back ground

June 23, 2014

Catching up

Hi everybody!
I was lazy last week and decided not to send a big email........ 
But now I regret it. Because lots of awesome things happened. And if I don't write them down no one will ever know.... including my future self. and my future children. 
What if Nephi felt lazy and had decided not to write on the plates after he built that ship....?
I'm calling myself to repentance for being slothful because of the easiness of the way. And now I'm going to tell you about the last TWO weeks. I'll try to keep it down to the size of the small plates instead of the large ones. But still... I hope your chair is comfy.

It came to pass that I, Sister Rogers traveled to the city of Århus for ZONE CONFERENCE. Which rocked.
I found a giant name tag in the primary room and I wore it all day. (Maybe we should all wear giant name tags all the time... then everyone will know we're missionaries from a mile away!) And Sister Pearson and I may or may not have worn matching outfits again. Because it was just so fun the first time. 
And because we think we're twins. Like our adorable 8 year old friends Emma and Rebekka who just got baptized.
​But anyways. At Zone Conference we learned about the gift of tongues and what that really encompasses... Its not just about Danish! Or Polish or Spanish or Croatian or any of those other crazy foreign languages that missionaries all over the world are trying to learn. 
There are some other languages that are really important for us all to learn. (and by us all I don't just mean the full time missionary force) If you want to understand people and you want to communicate with people and you want to help people, you have to understand love languages, body languages, and the language of the spirit. These languages are universal. And crucial. And just as important- if not more important- than spoken language. So yeah. Ponder on that. 

I know I've told you all a million times how awesome Zone Conferences are... How the Spirit is unbelievably strong and everyone's faith sky rockets. If you didn't believe me before, let me tell you a little story... 2 of the Sisters brought one of their investigators along. He walked into the building and came to our missionary meeting that morning as a devout Atheist. He left the building a few hours later with a baptismal date.
Holy Hannah Montana. The church is true.

After the big Zone Conference Sister Pearson took off to a beautiful place called Bornholm, and I got to be companions with Sister Rigby for the week!
 We went down to her area for the first few days and it was AWESOME. I felt so blessed to spend time with Sister Rigby and get to know her investigators and the people that the sisters are working with in Esbjerg. I got to meet their fabulous friend Kristina. She used to be one of those typical partying drinking Danes, then one day her mormon friend invited her to come to a young single adult activity. She went. And she loved it. And long story short..... She started coming to church and started meeting with the missionaries and now she is a completely different person. She's getting baptized next weekend and getting married to a mormon guy that she met at church a week later. 

Is the gospel not amazing?! 
My little trip to Esbjerg was amazing too.
I had this moment when I realized that I've been in Denmark for over a year. And in that moment I realized how much I've changed throughout that year.... 
This moment happened while I was riding a men's street bike. 
You see, a year ago when I first got to Denmark I was given a men's bike to ride, and I was SO annoyed and frustrated about it. I didn't want to ride that uncomfortable bike all day. Especially while wearing a skirt. And I was pretty bitter inside! 
And then when I went to Esbjerg a year later, I was once again given a men's street bike to ride. But this time my attitude was quite the opposite! 
It was terribly uncomfortable. It hurt my back. It was horribly awkward in a skirt. And I was FAR from graceful trying to get on and off that thing.... 
But I felt happy. And I wasn't annoyed or frustrated or bitter about my life at all.
So yes. I'm a better person today than I was a year ago.
Denmark has changed me.
Sister Rigby and I were quite exhausted after traveling between our areas and cramming a weeks worth of work into both of our cities. 
So it was wonderful when my companion came home and things went back to normal again. I missed my comp while she was gone! Sister Pearson rocks. 
Having a companion totally rocks. After 15 months of missionary life I'm totally used to being with someone 24/7 and deciding EVERYTHING together and doing everyyyyything together. But I'm not just used to it, I also LOVE it. I love having a companion! Its like having a perma-buddy. You've always got someone to laugh with. Through thick and thin. You've always got someone by your side. (Literally.) And I'm beginning to understand why lots of return missionaries jump on the marriage train right away..... Because as my "death date" creeps closer and closer I'm realizing how much I really do LOVE having a companion. I love being "we" instead of just "me". 
NOOOOOO I am NOT expressing a desire to get married ANYTIME soon. I'm just expressing my love for my companions! Thats all. Perma-buddies are great. But I don't want an eterna-buddy yet.
Ok. Glad we cleared that up.

