This week we taught some religious classes to some gymnasiet (Gymnasiet is a school between high school and college (Högskolan or Universitet) where you kind of pick a major and take classes based on said major.) aged kids (16-19). We taught the restoration and the plan of Salvation to them. Swedes are very inward and closed, its kind of funny. We had to tell them at the beginning of the class, don't be Swedes, you can be Americans or Englishmen. You can choose, but for the next hour you are not Swedes. They all laughed because they know its true. You will never see random Swedes conversing. And new missionaries always ask, how can I fit in best? And you always have to tell them sorry, you cant, your gonna be talking to people, and swedes just don't do that. Everyone picks us out as foreign as soon as we open our mouth. About half is because a real Swedish accent is near impossible for foreigners but the other is because we are opening our mouth.
This week we had a lesson where someone brought up passion. And how Mormons lack passion because we have rules. I think back to a scripture which helped me when I thought the same thing. When I thought rules limited passion, limited emotion. The scripture that helped me comes from Alma chapter 38 verse 12. "Use Boldness, but not overbearing." It is important to be bold and direct when preaching the gospel but not overbearing. To remain Christ like in our teaching methods and delivery is important. It then says "and also see that you bridle all your passions, that ye may be filled with love; see that ye refrain from idleness." A lot of people say that there is no passion when you follow certain rules and don't participate in certain activities. Passion can be more then a force for instinct, passion can be a force to bring to pass much good. As long as passion is bridled it can be of great use. When filled with love for everyone on earth a passion inspired within us and it has the power to keep us from idleness.
I have also become addicted to the baked goods called Semlors that swedes make around the early spring season, which to me, still looks like the dead of winter. Between Semlor and Marabou chocolates you need to make the most of your exercise time as a missionary.
A man we are teaching named Chris said he would be baptized on the 16th of March. We are hoping he receives his confirmation long before that date. He is an amazing släkt förskning person. Or like a family history researcher. He knows a lot about Scottish history. On my moms side of the family we have an old line that had been in New York years before the founding of America named the Mcbride's. Their mostly Irish but a bit of them come from Scotland and since one of our visits he traced them back to the old Macdonald clan in Scotland and showed me what their Tartan looks like. He is very talented at family history and quite an interesting man to talk to.
The work is hard, but we're always moving as long as someones willing to listen. It makes me happy to help other people regardless of the ways we help them. Sometimes it means bringing in wood, shoveling the walks, or teaching a class. I'm just happy to be here.