out Lars actually wants to meet with us. His dad and grandpa had just recently passed away and it was a bad day when we called him. What is this crazy life?
We had lunch with Irene and Maria. I LOVE NEW CONVERTS. Irene is so cool I like die everytime I talk to her. She and her husband are super cute. She made us swedish fish (like actual swedish fish, like the animal not the candy) and it was so good. And then she gave us this traditional swedish dessert called semlour and I like died all over again. I'm gonna roll when I get back home, swedes know dessert.
While we were out contacting we met this american guy named Mike and he's from Texas in sweden on business. He's cool and I think he's really just lonely so we talked to him for a long time out in the street and exchanged numbers and then met with him the next day to teach him the Restoration and the Plan of Salvation over subway sandwiches. He's cool and we're totally referring him to the missionaries in Texas. He like gave us fist bumps and was like, "i'm a believer too! go christians!" super funny!
I was able to go on splits this week and that was interesting. I felt like I was trying so hard the whole day with S. Christisen because all of our original plans fell through because of the snow. We went trackting and contacting and swung by some old investigators. We were supposed to teach sofia but she wasn't home :(
At church I was able to understand like 90% of branch council so woot for that! Thank you Heavenly Father for the interpretation of tongues. Now if only I could speak it better ;) One of our less actives that we visit all the time finally showed up to church!!! I was so happy to see her there! she even got up and shared her testimony!
We swung by Sofia after church and had a super good lesson with her and her husband. When people chase you down in centrum it's gotta be for a reason. I like Sofia :) She like answers the door wearing a blanket and helps me put on my shoes as we're leaving ahaha, she's a funny person!
That's about it for this week! Been working hard and loving life! Feeling healthy and doing the work! I am so blessed to be here and to be teaching the gospel! I'm so blessed to have sister Allred as my companion and be in the branch that I get to serve in! I love you all so much! You're prayers on our behalf are definitely helping us, probably more than we'll ever know! LOVE YOU GUYS LOTS!!!

Syster Janessa Brink

super fun sweden!  this is the fjord  we live close to!

kebab from the day I was ke-baptized

we went on a little walk and found this really cute bridge out in lyckeby

super sketchy little dock out in the middle of the swedish wilderness

I just like the fact the kid is playing with a snail haha :)

Pocahontas or the swedish equivalent?

all the houses have the year they were built!  super cool!

sailboat outside a swedish elementary school.

tanner- thíngs are going great!! I was able to understand everything during grensråd (branch council) yesterday! :) I love you too!! hahaha
thanks jensens!
yes, brothers and sisters are super cute swedish stores. today I had to buy another black skirt cuz the other one i brought was too short and I sent it home with the christmas tree. we are always in lyckeby, we are on kyrkogatan, kronotorp, sjukhuset bergåsa, ronneby, we're planning a day up in nybro. It's fun. OUR AREA IS HUGE.
go seahawks! sad they lost though :(
happy birthday dale!
I have my wash cloths
we only drink floral tea and all of it is disgusting. I will never like tea.
I love you guys! 

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