Well anyways. Sister Pearson came home and everything was normal for about 5 hours.... 
And then we hopped on another train down to the GORGEOUS city of Vejle. 
Think about San Francisco with a Danish twist. And thats Vejle for you. 
We got to go on exchanges in that gorgeous city with two of the most gorgeous sisters who surprised us with ROOTBEER FLOATS. (American childhood happening in my mouth.) 
 Awesome sisters and root beer floats make our crazy hectic traveling gypsy life totally worth it. 
I got to spend the day with Sister Wright, who just barely finished her training a few weeks ago. But if you didn't know she was a brand new missionary, you would never guess! She's a champion. Every time that she talked to someone on the bus or on the street I thought she already knew them.... She's just that loving and friendly and personable. If only everyone in the world was a little more like her.
Sister Wright and I visited this neat man named Kasper. He had a telescope! And when he let me look through it and check out the sun spots my dream of becoming an Astronomer re-surfaced. 
Despite Kasper's interest in science and astronomy he was very believing and very Christian, and I thought he was totally golden and prepared for baptism because he believed in everything we believe in. Or so I thought. You see towards the end of our lesson he started telling us all about how he discovered that mankind originated on Mars. Until a few million years ago when the humans found out that Mars wouldn't be able to support life much longer, so they flew through the stars and came to earth and brought birds with them. And that's how life on earth started. 
Kasper said it made perfect sense because "how else could you explain the feather?"

Oh man. I love being a missionary.

That night Sister P and I were heading back home to Horsens. And we were just having a nice little chat about never going back to America and becoming gypsies or pirates instead, when we looked out the window and realized that the train wasn't stopping.... Horsens flashed past and the train just kept speeding along! We'd gotten on the wrong train and had to travel clear up to Århus, switch trains, and then travel back home. It was quite frustrating and we were exhausted when we FINALLY made it back to our little home just before bedtime. 
Maybe it was God's way of telling me that becoming a gypsy or a pirate is a bad idea, and going home someday is a good idea after all.
Because there's no place like home.

But on the bright side, we found Ben&Jerry's at the train station in Århus. 
 Have I told you about our sweet friend Iman? Probably not. She's a new friend. Iman comes from Iraq and we started meeting with her because she wants to learn English. She's lived in Denmark for about 10 years, and she's divorced with 6 kids to take care of. Its hard for her to be so far from her home and family, and she loves it when we visit her. We use the Book of Mormon to teach her, and she reads from it in both Danish and English so that she can learn. I told her how reading the Book of Mormon every day in Danish has really helped me to learn the language, and that I knew it could help her with English as well. And then she said "You're right. Its helping. But I feel that this book will help me with more than just learning English.... I feel that this book will help me with my life. When I read the Book of Mormon, and when I pray the way you taught me, I feel peace and I feel protected." 

My testimony of prayer and of the Book of Mormon strengthened x10 that day.

The crowning event of the past two weeks was definitely Saturday night when we went to visit our best friend Daniel. 
Daniel helps us with Danish. We help him try to re-find his faith in God and Jesus Christ. 
Its a great thing we've got goin.
We brought the Elders along, and after our language lesson we all went around the room and shared our favorite scripture. The spirit was really strong and if Daniel's faith didn't grow a little bit, atleast mine did. My faith always grows when I share my testimony. And it also grows when I hear others bare testimony too. The best was listening to Elder Bateman (better known as Elder Batman) share his favorite scripture and his testimony. (Elder Batman has only been in Denmark for 3 weeks now.) I don't remember what scripture he shared or what he said exactly... I just remember that I could feel the Spirit. And it reminded me of what we learned that day in Zone Conference.... the language of love and the language of the Spirit really are so much more powerful and influential than anything else.
And then we had dessert! 
(As if root beer floats and ben&jerry's wasn't enough dessert for the week..... #yolo #YOSO you only serve once.)
But check this out. We invented it. 
 Sister Pearson and I love ice cream. Daniel loves bacon. Bacon sundae. With maple syrup. Its a good thing we've got goin.
Really though..... it was super tasty. You should try it. Just wake up early and go for a run the next morning so your heart doesn't stop beating. 

Well I could probably keep rambling about my day to day life for another few hours. But I promised you the small plates. And your chairs definitely aren't comfy enough for any more stories. 
But hey, if you want to tell me about your life I'D LOVE IT. Even if I don't know you! All the more exciting. 
I'll just be honest, p days are gettin a little boring! 
So if you ever get bored too, send me a quick email! 
Or else you could go eat a bacon sundae :)
I hver faldt, ha' det godt!
Sister Rog
 Sanfransisco with a Danish twist
 ​the giant white men in Esbjerg are pretty neat.