Monday, March 12, 2012

Atheist to Believer of Christ

This week flew by.  We have had some great things happening here in Jönköping. Small but steady progress! It is funny how one week can be really hard and nothing seems to be going right. And then the next week is like your on top of the clouds and everything is working out perfectly. Ok it is never really quite to those extremes.. but this week was definitely a blessing from the Lord.  You cant help to be happy when people's lives are changing due to the power of Christ.
Where to begin! Heavenly Father is answering my prayers.  Maybe not quite in the way I want Him to--which is usual.  But He is answering.  Tuesday morning I studied more about faith and finally figured out for the thousandth time why we need to have faith before miracles can occur. Miracles are really not to confirm our faith they are just a way that God interacts with a believer.  That day we went to an old lady who joined the church in her 50's.  She had been a faithful member until she had a stroke and is now unable to come to church.  We visited her in the nursing home and read her some Scriptures. She couldn't say very much but she seemed to appreciate it.  There was another old lady across the way who didn't seem to like our church.  She kept telling us to put on our coats and leave.  It is so cool that I can understand old ladies who are yelling at me in Swedish! :)  As we walked out of the building I said "Hi" to this young man as we passed.  He stopped and pulled out his ear phones and said "what, do I know you?".. That is my favorite reaction.  I walked back and said I was from America and people just say hi to strangers.  Then we started talking. And guess who gave us his number! Gustav!  I felt like that was the Lord answering my prayers--telling me that our time spent serving members was right and he accepts our work and will help us find along the way.
The next highlight of the week is Sabrina!  Just in case I have not talked about Sabrina yet.. she is Chinese.  We contacted her a few Sundays ago on our way home.  She said she was atheist but would be willing to learn more.  This week we taught her two great lessons.  The first was on faith.  In the middle of the lesson as she was describing her feelings she said "When I was atheist..."  She did a total 180 in understanding that we need to have faith before we have miracles. I felt peace. She said she felt peaceful as well. And at the end she said she would make more time for the Book Of Mormon to find out if was true.  I love listening to her prayers. 
Our second teach with her was on Christ. We watched "finding faith in Christ".  At the end of the film we asked her what she thought.  "Unbelievable... not possible. Can someone really raise people from the dead?"  We kept talking and she asked a lot of questions. In the end she asked is it worth it to put all this time and effort in to find out if God is there?   We asked "Well... so far what has your experience been like?  Good or bad?"  Good. Explain why... "I have a positive view on my future, I have hope, and I know it comes from meeting with you here in the church".  Well that was a good start. So we probed a little deeper to see if there was anything more. I officially love teaching Sabrina. At first she is a little quiet and takes a little time to open up. But once you ask the right questions she starts to really think.  She sometimes has to just sit there and think for a few moments and then its like a light bulb goes off in her head. I get it! and she will teach us the same thing we have just been teaching her.  We were still trying to work on having faith in something you cant see.  She suddenly paused and said.. Well I guess I have hope and faith in my future but I cant see it... "   It was perfect.  
As she talked to us more about the changes she has felt in her life in the short time that she has been meeting with us--she said she has felt a change in the way she treats people. Usually there are people she doesn't really like or get along with or have patience with.  She has a lot of negative feelings towards them. But she has felt those negative feelings leave her and she has really felt a change.  She doesn't dislike them anymore and she is able to forgive them.  That brings her feelings of relief and she feels much happier.
Throughout the teach she kept explaining that she felt good inside. Happy, peaceful, warm.  We explained that this was the Holy Ghost telling her that this was true.  She thought for a moment and said.. well maybe it is just because it is a nice story that gives me hope.. but its just a story.   After she explained her feelings about changing--I asked her if she thought a nice little story we told her once a week was really what was making her change?  After 24 years of living one way.. a little story about a nice man named Christ-- made her change the way she treats people in three weeks.  I don't think so.  That would be the power of Christ.  We explained that Christ's power is not just shown in bringing people back to life.. but also in changing people.  These changes that have happened in you--just after two to three weeks of meeting and learning about the gospel comes from the power of Christ.
It was awesome! It was cool for me to actually see the change she admits to happening in her.  The best part of the whole lesson was the Spirit testifying to us all that this was true. She paused at one moment and said I can feel that it is right--and she put her hand to her heart.
Sabrina came to church on Sunday... and loved it! I have to admit there is nothing quite so amazing as helping someone going from Atheist to a believer in Christ and seeing the changes it creates in their lives. Now she is praying to know if God really does love her.
So life just keeps on going! The weather here is beautiful. The sun is out in magnificent colors with bright blue skies and a breath of fresh air with blustery winds. I love Sweden.
On a more fun note.. we went to support one of the young single adults by going to her handball game.  I have never seen any sport like it! It was soo cool.  We decided it was like water polo but in a gym. I also got to play the Swedish version of field hockey called "innebandy"!!  They play it indoors with a light ball (like a whiffleball) and light sticks.  It was really fun. 
 Favorite Scripture of the day!
 Alma 15:16, 18 "...Almulek having forsaken all his gold, and silver, and his precious things, which were in the land of Ammonihah, for the word of God, he being rejected by those who were once his friends and also by his father and his kindred...and Alma having seen all these things, therefore he took Amulek and came over to the land of Zarahemla, and took him to his own house, and did administer unto him in his tribulations, and strengthened him in the Lord."
Love Syster Schneiber

3.  My desk.. my thinking spot where inspiration comes daily.
1.  Ring stund on the swings! (Ring stund= when we take some time to try and set up appointments for the week)
Fiesta Bowl.  This is a usual dish that Syster Juker and I have for dinner when we are the cooks!
Swedish homes on a beautiful day
My dream house! (owned by the Högberg family). I want their life!

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