Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mar 26: Vi åker mer än vi tror.

Hello USA!
   Spring is here and I love it! Can I just say.. I am so lucky to be here in Sweden. I am back on bikes-and I love it. We live right next to a small lake. Our clocks changed and now when I get up to go running the sun is just peaking up. It is so beautiful to run by the lake in the morning. Also Every week for district meeting we take a train from Alingsås to Göteborg--and it is beautiful! It is similar Minnesota.. but it is Sweden! And as you sit there on the train.. everyone is speaking Swedish! I love the Swedish language too. As we were ridding the train back this week there was a group of teenagers who got on with us. I love their accents and the intonation of their voices as they speak. We sat there in the corner trying to mimic them half the way home.  I remember how I used to ask people how long it took them to feel like they were fluent in Swedish as a missionary.  Well Kaitlin Purdy wrote me and asked me about how the language was going and if it was super hard still to communicate. It was cool to realize I dont even worry about it at all any more. I realize if some one goes off talking specifics about their jobs.. I wont be able to follow.. but otherwise when I have a conversation on the phone or to someone on the train.. anyone.. I never feel any worries about Swedish. That is amazing! Soo cooL! I can speak swediSH! I love languages!

Being with Syster Sprague is really fun. She only came two months before me--so we are at the same Swedish level.(we are senior co-companios) We are trying to learn 5 new words a day. The coolest part is once you learn a new word--you all the sudden start hearing the word all the time. And since Sys Sprague and I often have the same words we are learning.. we often have these secret code signals during our lessons that mean--"Hey! that was one of our words!" I love it. For our celebration of learning 5 words each day and getting them all right at the end of the week.. we decided to go up on the roof of our building. I know I know. this is probably not allowed. But! We live on the top floor of this big house (which is really a whole bunch of apartments) and there is a really big window in our bathroom that leads out to the roof... sooo a little CIA agent is still in me. :)
Other highlights from the week. On Monday after P-day we went to a member family for dinner. They are in a town called Trollhättan. Technically they are not in our area but they are now coming to our ward. On Saturday night Sys Sprague had remembered that they said they would love to have us for dinner. We were trying to plan ahead for the week and didn't have any specific plans for Monday.. so we thought, why not. All of our other evenings were already scheduled with member dinners. When the family picked us up from the train station one of their friends was in the back seat. I had never met the family let alone the friend. So I just introduced myself to her and slowly found out she wasn't a member. Well! Guess how awesome this family is! they just invited their friend over for dinner too! She has two little kids and her husband is a pilot but was away for the week. She also has a nanny helping around 19 years old. It was awesome! We had a great discussion around the dinner table and we are hoping to go back this week and do it again. The member just explained at the beginning that on Monday nights they have family night and explained about family home evening. What great member missionaries!!!
Your assignment! Do that!

But the story gets even better. They gave us a ride home and the mom had to use the bathroom when they got to our apt. (She is pregnant :) When she got out of the bathroom she thanked us once again for coming over.. and then began to cry.  Turns out they are really going through a rough time at the moment. And she was actually really surprised when we called to ask if we could come over. It ended up being a huge answer to her prayers. She said--she it was great you could do missionary work with our friends.. but I was thinking I just wanted you there to bring the spirit into our home.  It was a really neat experience to realize once again the Lord is guiding us.  And most of the time we really don't even realize it. It was really unusual actually that Sys Sprague remembered about this family.. they are not on our ward list yet.. nor did she have it written down. Sys Sp. also has a pretty bad memory :).  And the fact that we decided to schedule them for this Monday.. i remember when we decided to call them.. I thought we could have a teach with this other family. But we just decided why not do it this Monday. SO! moral of the story. Even when I don't feel like I am doing much.. and I don't see much change or results in my work.. The Lord really is guiding me and has a purpose for me here.  Which means the same for each one of you.

Alingsås is still small... and we are still having a hard time finding people to teach. This could make a missionary's life really difficult. Especially when we are keeping numbers on the number of lessons we have each week etc. I could feel it slowly taking me down. I was feeling like I wasn't doing anything.  Bit in our veckoplannering (weekly planning) Syster Sprague and I decided to make a simple goal for each day.  We taped it up on our wall that we can see each day we come in from a hard day of work.  "Have I done any good in the world today."  I love this simple goal. That I can reach every day and it also inspires me to reach for more each day as I walk out.  I love weekly planning! So much great inspiration comes to us. And I just love planning in general too.

You know what else I love? I love companionship study! Especially with Syster Sprague. (Did I mention i really really really love love love Syster Sprague? She is wonderful! So one day Syster Sprague pulled out her old notes from the MTC from some of the devotionals and read one titled "How to be a successful/happy missionary". She told me about it in our comp study. It was exactly what I needed. I cant remember all 10 right now.. but I think they are going to be goals for the rest of my life. One of them that I am working on right now is.. "Forget yourself".. and a part of the way the speaker described that one can do that is through praying for others. I have a new goal to not ask for anything for myself the next month. I can ask for things for our companionship.. but otherwise.. only thank yous and asking for things for others. I already feel a difference.

There is so much more I want to share.. but! We don't have as much time on these library computers. So I am going to head out!
I love you all! and hope you all have a wonderful day.
 "We can do much more than we think we can--through the help of Christ" --quote from sacrament meeting

Syster Schneiber  

PS. Dad I got the package

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