Email July 21, 2014 – Elder Kenneth Wm. Burton
"When in the work of the Lord the power behind you is always more powerful then the obstacles before you."
Bunch of Burtons
We just received news that Elder Bednar is coming to Denmark and is going to be giving a mission wide conference on September 6th! So many great and exciting things are happening lately! Roomer is Elder Bednar is coming with the Ipads, September is about the time we're scheduled to get them. I didn't expect an Apostle to be coming though, I can't wait to hear his message, the conference with him is going to be two hours and the whole mission is coming even the Icelandic Elders. That's as long as a session of General Conference that we get to listen to one Apostle!
Thanks Dad for the quote you sent from Alex! "As time sweeps us all away let's choose not to lament or mourn it but to savor and enjoy it. The experience of the passage of time is but a one time experience. We only get it while we're here on earth." I had written down the same quote from the letter she wrote and I was just reading it and shared it with my companion this morning. That is one thing I really have been learning on my mission, the importance of using time wisely. Its so hard to do, but can make a huge difference when attempted. Mom mentioned how Dad has been spending every spare minute he can to work on the garage, that's awesome! Imagine how many hours we loose because when we have a few minutes instead of doing something productive we sit and think about all the things we would do if we had more time. Something I've been trying to do lately, not extremely successfully but its improving, is using spare minutes I have during the day, on car rides, at bus stations, or after meals to learn and study. I try to carry a small note book with Danish vocabulary I need to learn, and after meals I read from the books in the Missionary Library. I forget quite a lot to study in the few minute breaks I have, but I am doing better and learning more. Imagine how much we could learn or accomplish if every spare minute was filled with it?
Great story this week, we were stopping by a few potentials in the same area and decided to leave our bikes at the first stop by to walk over to the next. As we walked some how we walked right past the building where our friend lived we realized we had walked to far so we stopped to turn around and I saw a box of random stuff someone had throne out. I walked over to see what was in it and we played with a purple hand for a minute as we talked about what to share with the stop by. I put the hand back in the box and we started walking when a woman called out for us to wait, we turned and a lady was hurrying over from an apartment building. She said she had seen us walk past on many occasions and didn't think we were Jehovah Witnesses so she thought she would ask who we were. We explained how we came from the Church of Jesus Christ to talk with people about our faith and about God and she asked us if we had ever had experience teaching kids, her son, a 6 year old, had been asking about God and her and her husband didn't know how to answer so she was wondering if we could teach him with her and her husband. We got her address and now have a time to go back in a week and a half to teach a family!
I am coming to love this area, there is so much potential! The area has been prepared and is waiting for a spark! We have a goal this week to have 10 other lessons, and its realistic, we will need work hard to set lessons up with everyone, but it can be done. The ward is huge compared to the branch up in Frederikshavn, I had almost forgotten what a normal sized ward was like. Its going to be hard getting to know all the members now. A good challenge I should say.
To answer Dads question, our area is one of the biggest in the mission, we have a car because we drive about 2200 kl every month. Its so nice to have a car, weird too, I hadn't driven in eight months until this week.
I had some problems with my bike, somehow during transfers the plastic guard behind the gears broke and got stuck so that the gears moved with the wheel making it so the peddles moved as it rolled and then when I tried to keep the peddles in place the chain would get way loose and fall off. And then we didn't have any wrenches in our apartment to get the wheel off to fix it so I ended up taking pliers and scissors to the plastic and destroyed it enough that it came off. So now the bike works again I just don't have the plastic guard for the gears. Which I hope wasn't to important.
By the way my eyes are better! After two days of painful zombi eyes that scared everyone away we made it to a doctor and got eye drops, after two more days of that it was gone! I now know why zombies dont like the day light, everthing was so bright I could barely hold my eyes open. We stopped by Tiger and bought me a pair of sunglasses that I wore around for a few days, It kept people from seeing my eyes too so that was good. And now I have sunglasses to where when I drive in the evenings and the sun is blinding.
New quote from Elder Durrant, I cant remember who first said it, "Its better to live a life of oh wells then what ifs". It goes perfectly with missionary work! There are always those last few doors to knock, or small thoughts and promptings that don't make sense, but its better to act on those and think oh well, then to never act and wonder what if I had followed that thought or knocked on that last door. Its happened multiple times this last week where just because we were out working and trying good came out of it. Your led to those who are ready. We were out contacting near the coast, the Fjord in danish, and no one was out, we were making a small loop and as we started some guys up on the hill saw us and they started talking to each other about God, and then at the end of the loop we past them and one called out to us and we ended up having an hour long conversation with this four guys.
Thanks everyone! I cant wait to see what stories I get to write about next week!
Elder Ken Burton
One more thing, I don't know how I forgot this, we found a new investigator named Leif, pronounced Life. We went to stop by a potential and Leif answered the door, he's the landlord I guess, and he said that our friend was still asleep. He asked who we were and we told him, and he aked what makes our church different from others, so we pulled out a Mormons Bog (The Book of Mormon) and he said "I have another Bible too, do you want one?" ... "It has my story in it" our response... "sure... if youll take a Mormons Bog". He went to his car and came out with a bible that had Biker Bible on the front and the cover is a motorcycle picture. Its a bible that has been changed to more modern danish so its easier to read and in the front and back there are photos and stories of all these Biker Christians. Leifs story tells about how he use to be the leader of a motorcycle gang named 666 and then was hit by a car and was in a coma for six weeks. A ton of people prayed for him including this priest who came and prayed over him and he came out of the coma and became a christian. Now he's a part of a christian biker gang and goes to church every Sunday. I'll send photos of the Biker Bible for you to see, we're going to ask for another one so that we can each have one. Its pretty awesome. He did take the Book of Mormon and said he'll try to read it and he'll defiantly pray about it. I guess he's not very good at reading or writing. When we went to leave we asked if we could say a prayer and he said "No! I don't accept prayers from others", we were kind of disappointed and then Elder Durrant asked "would you say a prayer for us?" "Of course of course!" Then he put a hand on each of our shoulders, ask our names and then prayed for us. Interesting. Oh and he wasn't wearing a shirt this whole time and was covered in tattoos, but he's a great guy!
Love you all! Have a great week!
-Elder Ken Burton