Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Bergen Miracles

Yoohoo! Hei alle sammen!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! I would love to begin by saying every crazy turn and twist of life as a purpose. Heavenly Father is super flink at having every single detail line up perfectly so the miracles that He wants us to see will happen. We had a zone conference this week with two of our mission zones (the West and the North zones) and HOLY GUACAMOLE incredible things happened.

The Highlights:
-Zone Conference with Elder Kopischke of the Europe Missionary Department
-Miracle of Splits: The Pinse man and Alexander
-When Two Lives Collide: Amanda and I (If you're short on time, read this one. This is the highlight of the highlights!)
-Spiritual Thought: Mosiah 23:20-22

We had the incredible opportunity to hear from Elder Kopischke. He was born and raised in Germany and has worked in the missionary department for many years. I don't quite know how to describe the experience I had at the conference... In preparing for this conference, I had not idea what to expect. When Elder Kopischke opened the conference though, he asked us to take a few minutes to write down a question or two we had. Tender Mercy from the Lord for me to have some last minute prep time. What followed after was such a mind-blowing experience! I filled up my note-taking notebook! I will be spending the first several weeks studying over the notes I took so "line upon line" or week after week, you will be able to hear about what we talked about at the conference!

The conference took place in Bergen and I was there for two and a half days which always ALWAYS means - GOING ON SPLITS! I was able to work help Sister Williams (who is serving in Trondheim, been out for about four months) and Sister Larsen (serving in Bergen and she's been out for almost two months). We had about an hour together before we needed to meet back up again to get situated for the night and so we went and "hit the pavement!"
We talked with this one old man who we later found out was a member of the Pinse church. He told us that he has met with many missionaries from all religions and så videre. To be honest, I had a REALLY hard time understanding his Bergen dialekt but Heavenly Father truly did bless each of us with the gift of tongues to keep the conversation going. By the end, he accepted to read the Book of Mormon and he gave us his address to visit him. So cool!
Later on we met this one kid named Alexander. He told us that he grew up Christian but struggles to believe in God now. We felt prompted to talk about prayer and how talking with God does help us develop an relationship. We asked if he would try praying right then and there and he said yes! You could tell he was nervous about it but it was so touching to hear his prayer! He didn't feel comfortable with giving us his number but we gave him a card and invited him to try praying again when he got home. He thanked us for the card and said he would coniute to practice saying prayers! 

When Two Lives Collide: Amanda and I
Quick backstory for this one: I have a pen pal named Amanda Fjell who lives in Bergen. We have been writing letters (like paper and stamp status) to each other for about six years now. In 2012, I got to visit her and meet her family, friends, and enjoy life as a Norwegian for about two weeks!
Before I left for Bergen, I got Amanda's number and I told her that I would be coming to Bergen for a few days! We were able to plan a time to meet up in the city center!
When we got off the light rail, the first person I see is Mona (one of Amanda's friends that was with us for pretty much the entire time I was staying with Amanda) and then I turn and see Amanda is walking up to her to give her a hug. I start walking up to them and was like, "Hey girls!" We all freaked out! It was so good to see them!! And Mona was just there and didn't know that I was here!! We found this one cafe that we could go in to get out of the wind and then we starting catching up with each other. We mainly focused on what I've been doing as a missionary which ended up leading into the first lesson (about the apostasy and restoration). Next thing I know, both Amanda and Mona want to get a Book of Mormon and they agreed to meet with the Bergen missionaries!! AND THEY BOTH SAID THEY'LL BRING FRIENDS NEXT TIME! WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT!!! This happened four days ago and I am still so incredibly pumped about it!! It still is so incredibly to me how Heavenly Father really has arranged for everything to fall right into place so that 1) Amanda and I could meet in the first place, 2) I could introduce Amanda to the gospel through our letters, 3) Meet the people that mean the most to Amanda back in 2012, and just so many details! Just comes to show that there are no coincidences!

Spiritual Thought: Mosiah 23:20-22
"And it came to pass that they did multiply and prosper exceedingly in the land of Helam; and they built a city, which they called the city of Helam. Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith. Nevertheless—whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day. Yea, and thus it was with this people."
I actually came across this scripture today during my personal studies. It was a personal reminder for me that yes, life is pretty good right now, but there's even greater things. Sometimes I struggle with pushing myself to see these great things happen so more often then less, Heavenly Father will give me a really good push in order to help my personal patience and faith to grow. Everything and anything we experience in this life is to push us in order to grow. This life is our olympic games afterall! 
Have a super duper week and remember - with great power comes great responsibility.
Take care!
Søster Buhler

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