Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Week 15

Minneapolis Winter Bike Attire!

Timberwolves or Trailblazers??

This week was a slow one for sure, but it was still an adventure! We share a car with two other missionaries in our district so this week we were on bikes. The good news is it wasn't -10 like it was last week, the bad news is it snowed about 6 inches on Monday and Tuesday. So, we had some fun slipping and sliding through the snow on our bikes and taking a few spills hahaha! Too bad we don't have any dog sleds to help us trail blaze through the streets😂 or motorized ski scooters like they have in Estonia! Luckily, later in the week we were able to get some rides from members to help us out. One of them is a returned missionary from Blackfoot and he served his mission in Nicaragua!

In the past few weeks we have been talking a bit with this older man named Kurt. He had a stroke and was paralyzed and also has some brain damage, but he is a very humble guy and loves talking to us! On Friday we were able to help him move his power wheelchair and some TVs to his apartment. We stayed and talked with him for a bit and found out he was baptized a member of the church in 1985! I guess he couldn't remember much of it because of the memory loss he had from his stroke, but he said he left the church a few years later. We invited him to come to church with us on Sunday and he did! So hopefully we sparked something in him that might remind him of the testimony that he gained and the spirit he felt at his baptism. And we are hoping to help him become active again in the church!

So I feel like I should give a little more detail on our service at Feed My Starving Children. It is a Christian organization who has volunteers come in and help pack rice and soy meals to be sent off to various countries across the globe with hungry children in need. Every Thursday we go as a district to help out and it's so awesome! They have stations with people scooping ingredients into the bag, weighing the bag, sealing it, and then packing it. So, it's basically like this mini assembly line, and we are pretty pro at it, not gonna lie haha. We packed 56 boxes in just one hour! We also get to jam out to some 80s rock playlists lol😂. It's such a fun experience, and not only that, but we are helping make a difference around the world.

Last week we got to have dinner with a recent convert named Al. He's from Tennessee and he is a huuuge guy haha. He fed us this insane deep dish pizza, with giant homemade pizza rolls, and biscuit rolls on the side. This pizza was just absurd.. The layer of cheese on top was at least an inch😂 one of the fattest American meals I will ever eat in my life! He is such a nice guy though, it was amazing to hear his story of meeting with the missionaries and receiving answers through prayer that he gained a testimony of the restored gospel. The gospel has blessed and changed his life forever as it has mine as well!

On Tuesday we went with a return missionary in our ward who served in Costa Rica and we visited a sweet lady from Liberia. Her name was Sarah and she said she absolutely loved to read books and just recently started reading the Bible. She mentioned to us her desire to learn about and read the Book of Mormon as well. She was super receptive and wanted to know all the details and history behind the Book of Mormon and it was awesome! We were able to testify of how the Book of Mormon was translated by the power of God and how the Bible and the Book of Mormon support each other. She was super excited to start reading it and study from it side by side with the Bible, I was amazed by her enthusiasm to read it! Just like Sarah I have grown to love to search the scriptures. I love to read the stories and testimonies of prophets in the Bible as well as the Book of Mormon, they are just filled with power! I know that as we read and ponder the scriptures daily we can not only be nourished spiritually, but strengthened!

Me gustaría compartir un mensajito espiritual con ustedes: There are two scriptures in the Bible and Book of Mormon that go hand in hand with each other that I love. In 1 Corinthians 15:58 it reads "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord." A verse from 2 Nephi 31:20 in the Book of Mormon similarly explains, "Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life." I love reading these scriptures when I am feeling discouraged or when I'm exhausted and feel like giving up. With so many struggles and afflictions in our world today, many people lose sight of their purpose here in this life and lose that brightness of hope. However, if we stand firm in our faith and rely steadfastly on the Lord Jesus Christ, we can receive hope and joy not only in this life but in the life to come. I know that Jesus Christ is our savior and there is always hope in his atonement. In our mortal journey to become like Him, we must press forward and rely on his strength to help us endure to the end. I know this to be true, and I share these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

¡Tengan una semana maravillosa!

-Elder Bolinder

Downtown Minneapolis
Another Shot of Downtown
Minneapolis Skyline at Night

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