Monday, November 24, 2014

Little Sister is Called to Serve - 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.

Elders Madsen and Ogden

Well, well, well, you saw my reaction (Kolby's sister, Maren, received a mission call to the Arkansas Little Rock Mission, speaking Spanish. A family in Denmark allowed him to watch the video of Maren reading her call letter while they videoed Kolby's reaction). My thoughts were, "This is not Denmark!" Just kidding, didn’t even cross my mind. I was just so happy. It was way different because, first of all, Maren’s voice has changed. She sounds like a women now. Second, I just could not believe that was my little sister reading her mission call. It was way different, but I loved it. I am way excited for her. I actually had to watch it like four times for it to sink in.

The best part is that she will be leaving on April 8th...almost exactly 2 years after I left. Crazy how that works. I mean, obviously it could not be exactly two years because it has to be on a certain day,  but it was great to hear. I am so excited for her. It will be good for her to go to Mexico for training. She will pick up the language faster that way. Learning Spanish from people who are native Spanish speakers makes a huge difference. It's something we don’t have as Danish speakers.


After I watched Maren open her call, I had to call President Sederholm right away because he comes from Arkansas, but he lives in the Oklahoma Tulsa mission.  I wouldn’t be surprised if she runs into him at some point though. Anyway, he told me over the phone that I have to go home on the 25th of March, so I can see Maren before she leaves. He was very convincing, plus I want to see her and have the family together for the last time for a while again. So yes, the 25th of March I will be in Salt Lake City with ya´ll. It's way hard because I really thought I had six months left, but it's okay. Everything happens for a reason. Don’t let her go to Hang Time. It’s not worth it!!! (Elder Madsen tore his ACL at Hang Time 6 weeks before leaving on his mission.)

With training and trainers. When you train, it’s like having full responsibility over this person.  You have to make sure they learn how to teach, learn the language, and make sure they are okay at all times. For some reason, as a trainer, you feel like you are responsible for the rest of what this missionary is going to be, what kind of missionary they will be, the fourth missionary or the third missionary. It’s actually quite stressful, and it's funny because you never really fully appreciate what your trainer did for you until you become a trainer. It’s a lot like life in that sense, like parenthood, I am guessing, but don’t know yet. It's another thing that happens on the mission that prepares you for life.

Here's another reason why anyone who has the opportunity to serve a mission should. The Lord works with you in so many ways that you cannot even understand. But yes, training is great, and yes, the relationship is hard at times. But overall if you rely on the Lord and love your companion, the companionship will be a lot better. And you are 100% correct, companionship is everything. The work does not go forward without a great companionship. When it comes to prioritizing as a missionary,  its goes Heavenly Father, mission president, then companionship, then family, and all the other things. The companionship is like the family, the basic unit in which we learn the most and where the most comes from.

We will be spending Thanksgiving with Mark, the American.  It's going to be great. I am really looking forward to it. It's going to be so much fun. Elder Zalewski is my district leader now, and he will be there.

Elder Ogden is doing way well. We have been working way hard this week. So many good things happened. To start off, me and Elder Child contacted this lady who is a priest here in Denmark, for the Church of Denmark. She was way nice. We had a great chat with her.  She said she wanted to have us come back and meet with her, so we did (me and Elder Ogden).  It went way well.  She had some questions about little things, the main differences in our church and the Church of Denmark. It went well, and then we asked her if she had any other questions and she asked, "What do you tell people when they ask you why bad things happen in the world today? Because all around the world people ask this, but here in Denmark they say they don’t believe because of all the bad things that happen to people in the world."

So we told her about how when Adam fell we came into the world in this state and, long story short, we described how in this fallen state we go through hardships to learn and grow, and it's all okay because through the atonement of Jesus Christ everything is made whole. Right after we described this, the Spirit was so strong that we could all feel it. She even said herself that she knows that to be true and that is was well put. Then she said, "Well, I will have to share that when people ask me." My first thought was, well I am glad that we just taught a learned priest how to do their job. But I was completely okay with it because I realized that if this answer will help some other people have faith enough to start following a church, like the Church of Denmark, then when these people run into some Mormon missionaries down the road, they may feel the same truth in the words that are said. It was a great eye opener for me. It’s like we could see that no effort is wasted by having a glimpse of what could come from this little conversation. It was great. She said she is way busy because it's Christmas time, but she wants us to visit afterward and continue meeting with her.

We also had an appointment with our friend, M**.  She had a pretty rough week, but she was excited to come to church and it was great. We talked about her baptism and how she will have to come to church, and we still have something to teach her.  She said she was actually going to ask us if we could move the date, so we did, to the 13th of December. She is so solid, came to church yesterday and she loved it. She even set up an appointment with us today so we can meet with her again. She has a really good relationship with the members as well. Again, member missionary work is the only way this works!

Such  a great week! We got some serious work in. I have never taught so many lessons in my life in one week. It was so great.  The hastening, again, is just going forward. We are super excited for the things to come. Maren is entering the mission at such a great time. She is going to see so many great things happen. I am so excited for her. I know that this church is true.

We actually came across  a Mormon Message the other day that I would like to invite you all to watch. You can YouTube it or watch it on Mormon Channel. Here's a link.

Consider how this reflects your life and apply the principles of what you can do with your challenges!

Med Kærlig Hilsen,

Ældste Madsen

Just Another Way of Saying Opportunity (November 17, 2014)

Following the Spirit  (December 1, 2014)