Monday, January 20, 2014

Mud - Elder Kolby Madsen

Written by Elder Kolby Madsen, serving in the Denmark Copenhagen Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Danish.

(Note to reader: Images can be enlarged by clicking on them. Clicking on highlighted words links to more information. Some names are omitted for privacy.)

No new investigators this week. We had a lot going on, and we ended up in København for two days. Then we had district meeting, which takes all day. I use a little more Danish just because when people speak to me I just respond in Danish. They can try to speak English all they want, but I just answer in Danish and then they finally just switch over to Danish. Comfortable? That’s another story. I'm not fluent or comfortable, but the Lord provides. I am way jealous of Hannah and Jake for the opportunity they have to just learn the language.

Everything is going smoothly, like I said. We were in KBH (Copenhagen) this week. While there, we got to go to the temple. It was so much fun, and it was in Danish. Awesome. I understood most of it. But that’s not hard considering I went so many times before left. So I just knew everything. I love the temple. The one here, on the outside, doesn't look like much, but on the inside it's just as beautiful.

After that we came home. Seven hours of travel, waiting for trains and such. We went to bed, then woke up to go do some service for our friend J**. It was great! We got there and started to help dig a hole in his basement, through 5 inches of cement, then 2 meters down to get a pipe in so that he could drain all the ground water from beneath his house. It took 8 hours, and the hole was only about 50 cm square. I barely fit, but I had to go down to get all the rocks and stuff out once it got deep enough to go in because we could not reach with shovels any more. We never got a picture of how deep it was when we finished. To put it into perspective, the floor was about 2 feet taller than me when finished. It took the rest of my strength to climb out of the stupid hole, but well worth it. It ended up being an all-day project, but a great one at that. So much fun. I was covered, waist deep, in mud and all over my body from the drippings of putting the shovel overhead, one small scoop at a time. I had mud and dirt in places I never thought could hold dirt or mud. But, it did.

After going to the temple and feeling the Spirit so strongly, and then doing service for a whole day, I knew exactly why I was on a mission in Denmark. We are here to show God’s love and give all we have spiritually, mentally, and physically to our brothers and sisters over here. I felt the closest to Christ when I was in a hole 2 meters down, covered in mud, thinking, "Why are we doing this is hard labor?" haha. But J**'s needed this done, and he couldn't do it himself. He works late into the night from 5:30 in the evening to 8 the next morning, and never gets to sleep. I prayed to ask for forgiveness for complaining, even the slightest. I was blessed to serve a fellow brother.

I learned a valuable lesson this week. It is simple, but very powerful. In Danish it's called, "Gør din bedste til din næste." Translated it's, "Do your best to your next." As I think about it, it's probably better understood to mean, "Do your best to those around you." The best is what Christ did. He is walking among us. I see it in my life, and if you look for Him you will, see him in yours too. Do our Father a favor and help your neighbor!

Med Kærlig Hilsen (with love),

Elder Madsen

This is from the man we helped, who we are also teaching. I hope you enjoy it. He wanted to send pictures of his family as well. If it doesn't make perfect sense, it's because he is Danish and his English isn't perfect. He is a great man! 

"Sometimes God sends his Angels to look out for our needs. If you say yes to Jesus, He will never let you down. My name is J** M**. I am married to AK**. We have two girls, ages 3 and 4 1/2 years old.

I trust in God. People say that our family has been through a lot, but the more reason to spend time with God. I am a first lieutenant in the Danish Army, but at the moment I drive a cab in Herning. We are true soldiers of God, but sometimes you need backup. My two brothers are here in the pictures giving what God has taught us: love, thoughtfulness, hard work.

They are not to be called boys after their service to me. They are now to be called men. In my house, they are called brothers of Christ and my friends. God is sometimes hard because he knows what is best for us. I am the same. Again, thanks for your service.

 John 3 :16

With Love,

 JM (First Lieutenant), AK (Designer), IKM (child full of love), NKM (child full of charm)"

It Hailed on Us All the Way Home (January 13, 2014)

Elder Wilsher's Birthday (January 27, 2014)